# Re: The Nature of Contingency: Quantum Physics as Modal Realism

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On 2/28/2022 3:39 PM, Jesse Mazer wrote:
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On Mon, Feb 28, 2022 at 6:12 PM Brent Meeker <meekerbr...@gmail.com> wrote:
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On 2/28/2022 1:12 PM, Jesse Mazer wrote:
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```    Superdeterminism goes well beyond Laplacean determinism.
Determinism is just about the dynamical laws--if you know some
"initial" state of the universe at time T1, it says you can
perfectly predict the state at a later time T2 (or an earlier
time, in a time-symmetric theory). Superdeterminism is a
constraint on the initial conditions which is meant to rule out
some broad class of possible worlds that are *not* ruled out by
the dynamical laws.
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In a deterministic system any given initial condition rules out
infinitely many futures.

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Yes, the conditional probability P(later conditions B | initial conditions A) is 1 for a unique value of B, 0 for every other possible value of B. But the dynamical laws themselves don't tell you anything about the non-conditional probability P(initial conditions A) for different possible choices of A. Superdeterminism adds an extra constraint which says P(initial conditions A) is 0 for the vast majority of possible initial conditions in the phase space, and only nonzero for a tiny fraction with some very special characteristics.
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But if the universe is deterministic it had only /*one*/ initial condition...so of course it had special characteristics. Just as the winning lottery ticket had a special number on it.
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```    In quantum theory, superdeterminism is invoked to allow for the
possibility that the dynamical laws are local realist ones (of a
single-world kind), so that under "generic" initial conditions
one would expect statistically to see Bell inequalities respected
(in contradiction to quantum predictions), but superdeterminism
constrains the initial conditions to a special set
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Then postulating that the initial conditions were in this set
seems like just another dynamical law; like Born's rule.

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Can you elaborate on the analogy to Born's rule? Born's rule is not a constraint on initial states.
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Born's rule for measurement results is not a dynamical law either.

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Even if we accept in principle the idea of laws that consist of constraints on allowable initial conditions, there is also the argument that the mathematical formulation of such a constraint would have to be incredibly complex in an algorithmic sense,
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Why?  "No hidden variable" isn't very complex.

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that it would have to have some built-in "concept" of high-level observers and measuring instruments so that the hidden variables could be assigned to particle pairs in a way that anticipated the fact that the two particles would later be measured by instruments in a certain configuration (the orientation of stern-gerlach devices used to measure each particle's spins, for example).
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But in a deterministic system all those things have a common cause; their past light cones overlap.
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Brent
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Jesse

Brent

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```    which predetermine that experimenters doing Bell tests will
routinely see Bell inequalities violated. This is why, in stating
the assumptions needed to prove Bell's theorem, physicists will
specify that they are assuming superdeterminism is false by
referring to the "no-conspiracy" assumption, so named because
superdeterminism is understood conceptually as a kind of
conspiracy in the initial conditions of the universe that makes
us think the dynamical laws are very different from what they
actually are.

Jesse

On Mon, Feb 28, 2022 at 3:31 PM Brent Meeker
<meekerbr...@gmail.com> wrote:

On 2/28/2022 11:49 AM, John Clark wrote:
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```        On Mon, Feb 28, 2022 at 2:22 PM Brent Meeker
<meekerbr...@gmail.com> wrote:

> /Sabine seems to argue against free will as the source
of statistical independence...which might be true. /

It's neither true nor untrue because "free will" is just
gibberish

/> I don't see that it has anything to do with Occam's
razor.  It just says the universe is deterministic (as
Laplace thought) and it started in some one definite
state and nothing random ever happened. /

Determinism just means a future state of the universe can be
calculated from the information in a previous date, but it
says nothing about the initial condition of the universe.
Superdeterminism says in addition that out of all the huge,
and possibly infinite, number of states the universe
could've started out in it started out in the one in only
state that would not only produce humans after 13.8 billion
years but humans who would always just happen to perform the
wrong experiments so that they would always be fooled into
thinking that the universe was random and non-local when in
reality it was neither. And it's literally impossible for
there to be a theory with a greater violation of Occam's
razor than that.
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That's like saying it's violation of Occam's razor that some
buy won a million dollars in the lottery because it was so
improbable that he won.  If the universe started out in some
definite state and it evolved deterministically then that it
produced humans who did certain things is no more remarkable
than if had produced Martians who did something different.
Already the definite initial state and determinism imply all
subsequent states.  That seems pretty simple.  And how is it
different from MWI which is also deterministic? Nobody seemed
Was it just because he failed to extend it to human
decisions?  Aren't you a compatibilist; you believe in will,
but physically determined will?

Brent

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/> I don't buy it...I'm not even sure it's operationally
distinct from good old quantum randomness.  But then I

I don't buy it either. Many Worlds is better than
Superdeterminism, Copenhagen is better than
Superdeterminism, "I don't know" is better than
Superdeterminism, even Shut Up And Calculate is better than
Superdeterminism.

John K Clark    See what's on my new list at Extropolis
sua

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