QM Interpretations


by curiousphoton
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curiousphoton
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#1
Oct29-09, 10:47 AM
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The following are the interpretations of QM:

Bohmian CCC Consistent histories Copenhagen Ensemble Hidden variable theory Many-worlds Pondicherry Quantum logic Relational Transactional

Which is the most accepted by the theoretical physics community? Obviously all have some supporters but I'm interested in finding out which is the most popular and why?

Thanks.
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DrChinese
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#2
Oct29-09, 11:25 AM
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There have actually been surveys done on this here. And I have seen some informal surverys as well. In many ways the most popular answer may be "Don't know, not sure if I should care". Not saying that is my opinion or that most specialists hold that view, but I would say it reflects the viewpoint of a lot of working physicists.
Bob_for_short
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#3
Oct29-09, 11:33 AM
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Ensemble, of course. It is not so opposite to the others though.

Why ensemble? Because one point does not give you all information about the quantum state. One point is a too poor experiment. You cannot even tell/prove where it comes from.

As in the macroscopic case, in the microscopic case you also deal with compound systems. And any compound system needs many exchanges to reveal its true face. More pixels, better image.

RUTA
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#4
Oct29-09, 09:42 PM
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QM Interpretations


I find the majority of physicists don't care about interpretations, subscribing to Mermin's "shut up and calculate." Physics Today 57, #5, 10-11 (2004).
Bob_for_short
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#5
Oct30-09, 03:34 AM
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Quote Quote by RUTA View Post
I find the majority of physicists don't care about interpretations, subscribing to Mermin's "shut up and calculate." Physics Today 57, #5, 10-11 (2004).
They keep exactly to the ensemble interpretation: everybody calculates probabilities in our, single Universe according to the wave (quantum) mechanics.
hamster143
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#6
Oct30-09, 03:50 AM
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Quote Quote by Bob_for_short View Post
They keep exactly to the ensemble interpretation: everybody calculates probabilities in our, single Universe according to the wave (quantum mechanics).
That's like saying that all agnostics are Buddhists, because Buddhism allows the possibility of all other gods.

Among physicists who do express preference for an interpretation, many-worlds interpretation is very popular.
Demystifier
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#7
Oct30-09, 04:24 AM
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Quote Quote by curiousphoton View Post
The following are the interpretations of QM:

Bohmian CCC Consistent histories Copenhagen Ensemble Hidden variable theory Many-worlds Pondicherry Quantum logic Relational Transactional
I never heard about CCC and Pondicherry. What are those? Some links?
Bob_for_short
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#8
Oct30-09, 05:18 AM
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Quote Quote by hamster143 View Post
Among physicists who do express preference for an interpretation, many-worlds interpretation is very popular.
How about the experimentalists? Are they content with one-point data in a double-slit experiment or do they care about measurement statistics in this world?
vanesch
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#9
Oct30-09, 07:11 AM
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Quote Quote by Bob_for_short View Post
How about the experimentalists?
I also prefer Many Worlds - and I am (or used to be) an instrumentalist/experimentalist. But I don't consider MW necessarily as "true", I only consider it as a very helpful mental picture to get some intuition for quantum-mechanical experiments. It avoids the difficult question of "what is a measurement" and "when does the wave function collapse" - and when you do so, all apparent paradoxes of EPR experiments and of retarded quantum erasers and so on disappear.
Bob_for_short
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#10
Oct30-09, 07:27 AM
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Quote Quote by vanesch View Post
I also prefer Many Worlds - and I am (or used to be) an instrumentalist/experimentalist. But I don't consider MW necessarily as "true", I only consider it as a very helpful mental picture to get some intuition for quantum-mechanical experiments. It avoids the difficult question of "what is a measurement" and "when does the wave function collapse" - and when you do so, all apparent paradoxes of EPR experiments and of retarded quantum erasers and so on disappear.
Sorry to hear that.
vanesch
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Oct30-09, 07:32 AM
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Quote Quote by Bob_for_short View Post
Sorry to hear that.
curiousphoton
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#12
Oct30-09, 09:19 AM
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Quote Quote by hamster143 View Post
Among physicists who do express preference for an interpretation, many-worlds interpretation is very popular.
So far many-worlds is my favorite. Is the fact that you have 12 interpretations of QM (and you may basically choose a favorite because one is not technically more correct than another) a major downfall to the theory?

Quote Quote by Demystifier View Post
I never heard about CCC and Pondicherry. What are those? Some links?
Wikipedia
Count Iblis
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#13
Oct30-09, 09:31 AM
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My opinion is that either MWI is true or QM itself is not exactly valid.
f95toli
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Oct30-09, 09:47 AM
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Quote Quote by Bob_for_short View Post
How about the experimentalists? Are they content with one-point data in a double-slit experiment or do they care about measurement statistics in this world?
Remember that not everyone who is doing "QM experiments" are working in optics. The double slit is a nice "toy" but it is far from the only system where you can see "weird" quantum effects.
There are plenty of people (me included) who work on system where there is only a single "quantum object" and not an ensemble, this includes just about everyone working with single qubits (solid state systems, ion traps etc).

Personally I am in the "shut up and calculate" camp, and so is just about everyone else I work with.
Bob_for_short
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#15
Oct30-09, 09:54 AM
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Quote Quote by f95toli View Post
...There are plenty of people (me included) who work on system where there is only a single "quantum object" and not an ensemble, this includes just about everyone working with single qubits (solid state systems, ion traps etc).
Personally I am in the "shut up and calculate" camp, and so is just about everyone else I work with.
The more you will work with your "single quantum object", the more data you will analyse, the better you will understand what an "ensemble" means. It is an ensemble of data about your single system, it goes without saying, and that's why it is sufficient to shut up and calculate.
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Oct30-09, 10:44 AM
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Quote Quote by Count Iblis View Post
My opinion is that either MWI is true or QM itself is not exactly valid.
My opinion is that MWI is correct but not complete.
(MWI by itself in its minimal form cannot explain the origin of the Born rule.)
f95toli
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Oct30-09, 10:52 AM
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Quote Quote by Bob_for_short View Post
The more you will work with your "single quantum object", the more data you will analyse, the better you will understand what an "ensemble" means. It is an ensemble of data about your single system, it goes without saying, and that's why it is sufficient to shut up and calculate.
True, but that is hardly a unique property of quantum systems. Most experiments involves taking averages of some sort at one point or another even if it just means increasing the integration time of your multimeter; but that has more to do with achieving a better signal-to-noise ratio than of any fundamental property of the system you are measuring.
There are certainly examples where one can -at least in principle- see the "quantumness" of a systems using a single shot readout. An obvious example being to first manipulate a single using MW pulses and then reading out its state using a measurement pulse. Now, the final result of such a procedure is obviously single-valued (since the qubit will end up in one of two states) but what comes before that (the manipulation) is very much a series of "quantum operations".
Any interpretation (or -in my case- lack of interpretation) should surely take into account not only what we see after the measurement pulse but also what is happening when we are manipulating the qubit; because even though we are not measuring we are certainly doing SOMETHING to the qubit with our pulses.
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#18
Oct30-09, 10:55 AM
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Quote Quote by curiousphoton View Post
Wikipedia
CCC = consciosness causes collapse

Pondicherry interpretation: as I understand it, seems to be a variant of the instrumentalist interpretation - QM is nothing but a tool for calculating probabilities.

Am I correct?


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