Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I am glad that the many world interpretation is only true at the quantum level

Hugh Everett's many-worlds interpretation (MWI) is one of several mainstream interpretations of quantum mechanics. In brief, one aspect of quantum mechanics is that certain observations cannot be predicted absolutely. Instead, there is a range of possible observations each with a different probability. According to the MWI, each of these possible observations corresponds to a different universe. Suppose a die is thrown that contains 6 sides and that the result corresponds to a quantum mechanics observable. All 6 possible ways the die can fall correspond to 6 different universes. (More correctly, in MWI there is only a single universe but after the "split" into "many worlds" these cannot in general interact.) (Sourced from Wikipedia)

I wonder if in some multiverse version of our life, all the near misses we have had as parents have ever materialized, and if so, what happens to the sequence of events that happened after.

I have gotten thinking about this since last Sunday. Husband, I, Anjali, and Sophia were on our way to West Coast Park for IEP. It was close to 2pm. All taxis go on some thing called shift change at 2pm. As we were sort of getting late (the facilitators try to come to the lesson by 2.30pm) and because of our prior bad experiences with shift change time in taxis, I was getting the phone out to call a taxi. Three things happened almost immediately after each other.

A bus pulled into the busstop. A taxi came in almost immediately after the bus, which husband tried to stop. I was put on hold at the call taxi, and was trying to decide whether to continue to hang up or to take the call, depending on whether the taxi was in shift change or not.

The taxi was not in shift change. I hung up the phone, took Sophia and walked to the taxi. "Come on Anjali", I said.

There was no Anjali. I looked left, right, down, in the grass, and no Anjali.

I turned around, and there was the bus, standing there, about to move on.

"Anjali got in the bus!" I shrieked.

"Get in the taxi", husband shouted, sprinting to the bus. It helps to have a marathon runner for a husband.

Anjali got out, and sauntered to the taxi, quite unperturbed.

She got in the taxi. "Mummy, i was very scared when mummy and daddy were not in the bus!", she exclaimed.

Quite calmly for someone who had nearly gotten lost. 

 


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