Ep 206: Sam Kuypers (Time: The First Quantum Concept Part 3 - and more).

12 Apr 2024 • 105 min • EN
105 min
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Sam Kuypers is a theoretical physicist who specialises in the physics of time. If you have the time, Sam can take up as much of it as you like telling you about how our ideas of time have changed…over time. As Sam will reveals: times, they are not a-changing. But there is change! Newtonian physics has a notion of time (or at least Newton himself did), Relativity as discovered by Einstein in the early 1900s radically transformed our notion of what time is and now, in the 21st Century, Sam Kuypers and others are beginning to develop a quantum theory of time. And this is why Sam joins me for this episode as we unpack time as a quantum concept: the very topic of Chapter 11 of “The Fabric of Reality” and go deep on Sam’s more recent contributions to our understanding of the reality of time. Appropriately, time stamps are below.   You may have to take your time with some of this.     00:00 - Introduction to this episode 05:04 - Introduction to Sam Kuypers 06:30 - The day-to-day of a theoretical physicist 10:30 - What led Sam to Oxford University 12:10 - What was Sam’s doctoral thesis about? 15:20 - The importance of Everett 16:30 - “Classical” Time and “universal time”. 27:00 - Julian Barbour and time as a series of instants 30:35 - Spacetime and the timeless view of physical reality. 33:35 - The clash of General Relativity and Quantum Theory I 37:20 - The clash of General Relativity and Quantum Theory II 40:40 - c-numbers and q-numbers 42:30 - The significance of (non) commutability (i.e the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle). 46:05 - The Page-Wooters Construction (Quantum Time I). 53:15 - Can there be change if nothing is ever changing? (Quantum Time II) 55:31 - The Heisenberg vs Schrödinger “Pictures” of Quantum Theory. 57:35 - What is “locality” in physics? 58:40 - Entanglement and: "Does Quantum Theory allows for faster than light communication?”  1:00:48 - Unitary Quantum Theory (vs: Everettian Quantum Theory) 1:05:33 - Philosophical Realism, Physics 1:06:40 - Does Time Exist? 1:07:58 - Is Time Travel Possible? 1:11:30 - How did Sam find his way into physics? 1:14:30 - The Dutch Enlightenment vs The British Enlightenment 1:20:50 - The Netherlands, international trade, tolerance and specialisation 1:23:08 - The Invention of Free Trade and misconceptions with long lifetimes. 1:16:30 - The peculiar rivalry between European Allies 1:28:40 - Prosperity and Pessimism: Are both on the ascendency? 1:32:19: Why are people special? 1:37:14: Liberalism, Authoritarianism and Climate Change 1:40:25: Science, Morality and (eg: Dutch) Innovation 1:43:30 - Concluding Remarks         

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