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Russian Roulette and schrodinger's cat

  1. Oct 14, 2012 #1
    We all the famous schrodinger's cat experiment and its outcomes which sound stupid in classic or macroscopic world. A similar thought came to my mind for Russian roulette game. Suppose you lock 2 game players in a room with a revolver of single shot and they start playing Russian roulette by pulling triger against their own head turn by turn. In such a game there is half a chance that a particular player will be alive. A shot is fired every minute. So what can we commen on a particular player after last shot is fired and assuming that they show quantum behaviour? Each player can be equally dead and alive at the same time. This makes possible four outcomes both dead, both alive, one dead, other dead. But we know that if one is dead then the other must live which eliminates 2 cases. But I m confused about state of 2 player system. So what will be the end result?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 14, 2012 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Um no - an important part of the Schrodinger Cat thing is that the probability that the cat lives of dies is tied up with some quantum state.

    The Russian Roulette is covered by normal, hidden variable, statistics.

    But if you put your contestant in a box where the gun is controlled by a quantum event ... then the illustration comes into play: before we open the room, what do we know about the state of the contestant?

    You may want to try a setup where the player who dies is determined by the quantum event.

    The rest of the point is that the cat cannot have wave-like properties.
    The thought experiment is a comment on the Copenhagen interpretation not on quantum mechanics or the behavior of quantum systems or of cats.
  4. Oct 14, 2012 #3
    The two-player case is like two-particle system. You will have separate indicators for each player. You will also have a "time evolution operator" that says a living player has a chance to be killed every minute. This operator would transform a living player into a superposition of a living and dead player. The action of this operator on a dead player would be zero (that means: you can not kill what already has no life). This setup will guarantee that at most one player is dead at the end.
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