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Thread: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM

  1. #1 Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
    Forum Freshman Lothar's Avatar
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    I was just wondering how professional physicists might respond to this presentation of Ron Garret.

    This is his recent "Google Talk" on the subject: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEaecUuEqfc

    This is his relevant paper from 2001: http://www.flownet.com/ron/QM.pdf

    ABSTRACT

    Richard Feynman once famously quipped that no one understands quantum mechanics, and popular accounts continue to promulgate the view that QM is an intractable mystery (probably because that helps to sell books). QM is certainly unintuitive, but the idea that no one understands it is far from the truth. In fact, QM is no more difficult to understand than relativity. The problem is that the vast majority of popular accounts of QM are simply flat-out wrong. They are based on the so-called Copenhagen interpretation of QM, which has been thoroughly discredited for decades. It turns out that if Copenhagen were true then it would be possible to communicate faster than light, and hence send signals backwards in time. This talk describes an alternative interpretation based on quantum information theory (QIT) which is consistent with current scientific knowledge. It turns out that there is a simple intuition that makes almost all quantum mysteries simply evaporate, and replaces them with an easily understood (albeit strange) insight: measurement and entanglement are the same physical phenomenon, and you don't really exist.


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    All I can add is that, as best I know, the reason it's call an interpretation is because it makes exactly the same predictions as any other interpretation, so if you could show something is wrong with one, it'd apply to all of them.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    All I can add is that, as best I know, the reason it's call an interpretation is because it makes exactly the same predictions as any other interpretation, so if you could show something is wrong with one, it'd apply to all of them.
    Naa, the interpretation just means that it's not fact yet because it hasn't been or can't be proven. If it can't be, then yes, if you disprove one you disprove all, but if it CAN be, than it will still exist, just as fact instead of an interpretation.

    And Copenhagen's interpretation is faulty, I agree, but I don't think entanglement is the same as measurement. I'll have to read more into that.
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    Consistency defines reality. We distinguish between the perceptions that we have while sleeping from those we have while awake precisely because our wakeful perceptions are more amenable to consistent storytelling. We call our wakeful
    perceptions "reality" and our sleepful ones "dreams" for precisely this reason. (Page 10)
    I disagree with this. We call our wakeful perceptions "reality" for many reasons. Yes, one of those reasons is because we can make more sense out of what happens (what he calls "consistency"), but can't we make more sense of it (Thus it seems consistent) BECAUSE this is what we call reality?

    Also, we can't be hurt in dreams, we don't even remember most of our dreams, and it's not like a choice, it's something that's instilled in us already.

    The mathematics of quantum information theory tell us unambiguously that particles are not real. (page 16; summary)
    The mathematics also show that one particle exists everywhere, and that it follows (in the double-slit experiment) two paths of trajectory (technically infinite) to go through both slits at once. So not only are particles not real, but they are real at the same time when you're looking at JUST the math.
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  6. #5  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meader
    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    All I can add is that, as best I know, the reason it's call an interpretation is because it makes exactly the same predictions as any other interpretation, so if you could show something is wrong with one, it'd apply to all of them.
    Naa, the interpretation just means that it's not fact yet because it hasn't been or can't be proven. If it can't be, then yes, if you disprove one you disprove all, but if it CAN be, than it will still exist, just as fact instead of an interpretation.

    And Copenhagen's interpretation is faulty, I agree, but I don't think entanglement is the same as measurement. I'll have to read more into that.
    No, that doesn't match any definition of interpretation I know of. Specifically, it doesn't match the definition of interpretation that's used in physical theories.

    Quote Originally Posted by [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interpretation_of_quantum_mechanics
    Wikipedia[/url]]
    The ingredients that vary between interpretations are the ontology and the epistomology, which are concerned with what, if anything, the interpreted theory is "really about".
    The Copenhagen (a place, not a person) interpretation can't be any more faulty than QM as a whole, at least not in an objective sense. You're free to pick which interpretation you like best though.

    Also, entanglement and measurement are two completely different things.

    Also also, theories never become facts. You can't prove something in physics the way you prove something in math. You can only fail to disprove it repeatedly. (Am I going to have to give The Science Game another try? No one ever seems to learn anything from it.)
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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meader
    [And Copenhagen's interpretation is faulty, I agree,
    Who is this guy Copenhagen?
    I hadn't heard of Ron Garret before I read this thread. Does he say anything new/original about QM?
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  8. #7 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lothar
    I was just wondering how professional physicists might respond to this presentation of Ron Garret.

    This is his recent "Google Talk" on the subject: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEaecUuEqfc

    This is his relevant paper from 2001: http://www.flownet.com/ron/QM.pdf

    ABSTRACT

    Richard Feynman once famously quipped that no one understands quantum mechanics, and popular accounts continue to promulgate the view that QM is an intractable mystery (probably because that helps to sell books). QM is certainly unintuitive, but the idea that no one understands it is far from the truth. In fact, QM is no more difficult to understand than relativity. The problem is that the vast majority of popular accounts of QM are simply flat-out wrong. They are based on the so-called Copenhagen interpretation of QM, which has been thoroughly discredited for decades. It turns out that if Copenhagen were true then it would be possible to communicate faster than light, and hence send signals backwards in time. This talk describes an alternative interpretation based on quantum information theory (QIT) which is consistent with current scientific knowledge. It turns out that there is a simple intuition that makes almost all quantum mysteries simply evaporate, and replaces them with an easily understood (albeit strange) insight: measurement and entanglement are the same physical phenomenon, and you don't really exist.
    I have not had the time or inclination to delve into this in detail, but go to Garret's web site and read some more. His presentation is based on the work of some real physicists. Detailed papers are available in Arxiv. Garret is a bright guy, but not, as he clearly says, a physicist. He is presenting his views based on his own study and the work of some real research physicists.

    Whether or not there is something here that will become part of mainstream physics remains to be seen. Garret is not a nut. Neither are the physicists upon whose research his talk is based.
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  9. #8 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    FWIW, I submitted my paper to the American Journal of Physics back in the day. It was rejected, not on the grounds that it was wrong, but on the grounds that it was nothing new. That entanglement and measurement are the same physical phenomenon is common knowledge is certain circles.
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  10. #9  
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    Wow. This is pretty awesome. Mr. Garrett! Thanks for posting!

    I was just reading an interesting blog post from a couple years ago by Sean Carroll which includes an exchange with Lorenzo Maccone in the comments.

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/co...till-a-puzzle/

    I wish I had the background to fully appreciate this discourse.
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lothar
    Wow. This is pretty awesome. Mr. Garrett! Thanks for posting!
    My pleasure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lothar
    I was just reading an interesting blog post from a couple years ago by Sean Carroll which includes an exchange with Lorenzo Maccone in the comments.

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/co...till-a-puzzle/

    I wish I had the background to fully appreciate this discourse.
    My paper and talk were designed to explain these things to people *without* a physics background, so if you could be a little more specific about where I lost you that would be helpful.

    BTW, I should point out that contrary to the title of this discussion topic. QIT is not my idea. I got it from Nicolas Cerf and Chris Adami, and they got it (more or less) from Von Neumann. So none of this is new. But it is, apparently, a distressingly well kept secret.
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  12. #11 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    What I find bizarre in Garret's reasoning is that he seems to consider entanglement as a form of "communication" between particles ('spooky action at a distance'). It has been long shown that the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paradox is an unvalid way of attacking the Copenhagen interpretation of QM because entanglement is non-local. How can Garret's hypothesis be correct if he starts from the purported correctness of the EPR-paradox?
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  13. #12 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    What I find bizarre in Garret's reasoning is that he seems to consider entanglement as a form of "communication" between particles ('spooky action at a distance'). It has been long shown that the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paradox is an unvalid way of attacking the Copenhagen interpretation of QM because entanglement is non-local. How can Garret's hypothesis be correct if he starts from the purported correctness of the EPR-paradox?
    I do not "consider entanglement as a form of 'communication'". Where did you get that idea?
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  14. #13 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    I do not "consider entanglement as a form of 'communication'". Where did you get that idea?
    On one of your slides on the EPR-paradox you ask the question: "if we measure on the left, do we destroy interference on the right?", which is basically the same as asking: "if we measure the spin of one electron on the left, does the wave function on the right also collapse so as to produce the same spin?". You then offer two possibilities: either it doesn't (which would violate Copenhagen) or either it does (which "would allow for faster-than-light communication").

    Now, John Bell's test experiments (this is why I rephrased your question) suggest that the wave function does collapse on both sides, precisely on the instant when one of the sides is measured, producing the same spin in both electrons. What I object to is that you consider the similar problem of interference as FTL communication, whereas this is really the essence of entanglement. The wave function does collapse, not due to communication, but because the two particles/waves are in some way connected on quantum (non-local) level.
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  15. #14 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    I do not "consider entanglement as a form of 'communication'". Where did you get that idea?
    On one of your slides on the EPR-paradox you ask the question: "if we measure on the left, do we destroy interference on the right?"
    Yes, I do indeed ask that question. But then I answer it. The answer turns out to be "no". But there is a compelling argument to be made for the answer being "yes". Understanding why that compelling argument is wrong is what the talk is about.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    You then offer two possibilities: either it doesn't (which would violate Copenhagen) or either it does (which "would allow for faster-than-light communication").
    That's right. Doesn't that seem like a compelling argument?

    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    Now, John Bell's test experiments (this is why I rephrased your question) suggest that the wave function does collapse on both sides, precisely on the instant when one of the sides is measured, producing the same spin in both electrons.
    If that were the case, then why would we not destroy the interference on both sides? Does not "collapsing the wave function" necessarily entail "destroying interference"?
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  16. #15 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    If that were the case, then why would we not destroy the interference on both sides? Does not "collapsing the wave function" necessarily entail "destroying interference"?
    Exactly. The wave function collapses on both sides and the interference is destroyed. But, if you allow me, that is not what you say in your presentation. I quote: "If the answer is “yes” [i.e. if the interference is destroyed] then we have FTL communications." Bell's experiment indeed produces a "yes", but this does not mean that there is any communication, the absence of which is precisely the essence of quantum entanglement (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bell's_theorem).

    The EPR-paradox is generally considered to be resolved thanks to Bell's experiments and thus not contradicting the Copenhagen interpretation. I wonder what new evidence you would suggest to overrule Bell's findings?
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  17. #16 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    If that were the case, then why would we not destroy the interference on both sides? Does not "collapsing the wave function" necessarily entail "destroying interference"?
    Exactly. The wave function collapses on both sides and the interference is destroyed. But, if you allow me, that is not what you say in your presentation. I quote: "If the answer is “yes” [i.e. if the interference is destroyed] then we have FTL communications."
    You are quoting me very selectively. I did indeed say those words. But you left out the part where I explain WHY we would have FTL communications. It's because the destruction of interference is an easily observable macroscopic phenomenon. Did you not watch the whole presentation?

    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    Bell's experiment indeed produces a "yes", but this does not mean that there is any communication, the absence of which is precisely the essence of quantum entanglement (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bell's_theorem).

    The EPR-paradox is generally considered to be resolved thanks to Bell's experiments and thus not contradicting the Copenhagen interpretation. I wonder what new evidence you would suggest to overrule Bell's findings?
    I have no idea what you mean here. I didn't even bring up Bell's theorem in my talk. (It wasn't necessary to make the point I was trying to make.)
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  18. #17 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    I have no idea what you mean here. I didn't even bring up Bell's theorem in my talk. (It wasn't necessary to make the point I was trying to make.)
    The problem is that Bell's theorem (which you indeed left out of your presentation) refutes the EPR-paradox and precludes its validity as a counterargument against the Copenhagen interpretation. The EPR-paradox presumes an entirely local universe, whereas Bell showed that some quantum effects are indeed non-local. But this non-locality has nothing to do with communication at speed of light (which is always local).

    It's not because the interference is destroyed that there is FTL communication. It is the quantum entanglement that causes the interference to vanish.

    Do you understand what I'm trying to say?
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  19. #18 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    I have no idea what you mean here. I didn't even bring up Bell's theorem in my talk. (It wasn't necessary to make the point I was trying to make.)
    The problem is that Bell's theorem (which you indeed left out of your presentation) refutes the EPR-paradox and precludes its validity as a counterargument against the Copenhagen interpretation. The EPR-paradox presumes an entirely local universe, whereas Bell showed that some quantum effects are indeed non-local. But this non-locality has nothing to do with communication at speed of light (which is always local).

    It's not because the interference is destroyed that there is FTL communication. It is the quantum entanglement that causes the interference to vanish.

    Do you understand what I'm trying to say?
    I think so. But I don't think you understand what *I* am trying to say. You are correct when you say that "It is the quantum entanglement that causes the interference to vanish." But how do you know that? That is not exactly an obvious result. I am trying to provide an accessible explanation for *why* entanglement destroys interference. The explanation is that entanglement is the same as measurement. The mathematics of an entangled particle are the same as the mathematics of an entangled particle. There's no need to invoke either Bell or EPR (notwithstanding that I allude to EPR in the talk, but that was with tongue in cheek).
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  20. #19 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    I think so. But I don't think you understand what *I* am trying to say. You are correct when you say that "It is the quantum entanglement that causes the interference to vanish." But how do you know that? That is not exactly an obvious result. I am trying to provide an accessible explanation for *why* entanglement destroys interference. The explanation is that entanglement is the same as measurement. The mathematics of an entangled particle are the same as the mathematics of an entangled particle. There's no need to invoke either Bell or EPR (notwithstanding that I allude to EPR in the talk, but that was with tongue in cheek).
    Alright, I have one final remark and one final question and then I will let go :wink:

    In your paper and presentation you state that the destruction of interference could lead to faster than light communication (slide 28 ), and you use this as an argument to counter the Copenhagen interpretation because it would then be fundamentally at odds with relativity theory. I do not here try to refute your thesis that entanglement equals measurement, I merely point out that you cannot use the FTL argument to refute Copenhagen. That is because there is no way to control the outcome of the measurement at one side. "Communication" entails a volitional signal that is sent to a receiver; when you merely measure something, there is no way you can control the outcome of the measurement. You cannot decide whether the spin should be up or down. You just find that it is either one of the two possiblities, and this then means that the electron on the other end has the opposite spin. This is by no means communication, and no interaction whatsoever between both electron occurs. That would simply be impossible and Copenhagen obeys that fact.

    And, lastly, if you do not invoke EPR, then what exactly is your physical refutation of the Copenhagen interpretation? You state on one of your slides that it is "untenable" but the only argument you seem to invoke for that is that Copenhagen violates general relativity (which I think I dismissed above). Do you have any additional arguments against Copenhagen?
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  21. #20  
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    He's no Brad Garrett.
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  22. #21  
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeslaG
    He's no Brad Garrett.
    That would be a good thing.
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  23. #22 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    I merely point out that you cannot use the FTL argument to refute Copenhagen. That is because there is no way to control the outcome of the measurement at one side. "Communication" entails a volitional signal that is sent to a receiver; when you merely measure something, there is no way you can control the outcome of the measurement. You cannot decide whether the spin should be up or down. You just find that it is either one of the two possiblities, and this then means that the electron on the other end has the opposite spin. This is by no means communication, and no interaction whatsoever between both electron occurs. That would simply be impossible and Copenhagen obeys that fact.
    It is true that you can't control the outcome of a measurement, but that's not relevant, and if you think that it is then you have completely missed the point. There are no measurements performed at the receiving end of the FTL setup. What is done at the receiving and is that the particles are allowed to self-interfere. Measurements are made (or not) on the transmitting side in order to transmit a one (or a zero). You have to make a LOT of measurements (or let a lot of particles go unmeasured) in order to transmit a single bit of information. The transmission has a finite signal-to-noise ratio depending on how many particles are used to transmit a single bit.

    If this doesn't make you go "aha" then send me an email and I'll try to explain it in more detail. ron at flownet dot com.
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  24. #23 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by rongarret
    It is true that you can't control the outcome of a measurement, but that's not relevant, and if you think that it is then you have completely missed the point. There are no measurements performed at the receiving end of the FTL setup. What is done at the receiving and is that the particles are allowed to self-interfere. Measurements are made (or not) on the transmitting side in order to transmit a one (or a zero). You have to make a LOT of measurements (or let a lot of particles go unmeasured) in order to transmit a single bit of information. The transmission has a finite signal-to-noise ratio depending on how many particles are used to transmit a single bit.

    If this doesn't make you go "aha" then send me an email and I'll try to explain it in more detail. ron at flownet dot com.
    No, no, I do not mean that there is any measurement on the receiving end. Nothing at all happens at the receiving end - it can't, because there is no communication.

    Say you have an electron with spin up or down. You measure it at one end. Let's say it turns out to be up. Then you know that it's down at the other end. But you have not transmitted any bits of information here! Simply because you cannot choose whether the electron will be up or down at the sending end. You cannot choose whether you "send" (assuming this is even possible) a 0 or a 1 as a bit.

    But even that left aside. Say you do not measure anything. There is interference between the two sides. Then you measure the "sending" end. The interference stops. If I understand correctly from your speech, you assert that switching back and forth between interference and non-interference would enable us to transmit morse from one end to the other, faster than light. How exactly are you going to determine that the interference has stopped if you are at the receiving end?

    We're talking here about quantum wave functions. They do not literally exist, they cannot be seen. We can see them in the two-slit experiment because you fire a heap of electrons at a wall and let them interfere. In the communication situation we are discussing here, there are no electrons that enable us to see whether there is any interference or not. The only way to ascertain that the interference is destroyed at the receiving end is to do a measurement, which would of course automatically destroy the wave function and invalidate the communication.

    Your explanation confirms my initial thoughts that you assume that Copenhagen thinks that there are bits of information sent between both sides of the experiment. There aren't. Quantum entanglement is not about sending information from one half to the other. It's about two particles/waves being tightly intertwined in their properties. If you measure one, you know the other. It's as if you had two marbles in a bag, one black and one white. If you measure one, i.e. you take out one, and it turns out to be white, then you know the one in the bag is black. Nothing more happens. There is no way this even vaguely resembles communication, and it is incorrect to use this as an argument against Copenhagen.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeslaG
    He's no Brad Garrett.
    Lol I had to look that one up, I'm not from America :wink:
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  26. #25 Re: Ron Garret's QIT interpretation of QM 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    Nothing at all happens at the receiving end - it can't, because there is no communication.
    That is correct. But that is not what one would conclude from reading popular accounts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    There is interference between the two sides.
    Again, that is correct. But again, this is not mentioned in popular accounts. In fact, the whole concept of "interference BETWEEN the two sides" is completely alien to popular accounts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    The only way to ascertain that the interference is destroyed at the receiving end is to do a measurement, which would of course automatically destroy the wave function and invalidate the communication.
    No, that is NOT correct. The problem here is that there is more than one possible kind of measurement. Some kinds of measurements (which-way measurements) destroy interference. Other kinds of measurements (like interferometry) don't.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    Your explanation confirms my initial thoughts that you assume that Copenhagen thinks that there are bits of information sent between both sides of the experiment.
    No, I do not assume that. Copenhagen says: if you don't know which way the particle went then you can observe interference. If you do know (or can in principle know) then you cannot observe interference, and more to the point, you can observe the absence of interference.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maximise24
    It's as if you had two marbles in a bag, one black and one white. If you measure one, i.e. you take out one, and it turns out to be white, then you know the one in the bag is black. Nothing more happens.
    Again, this is incorrect. The analogy here is that you have a whole bunch of marbles, and there is a test that you can do (interferometry) to determine whether or not you have looked at them. What color they turn out to be once you have looked at them is completely irrelevant.
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    Feynman's quote in his lectures: "We choose to examine a phenomenon which is impossible, absolutely impossible, to explain in any classical way, and which has in
    it the heart of quantum mechanics. In reality, it contains the only mystery."

    Surprise! Five years ago interference has been observed for macroscopic wave-particle object: completely classical oil droplets - https://hekla.ipgp.fr/IMG/pdf/Couder-Fort_PRL_2006.pdf
    These recent papers of Couder, Ford et al give great intuition what quantum mechanics is about - like in de Broglie's doctoral thesis: with particle's energy (E=mc^2) comes some internal clock (E=hf) and so corpuscle should create periodic waves of perturbation around - these recent experiments show that with such understanding of wave-particle duality, even bouncing droplets can recreate 'quantum phenomenas': interference(particle come one way, but waves it creates come both, affecting its behavior), tunneling (the state of waves works as fundamental noise) and orbit quantization (after an orbit, the phase has to return to the initial one - particle finds resonance with the field) for them.

    Do we expect required internal clock for particles(zitterbewegung)?
    Yes - they recently even observed it - here is Hestenees paper about it: http://www.fqxi.org/data/essay-conte..._time_essa.pdf
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    Interesting stuff Ron. I read Quantum Mysteries Disentangled. I liked the way you dispel all that quantum mysticism. I'm not quite happy with all aspects though. I have no problem with the particle-like behavior of quantum systems is an illusion, but I'd say what we usually call reality is “really” a very high quality simulation running on a quantum computer does go too far. That quantum "computer" is an analog computer.

    Of course, what's depressing about this is that you wrote the paper ten years ago, I haven't seen it before, and quantum mysticism seems to be stronger than ever. Sometimes it feels like I'm witnessing the growth of cargo-cult science.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farsight
    Of course, what's depressing about this is that you wrote the paper ten years ago, I haven't seen it before, and quantum mysticism seems to be stronger than ever. Sometimes it feels like I'm witnessing the growth of cargo-cult science.
    The irony is that I submitted it to Physics Today and it was rejected on the grounds that it was nothing new. I should probably revise it (it's a little short on references) and put it up on Arxiv.
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    The need for quantum mysticism is extremely complicated social problem ...
    In Poland we had great example - well know plasma physicist who started with adding electron's magnetic moment to classical scattering considerations (1959) - it gave surprisingly good agreement, these papers have hundreds of citations ... then he observed that such succeeding scatterings works quite well as atomic model - in many papers in the best journals showed surprising good experimental agreement of such classical approximation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free-fall_atomic_model

    I believe it's a matter of time now - for example the intuition from Couder is really great, they've recently managed to measure average photon momentum while interference: http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-06-...ferometer.html ...
    Recently there appeared Maximal Entropy Random Walk which shows why Brownian motion is only approximation and if we make thermodynamics properly, trajectories averages toward quantum orbitals.
    There is also possibility of LENR - even NASA takes it seriously and the only reasonable explanation I've seen is using Gryzinski's approximation: electron bounces between nuclei, screening the coulomb barrier...

    ps. You might be interested that there is conference coming about emergent quantum mechanics: http://www.univie.ac.at/hvf11/congress/EmerQuM.html
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  31. #30  
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    Do it, Ron. I'm John Duffield by the way, an interested amateur who got a lot more interested 5 years back when our teenage children gave up all their science subjects.

    If you have time, take a look at "quantum simulations" like this. Given that we can make electrons (and positrons) in pair production, using photons to model the behaviour of electrons feels very much like an analog computer. I'm thinking of those paint-mixing calculus problems, only you solve them with a "computer" that involves plumbing.

    I presume you've seen the recent "weak measurement" dual slit experiment by Steinberg et al. Here's a report of it: http://physicsworld.com/cws/article/news/46193
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