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  1. added 2019-07-03
    Căldura - Termodinamica fenomenologică.Nicolae Sfetcu - 2018 - Drobeta Turnu Severin,: MultiMedia Publishing.
    Despre căldură, temperatură, și modalități de măsurare, și aplicații practice în inginerie. Un punct de vedere contemporan privind energia, termodinamica și legile ei, cu detalierea celor mai importante principii care o guvernează. Un capitol special este dedicat schimbărilor climatice și încălzirii globale actuale. Explicații clare ale fenomenelor, evitând formulele matematice complexe. -/- CUPRINS: -/- Căldura și temperatura - Temperatura - - Definiții - - - Pe baza principiului zero - - - Pe baza celui de al doilea principiu - - (...)
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  2. added 2019-06-06
    Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics: A Maxwellian View.Wayne C. Myrvold - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 42 (4):237-243.
    One finds, in Maxwell's writings on thermodynamics and statistical physics, a conception of the nature of these subjects that differs in interesting ways from the way that they are usually conceived. In particular, though—in agreement with the currently accepted view—Maxwell maintains that the second law of thermodynamics, as originally conceived, cannot be strictly true, the replacement he proposes is different from the version accepted by most physicists today. The modification of the second law accepted by most physicists is a probabilistic (...)
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  3. added 2019-06-03
    Eternal Worlds and the Best System Account of Laws.Ryan A. Olsen & Christopher Meacham - forthcoming - In Valia Allori (ed.), Statistical Mechanics and Scientific Explanation: Determinism, Indeterminism and Laws of Nature. World Scientific.
    In this paper we apply the popular Best System Account of laws to typical eternal worlds – both classical eternal worlds and eternal worlds of the kind posited by popular contemporary cosmological theories. We show that, according to the Best System Account, such worlds will have no laws that meaningfully constrain boundary conditions. It’s generally thought that lawful constraints on boundary conditions are required to avoid skeptical arguments. Thus the lack of such laws given the Best System Account may seem (...)
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  4. added 2019-05-13
    On the Ergodic Theorem and Information Loss in Statistical Mechanics.Andreas Henriksson - manuscript
    In this article, it is argued that, for a classical Hamiltonian system which is closed, the ergodic theorem emerge from the Gibbs-Liouville theorem in the limit that the system has evolved for an infinitely long period of time. In this limit, from the perspective of an ignorant observer, who do not have perfect knowledge about the complete set of degrees of freedom for the system, distinctions between the possible states of the system, i.e. the information content, is lost leading to (...)
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  5. added 2019-02-28
    Time's Arrow in a Quantum Universe: On the Status of Statistical Mechanical Probabilities.Eddy Keming Chen - forthcoming - In Valia Allori (ed.), Statistical Mechanics and Scientific Explanation: Determinism, Indeterminism and Laws of Nature. World Scientific.
    In a quantum universe with a strong arrow of time, it is standard to postulate that the initial wave function started in a particular macrostate---the special low-entropy macrostate selected by the Past Hypothesis. Moreover, there is an additional postulate about statistical mechanical probabilities according to which the initial wave function is a ''typical'' choice in the macrostate. Together, they support a probabilistic version of the Second Law of Thermodynamics: typical initial wave functions will increase in entropy. Hence, there are two (...)
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  6. added 2018-12-14
    Reading the Past in the Present.Nick Huggett - unknown
    Why is our knowledge of the past so much more ‘expansive’ (to pick a suitably vague term) than our knowledge of the future, and what is the best way to capture the difference(s) (i.e., in what sense is knowledge of the past more ‘expansive’)? One could reasonably approach these questions by giving necessary conditions for different kinds of knowledge, and showing how some were satisfied by certain propositions about the past, and not by corresponding propositions about the future. I take (...)
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  7. added 2018-10-24
    Matters of Time Directionality in Classical Physics.Jean-Christophe Lindner - manuscript
    A complete and up-to-date analysis of the question of time directionality as it arises in a semi-classical context is provided which is based on key developments related to the theory of gravitation. Important clarifications are achieved regarding the concept of time reversal as a concept independent from the thermodynamic arrow of time. The role played by the Leibnizian constraint of relational definition of physical properties applied to the sign of electric charge and the energy of elementary particles is thoroughly examined (...)
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  8. added 2018-06-21
    Did the Universe Have a Chance?C. D. McCoy - forthcoming - Philosophy of Science 86 (5).
    In a world awash in statistical patterns, should we conclude that the universe’s evolution or genesis is somehow subject to chance? I draw attention to alternatives that must be acknowledged if we are to have an adequate assessment of what chance the universe might have had.
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  9. added 2018-05-04
    An Alternative Interpretation of Statistical Mechanics.C. D. McCoy - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-21.
    In this paper I propose an interpretation of classical statistical mechanics that centers on taking seriously the idea that probability measures represent complete states of statistical mechanical systems. I show how this leads naturally to the idea that the stochasticity of statistical mechanics is associated directly with the observables of the theory rather than with the microstates (as traditional accounts would have it). The usual assumption that microstates are representationally significant in the theory is therefore dispensable, a consequence which suggests (...)
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  10. added 2017-12-31
    Gabriel Vacariu and Mihai Vacariu (2017) From Hypernothing to Hyperverse: EDWs, Hypernothing, Wave and Particle, Elementary Particles, Thermodynamics, and Einstein’s Relativity Without “Spacetime”, Datagroup.Gabriel Vacariu and Mihai Vacariu - 2017 - Timisoara, Romania: Datagroup.
    Over the last two centuries, the relationship between philosophy and science has completely broken down, so the question we are confronted with is: How can we develop a new philosophy, which will influence science decisively? The physicists of the last century rejected their contemporary philosophy. They considered that “philosophy today is dead” (Hawking and Mlodinow 2010). However, we believe that the great scientific problems are always philosophical, and only philosophical problems. Therefore, these problems can be solved only by philosophers and (...)
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  11. added 2017-05-04
    Atheistic Induction by Boltzmann Brains.Bradley Monton - forthcoming - In Jerry Walls & Trent Dougherty (eds.), Two Dozen (or so) Arguments for God: The Plantinga Project. Oxford University Press.
    I present a new thermodynamic argument for the existence of God. Naturalistic physics provides evidence for the failure of induction, because it provides evidence that the past is not at all what you think it is, and your existence is just a momentary fluctuation. The fact that you are not a momentary fluctuation thus provides evidence for the existence of God – God would ensure that the past is roughly what we think it is, and you have been in existence (...)
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  12. added 2017-02-12
    A New Approach to the Approach to Equilibrium.Roman Frigg & Charlotte Werndl - 2012 - In Yemima Ben-Menahem & Meir Hemmo (eds.), Probability in Physics. The Frontiers Collection. Springer. pp. 99-114.
    Consider a gas confined to the left half of a container. Then remove the wall separating the two parts. The gas will start spreading and soon be evenly distributed over the entire available space. The gas has approached equilibrium. Why does the gas behave in this way? The canonical answer to this question, originally proffered by Boltzmann, is that the system has to be ergodic for the approach to equilibrium to take place. This answer has been criticised on different grounds (...)
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  13. added 2017-01-22
    Explaining Thermodynamic-Like Behavior in Terms of Epsilon-Ergodicity.Roman Frigg & Charlotte Werndl - 2011 - Philosophy of Science 78 (4):628-652.
    Gases reach equilibrium when left to themselves. Why do they behave in this way? The canonical answer to this question, originally proffered by Boltzmann, is that the systems have to be ergodic. This answer has been criticised on different grounds and is now widely regarded as flawed. In this paper we argue that some of the main arguments against Boltzmann's answer, in particular, arguments based on the KAM-theorem and the Markus-Meyer theorem, are beside the point. We then argue that something (...)
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  14. added 2017-01-20
    Entropy - A Guide for the Perplexed.Roman Frigg & Charlotte Werndl - 2011 - In Claus Beisbart & Stephan Hartmann (eds.), Probabilities in Physics. Oxford University Press. pp. 115-142.
    Entropy is ubiquitous in physics, and it plays important roles in numerous other disciplines ranging from logic and statistics to biology and economics. However, a closer look reveals a complicated picture: entropy is defined differently in different contexts, and even within the same domain different notions of entropy are at work. Some of these are defined in terms of probabilities, others are not. The aim of this chapter is to arrive at an understanding of some of the most important notions (...)
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  15. added 2017-01-16
    When Does a Boltzmannian Equilibrium Exist?Charlotte Werndl & Roman Frigg - 2016 - In Daniel Bedingham, Owen Maroney & Christopher Timpson (eds.), Quantum Foundations of Statistical Mechanics. Oxford University Press.
    The received wisdom in statistical mechanics is that isolated systems, when left to themselves, approach equilibrium. But under what circumstances does an equilibrium state exist and an approach to equilibrium take place? In this paper we address these questions from the vantage point of the long-run fraction of time definition of Boltzmannian equilibrium that we developed in two recent papers. After a short summary of Boltzmannian statistical mechanics and our definition of equilibrium, we state an existence theorem which provides general (...)
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  16. added 2016-11-04
    Physical Order and Existence of God.Iulian D. Toader - 2013 - In Athens and/or Jerusalem: Essays on the Relationship Between Science and Religion. University of Bucharest Press. pp. 133-142.
    This paper, written in Romanian, explains why the eutaxiological argument - endorsed by scientists like Newton, Einstein, and Weyl - is not a sound one.
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  17. added 2016-10-09
    Boltzmannian Immortality.Christian Loew - 2016 - Erkenntnis (4):1-16.
    Plausible assumptions from Cosmology and Statistical Mechanics entail that it is overwhelmingly likely that there will be exact duplicates of us in the distant future long after our deaths. Call such persons “Boltzmann duplicates,” after the great pioneer of Statistical Mechanics. In this paper, I argue that if survival of death is possible at all, then we almost surely will survive our deaths because there almost surely will be Boltzmann duplicates of us in the distant future that stand in appropriate (...)
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  18. added 2015-08-18
    How Typical! An Epistemological Analysis of Typicality in Statistical Mechanics.Massimiliano Badino - manuscript
    The recent use of typicality in statistical mechanics for foundational purposes has stirred an important debate involving both philosophers and physicists. While this debate customarily focuses on technical issues, in this paper I try to approach the problem from an epistemological angle. The discussion is driven by two questions: (1) What does typicality add to the concept of measure? (2) What kind of explanation, if any, does typicality yield? By distinguishing the notions of `typicality-as-vast-majority' and `typicality-as-best-exemplar', I argue that the (...)
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  19. added 2015-04-04
    Entropy as Root Metaphor.Eric Zencey - 1986 - Dissertation, The Claremont Graduate University
    Metaphors establish connection. Root metaphors--patterns of relational imagery in the language and thought of a culture, in which a diverse group of tenors are related to a single indentifiable class of vehicles--play an important role in organizing our thought, and in bringing a coherence to our vision of the world. This is a political function; root metaphors, as philosopher Stephen Pepper discusses them, are most often found in the works of philosophers remembered as political philosophers. ;The second law of thermodynamics--the (...)
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  20. added 2015-03-24
    Rethinking Boltzmannian Equilibrium.Charlotte Werndl & Roman Frigg - 2015 - Philosophy of Science 82 (5):1224-1235.
    Boltzmannian statistical mechanics partitions the phase space of a sys- tem into macro-regions, and the largest of these is identified with equilibrium. What justifies this identification? Common answers focus on Boltzmann’s combinatorial argument, the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution, and maxi- mum entropy considerations. We argue that they fail and present a new answer. We characterise equilibrium as the macrostate in which a system spends most of its time and prove a new theorem establishing that equilib- rium thus defined corresponds to the largest (...)
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  21. added 2015-03-19
    An Argument Regarding the Nature of Hooligan Behavior.Emanuel Gluskin - 2012 - Dialogues in Philosophy, Mental and Neuro Sciences 5 (2):51-53.
    We refer to the remarkable thought of Erwin Schrödinger expressed in his book “What is life?” regarding the connection between life and a decrease of entropy realized via feeding (eating). This thought is “transferred” into the field of human psychology, explaining hooligan behavior (e.g. the “days of violence”) as a natural human response to the improper (in its content or form) “informational feeding” that does not allow one to normally treat (‘’digest”) the received information, i.e. to make ones thoughts simpler (...)
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  22. added 2015-02-16
    On the Possibility of Stable Regularities Without Fundamental Laws.Aldo Filomeno - 2014 - Dissertation, Autonomous University of Barcelona
    This doctoral dissertation investigates the notion of physical necessity. Specifically, it studies whether it is possible to account for non-accidental regularities without the standard assumption of a pre-existent set of governing laws. Thus, it takes side with the so called deflationist accounts of laws of nature, like the humean or the antirealist. The specific aim is to complement such accounts by providing a missing explanation of the appearance of physical necessity. In order to provide an explanation, I recur to fields (...)
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  23. added 2014-11-04
    Considerazioni sui fondamenti della Meccanica Statistica.Sergio Chibbaro, Lamberto Rondoni & Angelo Vulpiani - 2012 - In Vincenzo Fano, Enrico Giannetto, Giulia Giannini & Pierluigi Graziani (eds.), Complessità e Riduzionismo. pp. 126-140.
    A differenza della meccanica quantistica, i cui fondamenti sono sempre stati al centro di un ininterrotto dibattito, gli aspetti concettuali della meccanica statistica non hanno attratto interessi così vasti; tra le eccezioni citiamo il bel libro di Emch e Liu. In questo breve contributo discuteremo alcuni problemi concettuali della meccanica statistica, in particolare il ruolo del caos e l’emergenza di proprietà collettive che appaiono quando il numero delle particelle del sistema è molto grande.
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  24. added 2014-07-31
    The Meta-Reversibility Objection.Christopher J. G. Meacham - forthcoming - In Barry Loewer, Brad Weslake & Eric Winsberg (eds.), Time's Arrow and the Probability Structure of the World.
    One popular approach to statistical mechanics understands statistical mechanical probabilities as measures of rational indifference. Naive formulations of this ``indifference approach'' face reversibility worries - while they yield the right prescriptions regarding future events, they yield the wrong prescriptions regarding past events. This paper begins by showing how the indifference approach can overcome the standard reversibility worries by appealing to the Past Hypothesis. But, the paper argues, positing a Past Hypothesis doesn't free the indifference approach from all reversibility worries. For (...)
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  25. added 2014-04-02
    Can Interventionists Be Neo-Russellians? Interventionism, the Open Systems Argument, and the Arrow of Entropy.Alexander Reutlinger - 2013 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 27 (3):273-293.
    International Studies in the Philosophy of Science, Volume 27, Issue 3, Page 273-293, September 2013.
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  26. added 2014-03-23
    Epsilon-Ergodicity and the Success of Equilibrium Statistical Mechanics.Peter B. M. Vranas - 1998 - Philosophy of Science 65 (4):688-708.
    Why does classical equilibrium statistical mechanics work? Malament and Zabell (1980) noticed that, for ergodic dynamical systems, the unique absolutely continuous invariant probability measure is the microcanonical. Earman and Rédei (1996) replied that systems of interest are very probably not ergodic, so that absolutely continuous invariant probability measures very distant from the microcanonical exist. In response I define the generalized properties of epsilon-ergodicity and epsilon-continuity, I review computational evidence indicating that systems of interest are epsilon-ergodic, I adapt Malament and Zabell’s (...)
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  27. added 2014-03-20
    Three Proposals Regarding a Theory of Chance.Christopher J. G. Meacham - 2005 - Philosophical Perspectives 19 (1):281–307.
    I argue that the theory of chance proposed by David Lewis has three problems: (i) it is time asymmetric in a manner incompatible with some of the chance theories of physics, (ii) it is incompatible with statistical mechanical chances, and (iii) the content of Lewis's Principal Principle depends on how admissibility is cashed out, but there is no agreement as to what admissible evidence should be. I proposes two modifications of Lewis's theory which resolve these difficulties. I conclude by tentatively (...)
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  28. added 2014-03-18
    The Entropy Theory of Counterfactuals.Douglas N. Kutach - 2002 - Philosophy of Science 69 (1):82-104.
    I assess the thesis that counterfactual asymmetries are explained by an asymmetry of the global entropy at the temporal boundaries of the universe, by developing a method of evaluating counterfactuals that includes, as a background assumption, the low entropy of the early universe. The resulting theory attempts to vindicate the common practice of holding the past mostly fixed under counterfactual supposition while at the same time allowing the counterfactual's antecedent to obtain by a natural physical development. Although the theory has (...)
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  29. added 2014-03-17
    The Physical Foundations of Causation.Douglas Kutach - 2007 - In Huw Price & Richard Corry (eds.), Causation, Physics, and the Constitution of Reality: Russell's Republic Revisited. Oxford University Press.
    I defend what may loosely be called an eliminativist account of causation by showing how several of the main features of causation, namely asymmetry, transitivity, and necessitation, arise from the combination of fundamental dynamical laws and a special constraint on the macroscopic structure of matter in the past. At the microscopic level, the causal features of necessitation and transitivity are grounded, but not the asymmetry. At the coarse-grained level of the macroscopic physics, the causal asymmetry is grounded, but not the (...)
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  30. added 2014-03-07
    Contemporary Approaches to Statistical Mechanical Probabilities: A Critical Commentary - Part II: The Regularity Approach.Christopher J. G. Meacham - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (12):1127-1136.
    This pair of articles provides a critical commentary on contemporary approaches to statistical mechanical probabilities. These articles focus on the two ways of understanding these probabilities that have received the most attention in the recent literature: the epistemic indifference approach, and the Lewis-style regularity approach. These articles describe these approaches, highlight the main points of contention, and make some attempts to advance the discussion. The second of these articles discusses the regularity approach to statistical mechanical probabilities, and describes some areas (...)
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  31. added 2014-03-07
    Contemporary Approaches to Statistical Mechanical Probabilities: A Critical Commentary - Part I: The Indifference Approach.Christopher J. G. Meacham - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (12):1116-1126.
    This pair of articles provides a critical commentary on contemporary approaches to statistical mechanical probabilities. These articles focus on the two ways of understanding these probabilities that have received the most attention in the recent literature: the epistemic indifference approach, and the Lewis-style regularity approach. These articles describe these approaches, highlight the main points of contention, and make some attempts to advance the discussion. The first of these articles provides a brief sketch of statistical mechanics, and discusses the indifference approach (...)
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  32. added 2013-11-02
    The Universal Arrow of Time.Oleg Kupervasser, Hrvoje Nikolić & Vinko Zlatić - 2012 - Foundations of Physics 42 (9):1165-1185.
    Statistical physics cannot explain why a thermodynamic arrow of time exists, unless one postulates very special and unnatural initial conditions. Yet, we argue that statistical physics can explain why the thermodynamic arrow of time is universal, i.e., why the arrow points in the same direction everywhere. Namely, if two subsystems have opposite arrow-directions at a particular time, the interaction between them makes the configuration statistically unstable and causes a decay towards a system with a universal direction of the arrow of (...)
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  33. added 2013-08-28
    Probabilities in Statistical Mechanics.Wayne C. Myrvold - 2016 - In Christopher Hitchcock & Alan Hájek (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Probability and Philosophy. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 573-600.
    This chapter will review selected aspects of the terrain of discussions about probabilities in statistical mechanics (with no pretensions to exhaustiveness, though the major issues will be touched upon), and will argue for a number of claims. None of the claims to be defended is entirely original, but all deserve emphasis. The first, and least controversial, is that probabilistic notions are needed to make sense of statistical mechanics. The reason for this is the same reason that convinced Maxwell, Gibbs, and (...)
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  34. added 2013-03-26
    Bridging Conceptual Gaps: The Kolmogorov-Sinai Entropy.Massimiliano Badino - forthcoming - Isonomía. Revista de Teoría y Filosofía Del Derecho.
    The Kolmogorov-Sinai entropy is a fairly exotic mathematical concept which has recently aroused some interest on the philosophers’ part. The most salient trait of this concept is its working as a junction between such diverse ambits as statistical mechanics, information theory and algorithm theory. In this paper I argue that, in order to understand this very special feature of the Kolmogorov-Sinai entropy, is essential to reconstruct its genealogy. Somewhat surprisingly, this story takes us as far back as the beginning of (...)
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  35. added 2011-12-16
    The Empirical Content of the Epistemic Asymmetry.Douglas Kutach - manuscript
    I conduct an empirical analysis of the temporally asymmetric character of our epistemic access to the world by providing an experimental scheme whose results represent the core empirical content of the epistemic asymmetry. I augment this empirical content by formulating a gedanken experiment inspired by a proposal from David Albert. This second experiment cannot be conducted using any technology that is likely to be developed in the foreseeable future, but the expected results help us to state an important constraint on (...)
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  36. added 2011-12-16
    Causation and Its Basis in Fundamental Physics.Douglas Kutach - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    I provide a comprehensive metaphysics of causation based on the idea that fundamentally things are governed by the laws of physics, and that derivatively difference-making can be assessed in terms of what fundamental laws of physics imply for hypothesized events. Highlights include a general philosophical methodology, the fundamental/derivative distinction, and my mature account of causal asymmetry.
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  37. added 2011-12-16
    The Asymmetry of Influence.Douglas Kutach - 2011 - In Craig Callender (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Time. Oxford University Press.
    An explanation of our seeming inability to influence the past.
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  38. added 2010-06-08
    Why Gravity is Not an Entropic Force.Shan Gao - manuscript
    The remarkable connections between gravity and thermodynamics seem to imply that gravity is not fundamental but emergent, and in particular, as Verlinde suggested, gravity is probably an entropic force. In this paper, we will argue that the idea of gravity as an entropic force is debatable. It is shown that there is no convincing analogy between gravity and entropic force in Verlinde’s example. Neither holographic screen nor test particle satisfies all requirements for the existence of entropic force in a thermodynamics (...)
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