Acquiring Knowledge Through Information Loss

Non-equilibrium Dynamics and Random Matrices
Topic:Acquiring Knowledge Through Information Loss
Speaker:Jürg Fröhlich
Affiliation:ETH Zürich; Visiting Professor, School of Mathematics
Date:Tuesday, December 10
Time/Room:2:00pm - 3:00pm/S-101

After a short introduction to some ideas on quantum probability theory I discuss the roles played by loss of information and entanglement in the emergence of facts in quantum-mechanical experiments and observations. Besides explaining why "information loss" is a fundamental phenomenon, the goal of my discussion is to arrive at a consistent theory of "von Neumann measurements". I then discuss some recent results in the theory of non-demolition measurements and speculate how they might explain the appearance of particle tracks in detectors. The main mathematical tools underlying my discussion are borrowed from the theory of operator algebras and from classical probability theory.