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Quantum decoherence in a pragmatist view: Part I

Healey, Richard (2012) Quantum decoherence in a pragmatist view: Part I. [Preprint]

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    Abstract

    The quantum theory of decoherence plays an important role in a pragmatist interpretation of quantum theory. It governs the descriptive content of claims about values of physical magnitudes and offers advice on when to use quantum probabilities as a guide to their truth. The content of a claim is to be understood in terms of its role in inferences. This promises a better treatment of meaning than that of Bohr. Quantum theory models physical systems with no mention of measurement: it is decoherence, not measurement, that licenses application of Born's probability rule. So quantum theory also offers advice on its own application. I show how this works in a simple model of decoherence, and then in applications to both laboratory experiments and natural systems. Applications to quantum field theory and the measurement problem will be discussed elsewhere.


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    Item Type: Preprint
    Keywords: Quantum decoherence, pragmatist, quantum interpretation
    Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Mechanics
    Depositing User: Richard Andrew Healey
    Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2012 12:18
    Last Modified: 28 Jul 2012 12:18
    Item ID: 9259
    URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9259

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