One World, One Beable

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Callender, Craig
preprint description
Is the quantum state part of the furniture of the world? Einstein found such a position indigestible, but here I present an understanding of the wavefunction that is easy to stomach. First, I develop the idea that the wavefunction is nomological in nature, showing how the quantum It or Bit debate gets subsumed by the corresponding It or Bit debate about laws of nature. Second, I motivate the nomological view by casting quantum mechanics in a “classical” formalism (Hamilton–Jacobi theory) and classical mechanics in a “quantum” formalism (Koopman–von Neumann theory) and then comparing and contrasting classical and quantum wave functions. I argue that Humeans about laws can treat classical and quantum wave functions on a par and that doing so yields many benefits.