Schrödinger's Cat

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posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:31 PM
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reply to post by PokeyJoe

Man, some of yall are really gumps..

It is a thought experiment....much like "If a tree falls in the woods, and no one heard it, did it really fall?"


Nope, not a gump. You haven't observed me yet, so there's no way of knowing that.


This is a classic paradoxical situation that I have heard many times. After some thought, I came up with this standard explanation a while back:

The cat's status, to us, is irrelevant. We do not know whether it is alive or dead, but since it is isolated from us, we have no need to know. As soon as we observe the cat, we can then say for certainty if the cat is alive or dead. It becomes relevant as we obtain the information.

The question of whether or not the cat is alive is not in flux; only our knowledge of it is in flux. The cat is very much aware of its situation, because it can obviously observe itself.

So my original statement stands: it doesn't matter until we observe the cat, because our knowledge is limited. And since we put the cat in the box (outside of our knowledge) in the first place, we really don't care about the cat.


TheRedneck




posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:33 PM
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I have always thought that the cat counts as an observer...

So the answer is whatever the cat observes (experiences) is the state it is in. [grin]



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:36 PM
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reply to post by weedwhacker
 


No, I saw your comments on the slit experiment. It's one of the two or three I was mentioning to "The Way" that you can reproduce on your own at home. Good find though. It's a clear demonstration of particle-wave duality


It's been fun. Will check back later wit' chall when I finish work.

out



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:36 PM
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First let me say that I think we can all talk about this without insulting eachother...I know everyones playing nice right now just want to make sure this doesn't devolve into a slap fest.

And yes Weedwhacker I was having some fun but my main question about schrodingers experiment was serious.

Schrodingers experiment talks about an event happening on a sub-atomic level and says that the outcome of the event doesn't exist until independently observed.

Maybe thats only an illusion due to our perspective of the event.

Like looking through rippling water at an object. It may appear to be six inches in front of you but when you reach into the water to retrieve the object you see that it is right at your feet.

Viewing through the medium of water gave an illusion that ended up not being true.

Maybe its not the observation that determines the outcome. Maybe the outcome is pre-determined due to the event/action and the illusion of duality is brought on by some sort of distortion (for lack of a better term).

We can not open the box and assume that no outcome has occured until the cows come home and yes to us it seems like the cat is both alive and dead a particle and a wave until we open the box and observe.

I say what if there are determined outcomes of events on the sub-atomic/quantum level just as there or on our big, lumpy, physical plane and the quantum world only gives the illusion of um fluxnicity...that's right I'm making up words now...don't judge me.

Again not an expert in this and quite frankly the math is far beyond me but I does love a good brain pretzel.

Spiderj



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:42 PM
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reply to post by Spiderj
 


wonderful. Perfectly said. See my last post to whatyoukno and compare. You expressed the variables and the outcome of the thought experiment right on the nose, and much better than I.

We run into grief with though experiments when we visualize them and fool with the thing as though it were a physical experiment. Of COURSE the cat is unhappy being in the box...... heck Schodinger would have probably been clawed to pieces, but those are the parameters he set for his thought process.

Thank you. Well done.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:50 PM
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Hi Guys and Gals,

The experiment in question is supposed to demonstrate duality. A concept that is born from quantum states not being set until observed.

However this does not actually apply to a cat in a box and the experiment is not meant to be taken literally.

In truth what Quantum mechanics states is that a totally isolated systems state is undetermined until it interacts with another system.

So for example if you were to have cat in a box, the cat would in fact be interacting with the matter of the box and therefore cross the barrier known simply as quantum coherence.

Now to answer if the cat is alive or dead....

This is where and why the thought experiment came about....

If you cannot observe if a system has or has not interacted then the systems values are not set until they are observed...

There are many who would debate why this happens but no reputable scientist will state that the effect is incorrect. The phenomenon is a fact and is currently being used as the principle for Quantum computing / Cryptography...

My personal view is that all possibilities exist simultaneously, that when we observe a value we are observing only one of a multitude of other potential events in order of . That Multitude I might add is such a large number that it simply hurts to think about...

The number of potential possible permutations there are of this world are huge..

The number just goes on and on and on...

The best way to visualise how many potential outcomes there are is the following diagram... but please try and visualise the line being trillions upon trillions upon trillions long...


Now when you observe a system and a value is set you are literally selecting One out of all those potentials...

Simple Mind Boggling but a scientific fact.

All the best,

NeoN HaZe


[edit on 12-6-2008 by Neon Haze]



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:52 PM
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reply to post by Spiderj
 


Spider, I methinks you are getting it! edit:...(hmmm....I methinks that may be redundant!)

Remember, this was in the 1930s, this mind experiment. The 'atom' was the smallest 'known' piece of matter....well, no, physicists were aware of nuclei; protons, neutrons and of course, electrons. Particle Physics, as it's called now, hadn't been developed, I don't think. The early ideas of Quantum....well, probably roundly derided.

But, we're are talking about cutting edge theories, of things that couldn't be directly seen, smelled or touched. These were great minds...let's not forget Einstein and Heisenberg either.

Call me an 'armchair' scientist, if you will....I eat up every show on Discovery or any Science Channel you care to mention....I spent most of my formative years, (teens, twenties, thirties, etc) avidly reading Science Fiction....so-called 'hard' Science Fiction, written by authors who had a solid science background. So, call me an amateur (because I am) but I can reason, and attempt to understand these foreign concepts, foreign, anyway, to what we know of as our 'five' senses.

I am looking at the thread Forum, and realized that most people (myself included) may not have noticed, at first, the subjects.

The OP's premise would, as I understand it, fall under "Philosophy", firstly, as a method of scientific discovery. Perhaps that's what "Metaphysics" is? Gound-breaking theories in physics?? (Just a thought....extemporalizing here)

And (grin) the "Psychology" part of the thread subject is how people respond....?


[edit on 6/12/0808 by weedwhacker]



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:02 PM
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Originally posted by argentus
reply to post by Spiderj
 


Perfectly said.


Yeah well it was bound to happen eventually...most likely wont happen again for a long time if ever


And yes WW this is a philosophical forum...so feel free to be funky in thought and provocative in theory.

Oh and "You're an arm chair scientist"

There, I said it.

Happy now.

Spiderj



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:04 PM
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reply to post by Neon Haze
 


I agree with you on us only perceiving one of the many outcomes and it begs the question, do we all see things the same? is a red table, the same shade of red to a different persons perspective? (eliminating 'colour blindness' for the sake of the question) or does everyone percieve the same things differently?

I wouldn't go so far as to say it's scienitific 'fact' though.


thanks. EMM



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:05 PM
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Originally posted by Neon Haze
In truth what Quantum mechanics states is that a totally isolated systems state is undetermined until it interacts with another system.

The phenomenon is a fact and is currently being used as the principle for Quantum computing / Cryptography...


A good answer.
And I have a link to this (Quantum computing):

en.wikipedia.org...

not so easy to read but it explains the use of this.

most importand is this:

In general a quantum computer with n qubits can be in up to 2^n different states simultaneously (this compares to a normal computer that can only be in one of these 2^n states at any one time).


Simultaneously is the word. It's not in the one and it's not in the other state its in all states simultanous.
And the quantum computer makes use of that, well once we have them.



[edit on 12-6-2008 by g210b]



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:10 PM
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reply to post by Neon Haze
 


Neon Haze, very robust and clear description, better than I could have managed to write!

You seem to have a good handle on this subject: Tell me if this goes out-of-bounds, or not, but does any of the Quantum Theory relate to String Theory? Are there two camps on this, or are they working together in the theoritical field?

AND, the big question....parallel universes. What I mean is, it's the "Is it or isn't it" concept, starting with duality, to cause a possible 'branching' of every possiblity/plausiblity into the "It's this, or it's that"....this really boggles the mind!

I have a personal opinion (notice I stated "possiblity/plausiblity").

So many choices, with 6 Billion people....well, you see the enormity. (And, I'm just speaking of human choices). But, to stay with my train of thought, not all 'decisions' are final, in that, possiblity and plausibility may evaporate, for want of another term, depending on the over-all size of the system we are considering. A 'self-correcting' system, if you will.

Now, we enter into the realm of....Philosophy.

I don't discount the branching of parallel universes, but many branches ("twigs"?) would die out immediately, depending on viability.

Sorry if it got too esoteric, there. But, isn't that part of the fun???

WW

edit....I found one typo..."I got better!". Seriously, maybe some ADD at work....but, I also wished to add this: I welcome any and all comments, my flame-proof suit is at my side!!

Cheers!



[edit on 6/12/0808 by weedwhacker]



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:16 PM
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reply to post by ElectroMagnetic Multivers
 


EMM.....I like the way you think, sometimes. Try this, everyone. Look at various colors, one eye at a time. See if sometimes the tone of the color seems slightly different, when compared between eyes. Try it out in artificial light, rather than in natural sunlight.

edit....assuming you have two eyes, and an MD or neurosurgeon could help here... isn't it possible that there are subtle differences, in perception, of color? In one brain, do both eyes (indepentantly) transmit from the retina to the same part of the brain? Do both eyes (since we must see in stereo, in order to provide depth perception, and an evolutionary edge) when used together, then allow the brain to process differently, and 'blend' both images together?



[edit on 6/12/0808 by weedwhacker]

second edit....I'm getting way too ahead of myself. I'll sit back, and enjoy the ways this discussion may turn....thanks, all!!

[edit on 6/12/0808 by weedwhacker]



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:18 PM
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reply to post by whatukno
 


Ah!! but thats the cats expectations...and yours...does mind have an influence over events that your mind makes assumptions of...like ..what if you believed that cat would not be scared!!


Its a round and round thing ..i think,,!!lol



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:27 PM
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reply to post by weedwhacker
 


lol, I see you've seen some of my crazier ideas!!


I was just saying, everyone will perceive their world differently from the next person, so, do we truly create our own reality? if what we consider physical reality, is dependent on whether we perceive it or not to manifest, does it change with how we perceive it?

told you I'm crazy


EMM


[edit on 12-6-2008 by ElectroMagnetic Multivers]



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:30 PM
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reply to post by weedwhacker
 



That is fascinating...that video..seen it a number of times,,,its our personal observance and perception that makes the diference...like what would happen if we were there to observe and change the outcome in the experiment...if just by our being there and observing changes logical outcome...what do we really percieve??? and is what we assume and believe to be..really true!!

Its is a very interesting video I think!!



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:33 PM
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The cat is neither alive nor dead until observed. The observer decides whether the cat is alive or dead, typically based on preconceptions the observer has as to how long he/she thinks a cat is likely to survive in a box. That is to say, the fate of the cat is calculated by the observer (usually unconsciously) based on the beliefs of the observer.

The paradox then is how can my observation effect another observer? I'd say that we're all in sync at this level so it's not really a paradox. But in order to be in sync we must all be connected... hmmmm.

Ever hear of entanglement?

That's because it's not photons (plural). It's just one. Too bad they threw out the idea of the ether with the speed of light measurements, when it was only the wave nature of light they were measuring, not the particle nature. Although 'particle' is really the wrong description because it's a 2D massless object in 3D space - ie. it flattens out to infinity). So much for photons "communicating with each other".

Oh boy, did I just say that out loud? I just contradicted conventional science. Heavens help me...

Oh well, I might as well continue this absurdity by suggesting that Quantum effects are not limited by time. Take it how you will.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:39 PM
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Originally posted by Kruel

That's because it's not photons (plural). It's just one. Too bad they threw out the idea of the ether with the speed of light measurements, when it was only the wave nature of light they were measuring, not the particle nature. Although 'particle' is really the wrong description because it's a 2D massless object in 3D space - ie. it flattens out to infinity).


I did like this, very interesting!!



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:43 PM
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reply to post by Kruel
 


Kruel, heavens help you indeed!!!


No, I have heard about....not sure of the term....symmetry?

Two particles, with no connection between them, reacting at the SAME time, even though there should have been a time delay to allow for the speed of light. Really fascinating stuff, we primates are discovering!!!!



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 03:52 PM
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reply to post by Kruel
 


I do have one question, assuming that it is 2D in a 3D environment, this would make it, for lack of a better word, a membrane and it would therefore have properties of a wave? or am I confusing things?

thanks. EMM



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 05:28 PM
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for that matter who can say whether our reality is reality or not? who is observing us and if they are are they interferring with our reality?





 
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