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Thread: Copenhagen Interpretation

  1. #1 Copenhagen Interpretation 
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    Hi


    I'm no scientist, just a natural philosopher who has had a nose around Wikipedia's entry on the Copenhage Interpretation and thinks he's come up with a solution to the quantum theory problem that wave functions collapse when observed.


    What I'd like to propose is that wave functions do not collapse when observed, but that it is the event of their collapse (or change of state) (through interacting with a photon (or whatever)) makes the collapsed state observable.


    After all this is what happens in the 'real' world. We don't really see things, we see things after they have been excited by photons and changed their state. We observe the release of energy. Turn off the light and things are not visible.


    If someone has proposed this before, then that's fine, but I can't find any evidence of it. If they have then why is it not a realistic solution, or why is it not on Wikipedia?


    As far as I can see this means that there is no need for the Copenhagen interpretation, plus it explains why we don't see dark matter. It doesn't change its state.


    In fact I'd go further and propose this as Ansell's Law: Nothing can be observed unless there has been a change of state with a release of energy from another thing to create the thing that is observed.


    Please celebrate my different thinking or shoot me down in flames.


    Last edited by Copenhagen; January 15th, 2018 at 03:29 PM. Reason: Detail
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  3. #2  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Copenhagen View Post
    Hi


    I'm no scientist, just a natural philosopher who has had a nose around Wikipedia's entry on the Copenhage Interpretation and thinks he's come up with a solution to the quantum theory problem that wave functions collapse when observed.


    What I'd like to propose is that wave functions do not collapse when observed, but that it is the event of their collapse (or change of state) (through interacting with a photon (or whatever)) makes the collapsed state observable.


    After all this is what happens in the 'real' world. We don't really see things, we see things after they have been excited by photons and changed their state. We observe the release of energy. Turn off the light and things are not visible.


    If someone has proposed this before, then that's fine, but I can't find any evidence of it. If they have then why is it not a realistic solution, or why is it not on Wikipedia?


    As far as I can see this means that there is no need for the Copenhagen interpretation, plus it explains why we don't see dark matter. It doesn't change its state.


    In fact I'd go further and propose this as Ansell's Law: Nothing can be observed unless there has been a change of state with a release of energy from another thing to create the thing that is observed.


    Please celebrate my different thinking or shoot me down in flames.
    It seems to me you may have hit on the current version of the Copenhagen interpretation that is tacitly in use in much of physical science.

    There is indeed nothing magic about "observation". If there were, one would have a whole host of ridiculous consequences, since it would imply the evolution of physical systems depended on whether they were "observed" or not. So the outcome of an experiment would change if the experimenter went out for a coffee, and, even worse, one would have to determine what counted as "observation": observation by just human beings? Observation by a lizard? By a wasp? A pot plant?

    As I understand it, it is generally assumed that it is interaction that changes (or "collapses") the state function. All detectors that we can use for "observation" must interact with the system under examination. And yes I think it probably must be true to say that some change in energy is required, somewhere, for a detector to detect something.

    By I am not an expert in such things, so maybe someone else would like to comment.


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    The death rate per 100 million miles traveled in 2015 was 0.52 in Massachusetts.

    Any person who drives less than 50 million miles during that year has a greater than (not exactly) 50% probability of not dying in a car crash...

    According to the death rate wave function, everyone in the less than 50 million miles traveled in a year category is found in the greater than 50% odds of survival probability lobe... a 1 mile drive to the grocery store should statistically be perfectly safe...

    ...suppose the first death of the year involves a fatal collision during the person’s 1st mile driven to the grocery store, and we look at the accident scene, we could say we’ve taken a measurement and the decedent’s wave function has collapsed, and they were actually found in the 100% probability of death per mile traveled probability lobe, despite the low statistical probability of this occuring according to the death rate wave function...
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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by devin-m View Post
    The death rate per 100 million miles traveled in 2015 was 0.52 in Massachusetts.

    Any person who drives less than 50 million miles during that year has a greater than (not exactly) 50% probability of not dying in a car crash...

    According to the death rate wave function, everyone in the less than 50 million miles traveled in a year category is found in the greater than 50% odds of survival probability lobe... a 1 mile drive to the grocery store should statistically be perfectly safe...

    ...suppose the first death of the year involves a fatal collision during the person’s 1st mile driven to the grocery store, and we look at the accident scene, we could say we’ve taken a measurement and the decedent’s wave function has collapsed, and they were actually found in the 100% probability of death per mile traveled probability lobe, despite the low statistical probability of this occuring according to the death rate wave function...
    This doesn't make sense.
    "[Dywyddyr] makes a grumpy bastard like me seem like a happy go lucky scamp" - PhDemon
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  6. #5  
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    A single stern-gerlach apparatus will separate particles according to spin. If the -1/2 particles are blocked and the +1/2 are put through successive stern-gerlach apparatuses, additional -1/2 particles appear... (this is an example of the process of observation altering the measurement.)

    Source: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ster...ach_experiment

    “If we link multiple Stern–Gerlach apparatuses, we can clearly see that they do not act as simple selectors, but alter the states observed (as in light polarization), according to quantum mechanical law: [6]

    Source: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ster...ach_experiment

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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by devin-m View Post
    The death rate per 100 million miles traveled in 2015 was 0.52 in Massachusetts.

    Any person who drives less than 50 million miles during that year has a greater than (not exactly) 50% probability of not dying in a car crash...

    According to the death rate wave function, everyone in the less than 50 million miles traveled in a year category is found in the greater than 50% odds of survival probability lobe... a 1 mile drive to the grocery store should statistically be perfectly safe...

    ...suppose the first death of the year involves a fatal collision during the person’s 1st mile driven to the grocery store, and we look at the accident scene, we could say we’ve taken a measurement and the decedent’s wave function has collapsed, and they were actually found in the 100% probability of death per mile traveled probability lobe, despite the low statistical probability of this occuring according to the death rate wave function...
    It is true that the integral, over a region of space, of the square modulus of a wave function represents a probability of detecting a QM entity in that region of space.

    This does not entitle one to pretend that any expression for probability must be some sort of wave function. Obviously.

    So indeed, as Dywyddyr has observed, what you have said does not make sense.

    As has been said before, learning some quantum theory would be a good idea.
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