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Studies in plausibility theory, with applications to physics

by Porta Mana, Piero Giovanni

Abstract (Summary)
The discipline usually called `probability theory' can be seen as the theory which describes and sets standard norms to the way we reason about plausibility. From this point of view, this `plausibility theory' is a province of logic, and the following informal proportion subsists:plausibility theory is to the common notion of `plausibility', as deductive logic is to the common notion of `truth'.Some studies in plausibility theory are here offered. An alternative view and mathematical formalism for the problem of induction (the prediction of uncertain events from similar, certain ones) is presented. It is also shown how from plausibility theory one can derive a mathematical framework, based on convex geometry, for the description of the predictive properties of physical theories. Within this framework, problems like state assignment - for any physical theory - find simple and clear algorithms, numerical examples of which are given for three-level quantum systems. Plausibility theory also gives insights on various fashionable theorems, like Bell’s theorem, and various fashionable `paradoxes', like Gibbs' paradox.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:Kungliga Tekniska högskolan

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:NATURAL SCIENCES; Physics; Bayesian probability theory; quantum theory; state assignment; state estimation

ISBN:978-91-7178-688-3

Date of Publication:01/01/2007

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