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  1. The Decoherent Arrow of Time and the Entanglement Past Hypothesis.Jim Al-Khalili & Eddy Keming Chen - manuscript
    If an asymmetry in time does not arise from the fundamental dynamical laws of physics, it may be found in special boundary conditions. The argument normally goes that since thermodynamic entropy in the past is lower than in the future according to the Second Law of Thermodynamics, then tracing this back to the time around the Big Bang means the universe must have started off in a state of very low thermodynamic entropy: the Thermodynamic Past Hypothesis. In this paper, we (...)
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  2. Quantum Interaction. QI 2016. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 10106.José Acacio de Barros, Bob Coecke & E. Pothos (eds.) - 2016 - Springer, Cham.
  3. Non-Hermitian Hamiltonians in Quantum Physics. Springer Proceedings in Physics, vol 184.F. Bagarello, R. Passante & C. Trapani (eds.) - 2016 - Springer, Cham.
  4. Causal Set Theory and Growing Block? Not Quite.Marco Forgione - manuscript
    In this contribution, I explore the possibility of characterizing the emergence of time in causal set theory (CST) in terms of the growing block universe (GBU) metaphysics. I show that although GBU seems to be the most intuitive time metaphysics for CST, it leaves us with a number of interpretation problems, independently of which dynamics we choose to favor for the theory —here I shall consider the Classical Sequential Growth and the Covariant model. Discrete general covariance of the CSG dynamics (...)
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  5. A Comparative Analysis of David Lewis' Modal Realism and Everett's Many Worlds on Closed Time-like Curves and Time Travel.Fabian Kerj - 2023 - Dissertation, King's College London
    This paper explores the physical and metaphysical implications of time travel, focusing on the possibility of changing the past, through a comparative analysis of David Lewis' modal realism and Everett's many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics. The existence of closed timelike curves (CTCs) in certain solutions to Einstein's field equations provides a theoretical basis for the possibility of backwards time travel, but this leads to a range of paradoxes, most notably the grandfather paradox. David Lewis argues that time travel must maintain (...)
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  6. Symmetries and Representation.Sebastián Murgueitio Ramírez & Geoffrey Hall - 2024 - Philosophy Compass.
    It is often said in physics that if two models of a theory are related by a symmetry, then the two models provide (or could provide) two different representations of the very same situation, alike the case of two maps of different color for the very same city. It is also said that the situations represented by two models of a theory are indiscernible in some ways when the models in question are related by a symmetry of the theory, just (...)
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  7. Existence Is Not Relativistically Invariant—Part 1: Meta-ontology.Florian Marion - 2024 - Acta Analytica 39:1-25.
    Metaphysicians who are aware of modern physics usually follow Putnam (1967) in arguing that Special Theory of Relativity is incompatible with the view that what exists is only what exists now or presently. Partisans of presentism (the motto ‘only present things exist’) had very difficult times since, and no presentist theory of time seems to have been able to satisfactorily counter the objection raised from Special Relativity. One of the strategies offered to the presentist consists in relativizing existence to inertial (...)
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  8. The nature of the physical and the meaning of physicalism.Mahmoud Jalloh - 2023 - Theoria. An International Journal for Theory, History and Foundations of Science 38 (2):205-223.
    I provide an account of the physical appropriate to the task of the physicalist while remaining faithful to the usage of “physical” natural to physicists. Physicalism is the thesis that everything in the world is physical, or reducible to the physical. I presuppose that some version of this position is a live epistemic possibility. The physicalist is confronted with Hempel’s dilemma: that physicalism is either false or contentless. The proposed account of the physical avoids both horns and generalizes a recent (...)
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  9. Respecting boundaries: theoretical equivalence and structure beyond dynamics.William J. Wolf & James Read - 2023 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 13 (4):1-28.
    A standard line in the contemporary philosophical literature has it that physical theories are equivalent only when they agree on their empirical content, where this empirical content is often understood as being encoded in the equations of motion of those theories. In this article, we question whether it is indeed the case that the empirical content of a theory is exhausted by its equations of motion, showing that (for example) considerations of boundary conditions play a key role in the empirical (...)
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  10. Physics rewritten.Gabriel Vacariu - 2022 - Dissertation, University of Bucharest
    Physics Overwritten in a new perspective: “Epistemologically Different Worlds” (Einsteins’ relativities without “spacetime”, quantum me-chanics, pre-Big Bang, Big Bangs and “inflation”, dark mat-ter and dark energy, the superstring theory, and Bohr’s com-plementarity) -/- .
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  11. On Wheeler's Meaning Circuit.Gregg Jaeger - 2023 - In Arkady Plotnitsky & Emmanuel Haven (eds.), The Quantum-Like Revolution. Springer Cham. pp. 25-59.
    The Meaning Circuit Hypothesis (MCH) is a synthesis of ideas providing John Wheeler’s outline of ultimate physics, which he fine-tuned over several decades from the 1970s onward. It is a ‘working hypothesis’ in which ‘existence is a ‘meaning circuit”’ that portrays the world as a “system self-synthesized by quantum networking.” It was strongly advocated by him for roughly two decades and since then has had an increasingly strong impact on the approach of many investigators of quantum theory; in particular, elements (...)
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  12. Group Field Theories: Decoupling Spacetime Emergence from the Ontology of non-Spatiotemporal Entities.M. Forgione - forthcoming - European Journal for Philosophy of Science.
    With the present paper I maintain that the group field theory (GFT) approach to quantum gravity can help us clarify and distinguish the problems of spacetime emergence from the questions about the nature of the quanta of space. I will show that the mechanism of phase transition suggests a form of indifference between scales (or phases) and that such an indifference allows us to black-box questions about the nature of the ontology of the fundamental levels of the theory. I consider (...)
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  13. Does the Dome Defeat the Material Theory of Induction?William Peden - 2021 - Erkenntnis 88 (5):2171-2190.
    According to John D. Norton's Material Theory of Induction, all inductive inferences are justified by local facts, rather than their formal features or some grand principles of nature's uniformity. Recently, Richard Dawid (Found Phys 45(9):1101–1109, 2015) has offered a challenge to this theory: in an adaptation of Norton's own celebrated "Dome" thought experiment, it seems that there are certain inductions that are intuitively reasonable, but which do not have any local facts that could serve to justify them in accordance with (...)
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  14. Time travel and coincidence-free local dynamical theories.Giuliano Torrengo - 2020 - Synthese (11):4835-4846.
    I criticize Lockwood’s solution to the “paradoxes” of time travel, thus endorsing Lewis’s more conservative position. Lockwood argues that only in the context of a 5D space-time-actuality manifold is the possibility of time travel compatible with the Autonomy Principle (according to which global constraints cannot override what is physically possible locally). I argue that shifting from 4D space-time to 5D space-time-actuality does not change the situation with respect to the Autonomy Principle, since the shift does not allow us to have (...)
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  15. Idealizations in Physics.Elay Shech - 2023 - Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
    Idealizations are ubiquitous in physics. They are distortions or falsities that enter into theories, laws, models, and scientific representations. Various questions suggest themselves: What are idealizations? Why do we appeal to idealizations and how do we justify them? Are idealizations essential to physics and, if so, in what sense and for which purpose? How can idealizations provide genuine understanding? If our motivation for believing in the existence of unobservable entities like electrons and quarks is that they are indispensable to our (...)
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  16. Idealizations in Physics.Elay Shech - 2023 - Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
    Idealizations are ubiquitous in physics. They are distortions or falsities that enter into theories, laws, models, and scientific representations. Various questions suggest themselves: What are idealizations? Why do we appeal to idealizations and how do we justify them? Are idealizations essential to physics and, if so, in what sense and for which purpose? How can idealizations provide genuine understanding? If our motivation for believing in the existence of unobservable entities like electrons and quarks is that they are indispensable to our (...)
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  17. Susan Stebbing.Frederique Janssen-Lauret - 2022 - Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
    Susan Stebbing (1885–1943), the UK’s first female professor of philosophy, was a key figure in the development of analytic philosophy. Stebbing wrote the world’s first accessible book on the new polyadic logic and its philosophy. She made major contributions to the philosophy of science, metaphysics, philosophical logic, critical thinking, and applied philosophy. Nonetheless she has remained largely neglected by historians of analytic philosophy. This Element provides a thorough yet accessible overview of Stebbing’s positive, original contributions, including her solution to the (...)
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  18. (Dis)satisfaction of female and early-career researchers with the academic system in physics.Vlasta Sikimić, Kaja Damnjanović & Slobodan Perovic - forthcoming - Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering.
    Modern physics encompasses theoretical and experimental research divided in subfields with specific features. For instance, high energy physics (HEP) attracts significant funding and has distinct organizational structures, i.e., large laboratories and cross-institutional collaborations. Expensive equipment and large experiments create a specific work atmosphere and human relations. While the gender misbalance is characteristic for STEM, early-career researchers are inherently dependent on their supervisors. This raises the question of how satisfied researchers with working in physics are and how different subgroups – female (...)
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  19. Relativistic Bohmian Trajectories and Klein-Gordon Currents for Spin-0 Particles.M. Alkhateeb & A. Matzkin - 2022 - Foundations of Physics 52 (5):1-13.
    It is generally believed that the de Broglie-Bohm model does not admit a particle interpretation for massive relativistic spin-0 particles, on the basis that particle trajectories cannot be defined. We show this situation is due to the fact that in the standard representation of the Klein-Gordon equation the wavefunction systematically contains superpositions of particle and anti-particle contributions. We argue that by working in a Foldy-Wouthuysen type representation uncoupling the particle from the anti-particle evolutions, a positive conserved density for a particle (...)
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  20. The Growth of Modern Acoustics.Ivano Zanzarella - manuscript
    This essay aims to inquiry into the main factors responsible for the growth of modern acoustics, which basically have to be traced back to the empirical turn occurred in science of music around 1600. Helmholtz’s theory of sound will be regarded as most scientifically significant archetype of modern acoustics. In Section 1 a general historical overview of the science of music will be given and its importance for the development of modern science and mathematics considered. In Section 2 the internal (...)
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  21. The Concept of Entropy in Statistical Mechanics and Stochastic Music Theory.Ivano Zanzarella - manuscript
    Originally appeared in the field of thermodynamics, the concept of entropy, especially in its statistical acceptation, has found applications in many different disciplines, both inside and outside science. In this work we focus on the possibility of drawing an isomorphism between the entropy of Boltzmann’s statistical mechanics and that of Xenakis’s stochastic music theory. We expose the major technical aspects of the two entropies and then consider affinities and differences between them, both at syntactic and at semantic level, hereto particularly (...)
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  22. What Should Be the Ontology for the Standard Model?Ding Jia - 2022 - Foundations of Physics 52 (4):1-20.
    Although the Standard Model of particle physics is usually formulated in terms of fields, it can be equivalently formulated in terms of particles and strings. In this picture particles and open strings are always coupled. This offers an intuitive and graphical explanation for the otherwise mysterious gauge symmetry. In addition, the particle–string formulation avoids introducing redundant path integral configurations that are present in the field formulation. For its explanatory power and economy, the particle–string ontology may be preferred over the field (...)
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  23. Hilbert Space dimensions 3, 4, 5.Paul Merriam, Daniel Huber & Bob Hanlon - forthcoming - Foundations of Physics:6.
    This is a pdf of a Mathematica calculation that supplements the paper "Presentist Fragmentalism and Quantum Mechanics" forthcoming in Foundations of Physics. In that paper the Born rule (or at least a progenitor) is derived from experimental conditions on the mutual observations of two fragments. In this pdf the experimental conditions are applied to Hilbert space dimensions 3, 4, and 5. It turns out each of these have a 1-dimensional solution space which, it is hoped, can be interpretated as the (...)
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  24. Probabilities and Certainties Within a Causally Symmetric Model.Roderick I. Sutherland - 2022 - Foundations of Physics 52 (4):1-17.
    This paper is concerned with the causally symmetric version of the familiar de Broglie–Bohm interpretation, this version allowing the spacelike nonlocality and the configuration space ontology of the original model to be avoided via the addition of retrocausality. Two different features of this alternative formulation are considered here. With regard to probabilities, it is shown that the model provides a derivation of the Born rule identical to that in Bohm’s original formulation. This derivation holds just as well for a many-particle, (...)
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  25. From Quantum Physics to Classical Metaphysics.William Simpson - 2021 - In William Simpson, Robert C. Koons & James Orr (eds.), Neo-Aristotelian Metaphysics and the Theology of Nature. pp. 21-65.
    In this chapter, I argue that Aristotle’s doctrine of hylomorphism, which conceived the natural world as consisting of substances which are metaphysically composed of matter and form, is ripe for rehabilitation in the light of quantum physics. I begin by discussing Aristotle’s conception of matter and form, as it was understood by Aquinas, and how Aristotle’s doctrine of hylomorphism was ‘physicalised’ and eventually abandoned with the rise of microphysicalism. I argue that the phenomenon of quantum entanglement, and the emergence of (...)
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  26. From Data to Quanta: Niels Bohr’s Vision of Physics - Perović Slobodan (2021), Chicago: University of Chicago Press. [REVIEW]Petar Nurkić - 2022 - Synesis 3 (1):85-90.
  27. Models and Multiplicities.Joshua Eisenthal - 2022 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 60 (2):277-302.
    I claim that Wittgenstein’s reference to Hertz’s “dynamical models” at 4.04 in the Tractatus provides evidence for the view that the Tractatus does not explain the sense of propositions by offering an account of the fundamental structure of reality. Just as Hertz’s dynamical models capture what all mechanical descriptions of the same system have in common, so Tractarian analysis captures what all propositions that express the same sense have in common, and in neither case is there a need to appeal (...)
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  28. 9 Temporal Knowledge Arguments and a Note on Presentism 2 17 2022.Paul Merriam - manuscript
  29. Children's Health in the Digital Age.Birgitta Dresp-Langley - 2020 - International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 9 (17):299..
    Can we identify potential long-term consequences of digitalisation on public health? Environmental studies, metabolic research, and state of the art research in neurobiology point towards the reduced amount of natural day and sunlight exposure of the developing child, as a consequence of increasingly long hours spent indoors online, as the single unifying source of a whole set of health risks identified worldwide, as is made clear in this review of currently available literature. Over exposure to digital environments, from abuse to (...)
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  30. Time.Bradley Dowden - 2023 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Time is what clocks are used to measure. Information about time tells the durations of events and when they occur and which events happen before which others, so time plays a very significant role in the universe’s structure, including the structure of our personal lives. But carefully describing time’s properties has led to many unresolved issues, both philosophical and scientific.
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  31. No Time for Time from No-Time.Eugene Y. S. Chua & Craig Callender - 2021 - Philosophy of Science 88 (5):1172-1184.
    Programs in quantum gravity often claim that time emerges from fundamentally timeless physics. In the semiclassical time program time arises only after approximations are taken. Here we ask what justifies taking these approximations and show that time seems to sneak in when answering this question. This raises the worry that the approach is either unjustified or circular in deriving time from no–time.
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  32. Applying Mathematics: Immersion, Inference, Interpretation.Otávio Bueno & Steven French - 2018 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. Edited by Steven French.
    How is that when scientists need some piece of mathematics through which to frame their theory, it is there to hand? What has been called 'the unreasonable effectiveness of mathematics' sets a challenge for philosophers. Some have responded to that challenge by arguing that mathematics is essentially anthropocentric in character, whereas others have pointed to the range of structures that mathematics offers. Otavio Bueno and Steven French offer a middle way, which focuses on the moves that have to be made (...)
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  33. On the Possibility of Feminist Philosophy of Physics.Maralee Harrell - 2016 - In Maria Cristina Amoretti & Nicla Vassallo (eds.), Meta-Philosophical Reflection on Feminist Philosophies of Science. Cham: Imprint: Springer. pp. 15-34.
    The dynamic nature of physics cannot be captured through an exclusive focus on the static mathematical formulations of physical theories. Instead, we can more fruitfully think of physics as a set of distinctively social, cognitive, and theoretical/methodological practices. An emphasis on practice has been one of the most notable aspects of the recent “naturalistic turn” in general philosophy of science, in no small part due to the arguments of many feminist philosophers of science. A major project of feminist philosophy of (...)
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  34. The Dirac large number hypothesis and a system of evolving fundamental constants.Andrew Holster - manuscript
    In his [1937, 1938], Paul Dirac proposed his “Large Number Hypothesis” (LNH), as a speculative law, based upon what we will call the “Large Number Coincidences” (LNC’s), which are essentially “coincidences” in the ratios of about six large dimensionless numbers in physics. Dirac’s LNH postulates that these numerical coincidences reflect a deeper set of law-like relations, pointing to a revolutionary theory of cosmology. This led to substantial work, including the development of Dirac’s later [1969/74] cosmology, and other alternative cosmologies, such (...)
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  35. Nominalism and Immutability.Daniel Berntson - manuscript
    Can we do science without numbers? How much contingency is there? These seemingly unrelated questions--one in the philosophy of math and science and the other in metaphysics--share an unexpectedly close connection. For as it turns out, a radical answer to the second leads to a breakthrough on the first. The radical answer is new view about modality called compossible immutabilism. The breakthrough is a new strategy for doing science without numbers. One of the chief benefits of the new strategy is (...)
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  36. Sympathy for the Demon. Rethinking Maxwell’s Thought Experiment in a Maxwellian Vein.Javier Anta - 2021 - Teorema: International Journal of Philosophy 40 (3):49-64.
    In this paper I will defend an approach to the thought experiment known as ‘Maxwell’s Demon’ based on a Maxwellian conception of statistical mechanics. Instead of assuming that thermodynamic descriptions depend reductively on the dynamics of molecular components, I will adopt a conception of thermophysics as a ‘resource theory’ in the Maxwellian line recently defended by Myrvold (2011) and Wallace (2017). From this interpretative stance, Maxwell’s demon would not lead directly to the plausibility of violating the second law of thermodynamics, (...)
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  37. Quantum Foundations of Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics.Orly Shenker - 2022 - In Eleanor Knox & Alastair Wilson (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Physics. London, UK: Routledge. pp. Ch. 29.
    Statistical mechanics is often taken to be the paradigm of a successful inter-theoretic reduction, which explains the high-level phenomena (primarily those described by thermodynamics) by using the fundamental theories of physics together with some auxiliary hypotheses. In my view, the scope of statistical mechanics is wider since it is the type-identity physicalist account of all the special sciences. But in this chapter, I focus on the more traditional and less controversial domain of this theory, namely, that of explaining the thermodynamic (...)
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  38. What Do Infinite Sets Look Like? ? It Depends on the Perspective of the Observer.Roger Granet - manuscript
    Consider an infinite set of discrete, finite-sized solid balls (i.e., elements) extending in all directions forever. Here, infinite set is not meant so much in the abstract, mathematical sense but in more of a physical sense where the balls have physical size and physical location-type relationships with their neighbors. In this sense, the set is used as an analogy for our possibly infinite physical universe. Two observers are viewing this set. One observer is internal to the set and is of (...)
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  39. Entanglement as the world-making relation: distance from entanglement.Rasmus Jaksland - 2020 - Synthese 198 (10):9661-9693.
    Distance, it is often argued, is the only coherent and empirically adequate world-making relation that can glue together the elements of the world. This paper offers entanglement as an alternative world-making relation. Entanglement is interesting since it is consistent even with quantum gravity theories that do not feature space at the fundamental level. The paper thereby defends the metaphysical salience of such non-spatial theories. An account of distance is the predominant problem of empirical adequacy facing entanglement as a world-making relation. (...)
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  40. What Entanglement Might Be Telling Us: Space, Quantum Mechanics, and Bohm's Fish Tank.Ismael Jenann - 2020 - In David Glick, George Darby & Marmodoro Anna (eds.), The Foundation of Reality: Fundamentality, Space, and Time. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 139-153.
  41. Everettian Formulation of the Second Law of Thermodynamics.Yu Feng - manuscript
    The second law of thermodynamics is traditionally interpreted as a coarse-grained result of classical mechanics. Recently its relation with quantum mechanical processes such as decoherence and measurement has been revealed in literature. In this paper we will formulate the second law and the associated time irreversibility following Everett’s idea: systems entangled with an object getting to know the branch in which they live. Accounting for this self-locating knowledge, we get two forms of entropy: objective entropy measuring the uncertainty of the (...)
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  42. The time asymmetry of quantum mechanics and concepts of physical directionality of time Part 1.Andrew Thomas Holster - manuscript
    This is Part 1 of a four part paper, intended to redress some of the most fundamental confusions in the subject of physical time directionality, and represent the concepts accurately. There are widespread fallacies in the subject that need to be corrected in introductory courses for physics students and philosophers. We start in Part 1 by analysing the time reversal symmetry of quantum probability laws. Time reversal symmetry is defined as the property of invariance under the time reversal transformation, T: (...)
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  43. Discrete space and the underlying reality of Quantum Mechanics.Sydney Ernest Grimm - manuscript
    Recently there is some new interest in understanding the physical reality behind the formalism of quantum mechanics. This paper relates the known “quantum mysteries” of QM with the properties of the underlying structure of discrete space. DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.5236617.
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  44. Explaining Relativity. Summary of TAU. A unified theory.Andrew Thomas Holster -
    This is a summary presentation of TAU, a theory proposed to explain relativity and unify physics. It is a radical change, because it proposes six dimensions of space, instead of the usual three (normal physics) or nine (string theory). It starts with an alternative foundation for Special Relativity, and leads to a unified theory of physics. It is a realist theory because it is realist about space and time. The TAU concept is briefly introduced here, and its results explained in (...)
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  45. Time's arrow and self‐locating probability.Eddy Keming Chen - 2021 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 105 (3):533-563.
    One of the most difficult problems in the foundations of physics is what gives rise to the arrow of time. Since the fundamental dynamical laws of physics are (essentially) symmetric in time, the explanation for time's arrow must come from elsewhere. A promising explanation introduces a special cosmological initial condition, now called the Past Hypothesis: the universe started in a low-entropy state. Unfortunately, in a universe where there are many copies of us (in the distant ''past'' or the distant ''future''), (...)
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  46. Sinnlich beginnt die Wissenschaft. Rezension von: David Cahan, Helmholtz: A Life in Science. [REVIEW]Gregor Schiemann - 2019 - German Studies Review 42 (3):592-595.
  47. Centering the Principal Principle.Isaac Wilhelm - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 178 (6):1897-1915.
    I show that centered propositions—also called de se propositions, and usually modeled as sets of centered worlds—pose a serious problem for various versions of Lewis's Principal Principle. The problem, put roughly, is that in scenarios like Elga's `Sleeping Beauty' case, those principles imply that rational agents ought to have obviously irrational credences. To solve the problem, I propose a centered version of the Principal Principle. My version allows centered propositions to be objectively chancy.
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  48. Tausendfaltige Naturen. Zur Vielgestaltigkeit der Naturdeutungen in Novalis' "Die Lehrlinge zu Sais".Gregor Schiemann - 2020 - In Klaus Feldmann & Nils Höppner (eds.), Wie über Natur reden? Philosophische Zugänge zum Naturverständnis im 21. Jahrhundert. Verlag Karl Alber. pp. 91-106.
  49. New Foundations for Branching Space-Times.N. Belnap, T. Müller & T. Placek - 2020 - Studia Logica 109 (2):239-284.
    The theory of branching space-times, put forward by Belnap, considers indeterminism as local in space and time. In the axiomatic foundations of that theory, so-called choice points mark the points at which the possible future can turn out in different ways. Working under the assumption of choice points is suitable for many applications, but has an unwelcome topological consequence that makes it difficult to employ branching space-times to represent a range of possible physical space-times. Therefore it is interesting to develop (...)
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  50. A Powerful Particulars View of Causation.Rögnvaldur D. Ingthorsson - 2021 - New York: Routledge.
    This Open Access book (see link to Taylor & Francis below) critically examines the recent discussions of powers and powers-based accounts of causation. The author then develops an original view of powers-based causation that aims to be compatible with the theories and findings of natural science. Recently, there has been a dramatic revival of realist approaches to properties and causation, which focus on the relevance of Aristotelian metaphysics and the notion of powers for a scientifically informed view of causation. In (...)
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