Everett’s Cat, Schrodinger’s Cat, Either Way They’ll Both Meow

There is something to be learned about probability and quantum superposition of states. Read from the source; in the piece, the section titled, “The Story Behind The Story,” has basic, quantum 101. Because Quantum is Coming.

**Everett’s cat**

Points to note…

+ Ours is a classical world, in which a car is either moving or at rest, a coin toss yields heads or tails, and a cat is either alive or dead. Combinations of the two are not possible. There are definitive states that each entity can take. However, in the subatomic world governed by quantum physics, a quantum particle can be in a probabilistic superposition of states.

*R. P. Sand reveals the inspiration behind Everett’s cat.*

+ Consider the qubit, the fundamental computing unit of a quantum computer. The qubit is analogous to the classical bit, which is the fundamental computing unit of the device you’re using to read this. A bit is binary, and can be in only one of two possible states: 0 or 1. But a qubit has a third option: a superposition of the two. However, once a qubit’s state is measured, the result is once again binary. The outcome has to be a 0 or a 1.

+ No one really knows why this happens. One possible explanation is the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics, in which the act of measurement itself ‘collapses’ all possibilities to a single one. In 1935, physicist Erwin Schrödinger published a paper that outlined his famous thought experiment as a push-back to this interpretation, by hypothetically extrapolating quantum effects on a microscopic level to an everyday macroscopic object — a cat.

Source:* nature. R. P. Sand, Everett’s cat… *

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