On the arrow of time again

10/09/2009

Lorenzo Maccone’s argument (see here)  is on the hot list yet. Today, a paper by David Jennings and Terry Rudolph (Imperial College, London) appeared (see here) claiming Maccone’s argument being incorrect. Indeed, they write down Maccone’s argument as follows

Any decrease in entropy of a system that is correlated with an observer entails a memory erasure of said observer

but this erasure is provided by quantum correlations. The key point is the link between quantum correlations and local decrease of entropy as seen by classical correlations. Jennings and Rudolph interpret Maccone’s view as the reduction of information at a quantum level entails a reduction of information at a classical level and we do not observe such events. These authors show counterexamples where this does not happen arguing that Maccone’s argument does not explain rather worsens the problem as quantum correlations can decrease while classical ones can increase.

I guess that this comment will undergo the standard procedure of Physical Review Letters for it and Lorenzo Maccone will produce a counterargument facing in this way a review process. As it stand, it appears a substantial open problem to the original Maccone’s proposal but relies in an essential way on the interpretation Jennings and Rudolph attach to it.

Being this a really exciting matter, it will be really interesting to following the way events will take place.


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