Interesting Scientific American article! (The end of QM?)

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Summary:
The end of QM? if it was not from Scientific American I would not have even read the article!
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Answers and Replies

  • #3
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Looking briefly through the original paper, it seems to be a variation on an old theme---the quantum zeno effect. You seem more focused on interpretational issues, while the paper is basically silent on those points.

EDIT: As to the Scientific American article... mere puffery.
 
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  • #4
PeroK
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I was always suspicious of QM's claim that if we cannot know something ( location and velocity ) it does not exist.
I thought you came up with that one:

Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.
 
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  • #6
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... the advent of superdeterminism
What do you mean by that? I know what superdeterminism is, and I know what the advent of something is, but I am at a loss to understand what “the advent of superdeterminism“ is.
 
  • #7
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It means that it is being considered seriously now.
 
  • #9
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Computers have been around for a long time. But only in the past few decades have they rose to prominence.
 
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I guess i should rewrite my post as it was obviously not clear. I wrote, "I was always suspicious of QM's claim that if we cannot know something ( location and velocity ) it does not exist. " I did not mean that QM claims that the object does not exist. I was claiming that the object has no POSITION OR VELOCITY according to QM. The Scientific American article suggested that such knowledge is knowable. I was also expressing the idea that the law of excluded middle will no longer be violated. Something cannot be 2 different things or places simultaneously.
 
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  • #11
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That is, as it [the particle] moves from its starting point A to some endpoint B, it doesn’t take one definite path, but rather simultaneously takes every possible path connecting the two points.
Hawking the grand design.


“According to Democritus, atoms had lost the qualities like color, taste, etc., they only occupied space, but geometrical assertions [distance, location, boundaries etc.] about atoms were admissible and required no further analysis. In modern physics, atoms lose this last property, they possess geometrical qualities in no higher degree than color, taste etc."
Heisenberg “Philosophical Problems of Nuclear Science”, trans F, C, Hayes (1952),

We cannot even suppose that the particle has a [particular] position and a velocity that are known to God but are hidden from us. Such "hidden variable" theories predict results that are not in agreement with observation.
Pg 107 The Universe in a nutshell. Hawking

I agree with Carl Sagan that extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Those claims by Hawking and Heisenberg are extraordinary. Now it looks like those claims of Hawking’s and Heisenberg’s do not have to be made anymore.
 
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I was hoping that someone could actually answer my question. Which boiled down is, do these recent developments remove the extraordinary nature of QM? Please, if you are going to claim that QM is not extraordinary, please explain how contradicting Law of excluded middle - Wikipedia is not extraordinary.
 
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  • #13
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do these recent developments remove the extraordinary nature of QM?

It depends on what you think the "extraordinary nature of QM" is. But as far as I can tell, these experiments are perfectly in line with what we already knew about QM--they don't invalidate any of the basic math or predictions of the theory--and they don't rule out any particular interpretation of QM. So I would say that, whatever you thought was extraordinary about QM before, that thing is still there now.
 
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  • #14
DrChinese
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Which boiled down is, do these recent developments remove the extraordinary nature of QM?

Pop articles (the ones with catchy headlines) like this are a dime a dozen. The only people that think they represent anything "amazing" and new are those who know little about current research. Read their conclusion and you will see there is no mention of overturning any element of QM, much less a "core tenet". So your answer is: there are no recent developments that

Scientific American title: "New Views of Quantum Jumps Challenge Core Tenets of Physics"
Actual paper: "Quantum Zeno effect appears in stages."

And the "advent of superdeterminism"? First, there is no theory or interpretation called "superdeterminism". There is only an idea for that, and so far there is no meaningful paper attempting to explain it and how it would describe the quantum world. NONE*. Maybe you will write that paper! :smile: In the meantime, I would love to see a few names of authors who are advocates of superdeterminism. I'd be amazed if you could find 3.

------------------------------

*Hopefully no one will mention 't Hooft's writings on the matter, which do NOT advance an interpretation at all. You cannot falsify an idea that has no specifics, and he has not advanced an related interpretation of QM. I could just as easily say that quantum particles are made of turtles ("it's turtles all the way down").
 
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  • #15
atyy
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*Hopefully no one will mention 't Hooft's writings on the matter, which do NOT advance an interpretation at all.

Unfortunately, you did. Must be superdeterminism. Or retrocausation. o0)
 
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  • #16
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I was hoping that someone could actually answer my question. Which boiled down is, do these recent developments remove the extraordinary nature of QM? Please, if you are going to claim that QM is not extraordinary, please explain how contradicting Law of excluded middle - Wikipedia is not extraordinary.
The extraordinariness did not start with QM as a theory; it started with experiments that revealed the unexpected nature of reality. Compton did not propose a theory that light may scatter like a massless particle and change its wavelength depending on the scattering angle. He did an experiment and discovered that is how light behaves. You can't make that go away. Whatever theory you propose to adopt must predict all the "weirdness" and "extraordinariness" of QM. Because QM is designed to predict all the "weirdness" and "extraordinariness" of nature.

QM is based on a core mathematical formalism. There is no contradiction between QM and standard mathematics or any element of logic - including the law of excluded middle.

Saying it does reveals that you understand neither QM nor logic.

When a popular science jounalist says something like "QM defies logic", what they mean is that "nature does not work as I expected it to".

Superdeterminism is, essentially, a fancy word for a capricious God controlling the universe. Personally, I think it's total bunkum. But, perhaps serious scientists of a more religious persuasion can see something in it.

In general, your views on QM are coloured entirely by taking popular science jounalism at face value. Taking shock headlines and extraordinary soundbites as the current progress of research. Going by the popular press, the basis of all science gets overturned and rewritten every few months.
 
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  • #17
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It means that it is being considered seriously now.
Huh? By whom? You have misunderstood something you’ve read.
 
  • #18
vanhees71
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Glancing over the SA article I only draw the conclusion that also SA seems to get into the realm of popular-science journals I don't trust anymore. Ninov's results are all understood within standard QT as far as I know, and that there are no instantaneous quantum jumps is already clear from just looking at the fundamental equations of QT: The time evolution is a differential equation in ##t##. So how can there be "jumps"? There are rapid transitions but no jumps, and the quantum Zeno effect is also not very surprising and, afaik, also observed in experiments several times before. SA seems now also try to sell their stuff by making unjustified claims about the "weirdness" of QT. Quantum esoterics sells, and that seems to be what's behind the article.

BTW the scientific article linked in the SA particle is Open Access:

https://journals.aps.org/prresearch/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevResearch.2.033512

I've still to read the article carefully, but from the Abstract there's no indication of any implication of an "end of QM". It's just another of the many amazing experiments that can time-resolve more and more precisely the dynamics of quantum states.
 
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  • #19
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SA seems to get into the realm of popular-science journals I don't trust anymore

I've held that opinion for some time now. It's very unfortunate; years ago SA was very different.
 
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  • #20
vanhees71
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The German version, "Spektrum der Wissenschaft", is still pretty good.
 
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  • #21
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The Scientific America article was interesting. I think one must exercise some patience, with the significance of results as those reported. Unfortunately, "high level" physics always generates a lot of smoke and mirrors when the savvy researchers or journalists put spins on the stuff to "sell it" to their supporters and fans. It takes time and patience to let the superficial nonsense dissipate a little. Still: Interesting!!!
 
  • #22
vanhees71
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Of course, it's interesting. I only find it very unfortunate (to say it nicely), if I need to read the original article to understand what they really talk about. The original article is a fascinating experimental result on the quantum Zeno effect but fully compatible with quantum mechanics with no indication whatsoever for having found QM being wrong.

What I find so troublesome is that I can really understand only a tiny fraction of original scientific papers (even of physics that is not related to my own topic of expertise) and thus for me the real merit of popular-science articles/journals is to get a trustworthy report on interesting scientific results and not some bold claims which are just made to sell the journal and distorting the meaning of the research originally reported.
 
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  • #23
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Of course, it's interesting. I only find it very unfortunate (to say it nicely), if I need to read the original article to understand what they really talk about. The original article is a fascinating experimental result on the quantum Zeno effect but fully compatible with quantum mechanics with no indication whatsoever for having found QM being wrong.

What I find so troublesome is that I can really understand only a tiny fraction of original scientific papers (even of physics that is not related to my own topic of expertise) and thus for me the real merit of popular-science articles/journals is to get a trustworthy report on interesting scientific results and not some bold claims which are just made to sell the journal and distorting the meaning of the research originally reported.
It is largely up to editors and peer reviewers, plus the researchers themselves to keep the reporting trustworthy. That makes the whole process dependent on people, most of whom have a variety of private agendas to push. Plus, once a "style" or "program" dominates, it often takes years before something worthwhile emerges from the bs.
 
  • #24
vanhees71
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I don't know, whether SA is "peer reviewed". It's not a scientific journal, but a popular-science journal!
 
  • #25
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QM says that before measurement the superposition is both a particle and a wave. QM also says ( see Hawking's quotes that I gave previously ) that the particle is nowhere and everywhere. That to me is a violation of the law of the excluded middle. https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/logic-paraconsistent/ was invented so that this violation of the law of the excluded middle would not extend the quantum weirdness into our macro world via ex contradictione quodlibet . To me this is not a solution, to me it is like saying that OK there are square circles at the quantum level but who cares that does not effect out everyday world. The fact that the law of the excluded middle has been violated period is shocking enough to me.
 
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