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The principles of quantum mechanics

Oxford,: Clarendon Press (1930)

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  1. Bohr on EPR, the Quantum Postulate, Determinism, and Contextuality.Zachary Hall - 2024 - Foundations of Physics 54 (3):1-35.
    The famous EPR article of 1935 challenged the completeness of quantum mechanics and spurred decades of theoretical and experimental research into the foundations of quantum theory. A crowning achievement of this research is the demonstration that nature cannot in general consist in noncontextual pre-measurement properties that uniquely determine possible measurement outcomes, through experimental violations of Bell inequalities and Kochen-Specker theorems. In this article, I reconstruct an argument from Niels Bohr’s writings that the reality of the Einstein-Planck-de Broglie relations alone implies (...)
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  • Forever Finite: The Case Against Infinity (Expanded Edition).Kip K. Sewell - 2023 - Alexandria, VA: Rond Books.
    EXPANDED EDITION (eBook): -/- Infinity Is Not What It Seems...Infinity is commonly assumed to be a logical concept, reliable for conducting mathematics, describing the Universe, and understanding the divine. Most of us are educated to take for granted that there exist infinite sets of numbers, that lines contain an infinite number of points, that space is infinite in expanse, that time has an infinite succession of events, that possibilities are infinite in quantity, and over half of the world’s population believes (...)
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  • Quantum Theory: a Foundational Approach.Charis Anastopoulos - 2023 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    This is a textbook on quantum mechanics. It is addressed to graduates and advanced undergraduates. The book presents quantum theory as a logically coherent system, placing stronger emphasis on the theory' s probabilistic structure and on the role of symmetries. It makes students aware of foundational problems from the very beginning, but at the same time, it urges them to adopt a pragmatic attitude towards the quantum formalism. The book consists of five parts. Part I is a review of classical (...)
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  • Bell's theorem: A bridge between the measurement and the mind/body problems.Badis Ydri - manuscript
    In this essay a quantum-dualistic, perspectival and synchronistic interpretation of quantum mechanics is further developed in which the classical world-from-decoherence which is perceived (decoherence) and the perceived world-in-consciousness which is classical (collapse) are not necessarily identified. Thus, Quantum Reality or "{\it unus mundus}" is seen as both i) a physical non-perspectival causal Reality where the quantum-to-classical transition is operated by decoherence, and as ii) a quantum linear superposition of all classical psycho-physical perspectival Realities which are governed by synchronicity as well (...)
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  • Gauge Symmetries, Symmetry Breaking, and Gauge-Invariant Approaches.Philipp Berghofer, Jordan François, Simon Friederich, Henrique Gomes, Guy Hetzroni, Axel Maas & René Sondenheimer - 2023 - Cambridge University Press.
    Gauge symmetries play a central role, both in the mathematical foundations as well as the conceptual construction of modern (particle) physics theories. However, it is yet unclear whether they form a necessary component of theories, or whether they can be eliminated. It is also unclear whether they are merely an auxiliary tool to simplify (and possibly localize) calculations or whether they contain independent information. Therefore their status, both in physics and philosophy of physics, remains to be fully clarified. In this (...)
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  • Physics as the Solution to an Optimization Problem on Entropy.Alexandre Harvey Tremblay - manuscript
    We propose a novel approach to quantum theory construction that involves solving a maximization problem on the Shannon entropy of all possible measurements of a system, relative to its initial preparation. This maximization problem is additionally constrained by a phase condition that vanishes under measurements. Specifically, enforcing a vanishing U(1)-valued phase constraint leads to standard quantum mechanics, while a vanishing Spin^c(3,1)-valued phase constraint extends the theory to relativistic quantum mechanics and to quantum gravity. Via a double-copy mechanism applied to the (...)
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  • Invariance or equivalence: a tale of two principles.Caspar Jacobs - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):9337-9357.
    The presence of symmetries in physical theories implies a pernicious form of underdetermination. In order to avoid this theoretical vice, philosophers often espouse a principle called Leibniz Equivalence, which states that symmetry-related models represent the same state of affairs. Moreover, philosophers have claimed that the existence of non-trivial symmetries motivates us to accept the Invariance Principle, which states that quantities that vary under a theory’s symmetries aren’t physically real. Leibniz Equivalence and the Invariance Principle are often seen as part of (...)
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  • Fritz London and the measurement problem: a phenomenological approach.Pedro M. S. Alves - 2020 - Continental Philosophy Review 54 (4):453-481.
    In this paper, I discuss the possible relations between Fritz London’s account of the status of the observer in quantum physics and transcendental phenomenology. Firstly, I discuss Steven French’s interpretation of London’s thesis as a phenomenological account of the status of the observer, along with the objections Otávio Bueno has brought forward. Secondly, refusing in part both French’s and Bueno’s theses for several reasons, I propose another way of reading London’s thesis in the framework of transcendental phenomenology. Namely, I put (...)
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  • Teorías de partículas. Esbozo de una reconstrucción estructuralista.Joseph D. Sneed - 2020 - Metatheoria – Revista de Filosofía E Historia de la Ciencia 11 (1):33-52.
    Particle theories intend to describe the fundamental constituents from which all matter is constructed and the interactions among them. These constituents include atoms and molecules as well as their subatomic constituents, nuclei and their component parts including elementary particles. We consider an alternative to the usual particle theories, but dealing with the same phenomena. We call these theories ‘QT’s’. This is an attempt to provide a formal description of the essential features of elementary particle theories within the framework of metatheoretical (...)
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  • Sophistry about symmetries?Niels C. M. Martens & James Read - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):315-344.
    A common adage runs that, given a theory manifesting symmetries, the syntax of that theory should be modified in order to construct a new theory, from which symmetry-variant structure of the original theory has been excised. Call this strategy for explicating the underlying ontology of symmetry-related models reduction. Recently, Dewar has proposed an alternative to reduction as a means of articulating the ontology of symmetry-related models—what he calls sophistication, in which the semantics of the original theory is modified, and symmetry-related (...)
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  • The Mechanistic and Normative Structure of Agency.Jason Winning - 2019 - Dissertation, University of California San Diego
    I develop an interdisciplinary framework for understanding the nature of agents and agency that is compatible with recent developments in the metaphysics of science and that also does justice to the mechanistic and normative characteristics of agents and agency as they are understood in moral philosophy, social psychology, neuroscience, robotics, and economics. The framework I develop is internal perspectivalist. That is to say, it counts agents as real in a perspective-dependent way, but not in a way that depends on an (...)
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  • Motivating dualities.James Read & Thomas Møller-Nielsen - 2020 - Synthese 197 (1):263-291.
    There exists a common view that for theories related by a ‘duality’, dual models typically may be taken ab initio to represent the same physical state of affairs, i.e. to correspond to the same possible world. We question this view, by drawing a parallel with the distinction between ‘interpretational’ and ‘motivational’ approaches to symmetries.
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  • Putting probabilities first. How Hilbert space generates and constrains them.Michael Janas, Michael Cuffaro & Michel Janssen - manuscript
    We use Bub's (2016) correlation arrays and Pitowksy's (1989b) correlation polytopes to analyze an experimental setup due to Mermin (1981) for measurements on the singlet state of a pair of spin-12 particles. The class of correlations allowed by quantum mechanics in this setup is represented by an elliptope inscribed in a non-signaling cube. The class of correlations allowed by local hidden-variable theories is represented by a tetrahedron inscribed in this elliptope. We extend this analysis to pairs of particles of arbitrary (...)
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  • Gauge and Ghosts.Guy Hetzroni - 2021 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 72 (3):773-796.
    This article suggests a fresh look at gauge symmetries, with the aim of drawing a clear line between the a priori theoretical considerations involved, and some methodological and empirical non-deductive aspects that are often overlooked. The gauge argument is primarily based on a general symmetry principle expressing the idea that a change of mathematical representation should not change the form of the dynamical law. In addition, the ampliative part of the argument is based on the introduction of new degrees of (...)
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  • Quantum Superpositions and the Representation of Physical Reality Beyond Measurement Outcomes and Mathematical Structures.Christian de Ronde - 2016 - Foundations of Science 23 (4):621-648.
    In this paper we intend to discuss the importance of providing a physical representation of quantum superpositions which goes beyond the mere reference to mathematical structures and measurement outcomes. This proposal goes in the opposite direction to the project present in orthodox contemporary philosophy of physics which attempts to “bridge the gap” between the quantum formalism and common sense “classical reality”—precluding, right from the start, the possibility of interpreting quantum superpositions through non-classical notions. We will argue that in order to (...)
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  • A consciousness-based quantum objective collapse model.Elias Okon & Miguel Ángel Sebastián - 2020 - Synthese 197 (9):3947-3967.
    Ever since the early days of quantum mechanics it has been suggested that consciousness could be linked to the collapse of the wave function. However, no detailed account of such an interplay is usually provided. In this paper we present an objective collapse model where the collapse operator depends on integrated information, which has been argued to measure consciousness. By doing so, we construct an empirically adequate scheme in which superpositions of conscious states are dynamically suppressed. Unlike other proposals in (...)
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  • Causality and the Modeling of the Measurement Process in Quantum Theory.Christian de Ronde - 2017 - Disputatio 9 (47):657-690.
    In this paper we provide a general account of the causal models which attempt to provide a solution to the famous measurement problem of Quantum Mechanics. We will argue that—leaving aside instrumentalism which restricts the physical meaning of QM to the algorithmic prediction of measurement outcomes—the many interpretations which can be found in the literature can be distinguished through the way they model the measurement process, either in terms of the efficient cause or in terms of the final cause. We (...)
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  • Representation and the figure of the observer.Vitor Silva Tschoepke - 2018 - Journal of Consciousness Exploration & Research 9 (8):722-738.
    The theoretical use of representation faces, among others, two types of inconsistencies, namely: a representation requires the figure of the agent to which it will be representative, which leads either to circularity or to infinite return; and the resulting one, which is the difficulty in reconciling a description, in representative terms, with other more fundamental scientific categories. The proposal of the present study for the solution of these problems was the identification of a referential process starting from the correlation between (...)
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  • Mechanistic Causation and Constraints: Perspectival Parts and Powers, Non-perspectival Modal Patterns.Jason Winning - 2020 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 71 (4):1385-1409.
    Any successful account of the metaphysics of mechanistic causation must satisfy at least five key desiderata. In this article, I lay out these five desiderata and explain why existing accounts of the metaphysics of mechanistic causation fail to satisfy them. I then present an alternative account that does satisfy the five desiderata. According to this alternative account, we must resort to a type of ontological entity that is new to metaphysics, but not to science: constraints. In this article, I explain (...)
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  • Quantum metaphysical indeterminacy.Claudio Calosi & Jessica Wilson - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (10):2599–2627.
    On many currently live interpretations, quantum mechanics violates the classical supposition of value definiteness, according to which the properties of a given particle or system have precise values at all times. Here we consider whether either metaphysical supervaluationist or determinable-based approaches to metaphysical indeterminacy can accommodate quantum metaphysical indeterminacy (QMI). We start by discussing the standard theoretical indicator of QMI, and distinguishing three seemingly different sources of QMI (S1). We then show that previous arguments for the conclusion that metaphysical supervaluationism (...)
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  • Yes, More Decoherence: A Reply to Critics.Elise M. Crull - 2017 - Foundations of Physics 47 (11):1428-1463.
    Recently I published an article in this journal entitled “Less interpretation and more decoherence in quantum gravity and inflationary cosmology” :1019–1045, 2015). This article generated responses from three pairs of authors: Vassallo and Esfeld :1533–1536, 2015), Okon and Sudarsky :852–879, 2016) and Fortin and Lombardi. In what follows, I reply to the criticisms raised by these authors.
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  • Representation and Invariance of Scientific Structures.Patrick Suppes - 2002 - CSLI Publications (distributed by Chicago University Press).
    An early, very preliminary edition of this book was circulated in 1962 under the title Set-theoretical Structures in Science. There are many reasons for maintaining that such structures play a role in the philosophy of science. Perhaps the best is that they provide the right setting for investigating problems of representation and invariance in any systematic part of science, past or present. Examples are easy to cite. Sophisticated analysis of the nature of representation in perception is to be found already (...)
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  • Quantum Mechanics and the Principle of Least Radix Economy.Vladimir Garcia-Morales - 2015 - Foundations of Physics 45 (3):295-332.
    A new variational method, the principle of least radix economy, is formulated. The mathematical and physical relevance of the radix economy, also called digit capacity, is established, showing how physical laws can be derived from this concept in a unified way. The principle reinterprets and generalizes the principle of least action yielding two classes of physical solutions: least action paths and quantum wavefunctions. A new physical foundation of the Hilbert space of quantum mechanics is then accomplished and it is used (...)
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  • Addressing the Conflict Between Relativity and Quantum Theory: Models, Measurement and the Markov Property.Gareth Ernest Boardman - 2013 - Cosmos and History 9 (2):86-115.
    Twenty-first century science faces a dilemma. Two of its well-verified foundation stones - relativity and quantum theory - have proven inconsistent. Resolution of the conflict has resisted improvements in experimental precision leaving some to believe that some fundamental understanding in our world-view may need modification or even radical reform. Employment of the wave-front model of electrodynamics, as a propagation process with a Markov property, may offer just such a clarification.
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  • The inaccuracy principle.Hans Martens & Willem M. de Muynck - 1990 - Foundations of Physics 20 (4):357-380.
    The problem of joint measurement of incompatible observables is investigated. Measurements are represented by positive operator-valued measures. A quantitative notion of inaccuracy is defined. It is shown that within this framework joint inaccurate measurements are possible for arbitrary maximal projection-valued measures on finite-dimensional spaces. The accuracy of such measurements is limited, as is shown by an inaccuracy inequality we derive. This new type of uncertainty relation can be unambiguously interpreted as referring to measurement precision rather than preparative quality. Several recent (...)
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  • The Feynman-Wheeler Perfect Absorber Theory in a New Light.B. G. Sidharth - 2010 - Foundations of Physics 40 (8):1134-1140.
    The original Feynman-Wheeler perfect absorber theory lead to the Instantaneous Action at a Distance formulation. We observe that this is perfectly meaningful in the light of recent studies pointing to a small but non-zero photon mass. The Quantum Mechanical effects within the Compton scale of such a small mass photon would lead to the above formulation.
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  • The Analysis of Lagrangian and Hamiltonian Properties of the Classical Relativistic Electrodynamics Models and Their Quantization.Nikolai N. Bogolubov & Anatoliy K. Prykarpatsky - 2010 - Foundations of Physics 40 (5):469-493.
    The Lagrangian and Hamiltonian properties of classical electrodynamics models and their associated Dirac quantizations are studied. Using the vacuum field theory approach developed in (Prykarpatsky et al. Theor. Math. Phys. 160(2): 1079–1095, 2009 and The field structure of a vacuum, Maxwell equations and relativity theory aspects. Preprint ICTP) consistent canonical Hamiltonian reformulations of some alternative classical electrodynamics models are devised, and these formulations include the Lorentz condition in a natural way. The Dirac quantization procedure corresponding to the Hamiltonian formulations is (...)
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  • Interpreting Quantum Mechanics according to a Pragmatist Approach.Manuel Bächtold - 2008 - Foundations of Physics 38 (9):843-868.
    The aim of this paper is to show that quantum mechanics can be interpreted according to a pragmatist approach. The latter consists, first, in giving a pragmatic definition to each term used in microphysics, second, in making explicit the functions any theory must fulfil so as to ensure the success of the research activity in microphysics, and third, in showing that quantum mechanics is the only theory which fulfils exactly these functions.
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  • On Relations Between Probabilities Under Quantum and Classical Measurements.Andrei Y. Khrennikov & Elena R. Loubenets - 2004 - Foundations of Physics 34 (4):689-704.
    We show that the so-called quantum probabilistic rule, usually introduced in the physical literature as an argument of the essential distinction between the probability relations under quantum and classical measurements, is not, as it is commonly accepted, in contrast to the rule for the addition of probabilities of mutually exclusive events. The latter is valid under all experimental situations upon classical and quantum systems. We discuss also the quantum measurement situation that is similar to the classical one, described by the (...)
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  • Atomic quantum zeno effect for ensembles and single systems.Almut Beige, Gerhard C. Hegerfeldt & Dirk G. Sondermann - 1997 - Foundations of Physics 27 (12):1671-1688.
    The so-called quantum Zeno effect is essentially a consequence of the projection postulate for ideal measurements. To test the effect, Itanoet al. have performed an experiment on an ensemble of atoms where rapidly repeated level measurements were realized by means of short laser pulses. Using dynamical considerations, we give an explanation why the projection postulate can be applied in good approximation to such measurements. Corrections to ideal measurements are determined explicitly. This is used to discuss how far the experiment of (...)
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  • The Newton-Wigner and Wightman localization of the photon.J. E. M. Ingall - 1996 - Foundations of Physics 26 (8):1003-1031.
    A quantum theory of the photon is developed in a natural manner. Newton-Wigner and Wightman demonstrated that the photon could not be strictly localized according to natural criteria. These investigations involved the identification of an elementary system with a uirrep of the Poincare group. We identify a particle with the localized measurement of the states satisfying the uirrep. In the case of zero mass and unit spin, the photon is identified with those components of the state that can be localized. (...)
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  • Interpretations of quantum mechanics, joint measurement of incompatible observables, and counterfactual definiteness.W. M. de Muynck, W. De Baere & H. Martens - 1994 - Foundations of Physics 24 (12):1589-1664.
    The validity of the conclusion to the nonlocality of quantum mechanics, accepted widely today as the only reasonable solution to the EPR and Bell issues, is questioned and criticized. Arguments are presented which remove the compelling character of this conclusion and make clear that it is not the most obvious solution. Alternative solutions are developed which are free of the contradictions related with the nonlocality conclusion. Firstly, the dependence on the adopted interpretation is shown, with the conclusion that the alleged (...)
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  • Nonideal quantum measurements.Hans Martens & Willem M. de Muynck - 1990 - Foundations of Physics 20 (3):255-281.
    A partial ordering in the class of observables (∼ positive operator-valued measures, introduced by Davies and by Ludwig) is explored. The ordering is interpreted as a form of nonideality, and it allows one to compare ideal and nonideal versions of the same observable. Optimality is defined as maximality in the sense of the ordering. The framework gives a generalization of the usual (implicit) definition of self-adjoint operators as optimal observables (von Neumann), but it can, in contrast to this latter definition, (...)
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  • Limits to the universality of quantum mechanics.Brian D. Josephson - 1988 - Foundations of Physics 18 (12):1195-1204.
    Niels Bohr's arguments indicating the non-applicability of quantum methodology to the study of the ultimate details of life, given in his bookAtomic Physics and Human Knowledge, conflict with the commonly held opposite view. The bases for the usual beliefs are examined and shown to have little validity; significant differences do exist between the living organism and the type of system studied successfully in the physics laboratory. Dealing with living organisms in quantum-mechanical terms with the same degree of rigor as is (...)
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  • Can quarks always be confined by a linear potential?H. B. Ai & J. P. Hsu - 1985 - Foundations of Physics 15 (2):155-159.
    It is demonstrated on the basis of the Dirac equation that quarks cannot be confined by a vector gluon potential of the form(r/r 0)a or[ln(r/r 0]a, a>0, if the quark-gluon interaction conserves parity. In order to confine quarks with the parity-conserving interaction, the effective gluon potential must be a pseudovector or a scalar. These are shown in a simple Yang-Mills field with theSU(2) group.
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  • On the covariant formulation of quantum mechanics.U. Kasper, E. Kreisel & H. J. Treder - 1977 - Foundations of Physics 7 (5-6):375-389.
    We give picture-covariant formulations of the equations of motion for observables and states such that the Hamiltonian operator is transformed asH-0304;=U(t)HU † (t) under a time-dependent unitary transformationU(t). Next, we consider the explicit and implicit covariance of Heisenberg's equations of motion for observables with respect to general transformations of coordinate operators. Most of our representation is spread out over a number of textbooks and articles, where the subject has been considered with greater or lesser clarity from different points of view.
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  • Austere quantum mechanics as a reductive basis for chemistry.Hinne Hettema - 2012 - Foundations of Chemistry 15 (3):311-326.
    This paper analyses Richard Bader’s ‘operational’ view of quantum mechanics and the role it plays in the the explanation of chemistry. I argue that QTAIM can partially be reconstructed as an ‘austere’ form of quantum mechanics, which is in turn committed to an eliminative concept of reduction that stems from Kemeny and Oppenheim. As a reductive theory in this sense, the theory fails. I conclude that QTAIM has both a regulatory and constructive function in the theories of chemistry.
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  • The Relation between Classical and Quantum Electrodynamics.Mario Bacelar Valente - 2011 - Theoria: Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia 26 (1):51-68.
    Quantum electrodynamics presents intrinsic limitations in the description of physical processes that make it impossible to recover from it the type of description we have in classical electrodynamics. Hence one cannot consider classical electrodynamics as reducing to quantum electrodynamics and being recovered from it by some sort of limiting procedure. Quantum electrodynamics has to be seen not as a more fundamental theory, but as an upgrade of classical electrodynamics, which permits an extension of classical theory to the description of phenomena (...)
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  • A Case for an Empirically Demonstrable Notion of the Vacuum in Quantum Electrodynamics Independent of Dynamical Fluctuations.Mario Bacelar Valente - 2011 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 42 (2):241-261.
    A re-evaluation of the notion of vacuum in quantum electrodynamics is presented, focusing on the vacuum of the quantized electromagnetic field. In contrast to the ‘nothingness’ associated to the idea of classical vacuum, subtle aspects are found in relation to the vacuum of the quantized electromagnetic field both at theoretical and experimental levels. These are not the usually called vacuum effects. The view defended here is that the so-called vacuum effects are not due to the ground state of the quantized (...)
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  • Reentrant emergence.Dr Steven Ravett Brown - 2009 - Cogprints.
    Emergent properties (EPs) are not causally reducible to the properties of a complex system’s elements. If a system’s properties cannot be reduced to those of any of its components, then that system is effectively a singular entity (SE). EPs are thus not properties of known complexes, but of SEs. A precise description of the parameters necessary to observe a physical system as an SE is thus necessary to establish under what conditions properties are understood as emergent. That description is provided (...)
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  • Physical causation and difference-making.Alyssa Ney - 2009 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (4):737-764.
    This paper examines the relationship between physical theories of causation and theories of difference-making. It is plausible to think that such theories are compatible with one another as they are aimed at different targets: the former, an empirical account of actual causal relations; the latter, an account that will capture the truth of most of our ordinary causal claims. The question then becomes: what is the relationship between physical causation and difference-making? Is one kind of causal fact more fundamental than (...)
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  • Between classical and quantum.Nicolaas P. Landsman - 2007 - Handbook of the Philosophy of Science 2:417--553.
    The relationship between classical and quantum theory is of central importance to the philosophy of physics, and any interpretation of quantum mechanics has to clarify it. Our discussion of this relationship is partly historical and conceptual, but mostly technical and mathematically rigorous, including over 500 references. For example, we sketch how certain intuitive ideas of the founders of quantum theory have fared in the light of current mathematical knowledge. One such idea that has certainly stood the test of time is (...)
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  • The quantum and classical domains as provisional parallel coexistents.Michel Paty - 2000 - Synthese 125 (1-2):179-200.
    We consider the problem of therelationship between the quantum and theclassical domains from the point of view that itis possible to speak of a direct physicaldescription of quantum systems havingphysical properties. We put emphasis, inevidencing it, on the specific quantum conceptof indistinguishability of identical in aconceptual way (and not in a logical way in thevein of ``da Costa's school''). In essence, thesubsequent argumentation deals with therelationship between the classical and thequantum, with the problem of the quantum theoryof measurement. Even in (...)
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  • The mathematical philosophy of Charles Parsons. [REVIEW]J. M. B. Moss - 1985 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 36 (4):437-457.
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  • Complementarity in quantum mechanics: A logical analysis.Hugo Bedau & Paul Oppenheim - 1961 - Synthese 13 (3):201 - 232.
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  • Introduction.Jeffrey A. Barrett - 1995 - Topoi 14 (1):1-6.
    On Bohm's formulation of quantum mechanics particles always have determinate positions and follow continuous trajectories. Bohm's theory, however, requires a postulate that says that particles are initially distributed in a special way: particles are randomly distributed so that the probability of their positions being represented by a point in any regionR in configuration space is equal to the square of the wave-function integrated overR. If the distribution postulate were false, then the theory would generally fail to make the right statistical (...)
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  • Symmetry, quantum mechanics, and beyond.Elena Castellani - 2002 - Foundations of Science 7 (1-2):181-196.
    The relevance of symmetry to today's physics is a widely acknowledged fact. A significant part of recent physical inquiry – especially the physics concerned with investigating the fundamentalbuilding blocks of nature – is grounded on symmetry principles andtheir many and far-reaching consequences. But where these symmetries come from and what their real meaning is are open questions, at the center of a developing debate among physicists and philosophers of science. To tackle the problems arising in considering the symmetry issue is (...)
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  • The foundations of quantum mechanics and the approach to thermodynamic equilibrium.David Z. Albert - 1994 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 45 (2):669-677.
    It is argued that certain recent advances in the construction of a theory of the collapses of Quantum Mechanical wave functions suggest the possibility of new and improved foundations for statistical mechanics, foundations in which epistemic considerations play no role.
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  • Quantum indeterminacy and the double-slit experiment.Claudio Calosi & Jessica Wilson - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (10):3291-3317.
    In Calosi and Wilson (Phil Studies 2019/2018), we argue that on many interpretations of quantum mechanics (QM), there is quantum mechanical indeterminacy (QMI), and that a determinable-based account of metaphysical indeterminacy (MI), as per Wilson 2013 and 2016, properly accommodates the full range of cases of QMI. Here we argue that this approach is superior to other treatments of QMI on offer, both realistic and deflationary, in providing the basis for an intelligible explanation of the interference patterns in the double-slit (...)
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  • Entanglement, Symmetry Breaking and Collapse: Correspondences Between Quantum and Self-Organizing Dynamics.Francis Heylighen - 2021 - Foundations of Science 28 (1):85-107.
    Quantum phenomena are notoriously difficult to grasp. The present paper first reviews the most important quantum concepts in a non-technical manner: superposition, uncertainty, collapse of the wave function, entanglement and non-locality. It then tries to clarify these concepts by examining their analogues in complex, self-organizing systems. These include bifurcations, attractors, emergent constraints, order parameters and non-local correlations. They are illustrated with concrete examples that include Rayleigh–Bénard convection, social self-organization and Gestalt perception of ambiguous figures. In both cases, quantum and self-organizing, (...)
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