Quantum Reality

Author: Jonathan Allday
Publisher: CRC Press
ISBN: 1584887044
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Probably the most successful scientific theory ever created, quantum theory has profoundly changed our view of the world and extended the limits of our knowledge, impacting both the theoretical interpretation of a tremendous range of phenomena and the practical development of a host of technological breakthroughs. Yet for all its success, quantum theory remains utterly baffling. Quantum Reality: Theory and Philosophy cuts through much of the confusion to provide readers with an exploration of quantum theory that is as authoritatively comprehensive as it is intriguingly comprehensible. Requiring no more than school level physics and mathematics background, this volume requires only an interest in understanding how quantum theory came to be and the myriad ways it both explains how our universe functions and extends the reach of human knowledge. Written by well-known physics author and teacher Dr. Jonathan Allday, this highly engaging work: Presents a thorough grounding in the theoretical machinery of quantum physics Offers a whistle-stop tour through the early part of the 20th century when the founding fathers of quantum theory forever altered the frontiers of human thought Provides an example-filled interpretation of the theory, its applications, and its pinnacle in quantum field theory (QFT), so crucial in shaping ideas about the nature of reality Separates fact from speculation regarding quantum physics’ ability to provide a starting point for philosophical queries into ultimate understanding and the limits of science The world beneath the one that we experience with our senses is profoundly mysterious, and while we may never completely unravel that mystery, quantum theory allows us to come closer than ever to understanding where the science leaves off and the mystery begins. Quantum Reality: Theory and Philosophy makes that understanding accessible to anyone possessing a quest for knowledge and a sense of awe.

Quantum Theory and the Flight from Realism

Author: Christopher Norris
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134595255
Format: PDF
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This book is a critical introduction to the long-standing debate concerning the conceptual foundations of quantum mechanics and the problems it has posed for physicists and philosophers from Einstein to the present. Quantum theory has been a major infulence on postmodernism, and presents significant problems for realists. Keeping his own realist position in check, Christopher Norris subjects a wide range of key opponents and supporters of realism to a high and equal level of scrutiny. With a characteristic combination of rigour and intellectual generosity, he draws out the merits and weaknesses from opposing arguments. In a sequence of closely argued chapters, Norris examines the premises of orthodox quantum theory, as developed most influentially by Bohr and Heisenberg, and its impact on varous philosophical developments. These include the ideas developed by W.V Quine, Thomas Kuhn, Michael Dummett, Bas van Fraassen, and Hilary Puttnam. In each case, Norris argues, these thinkers have been influenced by the orthodox construal of quantum mechanics as requiring drastic revision of principles which had hitherto defined the very nature of scientific method, causal explanati and rational enquiry. Putting the case for a realist approach which adheres to well-tried scientific principles of causal reasoning and inference to the best explanation, Christopher Norris clarifies these debates to a non-specialist readership and scholars of philosophy, science studies and the philosophy of science alike. Quantum Theory and the Flight From Realism suggests that philosophical reflection can contribute to a better understanding of these crucial, current issues.

Many Worlds

Author: Simon Saunders
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191614114
Format: PDF
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What does realism about the quantum state imply? What follows when quantum theory is applied without restriction, if need be, to the whole universe? These are the questions which an illustrious team of philosophers and physicists debate in this volume. All the contributors are agreed on realism, and on the need, or the aspiration, for a theory that unites micro- and macroworlds, at least in principle. But the further claim argued by some is that if you allow the Schrödinger equation unrestricted application, supposing the quantum state to be something physically real, then this universe is one of countlessly many others, constantly branching in time, all of which are real. The result is the many worlds theory, also known as the Everett interpretation of quantum mechanics. The contrary claim sees this picture of many worlds as in no sense inherent in quantum mechanics, even when the latter is allowed unrestricted scope and even given that the quantum state itself is something physically real. For this picture of branching worlds fails to make physical sense, let alone common sense, even on its own terms. The status of these worlds, what they are made of, is never adequately explained. Ordinary ideas about time and identity over time become hopelessly compromised. The concept of probability itself is brought into question. This picture of many branching worlds is inchoate, it is a vision, an error. There are realist alternatives to many worlds, some even that preserve the Schrödinger equation unchanged. Twenty specially written essays, accompanied by commentaries and discussions, examine these claims and counterclaims in depth. They focus first on the question of ontology, the existence of worlds (Part 1 and 2), second on the interpretation of probability (Parts 3 and 4), and third on alternatives or additions to many worlds (Parts 5 and 6). The introduction offers a helpful guide to the arguments for the Everett interpretation, particularly as they have been formulated in the last two decades.

On Physics and Philosophy

Author: Bernard d'. Espagnat
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691119649
Format: PDF, Kindle
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"On Physics and Philosophy is an accessible, mathematics-free reflection on the philosophical meaning of the quantum revolution, by one of the world's leading authorities on the subject. D'Espagnat presents an objective account of the main guiding principles of contemporary physics - in particular, quantum mechanics - followed by a look at just what consequences these should imply for philosophical thinking."--

Beyond Measure

Author: J. E. Baggott
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 9780198525363
Format: PDF, ePub
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Quantum theory is one of the most important and successful theories of modern physical science. A fact all the more remarkable because quatum theory is a theory that few understand. Most academic textbooks on the subject are written for specialists, filled with complex jargon and dense mathematics. In contrast there are many popular presentations of the inherent 'weirdness' of the quantum world that are light on jargon and contain no mathematics.Together these presentations serve tocreate the impression that there are two theories - the 'serious, one and the 'wierd' one. Baggott successfully bridges the gulf between these presentations by grounding the discussion of the theory's profound problems directly in its mathematical formalism in a way that under-graduate students and interested individuals can follow.

Physics and Whitehead

Author: Timothy E. Eastman
Publisher: SUNY Press
ISBN: 9780791459133
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Leading scholars explore the connections between quantum physics and process philosophy.

Reading Bohr Physics and Philosophy

Author: Arkady Plotnitsky
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 1402052545
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This book offers a new perspective on Niels Bohr's interpretation of quantum mechanics as complementarity, and on the relationships between physics and philosophy in Bohr's work. The importance of quantum field theory for Bohr's thinking has not been adequately addressed in the literature on Bohr. This book provides clarification of Bohr's writings (which usually pose problems of reading), and an analysis of the role of quantum field theory in Bohr's thinking.

Writings on Physics and Philosophy

Author: Wolfgang Pauli
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3662029944
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Like Bohr, Einstein and Heisenberg, Wolfgang Pauli was not only a Nobel laureate and one of the creators of modern physics, but also an eminent philosopher of modern science. This is the first book in English to include all his famous articles on physics and epistemology. They were actually translated during Pauli's lifetime by R. Schlapp and are now edited and annotated by Pauli's former assistant Ch. Enz. Pauli writes about the philosophical significance of complementarity, about space,time and causality, symmetry and the exclusion principle, but also about therole of the unconscious in modern science. His famous article on Kepler is included as well as many historical essays on Bohr, Ehrenfest,and Einstein as well as on the influence of the unconscious on scientific theories. The book addresses not only physicists, philosophers and historians of science, but also the general public.

Quantum Philosophy

Author: Roland Omnès
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691095516
Format: PDF, ePub
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In this magisterial work, Roland Omnès takes us from the academies of ancient Greece to the laboratories of modern science as he seeks to do no less than rebuild the foundations of the philosophy of knowledge. One of the world's leading quantum physicists, Omnès reviews the history and recent development of mathematics, logic, and the physical sciences to show that current work in quantum theory offers new answers to questions that have puzzled philosophers for centuries: Is the world ultimately intelligible? Are all events caused? Do objects have definitive locations? Omnès addresses these profound questions with vigorous arguments and clear, colorful writing, aiming not just to advance scholarship but to enlighten readers with no background in science or philosophy. The book opens with an insightful and sweeping account of the main developments in science and the philosophy of knowledge from the pre-Socratic era to the nineteenth century. Omnès then traces the emergence in modern thought of a fracture between our intuitive, commonsense views of the world and the abstract and--for most people--incomprehensible world portrayed by advanced physics, math, and logic. He argues that the fracture appeared because the insights of Einstein and Bohr, the logical advances of Frege, Russell, and Gödel, and the necessary mathematics of infinity of Cantor and Hilbert cannot be fully expressed by words or images only. Quantum mechanics played an important role in this development, as it seemed to undermine intuitive notions of intelligibility, locality, and causality. However, Omnès argues that common sense and quantum mechanics are not as incompatible as many have thought. In fact, he makes the provocative argument that the "consistent-histories" approach to quantum mechanics, developed over the past fifteen years, places common sense (slightly reappraised and circumscribed) on a firm scientific and philosophical footing for the first time. In doing so, it provides what philosophers have sought through the ages: a sure foundation for human knowledge. Quantum Philosophy is a profound work of contemporary science and philosophy and an eloquent history of the long struggle to understand the nature of the world and of knowledge itself.

Physics Meets Philosophy at the Planck Scale

Author: Craig Callender
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521664455
Format: PDF, ePub
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Was the first book to examine the exciting area of overlap between philosophy and quantum mechanics with chapters by leading experts from around the world.