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To: FormerACLUmember; neverdem

As I understand quantum electrodynamics, the hidden-variables explanation has already been shown to be incorrect. A quantum physicist would know that, so I’m thinking that this article may just be nonsense - maybe somebody who really understands this can explain this to me.

Einstein said that it doesn’t make sense that God would play dice with the universe. However, quantum theory has been proven to be valid, despite the fact that it doesn’t make intuitive sense to us.

At the quantum level, given a set of exact starting conditions we can’t say what will happen next - but we do know that if the exact same starting conditions are repeated a large number of times the set of results can be predicted with great accuracy.

So, that’s the same as if God is throwing dice or flipping a coin to determine what happens next at the quantum level.


7 posted on 05/19/2008 12:41:43 AM PDT by Flashlight
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To: Flashlight

“At the quantum level, given a set of exact starting conditions we can’t say what will happen next - but we do know that if the exact same starting conditions are repeated a large number of times the set of results can be predicted with great accuracy.

So, that’s the same as if God is throwing dice or flipping a coin to determine what happens next at the quantum level.”

The “dice” or “coin flip” analogy is probably correct, though most physicists do not think about it. The behavior of dice and coins is not random, but quite distinctly physically determined. The presumed “randomness” has entirely to do with our ignorance of what is going to happen.

Hank


20 posted on 05/19/2008 5:02:01 AM PDT by Hank Kerchief
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To: Flashlight
"As I understand quantum electrodynamics, the hidden-variables explanation has already been shown to be incorrect."

I have read that also. Ruled out.

31 posted on 05/19/2008 11:29:11 AM PDT by steve86 (Acerbic by nature, not nurtureĀ™)
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To: Flashlight

Last I heard quantum theory has not been proven to be valid... it has simply not been proven to be invalid, there is a huge disparity in saying one proves the other.

What is true as I understand it is that what we observe when we expirament with the quantum is what the probabilities of the theory predict, we have never obsevered to date an outcome that was not predicted by the math.. However this does not mean the theory is fact or valid. It may mean that only we have not attempted to uet to obsever the case(s) that do not meet the probabilities predicted in the math.

Of course quantum theory also states that by simply observing we affect the outcome.

I admit I am no quantum physicist, but of what I understand about it, which admittedly isn’t much, I don’t color myself convinced that the theory is wholey correct.


32 posted on 05/19/2008 11:36:02 AM PDT by HamiltonJay
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To: Flashlight
As I understand quantum electrodynamics, the hidden-variables explanation has already been shown to be incorrect. A quantum physicist would know that, so I’m thinking that this article may just be nonsense - maybe somebody who really understands this can explain this to me.

The late Dr. David Bohm presented a new formulation of work he did in the the 1950s. He dropped the original work of the '50s because I believe Einstein didn't think very highly of his ideas. However with the advent of Bell's theorem calling into question Einsteins theory of locality (you know the spooky action at a distance), Bohm renewed his pursuit of his theory of Quantum mechanics. The dislike of Bohm's theory is due to the fact that not that much changes. He in effect moved the goal line by stating the random nature of quantum mechanics is not due to any underlying physical property implied by the theory, instead it's due to our lack of knowledge of the state of the system at the beginning of the experiment. That and the fact that dimensions run wild with even simple calculations of particle experiments.

I believe the proof against hidden variable was due to Von Neuman (?). But Bohm addresses this in his last book and his theory is not affected by the proof.

So what's cool about all this is that if Bohm's theory is correct then it changes Einsteins Theory of Relativity. In Relativity is the concept of locality, that everything is capped by the speed of light. So that an event that happens on one side of the solar system can be detected no sooner than it would take light to travel across and reach a detector (your eye). But if Bohm's theory holds special quantum mechanical events could be transmitted faster than light (I believe near instantaneous).

I apologize in advance for errors in history. It's been a while since I've read about this stuff. But I'm glad Bohm's theory is alive and kicking. Even if he was a Marxist.

33 posted on 05/19/2008 12:12:46 PM PDT by stig
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