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Stop Using Quantum Mechanics as Evidence for Magic

By Esther Inglis-Arkell

[Snip] It Doesn’t Mean That We Are Psychic

Okay, here’s the big one. Quantum mechanics shows that the world works in unintuitive ways, and, yes, experiments done in quantum mechanics provide results that can be interpreted in ways that lead us to odd conclusions. What quantum mechanics doesn’t do is provide evidence for whatever whack-a-doodle theory any crackpot has at the moment. These theories come in several different flavors.

First there’s quantum entanglement. I have to admit, I have a soft spot for quantum entanglement. Entanglement involves two particles having opposite spins. As long as the spins aren’t measured, they’re undetermined. This doesn’t mean that we don’t know the spins. This means that they are literally undetermined until someone measures them. When a person measures the spin on one particle the other particle, immediately has the opposite spin. This has led people to suppose that faster-than-light signaling devices may be possible. They’re not.

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