Quantum mechanics as a deterministic theory of a continuum of worlds

Bostrom2014A non-relativistic quantum mechanical theory is proposed that describes the universe as a continuum of worlds whose mutual interference gives rise to quantum phenomena. A logical framework is introduced to properly deal with propositions about objects in a multiplicity of worlds. In this logical framework, the continuum of worlds is treated similarly to the continuum of time points; both „time“ and „world“ are considered as mutually independent modes of existence. The theory combines elements of Bohmian mechanics and of Everett’s many-worlds interpretation; it has a clear ontology and a set of precisely defined postulates from where the predictions of standard quantum mechanics can be derived. Probability as given by the Born rule emerges as a consequence of insufficient knowledge of observers about which world it is that they live in. The theory describes a continuum of worlds rather than a single world or a discrete set of worlds, so it is similar in spirit to many-worlds interpretations based on Everett’s approach, without being actually reducible to these. In particular, there is no splitting of worlds, which is a typical feature of Everett-type theories. Altogether, the theory explains 1) the subjective occurrence of probabilities, 2) their quantitative value as given by the Born rule, 3) the identification of observables as self-adjoint operators on Hilbert space, and 4) the apparently random „collapse of the wavefunction“ caused by the measurement, while still being an objectively deterministic theory.


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