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Quantum Information Processing

, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp 233–237 | Cite as

What Are Quantum States?

  • Shimon Malin
QUPON/QIPC Special Issue

We present three strong arguments against the ontic interpretation of quantum states. We then show that the appropriate alternative is not an epistemic interpretation, but viewing quantum states as representing the available knowledge about the potentialities of a quantum system from the perspective a of a particular point in space. Unlike ordinary knowledge, which requires a knower, available knowledge can be assumed to be present regardless of a knower. The relationship between “perspectives on potentialities” and “the potentialities themselves” is clarified.

Keywords

Process philosophy Whitehead’s philosophy quantum physics 

PACS

01.70.+w 03.65.-w 03.65Ud 

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References

  1. 1.
    Pais A. Subtle Is the Lord.... Oxford Univ. Press, 1982), p. 445.Google Scholar
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    Y. Aharonov and D. Z. Albert, Phys. Rev. D 21, 3316 (1980); Phys. Rev. D 24, 359 (1981).Google Scholar
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    S. Malin, Phys. Rev. D 36, 1330 (1982); Found. Phys. 14, 1083 (1984).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Physics and AstronomyColgate UniversityHamiltonUSA

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