The Quantum Pontiff


Confession of a classical sinner.


  1. #1 Ian Durham
    October 6, 2009

    I thought you were “crazy busy.” This is your third (maybe fourth?) post today.

  2. #2 Stephan Hoyer
    October 6, 2009

    “Impure thoughts” is a real groaner.

  3. #3 Dave Bacon
    October 6, 2009

    You think I write these posts at the time they are posted? 😉

  4. #4 John Sidles
    October 6, 2009

    Heck, it was none other than Saunders Mac Lane who said “It has taken me fifty years to understand classical mechanics.”

    One option is to read Arnol’d’s [i]Classical Mechanics[/i], and then embrace a new mathematical life as a classical-quantum hermaphrodite! 🙂

  5. #5 David
    October 7, 2009

    I work with a Polish emigre. He showed me his notes [in Polish] from when he taught classical mechanics. He used a diagram to illustrate the following things.

    If you start with classical mechanics. It becomes quantum mechanics when you assert H has a non-zero lower bound. It becomes a field theory when you assert \bar{h} has a non-zero lower bound. It becomes a relativistic theory when you assert that c has a finite upper bound. [So, a relativistic quantum field theory sets all three parameters].

    So, the whole classical-quantum distinction has been lost on me, since I actually thought it was important. Sometimes I wonder if this parametric view skews my understanding of the state of affairs.

New comments have been disabled.