WHERE DOES THE WEIRDNESS GO WHY QUANTUM MECHANICS IS STRANGE BUT NOT AS STRANGE AS YOU THINK

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Author : David Lindley
ISBN : 0786725877
Genre : Science
File Size : 40.10 MB
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Few revolutions in science have been more far-reaching--but less understood--than the quantum revolution in physics. Everyday experience cannot prepare us for the sub-atomic world, where quantum effects become all-important. Here, particles can look like waves, and vice versa; electrons seem to lose their identity and instead take on a shifting, unpredictable appearance that depends on how they are being observed; and a single photon may sometimes behave as if it could be in two places at once. In the world of quantum mechanics, uncertainty and ambiguity become not just unavoidable, but essential ingredients of science--a development so disturbing that to Einstein "it was as if God were playing dice with the universe." And there is no one better able to explain the quantum revolution as it approaches the century mark than David Lindley. He brings the quantum revolution full circle, showing how the familiar and trustworthy reality of the world around us is actually a consequence of the ineffable uncertainty of the subatomic quantum world--the world we can't see.

Author : Carl C. Gaither
ISBN : 9781461411130
Genre : Science
File Size : 52.64 MB
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This unprecedented collection of 27,000 quotations is the most comprehensive and carefully researched of its kind, covering all fields of science and mathematics. With this vast compendium you can readily conceptualize and embrace the written images of scientists, laymen, politicians, novelists, playwrights, and poets about humankind's scientific achievements. Approximately 9000 high-quality entries have been added to this new edition to provide a rich selection of quotations for the student, the educator, and the scientist who would like to introduce a presentation with a relevant quotation that provides perspective and historical background on his subject. Gaither's Dictionary of Scientific Quotations, Second Edition, provides the finest reference source of science quotations for all audiences. The new edition adds greater depth to the number of quotations in the various thematic arrangements and also provides new thematic categories.

Author : William J. Mullin
ISBN : 9780192514349
Genre : Science
File Size : 31.87 MB
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Quantum mechanics allows a remarkably accurate description of nature and powerful predictive capabilities. The analyses of quantum systems and their interpretation lead to many surprises, for example, the ability to detect the characteristics of an object without ever touching it in any way, via "interaction-free measurement," or the teleportation of an atomic state over large distances. The results can become downright bizarre. Quantum mechanics is a subtle subject that usually involves complicated mathematics — calculus, partial differential equations, etc., for complete understanding. Most texts for general audiences avoid all mathematics. The result is that the reader misses almost all deep understanding of the subject, much of which can be probed with just high-school level algebra and trigonometry. Thus, readers with that level of mathematics can learn so much more about this fundamental science. The book starts with a discussion of the basic physics of waves (an appendix reviews some necessary classical physics concepts) and then introduces the fundamentals of quantum mechanics, including the wave function, superposition, entanglement, Bell's theorem, etc., and applications to Bose—Einstein condensation, quantum computing, and much more. The interpretation of the mathematics of quantum mechanics into a world view has been the subject of much controversy. The result is a variety of conflicting interpretations, from the famous Copenhagen view of Bohr to the multiple universes of Everett. We discuss these interpretations in the chapter "What is a wave function?" and include some very recent advances, for example, quantum Bayesianism, and measurements of the reality of the wave function.

Why discovering the limits to science may be the most powerful discovery of all How much can we know about the world? In this book, physicist Marcelo Gleiser traces our search for answers to the most fundamental questions of existence, the origin of the universe, the nature of reality, and the limits of knowledge. In so doing, he reaches a provocative conclusion: science, like religion, is fundamentally limited as a tool for understanding the world. As science and its philosophical interpretations advance, we face the unsettling recognition of how much we don't know. Gleiser shows that by abandoning the dualistic model that divides reality into the known and the unknown, we can embark on a third way based on the acceptance of our limitations. Only then, he argues, will we be truly able to experience freedom; for to be free in an age of science we cannot turn science into a god. Gleiser ultimately offers an uplifting exploration of humanity's longing to conquer the unknown, and of science's power to transform and inspire.

Author : Philip Ball
ISBN : 9781473548084
Genre : Science
File Size : 39.20 MB
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'This is the book I wish I could have written but am very glad I've read' Jim Al-Khalili ‘I think I can safely say that nobody understands quantum mechanics.’ Richard Feynman wrote this in 1965 – the year he was awarded the Nobel prize in physics for his work on quantum mechanics. Quantum physics is regarded as one of the most obscure and impenetrable subjects in all of science. But when Feynman said he didn’t understand quantum mechanics, he didn’t mean that he couldn’t do it – he meant that’s all he could do. He didn’t understand what the maths was saying: what quantum mechanics tells us about reality. Over the past decade or so, the enigma of quantum mechanics has come into sharper focus. We now realise that quantum mechanics is less about particles and waves, uncertainty and fuzziness, than a theory about information: about what can be known and how. This is more disturbing than our bad habit of describing the quantum world as ‘things behaving weirdly’ suggests. It calls into question the meanings and limits of space and time, cause and effect, and knowledge itself. The quantum world isn’t a different world: it is our world, and if anything deserves to be called ‘weird’, it’s us. This exhilarating book is about what quantum maths really means – and what it doesn’t mean.

Author : Bruce Rosenblum
ISBN : 9780199792955
Genre : Science
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In trying to understand the atom, physicists built quantum mechanics, the most successful theory in science and the basis of one-third of our economy. They found, to their embarrassment, that with their theory, physics encounters consciousness. Authors Bruce Rosenblum and Fred Kuttner explain all this in non-technical terms with help from some fanciful stories and anecdotes about the theory's developers. They present the quantum mystery honestly, emphasizing what is and what is not speculation. Quantum Enigma's description of the experimental quantum facts, and the quantum theory explaining them, is undisputed. Interpreting what it all means, however, is heatedly controversial. But every interpretation of quantum physics involves consciousness. Rosenblum and Kuttner therefore turn to exploring consciousness itself--and encounter quantum mechanics. Free will and anthropic principles become crucial issues, and the connection of consciousness with the cosmos suggested by some leading quantum cosmologists is mind-blowing. Readers are brought to a boundary where the particular expertise of physicists is no longer the only sure guide. They will find, instead, the facts and hints provided by quantum mechanics and the ability to speculate for themselves. In the few decades since the Bell's theorem experiments established the existence of entanglement (Einstein's "spooky action"), interest in the foundations, and the mysteries, of quantum mechanics has accelerated. In recent years, physicists, philosophers, computer engineers, and even biologists have expanded our realization of the significance of quantum phenomena. This second edition includes such advances. The authors have also drawn on many responses from readers and instructors to improve the clarity of the book's explanations.

Author : R. Mirman
ISBN : 1560729910
Genre : Science
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Excision of errors and confusion about quantum mechanics -- and stimulation of thoughtful and adventurous readers are pre-eminent rationales of this entire work; these requiring definitions and analysis of underlying concepts of quantum mechanics, of quantum field theory -- why probability is given by the absolute square, what wavefunctions are and are not and why, and many others -- and also examination of some from the philosophy of science. People's beliefs about quantum mechanics are often just the reverse of what fundamental principles give, seen most spectacularly with the EPR 'paradox'. The puzzles, the mystical, the bizarre, come merely from negligence, from blunders, including the outlandish belief that the universe must be explained using classical physics. Careless, unthinking physicists, and gullible journalists who naively accept their confusion as statements about nature, cause so much misunderstanding and nonsense about physics. Among the many examples considered are the non-existence in quantum mechanics of waves and particles, so of wave-particle duality; the reason that general relativity must be the quantum theory of gravity; the mystery of the cosmological constant: why people believe in it though it would be obvious to a high school student that there cannot be any, it must be zero; the absurdity (and wild incorrectness) of much of the discussion about the vacuum; the required locality of quantum mechanics and the impossibility of action-at-a-distance; and many others. Many blunders, not only about physics, come from abuse of language, the use of words, phrases, sentences without content, with con- notation but no denotation, of names --- quantum mechanics, particles, waves, and so on -- that deceive and misrepresent, of questions that ask nothing. It is not only in physics that answers to questions without meaning smother and hide.

Life is the most extraordinary phenomenon in the known universe; but how does it work? It is remarkable that in this age of cloning and even synthetic biology, nobody has ever made anything living entirely out of dead material. Life remains the only way to make life. Are we missing a vital ingredient in its creation? Like Richard Dawkins' The Selfish Gene, which provided a new perspective on evolution by shifting the focus of natural selection from organisms to genes, Life On The Edge alters our understanding of life from cells or biomolecules to the fundamental particles that drive life's dynamics. From this new perspective, life makes more sense as its missing ingredient is revealed to be quantum mechanics and the strange phenomena that lie at the heart of this most mysterious of sciences. -- Provided by publisher.

"A high-speed thriller. . . . The pages turn rapidly with well-orchestrated suspense." - The New York Times "If Stephen Hawking and Stephen King wrote a novel together, you'd get The Flicker Men. Brilliant, disturbing, and beautifully told." -Hugh Howey, New York Times bestselling author of the Wool series A quantum physicist shocks the world with a startling experiment, igniting a struggle between science and theology, free will and fate, and antagonizing forces not known to exist Eric Argus is a washout. His prodigious early work clouded his reputation and strained his sanity. But an old friend gives him another chance, an opportunity to step back into the light. With three months to produce new research, Eric replicates the paradoxical double-slit experiment to see for himself the mysterious dual nature of light and matter. A simple but unprecedented inference blooms into a staggering discovery about human consciousness and the structure of the universe. His findings are celebrated and condemned in equal measure. But no one can predict where the truth will lead. And as Eric seeks to understand the unfolding revelations, he must evade shadowy pursuers who believe he knows entirely too much already.

Author : Leonard Susskind
ISBN : 9780465036677
Genre : Science
File Size : 49.74 MB
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From the bestselling author of The Theoretical Minimum, a DIY introduction to the math and science of quantum physics First he taught you classical mechanics. Now, physicist Leonard Susskind has teamed up with data engineer Art Friedman to present the theory and associated mathematics of the strange world of quantum mechanics. In this follow-up to The Theoretical Minimum, Susskind and Friedman provide a lively introduction to this famously difficult field, which attempts to understand the behavior of sub-atomic objects through mathematical abstractions. Unlike other popularizations that shy away from quantum mechanics’ weirdness, Quantum Mechanics embraces the utter strangeness of quantum logic. The authors offer crystal-clear explanations of the principles of quantum states, uncertainty and time dependence, entanglement, and particle and wave states, among other topics, and each chapter includes exercises to ensure mastery of each area. Like The Theoretical Minimum, this volume runs parallel to Susskind’s eponymous Stanford University-hosted continuing education course. An approachable yet rigorous introduction to a famously difficult topic, Quantum Mechanics provides a tool kit for amateur scientists to learn physics at their own pace.