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Quantum How can a philosopher know Quantum?

  1. Jul 11, 2017 #1
    My friend is a philosopher professor and he is searching for a way to know Quantum mechanics since he is very passionate about physics (his field is Aesthetics by the way). What do you recommend as a series of books for him to be able to know a decent level of QM. He has a background in calculus only. Please choose the easiest resources since he is really not mathematical, but he will do all his efforts.
     
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  3. Jul 11, 2017 #2
    Leonard Susskind's "Quantum Mechanics", or "Quantum Mechanics for Dummies", are good.
     
  4. Jul 11, 2017 #3

    vanhees71

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    For someone indulged in the study of Aesthetics, you should point him to Noether's theorem and symmetries in physics. This shows that physics is in fact a highly aesthetical subject. Its beauty, however, gets only revealed with the adequate level of math. Susskind's book is a good choice to begin with.
     
  5. Jul 13, 2017 #4

    Demystifier

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    That reminds me of a joke:
    Two young theoretical physicists are talking about girls.
    - I am dating a perfectly beautiful girl.
    - Really?
    - Yes, she can be accurately described by only one parameter.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
  6. Jul 13, 2017 #5
    I recommend "Quantum Enigma: Physics Encounters Consciousness" by Bruce Rosenblum and Fred Kuttner.
     
  7. Jul 13, 2017 #6
    Is it technical or descriptive?
     
  8. Jul 13, 2017 #7
  9. Jul 13, 2017 #8
    I did not get the joke :((, Can you please explain it to me ?
     
  10. Jul 14, 2017 #9

    Demystifier

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    ”Explaining a joke is like dissecting a frog. You understand it better but the frog dies in the process.”
    E.B. White
     
  11. Jul 14, 2017 #10
    But see this page describing what seems to be the book's purpose: http://quantumenigma.com/controversy/

    The OP's friend is already a philosopher, yes; but should he be recommended a book that is apparently most interested in speculating about the role of consciousness?
     
  12. Jul 14, 2017 #11
    What he wants is a technical intro. He knows all the pop science behind the theory. Please recommend textbooks
     
  13. Jul 14, 2017 #12
    There is an entry Quantum Mechanics in the „Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy“: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/qm/
    Check the bibliography!
     
  14. Jul 14, 2017 #13
    Watched the first lecture
    His way of explaining is cool I liked it
    But I think I didn't cope with the curriculum he's teaching
     
  15. Jul 14, 2017 #14
    Quantum Physics for Dummies is rather good.
     
  16. Jul 14, 2017 #15

    MathematicalPhysicist

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    E.B. White assumes that the frog was alive in the process of dissection.

    That's the problem with theoretical physicists, "hidden assumptions". :-)
     
  17. Jul 14, 2017 #16
    I prefer sacrifice of few frogs to save others.
     
  18. Jul 15, 2017 #17

    OCR

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    You and "E. B." might have to do a little more explaining, Demystifier... :oldwink:




    OK, now guys... this was just a little pun foking fun poking ... :oldbiggrin:
     
  19. Jul 15, 2017 #18
    Thats too many frogs for a physics forum.
     
  20. Jul 15, 2017 #19

    vanhees71

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    This is hopeless. They praise the book not to use mathematical formulae. That's the worst you can say about a book on quantum theory. Quantum theory is not possible to be formulated without math, and if philosophers want to have a chance to understand QT they have to learn tha math as anybody else. Usually what philsophers tend to produce with regard to the hard sciences, particularly quantum physics, is bad enough. You shouldn't mislead them by claiming to be able to formulate QT without math!
     
  21. Jul 15, 2017 #20
    He wants math. That is all what this post is about. I want you to give me a list of books that he can follow to be able at the end to tackle a quantum mechanics textbook. Linear algebra, calculus, maybe classical mechanics. Anything! As long as the end is a clear , mathematical, and 100% correct understanding of the quantum mechanics.
     
  22. Jul 15, 2017 #21
    The intention of the book "Quantum Enigma: Physics Encounters Consciousness" is a simple one: The authors bring out the experimental facts which show that the world is different in its nature than many think (even after they have studied quantum mechanics in detail and know all the math). The authors show that quantum mechanics easily accounts for every single one of these facts, and that it does so completely. That's all, where is the problem?

    I have recommended this book as a good start for for a professor of philosophy who is searching for a way to know Quantum mechanics.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 15, 2017
  23. Jul 15, 2017 #22
    If this is what you meant
    Then it's indeed fantastic
    Thanks
     
  24. Jul 16, 2017 #23
    No, I meant the book, by Steven Holzner, it's far more mathematical than the video, and presents a more complete picture. Hope he enjoys it.
     
  25. Jul 17, 2017 #24

    Demystifier

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    This thread should be moved to biology subforum. :wink:
     
  26. Jul 17, 2017 #25
    There are a lot of online lecture notes from various universities addressing the mathematics you are looking for. Nevertheless, he should begin with tackling a standard quantum mechanics textbook, e. g., R. Shankar's "Principles of Quantum Mechanics" or L. Susskind's "Quantum Mechanics". The math skills can be acquired as needed using the appropriate lecture notes.
     
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