Título: **THE CONCEPTUAL FOUNDATIONS OF QUANTUM MECHANICS**

Autor: **BARRETT, JEFFREY A.**

Año: **2020**

Género: **FÍSICA, MATEMÁTICAS, CIENCIA Y TECNOLOGÍA**

Formato: **PDF**

The aim of this book is to introduce the conceptual foundations of quantum mechanics. To this end, we will start with the empirical evidence that quantum mechanics is meant to explain, develop the standard formulation of quantum mechanics and discuss how it explains the empirical evidence, and then turn to the measurement problem and the various attempts to resolve it.

Since quantum mechanics is written in the language of linear algebra, we will need some basic mathematical notions in order to say precisely what the theory is. With few exceptions, almost everything should be accessible to a reader comfortable with high-school algebra.

Theory selection involves a sort of cost–benefit analysis. We start with rough intuitions concerning the nature of the world and a sense of the sorts of predictions and explanations we want from a satisfactory physical theory, then we see how much we can get given the constraints of inquiry. From this perspective, this book might be thought of as a map of the conceptual options and explanatory trade-offs one faces in constructing a theory that explains and predicts quantum phenomena.

It is impossible to evaluate the conceptual foundations of quantum mechanics without reflecting on general philosophical questions concerning what we can know about the physical world and what it means for a physical theory to explain and predict. That the world is so deeply counterintuitive that one cannot trust even one’s most cherished intuitions is one of the philosophical lessons of quantum mechanics. Part of the argument here is that there are nevertheless better and worse ways of understanding the quantum world.

The book is written the way I would explain quantum mechanics to a friend. While there is a natural order of sorts, the structure is not linear. This means that we will sometimes briefly discuss something before it is carefully explained. I have put forward-looking references in a number of places to mark this.

Jeff Barrett

Irvine, CA

6 July 2019