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Physics and philosophy


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PHYSICS

AND

PHILOSOPHY


Edited by:


Musa Akrami


Second Edition

________

1384 / 2006


Table of Contents





Preface to Second Edition

Chapter1. A Brief history and philosophy of physics

Introductory remarks

1. 1. Earliest beginnings, and the Greeks

1. 2. The Dark Ages, and the Translations

1. 3. The Middle Ages


1. 4. The Renaissance (1300-1700)

1. 5. Development of the scientific method


1. 6. The development of classical physics: Mechanics, Thermal physics, Optics, Electromagnetism, and Atoms

1. 6. 1. Mechanics

1. 6. 2. Thermal physics

1. 6. 3. Light and Optics

1. 6. 4. Electromagnetism

1. 6. 5. Atoms


1. 7. Modern physics: Relativity and Quantum physics

1. 7. 1. Relativity

1. 7. 2. Quantum physics

1. 8. The unification of physical phenomena





Chapter2. The Uncertainty Principle

2. 1. Introduction

2. 2. Heisenberg

2. 2. 1 Matrix mechanis and wave mechanics

2. 2. 2 Heisenberg's argument

2. 2. 3. The interpretation of Heisenberg's relation

2. 2. 4. Uncertainty relations or uncertainty principle?

2. 3. Bohr

Bohr's view on the uncertainty relations

2. 4. The minimal interpretation

Chapter3. Copenhagen interpretation of Quantum mechanics

3. 1. The background: Bohr’s model of hydrogen atom

3. 2. The principles violated in classical physics

3. 3. The Correspondence Rule

3. 4. Complementarity


3.4. 1. From wave-particle duality to complementarity

3.4. 2. Summary of Bohr's more mature view

3.4. 3. Bohr’s philosophical tendencies


Chapter4. Philosophical and foundational issues in Quantum theories


Chapter5. The Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen argument in Quantum theory

5. 1. Can quantum mechanical description of physical reality be considered complete?

5. 1. 1 Setting and prehistory

5. 1. 2. The argument in the text

5. 1. 3. The key features of EPR

5. 1.4 Einstein's versions of the argument

5. 2. A popular form of the argument: Bohr's response

5. 3. Development of EPR

5. 3. 1 The Bohm version

5. 3. 2 Bell and beyond





Chapter6. Bohmian mechanics

6. 1.The completeness of the quantum mechanical description

6. 2.The Impossibility of hidden variables ... or the inevitability of nonlocality?

6. 3. History


Chapter7. Early Philosophical Interpretations of General Relativity

7.1. The Search for Philosophical Novelty

7. 2. Machian Positivism

7. 2. 1. In the Early Einstein

7. 2. 2. A "Relativization of Inertia"?

7. 2. 3. Positivism and the "Hole Argument"

7. 2. 4. An Emerging Anti-Positivism

7. 3. Kantian and Neo-Kantian Interpretations

7. 3. 1. Neo-Kantians on Special Relativity

7. 3. 2. Immunizing Strategies

7. 3. 3. Rejecting or Refurbishing the Transcendental Aesthetic

7.3. 4. General Covariance: A Synthetic Principle of "Unity of Determination"

7. 4. Logical Empiricism

7.4. 1. Lessons of Methodology?

7. 4. 2. From the "Relativized A priori to the "Relativity of Geometry"

7. 4. 3. Critique of Reichenbachian Metric Conventionalism

7. 5. "Geometrization of Physics": Realism and Transcendental Idealism

7. 5. 1. Differing Motivations

7.5. 2. "Geometrizing" Gravity: the Initial Step

7.5.3. Extending "Geometrization"

7. 5. 4. Eddington's "World Geometry"

7.5. 5. Meyerson on "Pangeometrism"

7. 5. 6. "Structural Realism"?

Bibliography

Chapter8. Cosmology: Methodological Debates in the 1930s and 1940s

8. 1. Introduction

8. 2. The Lead-up to the Debate

8. 2. 1. Einstein's General Theory of Relativity

8. 2. 2. Hubble's Expanding Universe

8. 3. Cosmology and its philosophy

8. 3. 1. Relativistic Cosmology: the majority philosophy

8.3. 2. Milne's Philosophical Challenge

8.3. 3. Kinematic Relativity—an alternative cosmology

8. 4. The Great Cosmological Debate Begins: 1933-1934

8. 4. 1. Dingle's First Attacks

8.4. 2. Two Ways to Disagree with Milne

8.4. 3. Milne Makes Philosophical Improvements

8.4. 4. A Major Philosophical Issue: What makes a scientific theory ‘good’?

8. 4. 5. How to Choose Among Theories and Philosophies?

8. 5. The Triumph of Milne's Methods 1935-36

8. 5. 1. McCrea, Walker and Robertson Adopt Milne's Methods

8. 5. 2. But Eddington Scoffd…

8. 6. Dingle's Denoument

8. 6. 1. Modern Aristotles?

8.6. 2. Dingle as ‘True Believer’

8. 6. 3. Wrong from the Very Start

8. 6. 4. The Debate Goes Very Public

8. 6. 5. The Counterattack

8. 6. 6. The Coolest Voice

8. 7. The Calm Between the Storms

8. 7. 1. Two Equal Competitors

8. 7. 2. The Origin and Evolution of Theories

8. 7. 3. Milne's Ultimate Success

8. 8. Steady-state Cosmology

8. 8. 1. Bondi's Philosophical Origins

8. 8. 2. Enter Popper

8. 8. 3. But It's Milne In the End

8. 8. 4. Return of the Cosmological Principle

8. 8.5. A Popperian Conclusion

Bibliography



Chapter9. The Origin of the Universe and Contemporary Cosmology and Philosophy

9. 1. Introduction

9. 2. Two Approaches in Cosmology

9. 3. Dichotomy of Laws and Initial Conditions

9. 4. In the Search of a New Type of Laws

9. 5. World Without Borders

9. 6. Creative Conceptions of the Universe

9.7. Creation from "Nothing"

9. 8. Creation out of a "vacuum"

9. 9. Conceptions of the Universe which is Infinite in Time

Chapter10. Cosmology and some Philosophical Questions




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