Quantum mechanics: an empiricist's view by Bas C. van Fraassen

By Bas C. van Fraassen

After introducing the empiricist standpoint in philosophy of technology, and the techniques and strategies of the semantic method of medical theories, van Fraassen discusses quantum concept in 3 levels. He first examines the query of even if and the way empirical phenomena require a non-classical concept, and what kind of conception they require. He then discusses the mathematical foundations of quantum thought with targeted connection with advancements within the modelling of interplay, composite structures, and dimension. eventually, the writer broaches the most questions of interpretation. After providing a critique of past interpretations, he develops a brand new one--the modal interpretation--which makes an attempt to stick as regards to the unique Copenhagen principles with out implying a thorough incompleteness in quantum idea. He back supplies distinctive recognition to the nature of composite, many-body platforms and particularly to the odd personality of assemblies of exact debris in quantum data.

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Quantum mechanics: an empiricist's view

After introducing the empiricist viewpoint in philosophy of technological know-how, and the thoughts and techniques of the semantic method of medical theories, van Fraassen discusses quantum thought in 3 levels. He first examines the query of no matter if and the way empirical phenomena require a non-classical thought, and what kind of concept they require.

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Suppose we replace one model by another, whose statespace is just what remains in the first after the laws of coexistence are used to rule out some set of states. Then we have not diminished what can be modelled. Similarly, if we include in the state some functions of time, laws of succession may be replaced by laws of coexistence. We can illustrate this with different ways to write Newton's laws. The most obvious is to say that the second law of motion, F = ma, is a law of succession. But another way to think of it is this: the second derivative with respect to time, of position conceived as a function of time, is one parameter represented in the state, just as well as the total force impressed and the mass.

2. State-Space Models and Their Laws The semantic approach to scientific theories means to refine the analysis of their structure. At the level of analysis of the preceding chapter, we addressed the notion of theory überhaupt. To go further, we must consider relativistic and non-relativistic theories separately. With very few exceptions, our discussion of quantum mechanics will remain with its non-relativistic formulation; the difference this makes is that we can keep time as a separate category.

The family of propositions in general inherits a certain amount of structure from the geometric character of the state-space. To explore that structure is ipso facto to explore the logic of elementary statements. General relations of logical interest here include: A implies B exactly if SA is a subset of SB. b. (greatest lower bound) (with respect to the implication relationship) of SA and SB in the family of propositions. Again we must enter the caveat that, unless value attributions are reducible to state attributions, the propositions may not simply be regions of the state-space.

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