Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Friday, June 24, 2011

Aaron O'Connell Explains His Quantum Object



...happily the terms he uses are identical to the ones I used in my recent essay. It's a macro scale object, as large compared with regular quantum objects as a human is from it. It's a tiny “diving board,” that's how he describes it.

I was struck by something I hadn't heard before, which was that before they ran the experiment (I talk about it on this blog) they observed the little sliver “breathing.” It was already in a quantum state...

This adds major empirical muscle, by the way, to the theory of motion I'm going to endorse in Realist Magic. We think motion is pretty straightforward (that's almost a pun), but it's actually incredibly strange and involves all kinds of paradoxes. Most philosophers aren't happy with these but when they edit them out, they introduce brittleness into the metalanguage, and that results in even worse paradoxes...

2 comments:

Christopher Dempsey said...

a) David Detuch talks about the same thing (being in two places at the same time) and went on to state on that basis there are multiple selves in multiple universes leading *identical* lives.

I don't think he considered the role of chance. Just suppose in one of those multiple universes one single atom went in the opposite direction, thereby setting off a different chain of reactions ... and lives.

b) Mr O'Connell echos Deleuze: being is not inherent, but being is difference i.e. I am not me inherently in myself, but I am me by the difference between me and the tree, and vice versa. In much the same way that all the other quantum objects define you, you define all other quantum objects.

Interesting talk...

Timothy Morton said...

That's right Christopher. Intuitively I think that Deutsch's many worlds solution is a workaround, trying to avoid the inherently inconsistent quality of objects that O'Connell bravely argues for.