Philosophers
Mortimer Adler Rogers Albritton Alexander of Aphrodisias Samuel Alexander William Alston Anaximander G.E.M.Anscombe Anselm Louise Antony Thomas Aquinas Aristotle David Armstrong Harald Atmanspacher Robert Audi Augustine J.L.Austin A.J.Ayer Alexander Bain Mark Balaguer Jeffrey Barrett William Belsham Henri Bergson George Berkeley Isaiah Berlin Richard J. Bernstein Bernard Berofsky Robert Bishop Max Black Susanne Bobzien Emil du BoisReymond Hilary Bok Laurence BonJour George Boole Émile Boutroux F.H.Bradley C.D.Broad Michael Burke C.A.Campbell Joseph Keim Campbell Rudolf Carnap Carneades Ernst Cassirer David Chalmers Roderick Chisholm Chrysippus Cicero Randolph Clarke Samuel Clarke Anthony Collins Antonella Corradini Diodorus Cronus Jonathan Dancy Donald Davidson Mario De Caro Democritus Daniel Dennett Jacques Derrida René Descartes Richard Double Fred Dretske John Dupré John Earman Laura Waddell Ekstrom Epictetus Epicurus Herbert Feigl John Martin Fischer Owen Flanagan Luciano Floridi Philippa Foot Alfred Fouilleé Harry Frankfurt Richard L. Franklin Michael Frede Gottlob Frege Peter Geach Edmund Gettier Carl Ginet Alvin Goldman Gorgias Nicholas St. John Green H.Paul Grice Ian Hacking Ishtiyaque Haji Stuart Hampshire W.F.R.Hardie Sam Harris William Hasker R.M.Hare Georg W.F. Hegel Martin Heidegger Heraclitus R.E.Hobart Thomas Hobbes David Hodgson Shadsworth Hodgson Baron d'Holbach Ted Honderich Pamela Huby David Hume Ferenc Huoranszki William James Lord Kames Robert Kane Immanuel Kant Tomis Kapitan Jaegwon Kim William King Hilary Kornblith Christine Korsgaard Saul Kripke Andrea Lavazza Keith Lehrer Gottfried Leibniz Leucippus Michael Levin George Henry Lewes C.I.Lewis David Lewis Peter Lipton C. Lloyd Morgan John Locke Michael Lockwood E. Jonathan Lowe John R. Lucas Lucretius Alasdair MacIntyre Ruth Barcan Marcus James Martineau Storrs McCall Hugh McCann Colin McGinn Michael McKenna Brian McLaughlin John McTaggart Paul E. Meehl Uwe Meixner Alfred Mele Trenton Merricks John Stuart Mill Dickinson Miller G.E.Moore Thomas Nagel Friedrich Nietzsche John Norton P.H.NowellSmith Robert Nozick William of Ockham Timothy O'Connor Parmenides David F. Pears Charles Sanders Peirce Derk Pereboom Steven Pinker Plato Karl Popper Porphyry Huw Price H.A.Prichard Protagoras Hilary Putnam Willard van Orman Quine Frank Ramsey Ayn Rand Michael Rea Thomas Reid Charles Renouvier Nicholas Rescher C.W.Rietdijk Richard Rorty Josiah Royce Bertrand Russell Paul Russell Gilbert Ryle JeanPaul Sartre Kenneth Sayre T.M.Scanlon Moritz Schlick Arthur Schopenhauer John Searle Wilfrid Sellars Alan Sidelle Ted Sider Henry Sidgwick Walter SinnottArmstrong J.J.C.Smart Saul Smilansky Michael Smith Baruch Spinoza L. Susan Stebbing Isabelle Stengers George F. Stout Galen Strawson Peter Strawson Eleonore Stump Francisco Suárez Richard Taylor Kevin Timpe Mark Twain Peter Unger Peter van Inwagen Manuel Vargas John Venn Kadri Vihvelin Voltaire G.H. von Wright David Foster Wallace R. Jay Wallace W.G.Ward Ted Warfield Roy Weatherford William Whewell Alfred North Whitehead David Widerker David Wiggins Bernard Williams Timothy Williamson Ludwig Wittgenstein Susan Wolf Scientists Michael Arbib Bernard Baars Gregory Bateson John S. Bell Charles Bennett Ludwig von Bertalanffy Susan Blackmore Margaret Boden David Bohm Niels Bohr Ludwig Boltzmann Emile Borel Max Born Satyendra Nath Bose Walther Bothe Hans Briegel Leon Brillouin Stephen Brush Henry Thomas Buckle S. H. Burbury Donald Campbell Anthony Cashmore Eric Chaisson JeanPierre Changeux Arthur Holly Compton John Conway John Cramer E. P. Culverwell Charles Darwin Terrence Deacon Louis de Broglie Max Delbrück Abraham de Moivre Paul Dirac Hans Driesch John Eccles Arthur Stanley Eddington Paul Ehrenfest Albert Einstein Hugh Everett, III Franz Exner Richard Feynman R. A. Fisher Joseph Fourier Lila Gatlin Michael Gazzaniga GianCarlo Ghirardi J. Willard Gibbs Nicolas Gisin Paul Glimcher Thomas Gold A.O.Gomes Brian Goodwin Joshua Greene Jacques Hadamard Patrick Haggard Stuart Hameroff Augustin Hamon Sam Harris Hyman Hartman JohnDylan Haynes Martin Heisenberg Werner Heisenberg John Herschel Jesper Hoffmeyer E. T. Jaynes William Stanley Jevons Roman Jakobson Pascual Jordan Ruth E. Kastner Stuart Kauffman Martin J. Klein Simon Kochen Stephen Kosslyn Ladislav Kovàč Rolf Landauer Alfred Landé PierreSimon Laplace David Layzer Benjamin Libet Seth Lloyd Hendrik Lorentz Josef Loschmidt Ernst Mach Donald MacKay Henry Margenau James Clerk Maxwell Ernst Mayr Ulrich Mohrhoff Jacques Monod Emmy Noether Abraham Pais Howard Pattee Wolfgang Pauli Massimo Pauri Roger Penrose Steven Pinker Colin Pittendrigh Max Planck Susan Pockett Henri Poincaré Daniel Pollen Ilya Prigogine Hans Primas Adolphe Quételet Juan Roederer Jerome Rothstein David Ruelle Erwin Schrödinger Aaron Schurger Claude Shannon David Shiang Herbert Simon Dean Keith Simonton B. F. Skinner Roger Sperry John Stachel Henry Stapp Tom Stonier Antoine Suarez Leo Szilard William Thomson (Kelvin) Peter Tse Vlatko Vedral Heinz von Foerster John von Neumann John B. Watson Daniel Wegner Steven Weinberg Paul A. Weiss John Wheeler Wilhelm Wien Norbert Wiener Eugene Wigner E. O. Wilson H. Dieter Zeh Ernst Zermelo Wojciech Zurek Presentations Biosemiotics Free Will Mental Causation James Symposium 
Wojciech Zurek
Wojciech Zurek is a scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory best known for his contributions to the theory of quantum decoherence, the loss of coherence between the various states in a superposition of quantum states.
The principle of superposition of states, the axiom of measurement, and the projection postulate (the "collapse" of the wave function or "reduction of the wave packet") are the three main assumptions of P.A.M. Dirac's standard formulation of quantum mechanics. Zurek and his colleagues, notably H. Dieter Zeh, deny Dirac's projection postulate. They are a special case of many theorists who look for reasons to deny indeterministic and discrete discontinuous processes (e.g., quantum jumps), in order to restore a continuous and deterministic physics and explain the transition from microscopic quantum physics to macroscopic classical physics. Zurek and Zeh explain the loss of quantum coherence and the "appearance" of quantum jumping as the consequence of interactions of the quantum system with the environment. They describe decoherence as the loss of information from a quantum system to its environment. To be sure, maintaining coherence (for example the phase information between states in a superposition of states that produces wavelike interference effects) is an essential part of the time evolution of a quantum system according to the Schrödinger wave equation. Coherent time evolution is an idealization that is only approximately realizable, in a system that is nearly isolated from its environment. But without the projection into a single state (the "collapse" into an "eigenstate" with an observable "eigenvalue") there would be no particlelike behavior. Decoherence theorists replace the "collapse" with the loss of information. This is instructive, because every interaction of a quantum system with other systems (either quantum or approximately classical) can result in either a loss of information (a gain in positive entropy) or a gain in information locally (at the expense of even greater positive entropy transferred away from the quantum system and the local environment. The problem of measurement is best analyzed as a gain in information. The new knowledge acquired by the observer must first be newly created information that is a stable enough record to be available for observation. This requires an irreversible thermodynamic process and decoherence theorists agree that the dynamics of the quantum system (viewed in isolation from the environment) are nonunitary and irreversible. But they demur from an attempted explanation of measurement and they deny that decoherence generates an actual wave function collapse. Decoherence only provides an explanation for the "observance" of wave function collapse. They replace collapse with the "leakage" of information into the environment as components of the wave function are decoupled from a coherent system, and acquire new phases from their immediate surroundings. Decoherence theorists believe that the total superposition of a global or "universal" wavefunction follows a unitary time evolution according to the Schrödinger equation, which commits them to something like Everett's "manyworlds" or Zeh's "manyminds" interpretations of quantum mechanics. Zurek's insight about the importance of information is very powerful. As he wrote in his 2003 revisited version of the 1991 foundational paper on decoherence in Physics Today: ...if there is one lesson to be learned from what we already know about such matters, it is that information and its transfer play a key role in the quantum universe.
References
Decoherence and the Transition from Quantum to Classical—Revisited
Quantum Darwinism, Nature Physics, vol. 5, pp. 181188 (2009)
For Teachers
For Scholars
