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Superposition in relation to Counter factual definiteness

  1. Jan 25, 2016 #1
    look to post 3. original question had a lot of misconceptions.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2016
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 25, 2016 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Particles do not "have" superpositions, then can be in a superposition, but a superposition is meaningless unless you say what of... so a particle can be in a superposition of quantum states.
    This sentence has a very specific definition, which is not mean "does not have definite properties until measurement ... etc"

    "Counterfactual definiteness" does not mean that either.
    I think you need to do some more reading.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Counterfactual_definiteness
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_superposition
     
  4. Jan 25, 2016 #3
    I formulated my original question when I was very tired, and upon reviewing it, I'm attempting to start over.

    To me, it seems like superpositions of particles are due to the assumption that counterfactual definiteness is false
    Counterfactual definiteness being wrong implies that particles do not have definite attributes prior to decoherence, and isn't this exactly what a superposition is? A probability of a particle's attributes but not actually having definite ones?
    Does one have to assume that counterfactual definiteness is false to reach the conclusion that particles have superpositions prior to measurement?
     
  5. Jan 26, 2016 #4

    Simon Bridge

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    The counterfactual claim is more general than that though.
    A system being in a superposition does not mean that counterfactual definiteness is always false.
    The normal assumption is that some things you need to measure to be sure but other things you don't.
     
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