This tag is for questions relating to what, if anything, the quantum mechanical formalism and experimental results say about the way the world works.

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Why does the Copenhagen interpretation assert randomness if this cannot be tested?

Why does the Copenhagen interpretation of QM assert that random events occur if such a claim cannot ever be proven or disproven? A related question: How to tell if QM is really random? Edit On ...
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1answer
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Does Hardy's paradox represent a proof against Bohm's interpretation of the quantum mechanics?

This is a thought-experiment, see "Quantum Mechanics, Local Realistic Theories, and Lorentz-Invariant Realistic Theories", Phys. Rev. Lett., Vol. 68, No. 20, page 2981, year 1992, that rules out local ...
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1answer
154 views

What obstacles does de Broglie's pilot theory have to overcome? [duplicate]

I have been reading through a Wired article on pilot wave theory which talks about new evidence in support of Louis de Broglie's concept of pilot theory through experiments showing that the droplet in ...
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1answer
119 views

Argument for proving that the universe must be indeterministic [duplicate]

Can there exist an argument that could be used for proving that the universe is indeterministic? If this one seems to be too strict (rigorous), I would also be interested to know a 1-sentence ...
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2answers
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Unitarity and measurement

I used to believe that the wavefunction collapse came from the interaction of the system we want to measure {S} with the measurement apparatus {M} : {S} undergoing a non unitary transformation, but ...
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Many Worlds or Infinite Worlds?

Looking at the latest paper to deal with the topic: where it purports to show that QM can be recovered from the interactions of a multitude of Newtonian worlds, we have the following statements: ...
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46 views

Arrow of Time in Information transfer

I am writing a sci-fi script and need some legitimate theory to back up a central story element (so there's no real world application): Could there be a logically consistent theory supporting the ...
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85 views

I don't get the concept of “God plays with dice” - In what scenario is it proven that he does? [duplicate]

Does God Play With Dice? by Stephen Hawking I am no physicists, but I don't get the concept of God playing with dice. Logic shows me that the entire universe is calculated very precisely according ...
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1answer
106 views

Atom in a box and collapse of the wave-function

Suppose I have an atom trapped in an optically transparent box. I'm assuming the atom is bouncing off of the walls and not bonding, i.e. the center of mass of the atom experiences a square well. Now ...
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37 views

How would the transactional interpretation “bootstrap”

I have an interest in quantum physics and have been trying to educate myself here, other places on line and by reading "The Quantum Universe". During this process I became quite drawn to the ...
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67 views

Bell's inequality

For a project, I'm planning to study Bell's inequality, which as far as I can gather is taken to rule out hidden variable theories of QM. I'm looking for recommendations of decent sources which derive ...
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3answers
196 views

What is the best article presenting counterarguments to a many-world interpretation? [duplicate]

I'd like to see a clear overview of why the many-world interpretation (WWI) of quantum is wrong, written by someone who believes that. This would be aimed at a technically aware audience, yet as an ...
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1answer
124 views

Entanglement distillation - Interpreting a protocol

I have a general question regarding the interpretation of a enganglement distillation protocol. In general you have a set of entanglet qubit pairs in a Werner-state. Point of matter of this is that I ...
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3answers
274 views

A question on quantum computing and de Broglie's pilot wave theory

I don't know much about quantum computing except what I have read about on wiki and popsci. I have been reading about the de Broglie-Bohm pilot wave theory and how they describe quantum mechanics in ...
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0answers
20 views

A question on quantum computing? [duplicate]

I dont know much about quantum computing except what i have read about on wiki and popsci. I have been reading about the de broglie-bohm pilot wave theory and how they describe quantum mechanics in ...
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4answers
522 views

Quantum mechanics threshold

First of all I beg your forgiveness as I am not a physicist and the question I am going to ask may sound silly. I am aware that beyond a certain threshold in the hierarchy of building blocks of ...
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2answers
147 views

What is a measurement in MWI

I was reviewing the MWI, and couldn't figure what a measurement is in the MWI? Everett claims that split happens when you measure, but what is it for MWI (not for general QM)? Yes, I know about ...
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2answers
153 views

Copenhagen interpretation

Reading some science history, Werner Heisenberg and Bohr created the Copenhagen interpretation, but what I didn't get is how can we connect this interpretation to Schroedinger's cat and the double ...
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439 views

Are different interpretations of quantum mechanics empirically distinguishable?

Are the different interpretations of Quantum mechanics just different viewpoints of the same physical reality? Or can experiments distinguish them? Are they empirically distinguishable or not? I have ...
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3answers
222 views

The need for a 'particle description' of electrons

Is there any phenomenon where the 'wave description' of the electron's motion is not applicable? The reason for this question is to find out if there are any situations were quantum wave theories ...
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178 views

Are universally valid possibilistic theories possible?

This is a spin-off of the following question: Are Thomas Breuer's subjective decoherence and Scott Aaronson's freebits with knightian freedom the same things in essence? Given that Thomas ...
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1answer
71 views

Hugh Everett's MWI [closed]

According to Hugh Everett's many worlds interpretation, all the possibilities of one action can happen at the same time in other parallel universes, so how come we can't see these worlds? now I bumped ...
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2answers
343 views

Does a wavefunction interact with itself?

Considering the double slit experiment with a charged particle, after the particle passes through the slits, do the two portions of the wavefunctions feel the electromagnetic attraction of the other ...
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1answer
103 views

Mainstream view on the measurement problem

What is the modern mainstream way to deal with the measurement problem? For this question, the measurement problem is the problem of formalizing wave function collapse when the observer is part of the ...
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Books on foundations of QM [duplicate]

I am seeking for books on foundations of Quantum Mechanics with subjects like the EPR experiment, Bell's theorem, the problem of measurement, entanglement, decoherence, nonlocality, interpretations, ...
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16 views

Quantum observation in the double slit experiment? [duplicate]

As far as quantum observation, when a human observes electrons going through the double whole experiment, have scientist tried having a blind person observe the experiment to see if the electrons ...
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1answer
131 views

Is there an absolute minimum scale to the universe? If so, why?

Based on my rather circumscribed understanding of modern physics, one of the key insights of quantum mechanics over previous scientific theories is the prediction that there exists an absolute limit ...
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Is relational QM experimentally distinguishable from standard QM?

Some people advocate for relational quantum mechanics, which is an interpretation (or at least Wikipedia calls it an interpretation) of QM where quantum states are thought of as representing a ...
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2answers
533 views

How could the multiverse theory be disproven?

Theorists (physicists) suggest that there is the term/entity, the Multiverse that contains a huge number of universes not necessarily like our own. I personally find this theory very elegant because ...
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1answer
123 views

Decoherence in Everett quantum mechanics

Take an initial state and its environment, $E$, as follows, $$ |\psi\rangle_i = |0\rangle |E\rangle + \sqrt{2}|1\rangle |E\rangle. $$ Suppose that I've written it already in the basis in which the ...
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107 views

Is frequency or Bayesian interpretation used in quantum mechanics?

In quantum mechanics, we discussed about probability. There are two kinds of interpretations: frequency and Bayesian. Which one is actually used in quantum mechanics? My impression is, it doesn't ...
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2answers
143 views

Logic of the 'imaginary wave function collapse' argument in Double Slit experiment

My question is in regards to the stance that the 'wave function collapse' is not an actual physical occurrence. That is, you are not, by observation, changing the particles position from a wave to a ...
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1answer
127 views

Are only 2 bits of information transmitted in quantum teleportation?

Prompted by the recent success in Delft, I've been reading a number of papers and articles about quantum teleportation. I'm comfortable with my understanding of most aspects but haven't found much ...
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1answer
534 views

Interpretations of quantum mechanics

It is well known that there are many interpretations of quantum mechanics. I'm wondering if there is a specific reason why the Copenhagen interpretation is the most popular. Why is it that the ...
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193 views

Does processing for a quantum computer take place in other universes?

Apologies in advance if my question seems misinformed. I am a software developer, and neither quantum mechanics nor physics are my specialties. From ...
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403 views

What's wrong with this experiment showing that either FTL communication is possible or complementarity doesn't hold?

The assumptions are: Alice and Bob have perfectly synchronized clocks Alice and Bob have successfully exchanged a pair of entangled photons The idea is simply to have Alice and Bob perform the ...
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6answers
507 views

Could this mean that Schrodinger's Cat thought experiment is false?

Since it is uncertain on whether or not the cat could be dead or alive, it is concluded that it depends on the observer to make it either dead or alive. But lets look at a clock. It doesn't take ...
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61 views

Quantum entanglement, principle of locality and speed of light

I know it's a newbie question but I was wondering about how the principle of locality and the speed of light's limit fit with the phenomena of quantum entanglement? I've read that, due to Bell's ...
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Could the space outside the observable universe be entangled?

The title really says it all. One follow-up question is: How could one falsify this?
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606 views

Box normalization

Whenever we study free fields, the solutions of these fields (or particles, whatever feels most comfortable) are always given by plane waves. The dispersion-relation $\omega=\omega(k)$ will of course ...
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578 views

Double slit experiment and single particles. Is the wave function just a mathematical model?

I really do want to apologize in advance, I know this question has been 'answered' before. I have this 'problem' of feeling negatively toward much of today's 'mystical' interpretations of physics, ...
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Books about alternative interpretations of quantum mechanics

Recently I've heard that there exist alternative interpretations of quantum mechanics which, while not as widespread as the Copenhagen intepretation (or so it would seem), are equally valid in the ...
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123 views

Can the Lorentz force stabilize the Hydrogen atom?

I've recently been working on relative equilibria for some systems of particles. (ie. studying equilibrium solutions in a rotating frame. Saturn's rings for example.) This has evolved into some ...
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307 views

“Consciousness causes collapse”-interpretation or free will excluded by quantum zeno effect? [closed]

This question is if the von Neumann–Wigner interpretation, aka "consciousness cause collapse" (see e.g. John von Neumann's 1932 book The Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics) is compatible ...
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96 views

Under what circumstances is observing a superposition possible?

According to Ian Stewart's 2013 Symmetry: A Very Short Introduction (pp. 119-120), Experiment and theory suggest that superposed states should not be observable as such; only individual ...
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3answers
303 views

What happens with a tunneling particle when its momentum is imaginary in QM?

In classical mechanics the motion of a particle is bounded if it is trapped in a potential well. In quantum mechanics this is no longer the case and there is a non zero probability of the particle to ...
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3answers
223 views

Are there any QM effects where charged particles are not intimately involved?

Are there any QM effects that have been/could be measured from interactions involving non-charged particles? Elementary QM is all about the electron energy levels in the atom, photon - atom ...
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Would QM be detectable in a all boson universe

If there was a universe with the same laws as this one, but there were only bosons in it, would QM 'do anything'? Would there be any QM effects - such as an energy level (but that would require ...
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Why is superdeterminism generally regarded as a joke? [closed]

Before anything, I'm sorry for being an outsider coming to opine about your field. This is almost always a stupid decision, but I do have a good justification for this case. I've been reading about ...
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330 views

Determinism loophole?

I was thinking about the question I posted yesterday, and I thought of a better way to ask it. I'm trying to figure out why QM necessitates "pure randomness". Assume you have a photon that has a ...