You are here:

Physics/Schrödinger's cat

Advertisement


Question
If you put the box in a room full of people who hate cats would you end up with a dead cat? If you put the box in a room full of people who love cats, would the cat be alive? If you put the box in a room with both groups and had them mentally "duke it out" would they cancel each other out. If one outcome happens more than the other, is that saying something?

Answer
You're misinterpreting the Schrodinger's cat scenario.  The observation leading to the collapse of the cat's wavefunction is a quantum event.  It has nothing to do with human consciousness, that's mystic mumbo-jumbo, and egocentric to think that our actual brains have anything to do with the outcome.

Physics

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Dr. Stephen O. Nelson

Expertise

I can answer most basic physics questions, physics questions about science fiction and everyday observations of physics, etc. I'm also usually good for science fair advice (I'm the regional science fair director). I do not answer homework problems. I will occasionally point out where a homework solution went wrong, though. I'm usually good at explaining odd observations that seem counterintuitive, energy science, nuclear physics, nuclear astrophysics, and alternative theories of physics are my specialties.

Experience

I was a physics professor at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin, research in nuclear technology and nuclear astrophysics. My travelling science show saw over 20,000 students of all ages. I taught physics, nuclear chemistry, radiation safety, vacuum technology, and answer tons of questions as I tour schools encouraging students to consider careers in science. I moved on to a non-academic job with more research just recently.

Education/Credentials
Ph. D. from Duke University in physics, research in nuclear astrophysics reactions, gamma-ray astronomy technology, and advanced nuclear reactors.

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.