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Why Don’t Things Fall Apart
Posted: 31 May 2017 06:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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The Many Worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics

Makes me think about the folks who try to claim that ‘Time’ is a figment of our imagination because of some mathematical formula that doesn’t have an error attached to it.
Or something like that.

It seems like another example of mistaking the Map for the Territory.

Mathematics is our best method of understanding the Universe at large - but it is not that real Universe.
Meaning that simply because a mathematical formula can be manipulated to produce some astounding effects, doesn’t mean those effects have a foundation in reality.

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Posted: 31 May 2017 08:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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Here’s another little side road in this thread from Quanta Magazine

https://www.quantamagazine.org/a-defense-of-the-reality-of-time-20170516/

Not that he thinks they always are. Maudlin, who is a professor at New York University and one of the world’s leading philosophers of physics, made his name studying the strange behavior of “entangled” quantum particles, which display behavior that is as counterintuitive as can be; if anything, he thinks physicists have downplayed how transformative entanglement is. At the same time, though, he thinks physicists can be too hasty to claim that our conventional views are misguided, especially when it comes to the nature of time.

He defends a homey and unfashionable view of time. It has a built-in arrow. It is fundamental rather than derived from some deeper reality. Change is real, as opposed to an illusion or an artifact of perspective. The laws of physics act within time to generate each moment. Mixing mathematics, physics and philosophy, Maudlin bats away the reasons that scientists and philosophers commonly give for denying this folk wisdom.

Like many things in physics we will need to develop new mathematics to get a more complete understanding of the fundamental forces guiding how our universe works.

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Posted: 01 June 2017 12:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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DarronS - 31 May 2017 08:05 PM

Here’s another little side road in this thread from Quanta Magazine

https://www.quantamagazine.org/a-defense-of-the-reality-of-time-20170516/

Not that he thinks they always are. Maudlin, who is a professor at New York University and one of the world’s leading philosophers of physics, made his name studying the strange behavior of “entangled” quantum particles, which display behavior that is as counterintuitive as can be; if anything, he thinks physicists have downplayed how transformative entanglement is. At the same time, though, he thinks physicists can be too hasty to claim that our conventional views are misguided, especially when it comes to the nature of time.

He defends a homey and unfashionable view of time. It has a built-in arrow. It is fundamental rather than derived from some deeper reality. Change is real, as opposed to an illusion or an artifact of perspective. The laws of physics act within time to generate each moment. Mixing mathematics, physics and philosophy, Maudlin bats away the reasons that scientists and philosophers commonly give for denying this folk wisdom.

Like many things in physics we will need to develop new mathematics to get a more complete understanding of the fundamental forces guiding how our universe works.

My feeling is that in a deep sense QM is making us confront our subjective limitations in interpreting reality. Maybe, as a species evolved from hominids, we are simply incapable of really getting under the skin of QM and may need to evolve more to make real progress. This may be why we cannot presently test any of the interpretations, i.e., because we lack the perceptual ability to do so. Mathematical models alone are not enough to ‘experience’ deeper levels of the universe.

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Posted: 01 June 2017 09:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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Citizenschallenge-v.3 - 31 May 2017 06:03 PM

The Many Worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics

Makes me think about the folks who try to claim that ‘Time’ is a figment of our imagination because of some mathematical formula that doesn’t have an error attached to it.
Or something like that.

It seems like another example of mistaking the Map for the Territory.

Mathematics is our best method of understanding the Universe at large - but it is not that real Universe.
Meaning that simply because a mathematical formula can be manipulated to produce some astounding effects, doesn’t mean those effects have a foundation in reality.

Oh that’s great, mistaking the Map for the Territory. I’ve always felt that about QM, they seem to “reify” math, as if the equations ARE the reality.

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Posted: 01 June 2017 04:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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webplodder - 01 June 2017 12:03 AM

My feeling is that in a deep sense QM is making us confront our subjective limitations in interpreting reality. Maybe, as a species evolved from hominids, we are simply incapable of really getting under the skin of QM and may need to evolve more to make real progress. This may be why we cannot presently test any of the interpretations, i.e., because we lack the perceptual ability to do so. Mathematical models alone are not enough to ‘experience’ deeper levels of the universe.

Precisely. We are not wired to understand the quantum world. We can use math to get a working approximation but I’m not sure our brains will ever truly grasp the quantum world because it is so foreign to our experience.

Honestly neither the Copenhagen Interpretation nor the Many Worlds Interpretation can give us true insight. At least the CI gives phycisists the tools to make useful predictions, which have led to the electronics we use to communicate long distance. The MWI gives no such tools. Scientifically it is a dead end. The CI may also be a dead end, but it has been useful for decades.

Philosophically neither interpretation is satisfactory. They both postulate an outside observer to to make changes in quantum states, which is preposterous. There were no outside observers in the early universe. There are almost certainly no outside observers in the vast majority of the universe, yet matter exists in macro states or we would not be here. The CI at least gives us a working model that approximates reality and allows us to develop new technologies. The MWI is a fantasy that explains nothing and leads to the ridiculous conclusion that every time a quantum state changes it creates a new universe similar to ours but subtly different. There are about 1x10^80 particles in the universe. According to the MWI every time two of those particles interact a new universe pops up from nowhere. Those new universes are unobservable and have no affect on our universe. Where did that matter originate? How does it not violate conservation of energy? Why does the gravity from all the uncountable universes not affect our universe?

The phrase not even wrong comes to mind.

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