Fifty years ago, Hugh Everett devised a multi-world interpretation of quantum mechanics' quantum effects that spawned countless branches of the universe, each with different events occurring. The theory sounds like a strange hypothesis, but in fact Everett drew it from the basic mathematics of quantum mechanics. Still, most physicists of the time belittled him and had to shorten his PhD to make his thesis on the subject less controversial. Disheartened, Everett left physics and studied military and industrial mathematics and computing. Personally, he was an emotionally withdrawn and heavy drinker. He died at the age of 51, before he could see the respect physicists have shown his ideas lately. ” Who is Hugh Everett? “Let's explain in more detail.
Who is Hugh Everett?
In "The Many Worlds of Hugh Everett III", Peter Byrne tells the story of Hugh Everett III (1930-1982), whose multiverse theory had a profound impact on physics and philosophy. Using Everett's unpublished articles (which he recently discovered in his son's basement) and dozens of interviews with friends, colleagues, and surviving family members, Byrne paints for the general reader a detailed portrait of the genius who invented a surprising way of describing our complex.
Everett's mathematical model (called the "universal wave function") treats all possible events as "equally real" and concludes that there are innumerable copies of every person and thing in all possible configurations spanning an infinite number of universes and many worlds. the many worlds).
Influenced by depression and addictions, Everett sought to bring rational order to professional fields where he played historically important roles. In addition to his famous interpretation of quantum mechanics, Everett wrote a classic paper on game theory; He created computer algorithms that revolutionized military operations research and pioneered artificial intelligence for top-secret government projects.
He wrote the original software targeting cities in a nuclear hot war; and was one of the first scientists to recognize the danger of nuclear winter. As a Cold Warrior, he devised logical systems that modeled "rational" human and machine behavior, but was largely unaware of the emotional damage his irrational personal behavior was doing to his family, lovers, and business partners.
He died young, but left behind a fascinating record of his life, including correspondence with philosophically inclined physicists such as Niels Bohr, Norbert Wiener, and John Wheeler. These remarkable letters illuminate the long and often bitter struggle to explain the measurement paradox at the heart of quantum physics. In recent years, Everett's solution to this mysterious problem - the existence of a universe of universes - has received significant attention in the scientific community, not as science fiction but as an explanation of physical reality.