Crisis

Blogs on quantum physics philosophy, update

Posted in Philosophy, Philosophy of Science, quantum physics theory, Science by e1saman on October 10, 2010

New addition to the list of blogs that are realted to quantum physics philosophy;

The Event Horizon

After Bohr, physics is no more the study of the essence of things, but of the relationships among them

George’s Home Blog

George Putnam

Posts and news on science

Interesting posts

Beyond God and atheism: Why I am a ‘possibilian’

But good science is always open-minded, and the history of science is one of surprises and overturnings. Science is nothing but careful thinking, and careful thinking encourages an appreciation of the complexity of the world. The complexity encourages us to maintain several possibilities at once. In a single lifetime, we may have no way to remove the ambiguities from these possibilities.

News

Physics

Scientists isolate, hold, photograph individual Rubidium 85 atom

(PhysOrg.com) — In a major physics breakthrough, University of Otago scientists have developed a technique to consistently isolate and capture a fast-moving neutral atom – and have also seen and photographed this atom for the first time.

Random numbers created out of nothing

Now Christian Gabriel’s team at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light in Erlangen, Germany, has built a prototype that draws on a vacuum’s random quantum fluctuations. These impart random noise to laser beams in the device, which converts it into numbers.

Sound can leap across a vacuum after all

Now a theoretical analysis by Mika Prunnila and Johanna Meltaus, both of the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland in Espoo, suggests that sound may be able to leap across a vacuum separating two objects made of piezoelectric crystals. These crystals generate an electric field when squeezed or stretched by sound waves or other forces, and deform in an electric field.

Biology

Study shows real partners are no match for ideal mate

Our ideal image of the perfect partner differs greatly from our real-life partner, according to new research from the University of Sheffield and the University of Montpellier in France. The research found that our actual partners are of a different height, weight and body mass index than those we would ideally choose.

Unlocking the secret of beauty: Scientists discover the complexities of attractive female bodies

Scientists in Australia and Hong Kong have conducted a comprehensive study to discover how different body measurements correspond with ratings of female attractiveness. The study, published in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology, found that across cultural divides young, tall and long armed women were considered the most attractive.

Can the weirdness of quantum mechanics make you well, or make you wealthy?

quantum mechanics

quantum mechanics

I was doing a search on twitter about quantum mechanics and in the results I saw a lot of tweets about products that use quantum mechanics to change your life! Apparently some people believe that quantum mechanics can make you wealthier and healthier.  Can someone really use a physics theory (which is very hard to understand) in order to change his life? If you really don’t have an answer on that you can start your quest for an answer by reading the following post in Cosmic Log;

How to spot quantum quackery

This is an interview with Lawrence Krauss the writer of “The Physics of Start Trek”.

People want to believe that they can easily change everything without effort, but physics is all about understanding limitations;

The quantum world does pervade everything around us, but as Richard Feynman liked to say, “Scientific creativity is imagination in a straitjacket.” Not everything is possible. That’s what makes the world so interesting.

Maybe we don’t know everything about Science and quantum mechanics, but that is also the beauty of it; we are working hard in order to understand more, and to create more.

With quantum mechanics, there’s a notion that observers affect the things that they’re observing. That’s not always true, but it’s often true. That’s one of the very strange properties of quantum mechanics. Therefore people get the notion that there’s no objective reality, and that you can literally impact on the external world just by doing things internally. That’s not the case. If you want to affect something in the external world, you have to do something to it. You can’t just hope for the best. You can’t bring good things to you by thinking about them.

Knowledge has its scope and limitations, we have to understand that;

Quantum mechanics is often quoted as the explanation for many things, because it’s so weird that people latch onto it as a hope, to explain everything that they would like to believe about the universe.

Magic is linked to the belief that everything is possible with little or no effort; that is not the case with Science

There are lots of things in quantum mechanics that sound like magic. But sounding like magic and being magic are two different things.

Is quantum mechanics a new fashion?

Often, people who are trying to sell whatever it is they’re trying to sell try to justify it on the basis of science. Everyone knows quantum mechanics is weird, so why not use that to justify it? … I don’t know how many times I’ve heard people say, “Oh, I love quantum mechanics because I’m really into meditation, or I love the spiritual benefits that it brings me.” But quantum mechanics, for better or worse, doesn’t bring any more spiritual benefits than gravity does.

So you think you are special!

Posted in comment, Philosophy, Philosophy of Science, Physics, Science by e1saman on September 23, 2010

special According to Lee Smolin in “The trouble with Physics” the standard model of Physics was based on Natures symmetries and the spontaneous symmetry breaking;

Spontaneous symmetry breaking is the process by which a system described in a theoretically symmetrical way ends up in a non symmetrical state. For spontaneous symmetry breaking to occur, there must be a system in which there are several equally likely outcomes. The system as a whole is therefore symmetric with respect to these outcomes (if we consider any two outcomes, the probability is the same). However, if the system is sampled (i.e. if the system is actually used or interacted with in any way) a specific outcome must occur. Though we know the system as a whole is symmetric, we also know that it is never encountered with this symmetry, only in one specific state. Because one of the outcomes is always found with probability 1, and the others with probability 0, they are no longer symmetric. Hence, the symmetry is said to be spontaneously broken in that theory.

This mechanism is the basis for the unification of the three forces in Nature; electromagnetism,weak force, strong force. According to this view, and my understanding  the laws of physics that we experience are just an outcome of a random choice. There were other possibilities for this world; for example a possibility that the strong force is not so strong to hold the nucleus of the atoms together. In this case life, as we know it, is not possible. If you take this idea a little more further you can easily assume that there can be worlds that they are completely different from this one. These worlds cannot develop the same chemistry that our life is based on, but nothing forbids them from developing some other kind of life which we cannot even imagine.

I was reading the following post about the fine-structure constant;

the observer effect

fine-structure constant variation; If confirmed, this revelation could reshape physicists’ understanding of cosmology from the ground up. It may even help solve a major conundrum: Why are all the constants of nature perfectly tuned for life to exist?

As you can see the writer thinks that we are very very lucky that we live in a ‘place’ that is “life friendly”. I will not comment on the tautology of the view, but I am surprised that people are interested in science just to find the same answers rephrased; We know that we are here and this is the mystery, we want to know why and how. Learning again that we are here because the laws of Nature are ‘so well tuned’ does not add any kind of knowledge and does not answer something more! Maybe people like to think in this way because they just love to be reminded that they are special nothing more.