The philosophy of quantum information

Authored by: Chris Timpson

The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Information

Print publication date:  June  2016
Online publication date:  June  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138796935
eBook ISBN: 9781315757544
Adobe ISBN: 9781317633495

10.4324/9781315757544.ch19

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Abstract

Quantum information theory is an exciting and still youthfully vigorous area of research which lies at the intersection of quantum physics, communication theory, and the theory of computation. Its point of departure is to seize upon the very marked and peculiar ways in which the quantum world differs from our classical conceptions of physics, and to see in these differences opportunities for new forms of communication and computation. The oddity of the quantum world, in this approach, is not seen as a potentially troublesome conundrum, best avoided or treated in as classical-like a way as possible, but rather as something which we may be able to harness to our advantage, to do things which we would not otherwise be able to do, or to do things in ways in which we would not otherwise be able to do them. The defining, strikingly non-classical, and conceptually puzzling quantum features such as superposition, entanglement, and non-commutativity (we shall see more of each of these notions in due course) are positively embraced, and put to concrete work.

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