Thursday, December 30, 2004

Quantum Darwinism

According to quantum physics, anything anyone can conceive of is happening in its own quantum reality. There are an infinite number of these realities dreamt up by all of us. So why do we all seem to be sharing one particular reality? There's a theory I just heard about that tries to explain why.

Quantum Darwinism is kind of a natural selection, or survival of the fittest, of quantum realities. The more people experience a certain reality, the more real it is. It seems to make a difference, too, whether the circumstances of that reality are recorded -- the recording seems to stand in for another person experiencing it, raising the number of witnesses.

This explains why a hypothetical couple can disagree about how a certain conversation went, even though they were both there and participated in the same conversation. Since there are only two of them, the reality they experienced is fragile and easily warped by each individual's baggage and biases. However if the couple tape-recorded the conversation, they have another "person" (the recording) to shore up the reality they participated in and help them agree on it. If they have this conversation in the presence of several other people, the reality is going to be shored up even further.

So if you are ever trying to switch yourself from your current reality into another one -- perhaps a reality where you are rich and/or famous, or a reality where somebody you have an unrequited crush on returns your affections -- keep in mind that you may be the only person who's supporting that reality. The mass of humanity may be supporting the reality you are currently in, where you're a working stiff, toiling in obscurity, and/or where even by curing cancer or winning a Grammy award, you could never get that person to give a damn.

Believability seems to be the key. After I delve into this theory a bit more, I'll see what else I can come up with.

It's less than a month before my first recording sessions for Not Made of Stone! The train trip up to Eugene is going to be beautiful and I am practicing really hard. I've written a flute solo for "How Now Is Soon" and a bass flute solo for "Ultralite", and I'm working on bass flute and flute parts for "Blood With Salt". Jeff Davis will play drums, Jim Carr will play bass, Dan Magazin will play piano (I'm sending him up to Eugene as a MIDI file), and I'll play flute, bass flute, and guitar and do the vocals.