Chapter

Can the World Beshown to be Indeterministic after all?

Christian Wüthrich

in Probabilities in Physics

Published in print September 2011 | ISBN: 9780199577439
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191730603 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199577439.003.0014
Can the World Beshown to be Indeterministic after all?

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Is the world deterministic and can we ever know whether it is or is not so? This chapter critically evaluates recent results that bear on these issues, and points out the relation to probabilities. While results from classical physics are neither fully relevant nor conclusive, quantum mechanics is often assumed to establish indeterminism beyond doubt. However, whether the quantum world is indeterministic crucially depends on how the measurement problem is solved. There are both deterministic and indeterministic contenders in this field, some of them empirically equivalent to another one. This is shown using the deterministic Bohm theory and Nelsonsion mechanics, which is indeterministic. Two arguments that purport to establish indeterminism and that rely on Gleason's theorem and on Conway and Kochen's recent Free Will Theorem are shown to be wanting.

Keywords: probabilities; determinism; quantum mechanics; measurement problem; Bohm theory; Nelsonian mechnics; Gleason's Theorem; Free Will Theorem

Chapter.  11623 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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