|Subject: Jump processes in the standard quantum theory
Date: Wed, 24 Dec 2003 13:50:16 +0200
From: Dimi Chakalov <email@example.com>
To: Rod <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Eight months ago, you stated that the main virtue of Bell-type QFT were its clarity, only you didn't explain the source of those hidden waves nor the source of the quantum waves in standard quantum mechanics,
I couldn't see in your recent paper [Ref. 1] any effort to shed some light on this crucial issue.
Let me try to be specific, and please correct me if I'm wrong.
Suppose, just for the sake of the argument, that the QM wave function, [psi], provides a complete description of any quantum system. First, we treat the quantum system as being totally isolated from 'everything else in the universe'. We have to keep it "there" (where?), safe and secure, until we complete the "preparation",
Then we "measure" it, and get a quantum jump due to the non-unitary, non-relativistic, "instantaneous", and totally mystical transition from quantum to classical regime.
Sounds like a joke, but it works FAPP.
The interesting story is the utmost belief that this mystical *isolated* quantum system changes with time, as read by a physical clock. This can be written as [Ref. 2]
[psi](t_2) = U(t_2, t_1) [psi](t_1)
The time evolution propagator, U(t_2, t_1), describes the evolution of the system from time t_1 to time t_2. Note that we're talking about a time *interval*,
An isolated system is represented by a state vector that conveys statistic predictions for measurement outcomes. The temporal evolution law of the state is determined by the unitary operator
U = exp -iHt/h
where the Hamiltonian H is dictated either by external classical potentials and/or universal inter-particle/fields interactions. [Ref. 3]
I hope you will agree on these prerequisites, I deliberately picked some of the best papers written by professional physicists.
Now comes the puzzle: you get a "quantum jump" and cannot, even in principle, explain how my good old wristwatch reads this jump, although you explicitly insert some time parameter in the unitary operator above. This is an old story, from 1931,
Hence we believe that the "time" implied in the "evolution" of the "isolated" quantum system is not identical to the time read by a physical clock.
This new kind of time refers to the spectrum of quantum propensities (like a hole in a flute corresponding to a certain tone), which could be produced in particular measurement context, with certain probabilities.
However, this new kind of time goes to zero "during" the quantum jump. It's gone. Zilch. We have to kill the quantum wave of any quantum system in order to measure it. We know that there is a quantum wave associated with any macro-object, but that doesn't help a bit for solving the problem.
How would you resurrect this new kind of time from zero? Think of a spot left from measuring the electron's position on a photographic plate. This spot does not have any quantum/de Brioglie wave associated with it.
Am I wrong?
I will appreciate the opinion of your colleagues as well.
If you can resurrect the time of quantum propensities, perhaps you will be able to explain the source of quantum waves, then explain the transition from quantum to classical regime, and endorse your statement about "the main virtue of Bell-type QFT" (cf. above). Then perhaps you could re-write your recent paper [Ref. 1].
Wishing you and all your colleagues a very merry Christmas,
[Ref. 1] Roderich Tumulka, Some Jump Processes
in Quantum Field Theory, math.PR/0312326 v1,
[Ref. 2] J.H. McGuire et at., Quantum
time ordering and degeneracy. I: Time ordering in quantum mechanics, quant-ph/0312179
[Ref. 3] J. Oppenheim, B. Reznik, A probabilistic
and information theoretic interpretation of quantum evolutions, quant-ph/0312149
Subject: Re: Jump processes in the
standard quantum theory
Thank you for your reply of Fri, 26 Dec 2003 22:29:06 +0100 (MET).
> > you didn't explain the source of those hidden waves
I believe the problem is the very model of universe in which two things exist: the particles, and the wave function, evolving according to certain equations.
Perhaps you haven't clicked on the links in my preceding email,
1. The equations in question are defined for particular time *interval*. The link was
There is no advanced math there.
2. The particles and the wave function, evolving according to certain equations, cannot -- to the best of my knowledge -- describe any Lorentz-invariant nonlocal interaction. Please see a famous quote from John Bell at the end of this email.
If you have managed to solve this puzzle, please write a paper, say, on EPR argument. In case you are not familiar with the subject (Erwin Schrödinger wrote about it in 1931; the link is in my preceding email), the problem of reconciling STR with QM is explained at
"If you can resurrect the time of quantum propensities, perhaps you will be able to explain the source of quantum waves, then explain the transition from quantum to classical regime, and endorse your statement about "the main virtue of Bell-type QFT" (cf. above)."
I do hope that the meaning of this paragraph can be understood in the context of what I wrote above.
> What you describe about the wave function collapse certainly
I do not endorse the standard QM nor your model. I claim that they are equally mystical, since they do not describe facts. Facts are in our past light cone, hence you need a relativistic description of how these facts have come about.
> Is your question how the collapse of the wave function
of a system
In the context of STR -- yes, please! If you talk about some preferred reference frame, please do not forget to explain the mapping of this special absolute "time" to the one read by an inanimate physical clock, and (Sic!) the intrinsic "time" of this mapping.
> I don't understand either what problem my wristwatch
Anything we observe due to a non-local quantum interaction is *already* being placed in our past light cone. John Bell was very much aware of this problem. Please see his statement below.
In case you decide to write a paper in which your ideas would be describing facts, in full compliance with STR, please see the basic prerequisites from St. Augustine,
I apologize to your colleagues for including their email in the CC: list. The only reason is that I believe they would be very interested to find out how you would do better than Erwin Schrödinger in 1931. I wish you best of luck.
With kindest regards,
John S. Bell
How do I know it? Indirectly. An empty wave world, just like Lev's doppelgänger located 10 to the 1028 meters from here in the "nearest" parallel universe, would have zero chance to exist -- I mean, zero -- if and only if my world is one, and no more than one. How to make it one? Place it in the past, that's all.
Example: If the length of my desk is 2 m, as I see it having a fixed numerical value in my past light cone, then there is no chance -- I mean, zero chance -- for any other world in which my desk would have a doppelgänger or would be in some both-here-and-there superposition(s).
Again, if physical quantities have fixed values in the past light cone, they are not only unique, but have also left no room for any bull... sugar. Why? Because things in the past have no doppelgängers nor superpositions. Otherwise our past would be full of our doppelgängers, and the future would be full of the doppelgängers of the doppelgängers, and each of these doppelgängers would be a perfectly legitimate "genuine" bull... sugar.
Of course, we don't have a relativistic theory of mapping the quantum world to the macro-world. Lev Vaidman knows this very well. But instead of showing the crux of the problem, as stressed by John Bell, he prefers to explore the murky water of Bohm and Everett, and deliver his musings to Foundations of Physics. Good choice!
Subject: Re: Bell-type QFT
I think it is a profoundly mystical hypothesis. But since I'm not a physicist, let me quote John Polkinghorne, "Quantum Theory, A Very Short Introduction", Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2002, p. 55:
"For example, the hidden wave has to satisfy a wave equation. Where does this equation come from? The frank answer is out of air or, more precisely, out of the mind of Schrödinger."
The complete frank answer, however, is that ordinary QM is equally mystical, since it says nothing on the source of the quantum waves.
Many years ago, Erwin Schrödinger went to Switzerland to have some fun with his (presumably sexy blond) girlfriend. (It happens sometimes with genius married men, sources say.) In the morning, he picked up a paper napkin and wrote down an equation from acoustics, which describes how sound waves propagate in rails, say. Then he modified it a bit, and QM was born during that famous breakfast, in front of his (presumably amazed) blond girlfriend.
I have a suggestion. You've asked me NOT to tell you what is a Holon but I bet you have no idea where your hidden wave or those quantum waves come from. Why don't you pick up a nice blond girl, go to some Swiss resort, etc. Maybe you too will have luck.
Subject: Re: FYI
First, I'm very uncomfortable with the so-called BCPS, because I can't offer any math that could show the link between the brain and some effect of spacetime metric, as I speculate. There is no such animal in GR. That's tough. All I know is that PHI is not a force field, like EM field.
> > Perhaps this effect can be explained as reversible
I can spin it in both directions, much like Suzanne Padfield,
With light, it rotates in one direction only.
> And how does that relate to the physics of the brain?
"Violating certain conservation laws is to be expected in GR however, this is a consequence of the geodesic nature of spacetime. No path within such a space can be considered linear in its own accord, and hence at some arbitrary scale is expected to violate certain conservation principles."
A penny for your thoughts!
Best - Dimi