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

On Fri, May 6, 2022 at 10:50 PM Russell Standish <li...@hpcoders.com.au>
wrote:

On Wed, Apr 27, 2022 at 05:14:41PM -0700, Brent Meeker wrote:
>
> > *If there are probabilities attached to the branches, then Gleason's
> theorem shows that the probabilities must satisfy the Born rule. *

I agree with what you say, so why won't you also say that's a big win for
Everett's Many Worlds?

> *if they are probabilities of results that implies that some things
> happen and others don't.*

If there are probabilities of results that implies that* SOMETIMES* a
specific thing happens and *SOMETIMES* that exact same specific thing
doesn't.

> *other wise** what does "probability" mean*

Good question. To a poker player and to a believer in Everett's Many
Worlds, probability means doing the best you can with incomplete
information. If one wanted to be charitable one would say that to a
believer in Copenhagen probability means, to the extent it means anything
at all, that "*nothing is real until it is observed**, and never mind what
'real' means*". But I think it would be more accurate to say that to a
believer in Copenhagen probability means "*shut up and just use the
probability number in your calculation and get a result that can be checked
by experimentation, and give up and don't even try to think about what's
actually going on at a more fundamental level*".

> *and what use is it as an empirical concept? *

Whatever probability means nobody can deny it works.

Russell Standish <li...@hpcoders.com.au> wrote:

>
>
> *Doesn't this just hinge on what I call in my book the semantic-syntactic
> distinction, aka the  1-3 distinction (long debates between Bruno and JC on
> this), or the subjective-objective distinction, or even discrete-continuous
> distinction. Without this cut, the very concept of information makes no
> sense, and without information, Darwinian evolution doesn't happen.*
>

There doesn't seem to have been any "I" versus "you" distinction 2 billion
years ago when Eukaryotic cells evolved from Prokaryotic cells, so how did
it happen?  For that matter, how did the universe evolve from a thin and
almost completely even distribution of cold hydrogen and helium gas, as it
was about 1 million years after the Big Bang, into a universe filled with
stars and galaxies and black holes as it was just a few hundred million
years later? By the way, thanks to the new Webb telescope we will probably
soon have a more accurate figure on just how long that took, but we already
know it didn't take long, cosmically speaking.

>  QM is a continuous theory, it lacks this cut, which must be added in as
> an extra axiom.
>

It's not just quantum mechanics that has a  "solipsism is untrue" axiom,
every single conscious activity in everyday life, except in the philosophy
classroom, needs and makes use of this axiom.

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

ca9

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