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Jeremy Butterfield [118]Jeremy N. Butterfield [3]
  1. Less is Different: Emergence and Reduction Reconciled. [REVIEW]Jeremy Butterfield - 2011 - Foundations of Physics 41 (6):1065-1135.
    This is a companion to another paper. Together they rebut two widespread philosophical doctrines about emergence. The first, and main, doctrine is that emergence is incompatible with reduction. The second is that emergence is supervenience; or more exactly, supervenience without reduction.In the other paper, I develop these rebuttals in general terms, emphasising the second rebuttal. Here I discuss the situation in physics, emphasising the first rebuttal. I focus on limiting relations between theories and illustrate my claims with four examples, each (...)
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  2. Emergence, Reduction and Supervenience: A Varied Landscape. [REVIEW]Jeremy Butterfield - 2011 - Foundations of Physics 41 (6):920-959.
    This is one of two papers about emergence, reduction and supervenience. It expounds these notions and analyses the general relations between them. The companion paper analyses the situation in physics, especially limiting relations between physical theories. I shall take emergence as behaviour that is novel and robust relative to some comparison class. I shall take reduction as deduction using appropriate auxiliary definitions. And I shall take supervenience as a weakening of reduction, viz. to allow infinitely long definitions. The overall claim (...)
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  3. The Hole Truth.Jeremy Butterfield - 1989 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 40 (1):1-28.
  4.  73
    Comparing Dualities and Gauge Symmetries.Sebastian De Haro, Nicholas Teh & Jeremy N. Butterfield - 2017 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 59:68-80.
    We discuss some aspects of the relation between dualities and gauge symmetries. Both of these ideas are of course multi-faceted, and we confine ourselves to making two points. Both points are about dualities in string theory, and both have the ‘flavour’ that two dual theories are ‘closer in content’ than you might think. For both points, we adopt a simple conception of a duality as an ‘isomorphism’ between theories: more precisely, as appropriate bijections between the two theories’ sets of states (...)
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  5.  48
    A Schema for Duality, Illustrated by Bosonization.Sebastian De Haro & Jeremy Butterfield - unknown
    In this paper we present a schema for describing dualities between physical theories, and illustrate it in detail with the example of bosonization: a boson-fermion duality in two-dimensional quantum field theory. The schema develops proposals in De Haro : these proposals include construals of notions related to duality, like representation, model, symmetry and interpretation. The aim of the schema is to give a more precise criterion for duality than has so far been considered. The bosonization example, or boson-fermion duality, has (...)
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  6. On Kinds of Indiscernibility in Logic and Metaphysics.Adam Caulton & Jeremy Butterfield - 2012 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (1):27-84.
    Using the Hilbert-Bernays account as a spring-board, we first define four ways in which two objects can be discerned from one another, using the non-logical vocabulary of the language concerned. Because of our use of the Hilbert-Bernays account, these definitions are in terms of the syntax of the language. But we also relate our definitions to the idea of permutations on the domain of quantification, and their being symmetries. These relations turn out to be subtle---some natural conjectures about them are (...)
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  7. Against Pointillisme About Mechanics.Jeremy Butterfield - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (4):709-753.
    This paper forms part of a wider campaign: to deny pointillisme, the doctrine that a physical theory's fundamental quantities are defined at points of space or of spacetime, and represent intrinsic properties of such points or point-sized objects located there; so that properties of spatial or spatiotemporal regions and their material contents are determined by the point-by-point facts. More specifically, this paper argues against pointillisme about the concept of velocity in classical mechanics; especially against proposals by Tooley, Robinson and Lewis. (...)
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  8.  30
    On Dualities and Equivalences Between Physical Theories.Jeremy Butterfield - forthcoming - In Christian Wüthrich, Baptiste Le Bihan & Nick Huggett (eds.), Philosophy Beyond Spacetime. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    The main aim of this paper is to make a remark about the relation between dualities between theories, as `duality' is understood in physics and equivalence of theories, as `equivalence' is understood in logic and philosophy. The remark is that in physics, two theories can be dual, and accordingly get called `the same theory', though we interpret them as disagreeing---so that they are certainly not equivalent, as `equivalent' is normally understood. So the remark is simple: but, I shall argue, worth (...)
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  9. On the Emergence of Time in Quantum Gravity.Jeremy Butterfield & Chris Isham - 1999 - In The Arguments of Time. Published for the British Academy by Oxford University Press. pp. 111--168.
    We discuss from a philosophical perspective the way in which the normal concept of time might be said to `emerge' in a quantum theory of gravity. After an introduction, we briefly discuss the notion of emergence, without regard to time. We then introduce the search for a quantum theory of gravity ; and review some general interpretative issues about space, time and matter. We then discuss the emergence of time in simple quantum geometrodynamics, and in the Euclidean approach. Section 6 (...)
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  10. Bell’s Theorem: What It Takes.Jeremy Butterfield - 1992 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 43 (1):41-83.
    I compare deterministic and stochastic hidden variable models of the Bell experiment, exphasising philosophical distinctions between the various ways of combining conditionals and probabilities. I make four main claims. (1) Under natural assumptions, locality as it occurs in these models is equivalent to causal independence, as analysed (in the spirit of Lewis) in terms of probabilities and conditionals. (2) Stochastic models are indeed more general than deterministic ones. (3) For factorizable stochastic models, relativity's lack of superluminal causation does not favour (...)
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  11.  50
    On Symmetry and Duality.Sebastian De Haro & Jeremy Butterfield - forthcoming - Synthese 198 (4):2973-3013.
    We advocate an account of dualities between physical theories: the basic idea is that dual theories are isomorphic representations of a common core. We defend and illustrate this account, which we call a Schema, in relation to symmetries. Overall, the account meshes well with standard treatments of symmetries. But the distinction between the common core and the dual theories prompts a distinction between three kinds of symmetry: which we call ‘stipulated’, ‘accidental’ and ‘proper’.
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  12. Spacetime and the Philosophical Challenge of Quantum Gravity.Jeremy Butterfield & Chris Isham - 2001 - In Physics Meets Philosophy at the Panck Scale. Cambridge University Press.
    We survey some philosophical aspects of the search for a quantum theory of gravity, emphasising how quantum gravity throws into doubt the treatment of spacetime common to the two `ingredient theories' (quantum theory and general relativity), as a 4-dimensional manifold equipped with a Lorentzian metric. After an introduction (Section 1), we briefly review the conceptual problems of the ingredient theories (Section 2) and introduce the enterprise of quantum gravity (Section 3). We then describe how three main research programmes in quantum (...)
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  13. Symmetries and Paraparticles as a Motivation for Structuralism.Adam Caulton & Jeremy Butterfield - 2012 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (2):233-285.
    This article develops an analogy proposed by Stachel between general relativity (GR) and quantum mechanics (QM) as regards permutation invariance. Our main idea is to overcome Pooley's criticism of the analogy by appeal to paraparticles. In GR, the equations are (the solution space is) invariant under diffeomorphisms permuting spacetime points. Similarly, in QM the equations are invariant under particle permutations. Stachel argued that this feature—a theory's ‘not caring which point, or particle, is which’—supported a structuralist ontology. Pooley criticizes this analogy: (...)
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  14. Reduction, Emergence, and Renormalization.Jeremy Butterfield - 2014 - Journal of Philosophy 111 (1):5-49.
    In previous work, I described several examples combining reduction and emergence: where reduction is understood a la Ernest Nagel, and emergence is understood as behaviour that is novel. Here, my aim is again to reconcile reduction and emergence, for a case which is apparently more problematic than those I treated before: renormalization. My main point is that renormalizability being a generic feature at accessible energies gives us a conceptually unified family of Nagelian reductions. That is worth saying since philosophers tend (...)
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  15. Stochastic Einstein Locality Revisited.Jeremy Butterfield - 2007 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 58 (4):805-867.
    I discuss various formulations of stochastic Einstein locality (SEL), which is a version of the idea of relativistic causality, that is, the idea that influences propagate at most as fast as light. SEL is similar to Reichenbach's Principle of the Common Cause (PCC), and Bell's Local Causality. My main aim is to discuss formulations of SEL for a fixed background spacetime. I previously argued that SEL is violated by the outcome dependence shown by Bell correlations, both in quantum mechanics and (...)
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  16. Interpretation and Identity in Quantum Theory.Jeremy Butterfield - 1993 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 24 (3):443--76.
  17.  56
    Renormalization for Philosophers.Jeremy Butterfield & Nazim Bouatta - unknown
    We have two aims. The main one is to expound the idea of renormalization in quantum field theory, with no technical prerequisites. Our motivation is that renormalization is undoubtedly one of the great ideas—and great successes--of twentieth-century physics. Also it has strongly influenced in diverse ways, how physicists conceive of physical theories. So it is of considerable philosophical interest. Second, we will briefly relate renormalization to Ernest Nagel's account of inter-theoretic relations, especially reduction. One theme will be a contrast between (...)
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  18.  16
    The Structure of Time.Jeremy Butterfield & W. H. Newton-Smith - 1983 - Philosophical Review 92 (3):468.
  19. Seeing the Present.Jeremy Butterfield - 1984 - Mind 93 (370):161-176.
  20. Some Worlds of Quantum Theory.Jeremy Butterfield - 2001 - In R. J. Russell, N. Murphy & C. J. Isham (eds.), Quantum Physics and Divine Action. Vatican Observatory Publications. pp. 111--140.
    Abstract: This paper assesses the Everettian approach to the measurement problem, especially the version of that approach advocated by Simon Saunders and David Wallace. I emphasise conceptual, indeed metaphysical, aspects rather than technical ones; but I include an introductory exposition of decoherence. In particular, I discuss whether---as these authors maintain---it is acceptable to have no precise definition of 'branch' (in the Everettian kind of sense). (A version of this paper will appear in a CTNS/Vatican Observatory volume on Quantum Theory and (...)
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  21.  40
    Emergence and Reduction Combined in Phase Transitions.Jeremy Butterfield & Nazim Bouatta - unknown
    In another paper, one of us argued that emergence and reduction are compatible, and presented four examples illustrating both. The main purpose of this paper is to develop this position for the example of phase transitions. We take it that emergence involves behaviour that is novel compared with what is expected: often, what is expected from a theory of the system's microscopic constituents. We take reduction as deduction, aided by appropriate definitions. Then the main idea of our reconciliation of emergence (...)
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  22.  58
    Conceptual Aspects of Gauge/Gravity Duality.Sebastian de Haro, Daniel Mayerson & Jeremy Butterfield - 2016 - Foundations of Physics 46 (11):1381-1425.
    We give an introductory review of gauge/gravity duality, and associated ideas of holography, emphasising the conceptual aspects. The opening sections gather the ingredients, viz. anti-de Sitter spacetime, conformal field theory and string theory, that we need for presenting, in Sect. 5, the central and original example: Maldacena’s AdS/CFT correspondence. Sections 6 and 7 develop the ideas of this example, also in applications to condensed matter systems, QCD, and hydrodynamics. Sections 8 and 9 discuss the possible extensions of holographic ideas to (...)
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  23.  26
    Laws, Causation and Dynamics at Different Levels.Jeremy Butterfield - 2012 - Interface Focus 2 (1):101-114.
    I have two main aims. The first is general, and more philosophical. The second is specific, and more closely related to physics. The first aim is to state my general views about laws and causation at different ”levels’. The main task is to understand how the higher levels sustain notions of law and causation that ”ride free’ of reductions to the lower level or levels. I endeavour to relate my views to those of other symposiasts. The second aim is to (...)
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  24. On Under-Determination in Cosmology.Jeremy Butterfield - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 46 (1):57-69.
    I discuss how modern cosmology illustrates under-determination of theoretical hypotheses by data, in ways that are different from most philosophical discussions. I emphasise cosmology's concern with what data could in principle be collected by a single observer ; and I give a broadly sceptical discussion of cosmology's appeal to the cosmological principle as a way of breaking the under-determination.I confine most of the discussion to the history of the observable universe from about one second after the Big Bang, as described (...)
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  25. Underdetermination in Cosmology: An Invitation.Jeremy Butterfield - 2012 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 86 (1):1-18.
    I discuss how modern cosmology illustrates underdetermination of theoretical hypotheses by data, in ways that are different from most philosophical discussions. I confine the discussion to the history of the observable universe from about one second after the Big Bang, as described by the mainstream cosmological model: in effect, what cosmologists in the early 1970s dubbed the ‘standard model’, as elaborated since then. Or rather, the discussion is confined to a few aspects of that history. I emphasize that despite the (...)
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  26. David Lewis Meets John Bell.Jeremy Butterfield - 1992 - Philosophy of Science 59 (1):26-43.
    The violation of the Bell inequality means that measurement-results in the two wings of the experiment cannot be screened off from one another, in the sense of Reichenbach. But does this mean that there is causation between the results? I argue that it does, according to Lewis's counterfactual analysis of causation and his associated views. The reason lies in his doctrine that chances evolve by conditionalization on intervening history. This doctrine collapses the distinction between the conditional probabilities that are used (...)
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  27.  39
    Strange Positions.Gordon Fleming & Jeremy Butterfield - 1999 - In Jeremy Butterfield & Constantine Pagonis (eds.), From Physics to Philosophy. Cambridge University Press. pp. 108--165.
    The current status of localization and related concepts, especially localized statevectors and position operators, within Lorentz-invariant Quantum Theory (LIQT) is ambiguous and controversial.1 Ever since the early work of Newton & Wigner (1949), and the subsequent extensions of their work, particularly by Hegerfeldt (1974, 1985), it has seemed impossible to identify localized statevectors or position operators in LIQT that were not counterintuitive—strange—in one way or another; the most striking strange property being the superluminal propagation of the localized states. The ambiguous (...)
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  28.  94
    Reconsidering Relativistic Causality.Jeremy Butterfield - 2007 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 21 (3):295 – 328.
    I discuss the idea of relativistic causality, i.e., the requirement that causal processes or signals can propagate only within the light-cone. After briefly locating this requirement in the philosophy of causation, my main aim is to draw philosophers' attention to the fact that it is subtle, indeed problematic, in relativistic quantum physics: there are scenarios in which it seems to fail. I set aside two such scenarios, which are familiar to philosophers of physics: the pilot-wave approach, and the Newton-Wigner representation. (...)
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  29. Whither the Minds?Jeremy Butterfield - 1996 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 47 (2):200-221.
  30. The Rotating Discs Argument Defeated.Jeremy Butterfield - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (1):1-45.
    The rotating discs argument against perdurantism has been mostly discussed by metaphysicians, though the argument of course appeals to ideas from classical mechanics, especially about rotation. In contrast, I assess the RDA from the perspective of the philosophy of physics. I argue for three main conclusions. The first conclusion is that the RDA can be formulated more strongly than is usually recognized: it is not necessary to ‘imagine away’ the dynamical effects of rotation. The second is that in general relativity, (...)
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  31. The End of Time?Jeremy Butterfield - 2002 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 53 (2):289--330.
    I discuss Julian Barbour's Machian theories of dynamics, and his proposal that a Machian perspective enables one to solve the problem of time in quantum geometrodynamics (by saying that there is no time!). I concentrate on his recent book, The End of Time (1999). A shortened version will appear in The British Journal for Philosophy of Science}.
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  32.  50
    On Emergence in Gauge Theories at the ’T Hooft Limit‘.Nazim Bouatta & Jeremy Butterfield - 2015 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 5 (1):55-87.
    Quantum field theories are notoriously difficult to understand, physically as well as philosophically. The aim of this paper is to contribute to a better conceptual understanding of gauge quantum field theories, such as quantum chromodynamics, by discussing a famous physical limit, the ’t Hooft limit, in which the theory concerned often simplifies. The idea of the limit is that the number N of colours goes to infinity. The simplifications that can happen in this limit, and that we will consider, are: (...)
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  33.  97
    On Symplectic Reduction in Classical Mechanics.Jeremy Butterfield - unknown
    This paper expounds the modern theory of symplectic reduction in finite-dimensional Hamiltonian mechanics. This theory generalizes the well-known connection between continuous symmetries and conserved quantities, i.e. Noether's theorem. It also illustrates one of mechanics' grand themes: exploiting a symmetry so as to reduce the number of variables needed to treat a problem. The exposition emphasises how the theory provides insights about the rotation group and the rigid body. The theory's device of quotienting a state space also casts light on philosophical (...)
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  34.  88
    A Topos Perspective on the Kochen-Specker Theorem: I. Quantum States as Generalised Valuations.Chris Isham & Jeremy Butterfield - unknown
    Any attempt to construct a realist interpretation of quantum theory founders on the Kochen-Specker theorem, which asserts the impossibility of assigning values to quantum quantities in a way that preserves functional relations between them. We construct a new type of valuation which is defined on all operators, and which respects an appropriate version of the functional composition principle. The truth-values assigned to propositions are (i) contextual; and (ii) multi-valued, where the space of contexts and the multi-valued logic for each context (...)
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  35. On the Persistence of Particles.Jeremy Butterfield - 2004 - Foundations of Physics 35 (2):233-269.
    This paper is about the metaphysical debate whether objects persist over time by the selfsame object existing at different times (nowadays called “endurance” by metaphysicians), or by different temporal parts, or stages, existing at different times (called “perdurance”). I aim to illuminate the debate by using some elementary kinematics and real analysis: resources which metaphysicians have, surprisingly, not availed themselves of. There are two main results, which are of interest to both endurantists and perdurantists. (1) I describe a precise formal (...)
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  36.  39
    Scientific Realism and Primordial Cosmology.Feraz Azhar & Jeremy Butterfield - unknown
    We discuss scientific realism from the perspective of modern cosmology, especially primordial cosmology: i.e. the cosmological investigation of the very early universe. We first state our allegiance to scientific realism, and discuss what insights about it cosmology might yield, as against "just" supplying scientific claims that philosophers can then evaluate. In particular, we discuss: the idea of laws of cosmology, and limitations on ascertaining the global structure of spacetime. Then we review some of what is now known about the early (...)
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  37.  31
    On the Relation Between Dualities and Gauge Symmetries.Sebastian de Haro, Nicholas Teh & Jeremy Butterfield - 2016 - Philosophy of Science 83 (5):1059-1069.
    We make two points about dualities in string theory. The first point is that the conception of duality, which we will discuss, meshes with two dual theories being ‘gauge related’ in the general philosophical sense of being physically equivalent. The second point is a result about gauge/gravity duality that shows its relation to gauge symmetries to be subtler than one might expect: each of a certain class of gauge symmetries in the gravity theory, that is, diffeomorphisms, is related to a (...)
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  38.  94
    Determinism and Probability in Physics.Peter Clark & Jeremy Butterfield - 1987 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society, Supplementary Volumes( 61:185-243.
  39.  3
    The Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics: An Interactive Interpretation.Jeremy Butterfield & Richard Healey - 1992 - Philosophical Review 101 (4):911.
  40.  54
    Relationism and Possible Worlds.Jeremy Butterfield - 1984 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 35 (2):101-113.
    Relationism claims that our physical theory does not commit us to spacetime points. I consider how a relationist might rewrite physical theories without referring to spacetime points, by appealing to possible objects and possible configurations of objects. I argue that a number of difficulties confront this project. I also argue that a relationist need not be Machian in the sense of claiming that objects' spatiotemporal relations determine whether any object is accelerating.
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  41. Nonlocal Influences and Possible Worlds—A Stapp in the Wrong Direction.Robert K. Clifton, Jeremy N. Butterfield & Michael L. G. Redhead - 1990 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 41 (1):5-58.
    give a proof of the existence of nonlocal influences acting on correlated spin-1/2 particles in the singlet state which does not require any particular interpretation of quantum mechanics (QM). (Except Stapp holds that the proof fails under a many-worlds interpretation of QM—a claim we analyse in 1.2.) Recently, in responding to Redhead's ([1987], pp. 90-6) criticism that the Stapp 1 proof fails under an indeterministic interpretation of QM, Stapp [1989] (henceforth Stapp 2), has revised the logical structure of his proof (...)
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  42. Against Pointillisme About Geometry.Jeremy Butterfield - 2005 - In Michael Stöltzner & Friedrich Stadler (eds.), Time and History: Proceedings of the 28. International Ludwig Wittgenstein Symposium, Kirchberg Am Wechsel, Austria 2005. De Gruyter. pp. 181-222.
    This paper forms part of a wider campaign: to deny pointillisme. That is the doctrine that a physical theory's fundamental quantities are defined at points of space or of spacetime, and represent intrinsic properties of such points or point-sized objects located there; so that properties of spatial or spatiotemporal regions and their material contents are determined by the point-by-point facts. More specifically, this paper argues against pointillisme about the structure of space and-or spacetime itself, especially a paper by Bricker (1993). (...)
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  43. Seeing the Present.Jeremy Butterfield - 1998 - In Robin Le Poidevin (ed.), Mind. Oxford: Clarendon Press. pp. 161-176.
  44. Spatial and Temporal Parts.Jeremy Butterfield - 1985 - Philosophical Quarterly 35 (138):32-44.
  45.  34
    On Time in Quantum Physics.Jeremy Butterfield - unknown
    First, I briefly review the different conceptions of time held by three rival interpretations of quantum theory: the collapse of the wave-packet, the pilot-wave interpretation, and the Everett interpretation. Then I turn to a much less controversial task: to expound the recent understanding of the time-energy uncertainty principle, and indeed of uncertainty principles in general, that has been established by such authors as Busch, Hilgevoord and Uffink. Although this may at first seem a narrow topic, I point out connections to (...)
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  46.  33
    Assessing the Montevideo Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics.Jeremy Butterfield - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 52 (Part A):75-85.
    This paper gives a philosophical assessment of the Montevideo interpretation of quantum theory, advocated by Gambini, Pullin and co-authors. This interpretation has the merit of linking its proposal about how to solve the measurement problem to the search for quantum gravity: namely by suggesting that quantum gravity makes for fundamental limitations on the accuracy of clocks, which imply a type of decoherence that “collapses the wave-packet”. I begin by sketching the topics of decoherence, and quantum clocks, on which the interpretation (...)
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  47.  4
    Emergence and Correspondence for String Theory Black Holes.Jeroen van Dongen, Sebastian De Haro, Manus Visser & Jeremy Butterfield - forthcoming - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics.
  48.  13
    Truth and Interpretation: Perspectives on the Philosophy of Donald Davidson.Jeremy Butterfield & Ernest Lepore - 1989 - Philosophical Review 98 (1):107.
  49.  40
    Albert Einstein Meets David Lewis.Jeremy Butterfield - 1988 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1988:65-81.
    I reject Norton and Earman's hole argument that spacetime substantivalism is incompatible with determinism. I reconcile these both technically and philosophically. There is a technical definition of determinism that is not violated by pairs of models of the kind used in the hole argument. And technicalities aside, the basic idea of determinism is not violated if we claim that at most one of the two models represents a possible world. This claim can be justified either by metrical essentialism, or by (...)
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  50. On Symmetry and Conserved Quantities in Classical Mechanics.Jeremy Butterfield - unknown
    This paper expounds the relations between continuous symmetries and conserved quantities, i.e. Noether's ``first theorem'', in both the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian frameworks for classical mechanics. This illustrates one of mechanics' grand themes: exploiting a symmetry so as to reduce the number of variables needed to treat a problem. I emphasise that, for both frameworks, the theorem is underpinned by the idea of cyclic coordinates; and that the Hamiltonian theorem is more powerful. The Lagrangian theorem's main ``ingredient'', apart from cyclic coordinates, (...)
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