By Daniel T. Gillespie
E-book by means of Gillespie, Daniel T
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Extra resources for A quantum mechanics primer
There is reason to believe, however, that Everett himself understood such interpretational issues to involve nothing more than one’s choice of language for describing the correlations represented by the universal wave function. Moreover, it seems that Everett himself did not care much what language one used as long as one ended up with a description of the model that was consistent and revealed the empirical faithfulness of pure wave mechanics. He took the theory to be empirically faithful if one could find representations of observers’ determinate measurement records and the standard quantum statistics in the correlation model of pure wave mechanics, and he believed that he accomplished this in his thesis.
Everett then explains why one cannot consistently apply rule 4I and rule 4II as they stand. The question of the consistency of the scheme arises if one contemplates regarding the observer and his object-system as a single (composite) physical system. Indeed, the situation becomes quite paradoxical if we allow for the existence of more than one observer. Let us consider the case of one observer A, who is performing measurements upon a system S, the totality (A + S) in turn forming the object-system for another observer, B.
She was an excellent typist, and in the late summer of 1955 she typed up three extracts from Everett’s handwritten drafts. He gave these “minipapers” to Wheeler for comment early in the fall semester. It appears that Wheeler had intended to show the minipapers to Bohr. Wheeler revered Bohr as his mentor, and he wanted input from him because Everett’s thesis directly attacked the complementarity model. And although Bohr was not an overt advocate of wave collapse, since he did not view measurement as a problem, he did not dispute the collapse postulate’s wellestablished, pragmatic role in physics.