Cosmological interpretation of quantum mechanics
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The cosmological interpretation of quantum mechanics, proposed by Anthony Aguirre and Max Tegmark, is an interpretation of quantum mechanics that applies in the context of eternal inflation, which arguably predicts an infinite three-dimensional space with infinitely many planets and infinitely many copies of any quantum system. According to this interpretation, the wavefunction for a quantum system describes not some imaginary ensemble of possibilities for what the system might be doing, but rather the actual spatial collection of identical copies of the system that exist in our infinite space. Its collapse can be avoided. Moreover, the quantum uncertainty that you experience simply reflects your inability to self-locate in space, i.e., to know which of your infinitely many copies throughout space is the one having your subjective perceptions.
The cosmological interpretation is based on the mathematical theorem that when the same quantum experiment is performed in infinitely many places at once, the result is a quantum superposition of indistinguishable states for all of space, and in each of these states, the fraction of all places where a given outcome occurs equals that given by the Born rule. In this sense, quantum probabilities emerge from classical probabilities.
Cosmologist Alexander Vilenkin has expressed support for this interpretation: "I think this is an important advance. They showed that the mathematics really works out. It kind of clears up the foundations of quantum mechanics."
- "Born in an Infinite Universe: a Cosmological Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics", A. Aguirre and M. Tegmark (2010), Phys. Rev. D 84, 105002, arXiv:1008.1066
- "Non-collapsing wave functions in an infinite universe", E. Moulay (2014), Results in Physics 4, doi:10.1016/j.rinp.2014.08.010
- "Infinite doppelgängers may explain quantum probabilities", R. Courtland (2010), New Scientist, 7, August 28, 2010.