The Sorceror's Apprentice: A Quantum Parable
Green College Coach House - March 4, 2003

Philip Stamp

Dept. of Physics & Astronomy, University of British Columbia

In the last 70 years quantum mechanics has utterly transformed the way we understand physical world. It is a theory like no other. We have found no limit to its application, but we simply don't understand some of its fundamental features. Many physicists (including most of the pioneering contributors to the quantum theory) have looked for some more satisfactory alternative.

This talk is intended for a non-specialist audience. Prof. Stamp will explain at a simple level what is so bizarre about quantum mechanics, starting from very simple facts about the real microscopic world. He will then discuss how some physicists are pushing these bizarre features into our own macroscopic world. Unlike the wild speculations from some cosmologists about multiple universes, anthropic principles, etc., this is a search for new features of our world which can be examined in the laboratory and which promises revolutionary new developments such as quantum information processing. Stamp will speculate a little about where this work may lead.

More information on Philip Stamp can be found on his Web Site.

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