Re: Ambiguous or just uncertain?

Ian Goddard (
Sun, 31 May 1998 14:26:31 -0400

At 08:29 AM 5/31/98 -0700, John Clark wrote:
>On Sat, 30 May 1998 Daniel Fabulich <> Wrote:
> >Not ambiguous, UNCERTAIN. That's why they don't call it the
> >ambiguity principle and why they DO call it the uncertainty
> >principle. And despite the fact that the blueness will be
> >completely random, it WILL be either blue or not blue, despite the
> >fact that we cannot measure which while we know the position
> >perfectly.
>But it's much deeper than just a measurement problem because Heisenberg's
>Uncertainty Principle is only a small part of Quantum Mechanics, and by the
>standards of that bizarre science a conventional part. It's a little
>that there's a relationship between position and momentum, and a limit on
>our knowledge of the product of both, but it's not irrational. On the other
>hand there are some aspects of modern physics can only be described as
>Take the famous 2 slit experiment for example, shine a light on 2 closely
>spaced slits and it will produce a complex interference pattern on a film,
>even if the photons are sent out one at a time. If a photon goes through one
>slit it wouldn't seem to matter if the other slit, the one it didn't go
>though, was there or not, but it does.
>Even stranger, place a polarizing filter set at 0 degrees over one slit,
>one set at 90 degrees over the other, the interference pattern disappears.
>Now place a third filter set at 45 degrees one inch in front of the film
>10 light years from the slits. The interference pattern comes back, even
>though you didn't decide to put the filter in front of the film until 10
>after the photons passed the slits! Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle does
>not enter in any of this, it's not that the photon goes through one slit and
>we just don't know which one, it must go through the left slit only, and the
>right slit only, and both slits, and no slit at all, and it must do all
>things at the same time. Fundamental ambiguity in nature? Fundamental
>ignorance of some new law of logic? Backward causality? Parallel universes?
>None of the above? I have no idea.
>If this seems pretty stupid and completely ridiculous I don't blame you a
>but I'm the wrong person to receive the complaint, send it to God.

IAN: Nevertheless (and this was the initial point
disputed) that does not mean that the truth in the
physical reality is fuzzy, as in being less than
100% true at any time. If the physical reality is
strange and chaotic, then that is the 100% truth.

The idea that it means truth is fuzzy, is simply
a measure of a disjunction between what we think
subatomic entities SHOULD do and what they do do;
thus "fuzzy truth" measures, as it does in the
macro, a disjunction between ideas and reality.


"A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its
opponents and making them see the light, but rather because
its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows
up that is familiar with the idea from the beginning."

Max Plank - Nobel physicist

"The smallest minority on earth is the individual.
Those who deny individual rights cannot claim
to be defenders of minorities." Ayn Rand