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Will u guys give some comments on the transactional interpretation?

  1. Mar 11, 2004 #1
    recently,i am having a report on the issue concerning the quantum interpretation,somehow,i choosed to read the transactional interpretation by prof cramer.i have complete about 60% of the studying,however,the deadline is coming closer(march 13th).as a result,the alternatives interpretations wont be viewed.
    therefore,would u guys give some comments on the transactional interpretaion? moreover, comparing it with other interpretations will be gratefully appreciated!

    best wishes!
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 13, 2004 #2
    It says something like observers sending electromagnetic waves forward and backwards in time, if you receive an electromagnetic wave from the past, and accept it, you complete the "transaction" and send it back to the past. Not my favourite interpretation, I do not feel like I'm doing negotiations with my grand-grand-grandfather!
  4. Mar 14, 2004 #3


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    The transactional interpretation was certainly ingenious, but it looked a lot better a decade ago when people envisioned a "big crunch" in the future of the universe.

    The idea is that quantum mechanics, and eleectromagnetism too, produce both "advanced" and "retarded" waves. Advanced waves, in the mathematics, propagate into the past, and retarded waves propagate into the future. Conventional physics just ignore the advanced waves as "unphysical", but John Wheeler and Richard Feynman took them seriously and developed a version of electromagnetism based on that.

    Enter now John Cramer, who says, let the quantum wave functions, both retarded and advanced, propagate into the future and the past. And suppose that in both the far future and far past there are absorbers, that will reflect the waves. The one in the past is no problem, it's the big bang. And the cosmology of ten years or more ago foresaw a symmetrical big crunch end of the universe which could serve as the future absorber.

    The reflected wave functions from past and future would then meet at the event that created them, and INTERFERE, yielding the collapse of the amplitude wave that we see in quantum experiments. Cramer worked through all the math and it came out even; it explained quantum weirdness on the basis of the mathematically classical wave functions.

    I haven't seen Cramer's thoughts, or anybody else's for that matter, on how the accelerating universe affects the transactional interpretation. Can it be saved? Dunno.
  5. Mar 30, 2004 #4
    thx a lot,dude
    thumbs up!
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