By Pieter E. Vermaas

ISBN-10: 0521675677

ISBN-13: 9780521675673

Modal interpretations supply a normal framework during which quantum mechanics should be regarded as a concept that describes fact when it comes to actual structures owning yes houses. Modal interpretations are particularly new makes an attempt to offer quantum mechanics as a conception which, like different actual theories, describes an observer-independent fact. during this e-book, Pieter Vermaas info the result of this paintings. He presents either an obtainable survey and a scientific reference paintings approximately the way to comprehend quantum mechanics utilizing a modal interpretation. The publication should be of significant worth to undergraduates, graduate scholars and researchers in philosophy of technology and physics departments with an curiosity in studying approximately modal interpretations of quantum mechanics.

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Modal interpretations offer a normal framework in which quantum mechanics could be regarded as a concept that describes truth when it comes to actual structures owning sure houses. Modal interpretations are particularly new makes an attempt to give quantum mechanics as a idea which, like different actual theories, describes an observer-independent fact.

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**Example text**

3 Modal interpretations Before considering the particulars of the different versions of the modal interpretation in the next chapter, I first present their common characteristics. Then I list the starting points from which I develop these modal interpretations to fully-fledged descriptions of reality. Finally, I give the criteria I think interpretations should meet and present a number of desiderata I hope they meet. 1 General characteristics The name 'modal interpretation' originates with Van Fraassen (1972) who, in order to interpret quantum mechanics, transposed the semantic analysis of modal logics to the analysis of quantum logic.

S> |R;)(Rjl, where Xr(j satisfies E , / ^ = ^ and Hi^'lj = \cj\2- Secondly, one can directly a/x apply the ignorance interpretation to the state |*F ) of a/x. This state is pure and thus describes a homogeneous ensemble of N" systems which all have the state |4 /a ^)(4 /a// |. These two routes thus lead to descriptions of ensembles which are different from one another. Hence, taking the state W^ as describing an inhomogeneous ensemble leads to an inconsistency. • More generally, d'Espagnat (1971, Sect.

2* Its core 28 The name 'modal interpretation' indeed first appeared in Van Fraassen (1972). However, if authors refer to the modal interpretation by Van Fraassen, they are refering to the one presented in Van Fraassen (1973). This latter interpretation is also the one discussed in Van Fraassen (1991, Sect. 3 and the Proofs and illustrations of Sect. 3) (see footnote 1 of Chapter 9 of Van Fraassen (1991) for a short chronological overview). Other papers on Van Fraassen's modal interpretation are Van Fraassen (1976, 1981, 1990, 1997) and Leeds and Healey (1996).

### A Philosopher's Understanding of Quantum Mechanics: Possibilities and Impossibilities of a Modal Interpretation by Pieter E. Vermaas

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