Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Robert Anton Wilson Explains The Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Physics

Robert Anton WIlson Explains The Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Physics

The Copenhagen interpretation is an interpretation of quantum mechanics. A key feature of quantum mechanics is that the state of every particle is described by a wavefunction, which is a mathematical representation used to calculate the probability for it to be found in a location, or state of motion. In effect, the act of measurement causes the calculated set of probabilities to "collapse" to the value defined by the measurement. This feature of the mathematical representations is known as wavefunction collapse.

Other Interpretations

# A system is completely described by a wave function ψ, which represents an observer's knowledge of the system. (Heisenberg)

# The description of nature is essentially probabilistic. The probability of an event is related to the square of the amplitude of the wave function related to it. (Max Born)

# Heisenberg's uncertainty principle states the observed fact that it is not possible to know the values of all of the properties of the system at the same time; those properties that are not known with precision must be described by probabilities.

# Complementarity principle: matter exhibits a wave-particle duality. An experiment can show the particle-like properties of matter, or wave-like properties, but not both at the same time.(Niels Bohr)
# Measuring devices are essentially classical devices, and measure classical properties such as position and momentum.

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