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Re: physics world

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    ... thanks Brian :-) However, we may have yet the last laugh regarding entanglement nonlocal signaling Subquantum Information and Computation Antony Valentini
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 2, 2012
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      On Aug 2, 2012, at 1:16 PM, Brian Josephson <bdj10@...> wrote:

      One of these people looks a bit familiar :-)



      Brian D. Josephson
      Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of Cambridge
      Director, Mind–Matter Unification Project
      WWW: http://www.tcm.phy.cam.ac.uk/~bdj10
      Tel. +44(0)1223 337260/337254

      thanks Brian :-)

      However, we may have yet the last laugh regarding entanglement nonlocal signaling

      Subquantum Information and Computation

      (Submitted on 11 Mar 2002 (v1), last revised 12 Apr 2002 (this version, v2))
      It is argued that immense physical resources - for nonlocal communication, espionage, and exponentially-fast computation - are hidden from us by quantum noise, and that this noise is not fundamental but merely a property of an equilibrium state in which the universe happens to be at the present time. It is suggested that 'non-quantum' or nonequilibrium matter might exist today in the form of relic particles from the early universe. We describe how such matter could be detected and put to practical use. Nonequilibrium matter could be used to send instantaneous signals, to violate the uncertainty principle, to distinguish non-orthogonal quantum states without disturbing them, to eavesdrop on quantum key distribution, and to outpace quantum computation (solving NP-complete problems in polynomial time).
      Comments:10 pages, Latex, no figures. To appear in 'Proceedings of the Second Winter Institute on Foundations of Quantum Theory and Quantum Optics: Quantum Information Processing', ed. R. Ghosh (Indian Academy of Science, Bangalore, 2002). Second version: shortened at editor's request; extra material on outpacing quantum computation (solving NP-complete problems in polynomial time)
      Subjects:Quantum Physics (quant-ph)
      Journal reference:Pramana - J. Phys. 59 (2002) 269-277
      DOI :10.1007/s12043-002-0117-1
      Report number:Imperial/TP/1-02/15
      Cite as:arXiv:quant-ph/0203049v2

       - from a paper I am now working on: 

      Even the Second Law of Thermodynamics is on the edge of The Abyss.

      1. [PDF] 

        Experimental Challenges to the Second Law of Thermodynamics

        File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - Quick View
        (c) 2009 Paradigm Energy Research Corporation. Experimental Challenges to the.Second Law of ThermodynamicsDaniel P. Sheehan. Physics, University of ...

      Any reader who expects David Kaiser's new book about quantum-information theory to be an orthodox treatise will be disabused by the book's front cover, which depicts a naked man standing on his head, his modesty retained by a bright yellow, strategically superimposed image of a nucleus in a Bohr-type atom. This is hardly a typical cover for a history book, but then How the Hippies Saved Physics is not a typical history. Instead, it is an entertaining argument that quantum-information theory owes its origins to a group of New Age physicists-cum-hippies who lived on the US West Coast in the late 1970s.
      The period Kaiser describes was certainly a momentous one for US physics. In the years that followed the Second World War, physics enjoyed a continuously upward spiral of financial support and empirical success, fed by the stimulus of the Cold War. Yet this success, Kaiser argues, had come at the expense of its soul: in this era, physics worshipped calculation instead of the thought experiments or conceptual analyses valued by the giants of the 1920s and 1930s.
      Soulless or not, the US physics community would soon receive an abrupt wake-up call. Younger physicists, in particular, were shaken by Ronald Reagan's savage cuts in higher-education funding when he was Governor of California from 1967 to 1975; the equally savage nationwide cuts of the 1970s (a result of a temporary thaw of relations with Russia); and the removal of Vietnam draft deferments. A few chose to use their removal from the rat race as an opportunity to return to the conceptual foundations of physics, in particular those of quantum theory.
      In doing so, they were following the crucial work, then relatively unknown, of the Irish physicist John Bell, whose deep analysis of quantum theory showed that its handling of entangled pairs of electrons or photons contradicted a combination of locality and realism. Bell's understanding of locality was strictly scientific, but at the time, it was perhaps not clear – particularly to those on the periphery of science – that his ideas were qualitatively different from the many less physical, but more dramatic notions, that were buzzing around places like Berkeley, California.
      In 1975 two graduate students at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, Elizabeth Rauscher and George Weissman, founded the Fundamental Fysiks Group (FFG) as a society for investigating such problems. Other main members of the group included Jack Sarfatti and Fred Alan Wolf, who had both resigned from posts at San Diego State College after the Reagan cuts. They were joined by Saul-Paul Sirag, whom Kaiser describes as "a bearded, wild-haired apostle of the hip group", and Nick Herbert, who once attended a job interview with an electronics manufacturer "looking like an insane hippy" – prompting the manager to insist he be screened by a San Francisco psychologist before he could be appointed.
      Outside this core group, a score of others attended the FFG's Friday afternoon get-togethers at the Berkeley lab. Most of them had PhDs from good universities but minimal job prospects. But the group's outer circle also included two physicists who were better known, both then and now. One was Henry Stapp, a senior physicist at the Berkeley lab who had worked with Pauli and Heisenberg and made major contributions to S-matrix theory, a forerunner of today's string theory, before becoming interested in quantum foundations. Another was John Clauser, who played a unique role in publicizing and analysing Bell's theorem. Clauser was the first to correspond with Bell after the latter's papers were published, and in 1969 he and two collaborators, Abner Shimony and Michael Horne, produced the fundamental analysis that showed how Bell's equations could be tested experimentally. After he moved from Columbia University to California, in 1972 Clauser performed the first such experiments himself, obtaining excellent results.
      In the 2010s Clauser's work may gain him a Nobel prize. In the 1970s it rendered him unemployable in academia. Selectors felt that his work did not constitute proper physics, and for much of his career he has produced his often cutting-edge research first in institutes such as the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory, and later as a scientific entrepreneur, performing important work on medical imaging. Although his serious collaborators on quantum foundations were the decidedly East Coast Shimony and Horne, he interacted a good deal with the FFG, and undoubtedly influenced their work. About a quarter of the papers published on Bell's work between 1975 and 1979 were associated with the group.
      Of course, everything was washed down with lashings of LSD
      In his book, Kaiser, a science historian at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, asks why this work has disappeared from history. The answer is fairly clear. Bell's work was straight physics: he showed that the quantum theory of entangled pairs of photons or electrons contradicts local realism. Many members of the FFG, in contrast, were more interested in extending the concept of non-locality to include the possibility of clairvoyance, extrasensory perception and psychokinesis. To this end, they lent their support to the spoon-bending antics of the magician Uri Geller and became fervent advocates of Eastern religions. Similarly, while the Nobel laureate Eugene Wigner had suggested that consciousness collapsed wave-functions at a measurement, FFG members extended such study to include transcendental meditation, mysticism, séances and Tarot cards. And of course, everything was washed down with lashings of LSD.
      Kaiser shows that for many FFG members, renunciation of conformity did not result in continuous poverty. True, Sirag worked as a night watchman for a lengthy period, and Herbert had spells as a dishwasher and on public assistance. But they also obtained grants totalling $20m from the CIA, which was convinced that the Soviets were ahead in the crucial fields of mind reading and mind control. In addition, the group basked in the attention of several fascinated and deep-pocketed millionaires and celebrities. The most interesting of these was Ira Einhorn – a hippy guru, anti-war protester, literary agent for FFG and valued consultant for Bell Labs who fled to Europe after his ex-girlfriend's decomposed body was found in his apartment in 1979. He was eventually caught, extradited and convicted of her murder, and has been in a Pennsylvania prison since 2002.
      Given these associations, it is hardly surprising that serious workers in quantum foundations, struggling to establish Bell-type work as valid physics, must have found the excesses of FFG exactly what they didn't need. Similarly, two bestselling books by FFG members, Fritjof Capra's The Tao of Physics and Gary Zukav's The Dancing Wu Li Masters, were frowned on by many academic physicists – although, as Kaiser points out, they frowned less at the increase in student enrolments these books encouraged.
      Kaiser does describe some positives about the FFG. For example, Herbert wrote excellent and very well-known books on physics and human consciousness, while his proof of Bell's theorem is perhaps the simplest and clearest yet found, although he left a gap in logic to be filled in by others. And even some of their incorrect results had value: Herbert's proofs of faster-than-light communication, clever as they were, were shown to be incorrect by the production of the no-cloning theorem, which they violated. This theorem is now at the heart of quantum cryptography.
      The FFG broke up in 1979, but at a reunion in 2000 Rauscher, its cofounder, declared that "The search for truth is the fundamental driving force behind me and what I do…We can have peace, love and joy on this planet, instead of war, crime and violence." A less high-minded view of the group's purpose was encapsulated in a gathering attended by several soon-to-be FFG members on 24 March 1974, the centenary of Harry Houdini's birth. That evening, one of Herbert's inventions – a "metaphase typewriter" that supposedly relied on quantum uncertainty to study human consciousness – was used in an attempt to correspond with the famous magician during a séance. Houdini did not appear, but in Kaiser's words, "after the inevitable paper jams, celebratory drinking and psychedelic drug use", even though there were no conclusions to the mysteries of quantum mechanics, "a good time was had by all".

      About the author

      Andrew Whitaker is a physicist at Queen's University Belfast. His latest book is The New Quantum Age
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