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Offline Mr. Scientist

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« on: 29/12/2008 05:53:57 »
And so it has been, for the last 20 years, the search for the solution to quantum decoherence is unsolved. We still do not know how virtual reality (the kind of reality that exists before an arbitrary resolution such as an observation has been made) is manifested into a real configuration.

This is the wave function i speak of. Quantum Mechanics right now, states that before an observation is made on a system, that system is found to be in a ghostly apprarition of states, all superpositioned (or) spread out out over a space and time. Let's try and imagine this.

Imagine that no human had cropped up on the face of the earth in the last 10,000 years: The correct amount of time which would require a human being to arise on Earth. Now, as the old proverb says, the creature that made the sea roar, was like the first observation of a human being, a being thus capable of analyzing their surroundings. These ''subtle'' observations in spacetime, on physical matter ''out there,'' we can inevitably distort their positions, alter their physical appearances and texture, to bring about real solid and tangible matter.

Nope... this is not a fairytail. We have already proven this to be a true fact: Simple observation brings about real quantum attributes. We therefore can and do, create the world around us. We have quantum fact after quantum fact that proves this strange phenomenon.

The Observer and the Atom

Everything is made up of 'observables'. If i looked at a dice, i could say that it has observables. I could say it has dimensions - with six sides as a result. I could also say it has dots placed on each side. What i see are observables. Everything that is physical is made up of things we can measure. Let us take a particle as a quick and easy explanation.

A particle has many observables. One observable is spin - all fundamental matter has spin - from the smallest matter which is an electron, to the smallest quanta of energy, which is a photon... every particle has a spin value, which can be either a 'half-integer' or an 'increasing integer'. The lowest spin that any particle can have is a 1/2. Thus a particle with a 1/2 spin can be potentially observed as either an up-spin or a down-spin. It is here the relationship between mind and matter can come into play - again, mind is matter.

A particle, before any resolution is made, has to have both a spin-up and a spin-down simultaneously - this is the effect of the quantum wave function. Whenever an observation is made on a particle, a direction is made for it. We can observe it to be with a spin-up or a spin-down. Thus we essentially create the function of the matter being observed.

Another effect we can have on matter, is found in the 'Zeno-Effect' in quantum physics. Suppose a scientist came along to observe an atom. Now, one might think that the atom would behave just as normally, despite the fact of it being observed - and would eventually radiate away its energy. However, it turns out that this is not the case at all. The very act of observation 'somehow' suspends the little atom in time, and prevents it from evolving and releasing any energy!

Another example is the photon particle (the kind of particle the sun emits)... The photon for instance is a zero-time particle [1]. That leaves this luxen particle in the category of the potential... not quite real... might i even say it exists as a ghost, as it whizzes across the galaxy. Now imagine the photon was to travel the universe in either a wave description or as a particle... but before this, the photon has no state. It is us therego, who applies and ascribes the photon with a wave-like or particle-like attributes. This goes for all matter.

The Mind

One of the biggest mysteries concerning physics today is the role of the observer. The world of the mind has captured the imaginations of some of the biggest giants in the world of physics... and with good reason. We learn that the observer must play one of the most important parts in what we call reality. Hence, a physicist is compelled to say, 'the mind is reality,' and in this chapter, we will investigate why physics is driven into believing this statement.

The observer plays one of the biggest roles in physics - but unfortunately, it isn't explored enough i feel. Theoretical physicist, Fred Alan Wolf has written many tributes to the theory of consciousness. Physicist and mathematician Erwin Schrödinger, most famous for 'Schrödinger’s cat paradox' also dedicated a lot time to the observer. Niels Bohr, the founder of the 'Copenhagen interpretation' showed us the effects of the observer on the observed. Einstein himself brought back the role of the observer, in many examples such as the 'twin paradox', the 'train-platform game of catch,' the 'grandfather paradox', the 'EPR paradox', ect.

The EPR paradox is by physicists Einstein, Boris (Podolsky) and Nathan (Rosen). It raises the question of the state of one half of a system that was previously attached to the other system. If one half of the system is observed and measured, what happens to the other half? Well, whatever is determined for the half being observed, instantly determines the other system, even though it is no longer connected to it. The paradox is how this happens. The research on the EPR is still on-going, and the results of physicist Alain Aspect showed a connection of entangled behavior in 1982.

I can understand why Einstein was highly critical of physics; considering half of the unsolvable paradox's came from him. Even 'Schrödinger’s cat' was inspired by Einstein. It was as though Einstein was out on a mission to show everyone of the world that quantum physics was strange, and there was nothing we could do about it - and this included the paradoxical world of the observer.

This has led science to also consider how the mind directly influences the properties of whatever it observes, as the information travels superluminal (faster-than-light) through time and space. These quantum waves are best described by physicist John G. Cramer. A collapse of the wave function occurs, only when two quantum waves travel through time, one travels forward in time, and the other wave travel backwards through time; then the waves meet in the present and they multiply. This multiplication is called the collapse. The original wave can only multiply with it’s complex conjugate. (This part has been mostly adopted by Dr. Fred Alan Wolf - though Dr Cramer would also use this interpretion. It derived from the Absorber Interpretation of quantum interpretation.)

Multiplying two answers to obtain a single answer is common in everyday life. You might remember the mathematical formulae from school. Here are a few to example;

1. Force = mass x acceleration
2. Velocity = frequency x wavelength
3. Volume = area of base x height
4. Area = half the length of base x perpendicular height

Once they multiply, the 'transaction', as Cramer terms it, is complete. He feels that using these quantum waves helps in teaching how they work. It is after all, understandable. It is quite an elementary way of looking at it all.

Let's have a look at Schrödinger’s Cat. It refers to a cat that is locked up in a box, and inside the box is a device that will or will not emit poisonous gasses. Einstein had previously suggested a similar paradox, but involved an unstable keg of gunpowder instead of a cat. It suggests that if no one looks into the box, the cat has 50/50 chance. One it could be alive, or two it could be dead. Is the cat dead or alive?

Schrödinger just took the next step in applying quantum mechanics to an entity that may or may not be conscious, to illustrate the putative inconsistency of quantum mechanics when going from microscopic to macroscopic events, (the world of objects the eye can see directly). He once wrote;

'One can even set up quite ridiculas cases. A cat is penned up in a steel chamber, along with the following device (which must be secured against direct interference by the cat) - in a Geiger counter there is a tiny bit of radioactive substance, so small, that perhaps in the course of one hour at least one of the atoms decays, but also, with equal probability perhaps none; if it happens, the counter tube discharges and through a relay releases a hammer which shatters a small flask of hydrocyanic acid. If one has left this entire system to itself for an hour, one would say that the cat still lives if meanwhile no atom has decayed. The psi-function of this entire system would express this by having in it the living and the dead cat mixed, or smeared out in equal parts... which can be resolved by direct observation. That prevents us from so naively accepting as valid a 'blurred model' for representing reality. In itself, it would not embody anything unclear or contradictory. There is a difference between a shaky or out-of-focus photograph and snapshot of clouds and fog banks.'

So... after one hour, is the cat dead or alive? In the parallel universe model (even though Schrödinger never considered the many worlds theory in his paradox), the cat is both dead and alive. The cat will have split the universe into two, with a happy living cat in one universe, and a dead smeared cat in another.

The Copenhagen interpretation says that a system halts when an observation takes place. Schrödinger’s cat will be in a superpositioning until such an observation is performed - until then the experiment will exist as 'decayed nucleus/dead cat' simultaneous with 'undecayed' nucleus/living cat.' This is the effect of the quantum wave function until any observation is carried out, (no such thing as a collapse happens in the parallel universe theory. Instead, the observer and the observed become involved in a split). However, Schrödinger did not make this experiment to example the split.

According to the Copenhagen school of thought, the amount of uncertainty for complex quantum systems is predicted by 'quantum decoherence.' Particles which exchange photons become so entangled with each other that the uncertainty in a macroscopic system, like a cat, is almost zero - this means we can say that the cat is no longer dead and alive, but rather is one or the other - one (the cat is alive) or zero (the cat is dead).

'Wigner’s Friend,' by physicists Eugene Wigner, is an extension of Schrödinger’s Cat. It is meant to provoke thought. Professor Wigner stands outside of the room, ready to look in to see Wigner’s friend looking at the cat. Is Wigner’s friend in a happy state, or a sad state?
Eugene Wigner designed the experiment to highlight how he believed consciousness is a requisite for mathematical measurement process - if a material device is substituted for Wigner’s friend, the wave function hasn't collapsed and superpositioning continues. However, he also reasons that a conscious observer must be in one state or the other.

'We ourselves can bring about into existence only very small-scale properties, like the spin of the electron. Might it require intelligent beings, 'more conscious' than ourselves to bring into existence the electrons and other particles?
Barrow and Tipler, 'the Anthropic Principle.'

'No photon exists until a detector fires, only a developing potentiality. Particle-like and wave-like behavior are properties we ascribe to light. Without us, light has no properties, no existence. There is no independent reality for phenomena nor agencies of observation.'
Niels Bohr

'The world in Copenhagen interpretation is merely potential before our observation, and is actual afterwards.'
Bryce S. DeWitt

'We have to imagine the system a-attentively trying out all potentialities out of which one actually emerges.'
David Bohm

'There is always a triple correspondence;
1. A mental image, which is in our minds and not in the external world
2. Some kind of counterpart in the external world, which is inscrutable in nature
3. A set of pointer readings, which exact science can study and connect with other pointer readings
To put the conclusion crudely - the stuff of the world is 'mind stuff'. '
Sir Arthur Eddington


1) The photon moves along a null-path, which suggests it neither moves through time or space. This means that the photon, even though we may witness a ray of light zoom across the summit of mountains and rooftops of houses, it actually goes nowhere!!!! This is the strange workings of relatativity.
« Last Edit: 29/12/2008 05:56:17 by Mr. Scientist »


 

Offline Mr. Scientist

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #1 on: 29/12/2008 06:02:14 »
And so my question is, do you think the final model of physics could be largely based on the observer?
 

Offline Soul Surfer

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #2 on: 29/12/2008 18:15:20 »
Mr. Scientist Maybe you should have acknowledged your reference

http://politicsnow.common-nation.com/science-f46/the-greatest-mystery-the-observer-effect-t798.html

I am not sure that even that is the original source.  It is quite an interesting piece of writing and if it is not your own you should acknowledge the author or people will start to think you are clever  :-)

Coming back to the question.  I feel tyhat the use of the term "observer" in this case has caused some of the most fundamental misunderstandigs about quantum mechanics.

OK it IS weird I think it was feyneman who said "anyone who thinks that they completely understand quantum mechanica is wrong"! but it does not require intelligent human interveention to operate.

For the case ofentangled states any interaction that resolves the entanglement will do  ie the absobtion of a photon etc.
 

Offline lightarrow

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #3 on: 29/12/2008 23:12:27 »
And so my question is, do you think the final model of physics could be largely based on the observer?
I don't like this interpretation; I prefer others.
 

Offline Mr. Scientist

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #4 on: 30/12/2008 06:29:00 »
It's mine light arrow. This is my work
 

Offline yor_on

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #5 on: 30/12/2008 09:55:17 »
Ok, I liked it.

Some principal observations I've made reading this and other forums.
And now you all need to tell me if it's correct

If one like the 'wave patterned 'approach' one more often than not, seem to see the photon as not 'traveling' in spacetime at all, am I correct in that?

Then the photon more or less become a quantum related state that 'falls out' with the interaction of the observer.
Or am I formulating this wrong?
 

Offline lightarrow

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #6 on: 30/12/2008 14:36:10 »
It's mine light arrow. This is my work

Ok. However you made a question and I answered you. I don't think the final model of physics could be largely based on the observer.
 

Offline Mr. Scientist

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #7 on: 31/12/2008 04:11:59 »
And so my question is, do you think the final model of physics could be largely based on the observer?
I don't like this interpretation; I prefer others.

However, an interpretation, like parallel universe theory or even the Copenhagen theory do not need to be struck off, so to speak; they could live as largely observational-dependant theories.
 

Offline Mr. Scientist

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #8 on: 31/12/2008 04:13:34 »
Ok, I liked it.

Some principal observations I've made reading this and other forums.
And now you all need to tell me if it's correct

If one like the 'wave patterned 'approach' one more often than not, seem to see the photon as not 'traveling' in spacetime at all, am I correct in that?

Then the photon more or less become a quantum related state that 'falls out' with the interaction of the observer.
Or am I formulating this wrong?

It's different from a photons perspective, because it see's itself as never coming in contact with anything else in the universe.
 

Offline cwhend

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #9 on: 10/01/2009 16:52:14 »
Perhaps the "parallel universe" approach could be more precisely characterized using M (string-theory) 11 dimensional interactive multiverses? Every aspect of every atom within the 4 dimensional space-time observer is interacting with the other 7 dimensions. Conceivably some of these infinity of universes are warped in space time allowing for informational displacement across large distances at seemingly infinite speeds (as perceived in our universe). All possible physical states can exist simultaneously- its simply a matter of probability as to what occurs when, not withstanding an observer's presence. Particle/state changes (really only energy changes) are the result of going in/out of those extra universes separated microscopically (three dimensions to each of our observable dimensions). The high energy particle colliders have shown particles disappearing/re-entering given enough energy (at the right wavelength) and also randomly as probabilistically predicted.

Lets not personify or philosophize a physical phenomena when M theory has explanation.
 

Offline yor_on

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #10 on: 10/01/2009 20:28:34 »
Aaaah?

What??
 

Offline lightarrow

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #11 on: 10/01/2009 23:22:55 »
Perhaps the "parallel universe" approach could be more precisely characterized using M (string-theory) 11 dimensional interactive multiverses? Every aspect of every atom within the 4 dimensional space-time observer is interacting with the other 7 dimensions. Conceivably some of these infinity of universes are warped in space time allowing for informational displacement across large distances at seemingly infinite speeds (as perceived in our universe). All possible physical states can exist simultaneously- its simply a matter of probability as to what occurs when, not withstanding an observer's presence. Particle/state changes (really only energy changes) are the result of going in/out of those extra universes separated microscopically (three dimensions to each of our observable dimensions). The high energy particle colliders have shown particles disappearing/re-entering given enough energy (at the right wavelength) and also randomly as probabilistically predicted.

Lets not personify or philosophize a physical phenomena when M theory has explanation.
Wellcome on this forum cwhend. However M theory, for what I know, is still far from being well established, isnt'it?
 

Offline justaskin

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #12 on: 11/01/2009 02:17:31 »
Are we saying here that if we humans were not here to observe then what is
happening would not be happening?.
What a load of self opinionated prats we humans are to think the whole uneverse
revolves around us.
Whats to say that we are not a biological accident caused by some chemical imbalance that the universe has not noticed yet because it is to busy building the universe but when it does take a break and realize we are here wont come back and smite us from the record as just a complete waste of carbon. :D
I don't think the universe gives a continental if we are observing or not.

Cheers
justaskin
 

Offline LeeE

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #13 on: 11/01/2009 05:08:14 »
Quote
Are we saying here that if we humans were not here to observe then what is
happening would not be happening?

Have a careful read of:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthropic_principle

You need to know about it, just so you can argue against it ;D
 

Offline justaskin

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #14 on: 11/01/2009 09:05:56 »
So the universe is an exhibitionist  and likes to be watched so it created intelligent life
to watch it.
I think Mr Carter and Mr Dickie have been imbibing some of the strong stuff or are full of their own importance.
So how come as was stated at the end of the article there is so little life around.If the universe was going to go to the bother of creating life why on just one planet in one solar system of gazillions in one galaxy of billions.
And if relativity is right we are never going to get of this rock anyway.So when the lights go out on the sun the poor old universe will have no one to watch it anymore. :D
Now Mr Copernicus he sounds like my kind of guy.

Cheers
justaskin 
 

Offline Vern

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #15 on: 11/01/2009 22:34:29 »
I have to agree with justaskin. Maybe it is little green men from another galaxy that must observe a happening to make it reality.
 

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The Observer Effect of Quantum Mechanics
« Reply #15 on: 11/01/2009 22:34:29 »

 

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