Current Quantum Research
National Quantum Initiative Act To provide for a coordinated Federal program to accelerate quantum research and development for the economic and national security of the United States. The purpose is for a comprehensive strategy for coordinating quantum science research efforts in light of recent investments in quantum research in China and the European Union.
National Science Foundations ’10 Big Ideas’: FY19 Budget Request: NSF Bets on Big Ideas
Exploiting quantum mechanics to observe, manipulate, and control the behavior of particles and energy at atomic and subatomic scales, resulting in next-generation technologies.
Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics
Perimeter Institute is a leading centre for scientific research, training and educational outreach in foundational theoretical physics. Sometimes includes topics related to the QMP.
The Foundational Questions Institute (FQXi)
FQXi catalyzes, supports, and disseminates research on questions at the foundations of physics and cosmology, particularly new frontiers and innovative ideas integral to a deep understanding of reality, but unlikely to be supported by conventional funding sources. Sometimes includes topics related to the QMP.
John Templeton Foundation
The John Templeton Foundation aims to advance human well-being by supporting research on the Big Questions. Sometimes includes topics related to the QMP.
It from Qubit: Simons Collaboration on Quantum Fields, Gravity and Information Developments over the past ten years have shown that major advances in our understanding of quantum gravity, quantum field theory and other aspects of fundamental physics can be achieved by bringing to bear insights and techniques from quantum information theory.
Inspire Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established with an objective to help facilitate and support its members in conducting scientific research.
Links to additional conferences can be found in particular sections below.
Papers and Review Articles
The quantum technologies roadmap: a European community view
Antonio Acín, Immanuel Bloch, Harry Buhrman, Tommaso Calarco, Christopher Eichler, Jens Eisert, Daniel Esteve, Nicolas Gisin, Steffen J Glaser, Fedor Jelezko
Within the last two decades, quantum technologies (QT) have made tremendous progress, moving from Nobel Prize award-winning experiments on quantum physics (1997: Chu, Cohen-Tanoudji, Phillips; 2001: Cornell, Ketterle, Wieman; 2005: Hall, Hänsch-, Glauber; 2012: Haroche, Wineland) into a cross-disciplinary field of applied research. Technologies are being developed now that explicitly address individual quantum states and make use of the ‘strange’ quantum properties, such as superposition and entanglement.
Quantum Physics arXiv.org
Open access to e-prints in Quantum Physics and other disciplines
Bibliographic guide to the foundations of quantum mechanics and quantum information by Adan Cabello (10344 entries, 462 pages) Summary: This is a collection of references (papers, books, preprints, book reviews, Ph. D. thesis, patents, web sites, etc.), sorted alphabetically and (some of them) classified by subject, on foundations of quantum mechanics and quantum information. Specifically, it covers hidden variables (“no-go” theorems, experiments), “interpretations” of quantum mechanics, entanglement, quantum effects (quantum Zeno effect, quantum era- sure, “interaction-free” measurements, quantum “non- demolition” measurements), quantum information (cryptography, cloning, dense coding, teleportation), and quantum computation.
This is a repository of over 70,000 research papers authored by Caltech faculty and other researchers at Caltech. It is updated continuously as departments and library staff add available and recently published documents.
Foundations of Quantum Measurement
theQMP.com, The companion site to The Quantum Measurement Problem book.
Internon.com, Internon (derived from the Latin Internus) is a new quantum paradigm that we expect will correctly resolve the long-standing wave-particle duality problem or measurement problem.
Quantum experts discuss the measurement problem: A transcript from 1994
The Measurement Problem, John D. Norton, U. Pittsburgh
The Information Philosopher, The “Problem of Measurement” in quantum mechanics has been defined in various ways, originally by scientists, and more recently by philosophers of science who question the “foundations of quantum mechanics.”
American Institute of Physics Oral History Interviews
Interviews range in date from the early 1960s to the present and cover the major areas and discoveries of physics from the past 100 years, including Bohr, Heisenberg, Dirac, Bohm and many others.
Web of Stories/ Some of the greatest people of our time telling their life stories.
Including physicists John Wheeler, Hans Bethe, Freeman Dyson and others.
The Seven Pines Symposiums are dedicated to bringing together leading historians, philosophers, and scientists for several days in a collaborative effort to probe and clarify significant foundational issues in science:
- The Conceptual Development of Quantum Physics – I
- Seven Pines Symposium XVII
- The Conceptual Development of Quantum Physics – II
- Seven Pines Symposium XVIII
- The big questions: fundamental problems in physics
- Seven Pines Symposium XX
Quantum Information Revolution: Impact to Foundations? (QIRIF?) Linneas University, Sweden, 9-13, June 2019 The jubilee 20th Växjö conference devoted to quantum foundations and applications of quantum theory, especially quantum information and probability. This conference is aimed to highlight and at the same time to question the foundational impact of the recent quantum information revolution and to enlighten recent novel contributions to quantum foundations, theory and experiment.
Trieste Junior Quantum Days, A Look at the Mysteries of Quantum Theory , Trieste, 24-26 July 2019 The “Trieste Junior Quantum Days” workshop will gather young researchers working in quantum mechanics and its applications. PhD students and PostDocs will be given the opportunity to present their research activity and interact with their colleagues, share motivations, techniques and perspectives, in a friendly and informal environment. In the morning, blackboard lectures by senior experts will provide a perspective on relevant topics in quantum theory.
Papers and Review Articles
Against Measurement, J.S. Bell, Physics World, vol. 3, pp. 33-40, 1990. Surely, after 62 years, we should have an exact formulation of some serious part of quantum mechanics? (From the abstract).
Feynman’s Interpretation of Quantum Theory by H.D. Zeh
Abstract A historically important but little-known debate regarding the necessity and meaning of macroscopic superpositions, in particular those containing different gravitational fields, is discussed from a modern perspective. On-Line PDF
The Oxford Questions on the foundations of quantum physics, G.A.D. Briggs, J.N. Butterfield, and A. Zeilinger. Proceedings of the Royal Society A, 8 September 2013 Volume 469, issue 2157
AbstractThe twentieth century saw two fundamental revolutions in physics-relativity and quantum. Daily use of these theories can numb the sense of wonder at their immense empirical success. Does their instrumental effectiveness stand on the rock of secure concepts or the sand of unresolved fundamentals? Does measuring a quantum system probe, or even create, reality or merely change belief? Must relativity and quantum theory just coexist or might we find a new theory which unifies the two? To bring such questions into sharper focus, we convened a conference on Quantum Physics and the Nature of Reality. Some issues remain as controversial as ever, but some are being nudged by theory’s secret weapon of experiment.
Experiment and the foundations of quantum physics, Anton Zeilinger, Rev. Mod. Phys. 71, S288 – Published 1 March 1999
Macroscopic quantum states: Measures, fragility, and implementations, Florian Fröwis, Pavel Sekatski, Wolfgang Dür, Nicolas Gisin, and Nicolas Sangouard, Rev. Mod. Phys. 90, 025004 – Published 31 May 2018
Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics, John von Neumann; Robert T. Beyer, trans. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1955, pp. 417-445.
Originally published as Mathematische Grundlagen der Quantenmechanik . Berlin: Julius Springer, 1932. Quantum mechanics was still in its infancy in 1932 when the young John von Neumann, who would go on to become one of the greatest mathematicians of the twentieth century, published Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics–a revolutionary book that for the first time provided a rigorous mathematical framework for the new science. (From the publisher)
Quantum Theory and Measurement, John Archibald Wheeler and Wojciech Hubert Zurek, eds. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1983. The forty-nine papers collected here illuminate the meaning of quantum theory as it is disclosed in the measurement process. Together with an introduction and a supplemental annotated bibliography, they discuss issues that make quantum theory, overarching principle of twentieth-century physics, appear to many to prefigure a new revolution in science. (From the publisher)
Niels Bohr – Collected Works, Volumes 1-13, Elsevier. The influence of Niels Bohr’s work, of his approach to research, both practical and theoretical, is widely felt today. His contributions to our knowledge of the atomic constituents of matter and to our view of science, remain of fundamental importance. The publications of his collected works will give historians of science and scientists easy access to a life-work entirely devoted to the rational analysis of the laws of nature and of the singular character of their meaning for us. In addition to Bohr’s published papers, the series includes unpublished manuscripts and a wide selection of letters and other documents, with explanatory notes. (From the publisher
The Philosophical Writings of Niels Bohr, Volumes 1-4: Volume 1, Atomic Theory and the Description of Nature; Volume 2, Essays 1932-1957 on Atomic Physics and Human Knowledge; Volume 3, Essays 1958-1962 on Atomic Physics and Human Knowledge, Volume 4, Causality and Complementarity, Niels Bohr Ox Bow Press. Niels Bohr, one of the leading figures of modern science, is best known for his landmark theory of the hydrogen atom (1913). His enormous contribution to understanding the atom revolutionized thinking in both physics and philosophy. This four-volume set brings together Bohr’s central philosophical texts. (From the publisher).
The Physical Principles of the Quantum Theory, W. Heisenberg, Dover
Publications 2013. In this classic, based on lectures delivered at the University of Chicago, Heisenberg presents a complete physical picture of quantum theory. He covers not only his own contributions, but also those of Bohr, Dirac, Bose, de Broglie, Fermi, Einstein, Pauli, Schrodinger, Somerfield, Rupp, Wilson, Germer, and others in a text written for the physical scientist who is not a specialist in quantum theory or in modern mathematics. Partial contents: introduction (theory and experiment, fundamental concepts); critique of physical concepts of the corpuscular theory (uncertainty relations and their illustration); critique of the physical concepts of the wave theory (uncertainty relations for waves, discussion of an actual measurement of the electromagnetic field); statistical interpretation of quantum theory (mathematical considerations, interference of probabilities, Bohr’s complementarity). (From the publisher). Includes Heisenberg’s description of measurement.
The Road to Reality, A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe, Roger Penrose, Alfred A. Knopf 2006. Roger Penrose, one of the most accomplished scientists of our time, presents the only comprehensive and comprehensible account of the physics of the universe. From the very first attempts by the Greeks to grapple with the complexities of our known world to the latest application of infinity in physics, The Road to Reality carefully explores the movement of the smallest atomic particles and reaches into the vastness of intergalactic space. Here, Penrose examines the mathematical foundations of the physical universe, exposing the underlying beauty of physics and giving us one the most important works in modern science writing. (From the publisher). Includes Penrose’s discussion of the quantum measurement problem.
Wave-Particle Duality and Entanglement
Richard Feynman, Quantum Mechanical View of Reality
Esalen Institute, Workshop, November 1983, Big Sur, CA. Full video:
Five minute segment with Feynman’s comment on significance of Bell’s Theorem
Physics and Beyond, W. Heisenberg, Harper Torchbooks, 1972. Contains conversations between the author, who discovered the uncertainty principle, and other famous scientists including Albert Einstein, and Erwin Schrodinger.
Physics and Philosophy, The Revolution in Modern Science, Werner Heisenberg, Penguin Books 1958 London. These lectures discuss the theoretical and empirical results brought about with the development of quantum physics, at the same time giving an insight into the extent to which such results go beyond the scope of pure science and affect fundamental philosophical conceptions of reality and of the place of man in it. The latter theme is investigated both theoretically and historically. From the former perspective, Heisenberg focuses on the structural links between physical theories and their philosophical premises. He pays special attention to the interaction between ontological and epistemological assumptions at stake in the axiomatic postulations of every physical theory. In the context of his historical reconstruction, Heisenberg establishes some fundamental links between quantum physics and ancient and modern developments of the philosophical idea of a ‘fundamental’ substance or structure of matter in Western thought. (From publisher)
The Age of Entanglement: When Quantum Physics was Reborn, L. Gilder. Vintage Books 2008. In The Age of Entanglement, Louisa Gilder brings to life one of the pivotal debates in twentieth century physics. In 1935, Albert Einstein famously showed that, according to the quantum theory, separated particles could act as if intimately connected–a phenomenon which he derisively described as “spooky action at a distance.” In that same year, Erwin Schrödinger christened this correlation “entanglement.” Yet its existence was mostly ignored until 1964, when the Irish physicist John Bell demonstrated just how strange this entanglement really was. Drawing on the papers, letters, and memoirs of the twentieth century’s greatest physicists, Gilder both humanizes and dramatizes the story by employing the scientists’ own words in imagined face-to-face dialogues. The result is a richly illuminating exploration of one of the most exciting concepts of quantum physics. (From Publisher)
Basics of Quantum Mechanics
A resource for current quantum books
The Feynman Lectures on Physics
Now, anyone with internet access and a web browser can enjoy reading a high quality up-to-date copy of Feynman’s legendary lectures. Quantum mechanics is in Volume III.
Lectures on Quantum Mechanics, S. Weinberg, Cambridge University Press 2013 Nobel Laureate Steven Weinberg combines his exceptional physical insight with his gift for clear exposition to provide a concise introduction to modern quantum mechanics. Ideally suited to a one-year graduate course, this textbook is also a useful reference for researchers. Readers are introduced to the subject through a review of the history of quantum mechanics and an account of classic solutions of the Schrödinger equation, before quantum mechanics is developed in a modern Hilbert space approach. The textbook covers many topics not often found in other books on the subject.
The Principles of Quantum Mechanics, P.A.M. Dirac, Clarendon-Press, 1930,
p. x + 257. The standard work in the fundamental principles of quantum mechanics, indispensable both to the advanced student and to the mature research worker, who will always find it a fresh source of knowledge and stimulation.
Quantum paradoxes: quantum theory for the perplexed, Y. Aharonov and D. Rohrlich, John Wiley & Sons, 2008. A pioneering work on the remaining mysteries of quantum mechanics. From the perspective of a preeminent researcher in the fundamental aspects of quantum mechanics, the text combines mathematical rigor with penetrating and concise language. More than 200 exercises introduce readers to the concepts and implications of quantum mechanics that have arisen from the experimental results of the recent two decades. (From the publisher)
Papers and Review Articles
Bell nonlocality, N. Brunner, D. Cavalcanti and S. Pironio, Reviews of Modern Physics, vol. 86, pp. 419-478, April-June 2014.
Speakable and unspeakable in quantum mechanics: Collected papers
on quantum philosophy, J.S. Bell, Cambridge University Press 2004. This book comprises all of John Bell’s published and unpublished papers in the field of quantum mechanics, including two papers that appeared after the first edition was published. It also contains a preface written for the first edition, and an introduction by Alain Aspect that puts into context Bell’s great contribution to the quantum philosophy debate. One of the leading expositors and interpreters of modern quantum theory, John Bell played a major role in the development of our current understanding of the profound nature of quantum concepts. (From the publisher)
Quantum Computation and Quantum Information, M. A. Nielsen and I. L. Chuang, Cambridge University Press, 2010. One of the most cited books in physics of all time, Quantum Computation and Quantum Information remains the best textbook in this exciting field of science. This comprehensive textbook describes such remarkable effects as fast quantum algorithms, quantum teleportation, quantum cryptography and quantum error-correction. Quantum mechanics and computer science are introduced before moving on to describe what a quantum computer is, how it can be used to solve problems faster than ‘classical’ computers and its real-world implementation. It concludes with an in-depth treatment of quantum information. (From the publisher)
Lecture Notes for Ph219/CS219: Quantum Information, J. Preskill 2015. [Online]. Excellent introduction to quantum information.
Quantum non-locality and relativity, T. Maudlin, 3rd ed., Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell 2011. A new edition of the premier philosophical study of Bell’s Theorem and its implication for the relativistic account of space and time. Discusses Roderich Tumiulka’s explicit, relativistic theory that can reproduce the quantum mechanical violation of Bell’s inequality. Discusses the “Free Will Theorem” of John Conway and Simon Kochen. Introduces philosophers to the relevant physics and demonstrates how philosophical analysis can help inform physics. (From the publisher)
Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics
De Broglie-Bohm pilot-wave theory and the foundations of quantum mechanics
A graduate lecture course by Mike Towler (University of Cambridge, Lent term 2009)
This international research collaboration on Bohmian Mechanics was started in the 1980s by Prof. Dr. Detlef Dürr, Prof. Dr. Sheldon Goldstein and Prof. Dr. Nino Zanghì.
Papers and Review Articles
Decoherence, the measurement problem, and interpretations of quantum mechanics, Maximilian Schlosshauer, Rev. Mod. Phys. 76, 1267 – Published 23 February 2005
The interpretation of quantum mechanics, R. Omnes, Princeton University Press 1994. Drawing on the new contributions, The Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics offers a complete and self-contained treatment of interpretation (in nonrelativistic physics) in a manner accessible to both physicists and students. Although some “hard” results are included, the concepts and mathematical developments are maintained at an undergraduate level. This book enables readers to check every step, apply the techniques to new problems, and make sure that no paradox or obscurity can arise in the theory. In the conclusion, the author discusses various philosophical implications pertinent to the study of quantum mechanics. (From the publisher)
The Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics: The Interpretations of Quantum Mechanics in Historical Perspective, Max Jammer. Wiley 1974 This is a modern classic, a seminal work by one of our foremost philosophers of science, cited by just about every serious thinker who has explored the foundations of quantum mechanics. Jammer is one of a precious few who are equally at home within quantum theory and the larger philosophical tradition. The text is quite accessible, but it is a work of real scholarship, written for scholars and scientists, and will present significant challenges for the layman. (From publisher).
Measurement Collapse Theories
Papers and Review Articles
Models of wave-function collapse, underlying theories, and experimental tests Angelo Bassi, Kinjalk Lochan, Seema Satin, Tejinder P. Singh, and Hendrik Ulbricht, Rev. Mod. Phys. 85, 471, April 2013.
Quantum Theory as an Emergent Phenomenon, S. Adler, Cambridge University Press 2004. This book develops a new approach, based on the proposal that quantum theory is not a complete, final theory, but is in fact an emergent phenomenon arising from a deeper level of dynamics. The dynamics at this deeper level is taken to be an extension of classical dynamics to non-commuting matrix variables, with cyclic permutation inside a trace used as the basic calculational tool. With plausible assumptions, quantum theory is shown to emerge as the statistical thermodynamics of this underlying theory (From the publication)
The Emperor’s New Mind, R. Penrose Oxford University Press, 1989. For many decades, the proponents of `artificial intelligence’ have maintained that computers will soon be able to do everything that a human can do. In his bestselling work of popular science, Sir Roger Penrose takes us on a fascinating tour through the basic principles of physics, cosmology, mathematics, and philosophy to show that human thinking can never be emulated by a machine. (From the publisher)
The Role of Gravitation in Physics, Report from the 1957 Chapel Hill Conference, Dean Rickles, Cécile M. DeWitt (eds) From the Preface: This book contains the original report from the Conference on the Role of Gravitation in Physics, which took place at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, over six days in 1957. The report was taken down by Cécile DeWitt and several other “reporters,” as part of a conference funding agreement with the Wright Air Development Center, a U.S. Army (Air Force) funding body (the report’s ‘official’ designation is: WADC Technical Report 57-216). Cécile DeWitt then edited the recorded material into its final form. The report, though publicly available as a government document, has not previously been published in book form, and there are not many copies of the report left in existence. Given the immense historical significance of the conference – giving gravitational research some much needed impetus at a time when it was in a state of dire neglect – we thought it was high time to produce a version of the report ‘for the masses’ as it were. (From the publication) Includes Feynman’s thought experiment involving quantum effects with mass
The Collected Papers of Albert Einstein
The Digital Einstein Papers is an open-access site for The Collected Papers of Albert Einstein, the ongoing publication of Einstein’s massive written legacy comprising more than 30,000 unique documents.
Niels Bohr Archives
The Niels Bohr Archive is an independent institution overseen by the University of Copenhagen and it holds extensive archival material documenting the life and work of Niels Bohr.
Don Howard, University of Notre Dame, Papers, Presentations, and Manuscripts
Of particular interest for historical insights into Einstein and Bohr.
Lists of historic physics papers available on the web
A resource for fundamental historical quantum papers
Quantum Theory at the Crossroads, Reconsidering the 1927 Solvay Conference,
by Guido Bacciagaluppi and Antony Valentini. Cambridge University Press, 2013. The 1927 Solvay conference was perhaps the most important in the history of quantum theory. Contrary to popular belief, questions of interpretation were not settled at this conference. Instead, a range of sharply conflicting views were extensively discussed, including de Broglie’s pilot-wave theory (which de Broglie presented for a many-body system), Born and Heisenberg’s ‘quantum mechanics’ (which apparently lacked wave function collapse or fundamental time evolution), and Schrödinger’s wave mechanics. Today, there is no longer a dominant interpretation of quantum theory, so it is important to re-evaluate the historical sources and keep the debate open. This book contains a complete translation of the original proceedings, with essays on the three main interpretations presented, and a detailed analysis of the lectures and discussions in the light of current research. This book will be of interest to graduate students and researchers in physics and in the history and philosophy of quantum theory. (From publisher)
Black-Body Theory and the Quantum Discontinuity, T. Kuhn, University of Chicago Press, 1987. A masterly assessment of the way the idea of quanta of radiation became part of 20th-century physics. . .The book not only deals with a topic of importance and interest to all scientists, but is also a polished literary work, described (accurately) by one of its original reviewers as a scientific detective story (From the publisher). This book caused controversy for its questioning of whether Planck actually introduced any discontinuity.
Niels Bohr, His Life and Work as Seen by His Friends and Colleagues, S. Rozental, Ed., Interscience Publishers 1967. This collection of essays on Niels Bohr by contributors, who all knew Bohr well, give a unique historical account of his life, his work, and his way of thinking. (From publisher)
Niels Bohr A Centenary Volume, A. P. French and P.K. Kennedy, Ed., Harvard University Press 1985. Briefly sketches Bohr’s life, assesses his contributions to nuclear physics, and discusses his political and philosophical ideas. (From publisher)
Niels Bohr’s Times in Physics, Philosophy, and Polity, Abraham Pais. Oxford University Press, 1991. Abraham Pais … illuminates the life and thought of a giant of 20th-century physics. Bohr was the first to understand how atoms were put together, he played a major role in shaping the theory of the atomic nucleus, he decoded the atomic spectrum of hydrogen, an achievement which marks him as the founder of the quantum dynamics of atoms, and his concept of complementarity (which provides the philosophical underpinning for quantum theory) qualifies him as one of the twentieth century’s greatest philosophers. Pais covers all of these achievements with sophistication and clarity, but he also reveals the many other facets of the man. (From the publisher)
Niels Bohr and the Quantum Atom, H. Kragh, Oxford University
Press, 2012. Niels Bohr and the Quantum Atom is the first book that focuses in detail on the birth and development of Bohr’s atomic theory and gives a comprehensive picture of it. At the same time it offers new insight into Bohr’s peculiar way of thinking, what Einstein once called his ‘unique instinct and tact’. Contrary to most other accounts of the Bohr atom, the book presents it in a broader perspective which includes the reception among other scientists and the criticism launched against it by scientists of a more conservative inclination. (From the publisher).
Subtle is the Lord, The Science and Life of Albert Einstein, Abraham Pais, Oxford University Press, 1982. Subtle is the Lord is widely recognized as the definitive scientific biography of Albert Einstein. The late Abraham Pais was a distinguished physicist turned historian who knew Einstein both professionally and personally in the last years of his life. His biography combines a profound understanding of Einstein’s work with personal recollections from their years of acquaintance, illuminating the man through the development of his scientific thought. (From the publisher)
Albert Einstein: Philosopher-Scientist, P. A. Schillp, Ed., London, Cambridge University Press 1949. This is not a glimpse into Einstein’s personal life, but an extension and elaboration into his thinking on science. Two of the great theories of the physical world were created in the early 20th century: the theory of relativity and quantum mechanics. Einstein created the theory of relativity and was also one of the founders of quantum theory. Here, Einstein describes the failure of classical mechanics and the rise of the electromagnetic field, the theory of relativity, and of the quanta. (From the publisher)
The BORN-EINSTEIN Letters, Correspondence between Albert Einstein and Max and Hedwig Born from 1916 to 1955 with commentaries by MAX BORN, Translated by Irene Bom, The MacMillan Press Ltd London and Basingstoke. A classic collection of correspondence between two Nobel Prize winners, The Born-Einstein Letters , is also highly topical: scientists continue to struggle with quantum physics, their role in wartime and the public’s misunderstanding. (From publisher)
The Quantum Dissidents, Rebuilding the Foundations of Quantum Mechanics (1950-1990), O.F. Junior, Springer 2015. This book tells the fascinating story of the people and events behind the turbulent changes in attitudes to quantum theory in the second half of the 20th century. The huge success of quantum mechanics as a predictive theory has been accompanied, from the very beginning, by doubts and controversy about its foundations and interpretation. This book looks in detail at how research on foundations evolved after WWII, when it was revived, until the mid 1990s, when most of this research merged into the technological promise of quantum information. It is the story of the quantum dissidents, the scientists who brought this subject from the margins of physics into its mainstream. (From the publisher)
A Cultural History of Physics, K. Simonyi, CRC Press 2012. Comprehensive history from ancient times to present day within the cultural context of its discovery. Rich with illustrations as well as quotations from primary and secondary sources. Places science in the context of history, looking at what people did right and did wrong and why. (From the publisher)
To Explain the World, S. Weinberg, Harper Collins Publishers
2015. A masterful commentary on the history of science from the Greeks to modern times, by Nobel Prize-winning physicist Steven Weinberg—a thought-provoking and important book by one of the most distinguished scientists and intellectuals of our time. (From the publisher)
Papers and Review Articles
Understanding complexity Sophia Kivelson & Steven Kivelson, Nature Physics, volume 14, pages426–427 (2018). The criteria by which the validity of theories of complex systems are judged are more nuanced than a naive understanding of ‘the scientific method’ suggests.
The Complete Sherlock Holmes (2 Volumes), Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Bantam Classic 1986.
The complete collection of Sherlock Holmes’s adventures in crime, including all four novels and fifty-six short stories featuring Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic hero. “…when you have eliminated all which is impossible, then whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”
The Complete Works of Aristotle – The Revised Oxford Translation, J. Barnes, Ed., Princeton: Princeton University Press 1984. The Oxford Translation of Aristotle was originally published in 12 volumes between 1912 and 1954. It is universally recognized as the standard English version of Aristotle. This revised edition contains the substance of the original Translation, slightly emended in light of recent scholarship; three of the original versions have been replaced by new translations; and a new and enlarged selection of Fragments has been added. The aim of the translation remains the same: to make the surviving works of Aristotle readily accessible to English speaking readers. (From the publisher)
The structure of scientific revolutions, T.S. Kuhn, International Encyclopedia
of Unified Science, vol. 2, no. 2, Chicago: The University of Chicago Press,
1970. Considered a landmark publication for historians of science, Kuhn’s book challenged the then prevailing view of scientific progress as development-by-accumulation of accepted facts and theories. Kuhn argued for an episodic model in which periods of such conceptual continuity in normal science were interrupted by periods of revolutionary science leading to new “paradigms”. New paradigms then ask new questions of old data, move beyond the mere puzzle-solving of the previous paradigm, change the rules of the game to new research directions. (From the publisher)
The logic of scientific discovery, K. Popper, Routledge, 2005. This book revolutionized contemporary thinking on science and knowledge. Ideas such as the now legendary doctrine of ‘falsificationism’ electrified the scientific community, influencing even working scientists, as well as post-war philosophy. (From the publisher)
Quantum Measurement Operations
Quantum Measurement by Paul Busch, Pekka J Lahti, Juha-Pekka Pellonpää and Kari Ylinen
Springer 2016 Develops tools for a rigorous approach to central questions of quantum mechanics. This is a book about the Hilbert space formulation of quantum mechanics and its measurement theory. It contains a synopsis of what became of the Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics since von Neumann’s classic treatise with this title. Fundamental non-classical features of quantum mechanics—indeterminacy and incompatibility of observables, unavoidable measurement disturbance, entanglement, nonlocality—are explicated and analysed using the tools of operational quantum theory. (From the publisher)
Quantum Measurement and Control, H. Wiseman and G. Milburn, Cambridge University Press 2009 The control of individual quantum systems promises a new technology for the 21st century – quantum technology. This book is the first comprehensive treatment of modern quantum measurement and measurement-based quantum control, which are vital elements for realizing quantum technology. Readers are introduced to key experiments and technologies through dozens of recent experiments in cavity QED, quantum optics, mesoscopic electronics, and trapped particles several of which are analyzed in detail. Nearly 300 exercises help build understanding and prepare readers for research in these exciting areas. This important book will interest graduate students and researchers in quantum information, quantum metrology, quantum control and related fields. Novel topics covered include adaptive measurement; realistic detector models; mesoscopic current detection; Markovian, state-based and optimal feedback; and applications to quantum information processing. (From the publisher)
Papers and Review Articles
Colloquium: The physics of Maxwell’s demon and information, K. Maruyama, F. Nori and V. Vedral, Reviews of Modern Physics, vol. 81, no. 1, pp. 1-23, January-March 2009.