Quantum theory is famously mind-boggling. But do its paradoxes mean we haven’t yet understood it?
Quantum mechanics is so notoriously difficult that Nobel-winning physicist Richard Feynman cheerfully admitted that even he didn’t understand it.
The reason is not that quantum theory is full of difficult maths, but that it defies intuition, and even, it seems, logic. Does this mean that we’re doomed forever to vague talk of wave-particle duality, uncertainty, Schrödinger’s cat and “spooky action at a distance”? Or has quantum mechanics moved on from these old clichés?
Thanks to improved experiments and fresh thinking about quantum theory, we can now say more clearly what it does and doesn’t mean. It’s not all about fuzziness and weirdness, but is a theory about information: about how, and how much, we can really find out about the fundamental ways the world behaves – and about where we fit into the picture. It’s time to go “beyond weird”.More information