Experimental metaphysics2: The double standard in the quantum-information approach to the foundations of quantum theory

Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 38 (4):906-919 (2007)
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Abstract

Among the alternatives of non-relativistic quantum mechanics (NRQM) there are those that give different predictions than quantum mechanics in yet-untested circumstances, while remaining compatible with current empirical findings. In order to test these predictions, one must isolate one’s system from environmental induced decoherence, which, on the standard view of NRQM, is the dynamical mechanism that is responsible for the ‘apparent’ collapse in open quantum systems. But while recent advances in condensed-matter physics may lead in the near future to experimental setups that will allow one to test the two hypotheses, namely genuine collapse vs. decoherence, hence make progress toward a solution to the quantum measurement problem, those philosophers and physicists who are advocating an information-theoretic approach to the foundations of quantum mechanics are still unwilling to acknowledge the empirical character of the issue at stake. Here I argue that in doing so they are displaying an unwarranted double standard. r 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Amit Hagar
Indiana University, Bloomington

Citations of this work

Length matters: The einstein–swann correspondence and the constructive approach to the special theory of relativity.Amit Hagar - 2007 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 39 (3):532-556.
Reconsidering Mermin’s “In Praise of Measurement”.GianCarlo Ghirardi - 2008 - Foundations of Physics 38 (11):1011-1019.

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