Physics and Chance

Philosophical Issues in the Foundations of Statistical Mechanics

Author: Lawrence Sklar

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521558815

Category: Philosophy

Page: 437

View: 6689

DOWNLOAD NOW »
Statistical mechanics is one of the crucial fundamental theories of physics, and in his new book Lawrence Sklar, one of the pre-eminent philosophers of physics, offers a comprehensive, non-technical introduction to that theory and to attempts to understand its foundational elements. Among the topics treated in detail are: probability and statistical explanation, the basic issues in both equilibrium and non-equilibrium statistical mechanics, the role of cosmology, the reduction of thermodynamics to statistical mechanics, and the alleged foundation of the very notion of time asymmetry in the entropic asymmetry of systems in time. The book emphasises the interaction of scientific and philosophical modes of reasoning, and in this way will interest all philosophers of science as well as those in physics and chemistry concerned with philosophical questions. The book could also be read by an informed general reader interested in the foundations of modern science.

Causality and Chance in Modern Physics

Author: David Bohm

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134687095

Category: Philosophy

Page: 192

View: 781

DOWNLOAD NOW »
In this classic, David Bohm was the first to offer us his causal interpretation of the quantum theory. Causality and Chance in Modern Physics continues to make possible further insight into the meaning of the quantum theory and to suggest ways of extending the theory into new directions.

Chance in Physics

Foundations and Perspectives

Author: J. Bricmont,D. Dürr,M.C. Galavotti,G. Ghirardi,F. Petruccione,Nino Zanghi

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 3540449663

Category: Science

Page: 292

View: 4424

DOWNLOAD NOW »
This selection of reviews and papers is intended to stimulate renewed reflection on the fundamental and practical aspects of probability in physics. While putting emphasis on conceptual aspects in the foundations of statistical and quantum mechanics, the book deals with the philosophy of probability in its interrelation with mathematics and physics in general. Addressing graduate students and researchers in physics and mathematics togehter with philosophers of science, the contributions avoid cumbersome technicalities in order to make the book worthwhile reading for nonspecialists and specialists alike.

Time, Chance, and Reduction

Philosophical Aspects of Statistical Mechanics

Author: Gerhard Ernst,Andreas Hüttemann

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 0521884012

Category: Science

Page: 211

View: 719

DOWNLOAD NOW »
Statistical mechanics attempts to explain the behaviour of macroscopic physical systems in terms of the mechanical properties of their constituents. Although it is one of the fundamental theories of physics, it has received little attention from philosophers of science. Nevertheless, it raises philosophical questions of fundamental importance on the nature of time, chance and reduction. Most philosophical issues in this domain relate to the question of the reduction of thermodynamics to statistical mechanics. This book addresses issues inherent in this reduction: the time-asymmetry of thermodynamics and its absence in statistical mechanics; the role and essential nature of chance and probability in this reduction when thermodynamics is non-probabilistic; and how, if at all, the reduction is possible. Compiling contributions on current research by experts in the field, this is an invaluable survey of the philosophy of statistical mechanics for academic researchers and graduate students interested in the foundations of physics.

Probability in Physics

Author: Yemima Ben-Menahem,Meir Hemmo

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3642213294

Category: Science

Page: 324

View: 3576

DOWNLOAD NOW »
What is the role and meaning of probability in physical theory, in particular in two of the most successful theories of our age, quantum physics and statistical mechanics? Laws once conceived as universal and deterministic, such as Newton‘s laws of motion, or the second law of thermodynamics, are replaced in these theories by inherently probabilistic laws. This collection of essays by some of the world‘s foremost experts presents an in-depth analysis of the meaning of probability in contemporary physics. Among the questions addressed are: How are probabilities defined? Are they objective or subjective? What is their explanatory value? What are the differences between quantum and classical probabilities? The result is an informative and thought-provoking book for the scientifically inquisitive.

Chance and Temporal Asymmetry

Author: Alastair Wilson

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 019967342X

Category: Philosophy

Page: 297

View: 9763

DOWNLOAD NOW »
Chance and Temporal Asymmetry presents a collection of cutting-edge research papers in the metaphysics of science, tackling the perplexing philosophical problems raised by recent progress in the physics and metaphysics of chance and time. The aim of the volume is both to survey and summarize recent debates about chance and temporal asymmetry and to push them forward. Familiar approaches are subjected to searching new critiques, and bold new proposals aremade concerning (inter alia) the semantics of chance-attributions, the justification of the Principal Principle connecting chance and degree of belief, and the source of the temporal asymmetry of humanexperience. This volume sets the agenda for future work on time and chance, which are central to the emerging sub-field of metaphysics of science.

After Physics

Author: David Z. Albert

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 0674731263

Category: Science

Page: 181

View: 4402

DOWNLOAD NOW »
Here the philosopher and physicist David Z Albert argues, among other things, that the difference between past and future can be understood as a mechanical phenomenon of nature and that quantum mechanics makes it impossible to present the entirety of what can be said about the world as a narrative of “befores” and “afters.”

The physics of chance

from Blaise Pascal to Niels Bohr

Author: Charles Ruhla

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780198539605

Category: Science

Page: 222

View: 7101

DOWNLOAD NOW »
This work offers a clear, much-needed introduction to the ideas of randomness that are central to modern physics. These are the concepts that have been instrumental in overthrowing the notion of the classical "clock-work" universe of earlier centuries. The author shows how the laws of probability and statistics were developed by such mathematicians as Fermat, Pascal, and Gauss, and how they received their first major application in physics in the kinetic theory of gases developed by Maxwell and Boltzmann. Here the use of statistics was necessary because the number of particles involved is too great for a deterministic calculation. But soon the mathematician and physicist Poincare demonstrated the unpredictability of certain systems containing only a small number of bodies, because of extreme sensitivity to initial conditions. He thus became a founder of chaos theory. Finally, with the advent of quantum theory, physics--and reality itself-- seemed to be based on an essential randomness, an idea that was debated by Bohr and Einstein until the end of their lives. Only recently, in the experiments of Alain Aspect, has a convincing demonstration been given the inescapable randomness of quantum theory is a fact of nature. The author skillfully guides the reader through these developments and provides mathematical details in appendices, offering an accessible introduction to the modern physicist's conception of the world of cause and chance. Of special interest to physics students and teachers, the book will also appeal to anyone seeking a better understanding of modern physics, quantum theory, and the concept of chaos.

The Physics of Theism

God, Physics, and the Philosophy of Science

Author: Jeffrey Koperski

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1118932773

Category: Science

Page: 288

View: 8532

DOWNLOAD NOW »
The Physics of Theism provides a timely, critical analysis of the ways in which physics intertwines with religion. Koperski brings clarity to a range of arguments including the fine-tuning argument, naturalism, the laws of nature, and the controversy over Intelligent Design. A single author text providing unprecedented scope and depth of analysis of key issues within the Philosophy of Religion and the Philosophy of Science Critically analyses the ways in which physics is brought into play in matters of religion Self-contained chapters allow readers to directly access specific areas of interest The area is one of considerable interest, and this book is a timely and well-conceived contribution to these debates Written by an accomplished scholar working in the philosophy of physics in a style that renders complex arguments accessible

Causation, Physics, and the Constitution of Reality

Russell's Republic Revisited

Author: Huw Price,Richard Corry

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199278199

Category: Science

Page: 403

View: 9849

DOWNLOAD NOW »
In philosophy as in ordinary life, cause and effect are twin pillars on which much of our thought seems based. But almost a century ago, Bertrand Russell declared that modern physics leaves these pillars without foundations. Russell's revolutionary conclusion was that 'the law of causality is a relic of a bygone age, surviving, like the monarchy, only because it is erroneously supposed to do no harm'. Russell's famous challenge remains unanswered. Despite dramatic advances in physics,the intervening century has taken us no closer to an explanation of how to find a place for causation in a world of the kind that physics reveals. In particular, we still have no satisfactory account of the directionality of causation - the difference between cause and effect, and the fact that causes typically precede their effects. In this important collection of new essays, 13 leading scholars revisit Russell's revolution, in search of reconciliation. The connecting theme in these essays is that to reconcile causation with physics, we need to put ourselves in the picture: we need to think about why creatures in our situation should present their world in causal terms.

Wholeness and the Implicate Order

Author: David Bohm

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134438729

Category: Philosophy

Page: 304

View: 7064

DOWNLOAD NOW »
David Bohm was one of the foremost scientific thinkers and philosophers of our time. Although deeply influenced by Einstein, he was also, more unusually for a scientist, inspired by mysticism. Indeed, in the 1970s and 1980s he made contact with both J. Krishnamurti and the Dalai Lama whose teachings helped shape his work. In both science and philosophy, Bohm's main concern was with understanding the nature of reality in general and of consciousness in particular. In this classic work he develops a theory of quantum physics which treats the totality of existence as an unbroken whole. Writing clearly and without technical jargon, he makes complex ideas accessible to anyone interested in the nature of reality.

Poetry, Physics, and Painting in Twentieth-Century Spain

Author: C. Gala

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137002182

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 252

View: 6048

DOWNLOAD NOW »
This book reads the work of Salinas, Guillén, Larrea, Diego, Alberti, Méndez, and Lorca in analogical relation with Cubism and with the revolutionary discoveries of modern physics. Gala advances traditional criticism by considering these artists in the broader cultural context of Spain, Europe, and European Modernism.

Creating Modern Probability

Its Mathematics, Physics and Philosophy in Historical Perspective

Author: Jan von Plato

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521597357

Category: Mathematics

Page: 323

View: 591

DOWNLOAD NOW »
In this book the author charts the history and development of modern probability theory.

Physics and Politics

Or, Thoughts on the Application of the Principles of "natural Selection" and "inheritance" to Political Society

Author: Walter Bagehot

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Evolution

Page: 224

View: 8495

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Physics, Nature and Society

A Guide to Order and Complexity in Our World

Author: Joaquin Marro

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3319020242

Category: Science

Page: 204

View: 8941

DOWNLOAD NOW »
This wide-ranging and accessible book serves as a fascinating guide to the strategies and concepts that help us understand the boundaries between physics, on the one hand, and sociology, economics, and biology on the other. From cooperation and criticality to flock dynamics and fractals, the author addresses many of the topics belonging to the broad theme of complexity. He chooses excellent examples (requiring no prior mathematical knowledge) to illuminate these ideas and their implications. The lively style and clear description of the relevant models will appeal both to novices and those with an existing knowledge of the field.

Lightning Physics and Lightning Protection

Author: Eduard M. Bazelyan,Yuri P. Raizer

Publisher: CRC Press

ISBN: 9781420034011

Category: Science

Page: 325

View: 3650

DOWNLOAD NOW »
Lightning Physics and Lightning Protection presents a comprehensive and up-to-date review of lightning, including its hazards and protection techniques. The authors first discuss the effectiveness of conventional protective measures, supply technical advice and practical recommendations, and explore the prospects for the preventive control of a lightning leader, followed by a discussion of the initiation of a leader and return stroke and subsequent components. After including measurements useful for understanding lightning and its effects, the book describes the mechanism of lightning discharge processes. It then examines the effects of large aircraft, high-voltage lines, and other high-altitude constructions on lightning trajectory and leader attraction. The book concludes by studying the action of lightning's electrical and magnetic fields and the lightning current on industrial premises, power transmission lines, underground communications, aircraft and their electrical circuits, and the induction of a dangerous overvoltage. A clear, straightforward, and systematic presentation of complicated material, Lightning Physics and Lightning Protection provides deep insight into the physics of lightning, simple analytical estimates, and a detailed illustration of effects by computer simulation, making this resource essential for those who investigate lightning phenomena and who have to solve practical protection problems.

World Congress on Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering September 7 - 12, 2009 Munich, Germany

Vol. 25/I Radiation Oncology

Author: Olaf Dössel,Wolfgang C. Schlegel

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9783642034749

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 1084

View: 4030

DOWNLOAD NOW »
Present Your Research to the World! The World Congress 2009 on Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering – the triennial scientific meeting of the IUPESM - is the world’s leading forum for presenting the results of current scientific work in health-related physics and technologies to an international audience. With more than 2,800 presentations it will be the biggest conference in the fields of Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering in 2009! Medical physics, biomedical engineering and bioengineering have been driving forces of innovation and progress in medicine and healthcare over the past two decades. As new key technologies arise with significant potential to open new options in diagnostics and therapeutics, it is a multidisciplinary task to evaluate their benefit for medicine and healthcare with respect to the quality of performance and therapeutic output. Covering key aspects such as information and communication technologies, micro- and nanosystems, optics and biotechnology, the congress will serve as an inter- and multidisciplinary platform that brings together people from basic research, R&D, industry and medical application to discuss these issues. As a major event for science, medicine and technology the congress provides a comprehensive overview and in–depth, first-hand information on new developments, advanced technologies and current and future applications. With this Final Program we would like to give you an overview of the dimension of the congress and invite you to join us in Munich! Olaf Dössel Congress President Wolfgang C.