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review 2018-05-27 10:32
Quantum Ontology: "What is Real - The Unfinished Quest for the Meaning of Quantum Physics" by Adam Becker
What Is Real?: The Unfinished Quest for the Meaning of Quantum Physics - Adam Becker

The Universal-Wave-Function vs. The Pilot-Schrödinger-Wave-Function vs. the Collapsing-Schrödinger-Wave-function as a Stab at Explaining Reality.




The diversity of possible comments on this book reflects ironically the Everett paradigm of quantum ontology. There are as many views of reality as there are observers. Thankfully in all instances, given the depth of some of the possible interpretations, the interaction of the observer state wave and that of the rest of the universe is extremely asymmetrical - the universe has a great effect on the observer but the latter's effect on the universe is mercifully, infinitesimally small. There is no doubt that the philosophical implications of the developments in modern scientific thinking are in lagging mode. This is because of the extreme complexities of the formalisms created to describe the reality as seen by human observers with a certain evolved sense of perception. The modern philosopher has to tread wearily through the theory before emerging tired and almost at wit's end to be in a position to even expound a valid opinion, least of all an emerging new philosophy, on the ontological basis of the quantum world. This is the first time I’ve read a book on Quantum Mechanics wherein three of the major outlier physicists appear: David Bohm, Hugh Everett III, and John Stewart Bell. 



If you're into the Measurement Problem in Quantum Mechanics, read on.

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text 2018-05-23 00:58
Reading progress update: I've read 168 out of 253 pages.
So Pretty a Problem - Francis Duncan

okay, well, it’s no classic, but I’m enjoying it enough that I’m going to try and finish the whole thing tonight (partly because I want to get to a Spy novel, now that there is some kind of Spy novel mania hitting BookLikes in my neck of the woods!).

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text 2018-05-21 23:21
Reading progress update: I've read 74 out of 253 pages.
So Pretty a Problem - Francis Duncan

one cool thing: this series entry has an atypical story structure compared to the other Mordecai Tremaine Mysteries I read (three); this one is divided into three Sections: Query: At the Time of the Corpse; Background: Before the Corpse; and Exposition: Following the Corpse. I‘m into the middle section now, and it seems that Mordecai had interacted with the dead man and his wife, plus their social circle (soon to be suspects), at various functions, and even by chance (meeting on the street, etc.). I don’t remember anything like this in the other Francis Duncan books I got to earlier, and it’s an interesting feature. of course, it was obvious in the first section that there was a messy backstory attached to Adrian and Helen Carthallow, and that our amateur detective  was somehow snarled up in it...and now I’m getting the unsettling play-by-play.


also, Helen seems to lie a lot...


this book has the potential to become my favorite amongst Mysteries by this author, if it can stay strong. I do like it a lot, as of page 74. first of four I bought by this author, many moons ago, and seems like a good one to leave for last (well, “last”, for the time being).

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text 2018-05-21 15:31
Reading progress update: I've read 14 out of 253 pages.
So Pretty a Problem - Francis Duncan

I’ve only done the first chapter, but events depicted have got me completely hooked. this is the last Francis Duncan novel I had left in my Unread piles, and I have no plans to acquire his Christmas-oriented Mystery, so let’s see if he can do something impressive here. In at the Death is my favorite so far.

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review 2018-05-21 14:40
The Three-Body Problem
The Three-Body Problem - Liu Cixin,Ken Liu

I have been getting yelled at for a while to read "The Three-Body Problem." I really wish that I had left it alone. I had a hard time even getting immersed in the book cause not a lot of it made sense to me and we kept changing POVs.  I know about the Cultural Revolution in China (East Asia was my main focus when I got my undergraduate degree in History) but linking that with science fiction didn't gel that well in my opinion. I can see though why some of the characters were over mankind though due to what they had been through in their lives, but I would still hard pause about some of the choices that we had people make throughout this book. The ending just left me nonplussed. 


"The Three-Body Problem" follows several characters, Ye Wenjie a disgraced scientist, Michael Evans, a rich man, and Wang Miao, a nanotechnology professor, and a whole host of people I am probably forgetting at this point. I am not going to lie, after a while I stopped taking in people's names. The book bounces back and forth the most between Ye and Wang though.


The book starts off during China's Cultural Revolution. Ye witnesses her father being murdered and is sent off to work in a labor camp after being labeled a traitor. While there though she is recruited by Red Coast (China's organization that is out there looking for proof of alien life). Due to Ye's expertise she is asked about working with radio communications to get messages back and forth from aliens. Eventually Ye does have first contact with people from the planet Trisolaris. 


Fast forward to Wang in the present day who gets asked to work with a detective who is looking into the deaths of some scientists. Wang starts to notice some things that are weird and wonders if something more sinister is going on. Eventually though Wang is playing a virtual reality game called "Three Body." 


I didn't feel a real connection to any of the characters while I was reading this. I tried, but I found myself getting bored for the most part. The only things that held my interest was when Wang went into the Three Body game and I found myself becoming fascinated with the game. 


The writing got a bit convoluted to me when trying to explain the science behind everything.

"Can the fundamental nature of matter really be lawlessness? Can the stability and order of the world be but a temporary dynamic equilibrium achieved in a corner of the universe, a short-lived eddy in a chaotic current?"


“And it is this: The human race is an evil species. Human civilization has committed unforgivable crimes against the Earth and must be punished. The ultimate goal of the Adventists is to ask our Lord to carry out this divine punishment: the destruction of all humankind.”


The flow of the book was off and as I said, I struggled to finish this. I just found myself wishing for the book to finally get to the ending. When I did I was just relieved I managed to finish it. 


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