01289nas a2200109 4500008004100000245002100041210002000062260001500082520102100097100001701118856004401135 2004 eng d00aWhy the quantum?0 aWhy the quantum c2004/02/203 a This paper is a commentary on the foundational significance of the
Clifton-Bub-Halvorson theorem characterizing quantum theory in terms of three
information-theoretic constraints (Foundations of Physics 33, 1561-1591 (2003);
quant-ph/0211089). I argue that: (1) a quantum theory is best understood as a
theory about the possibilities and impossibilities of information transfer, as
opposed to a theory about the mechanics of nonclassical waves or particles, (2)
given the information-theoretic constraints, any mechanical theory of quantum
phenomena that includes an account of the measuring instruments that reveal
these phenomena must be empirically equivalent to a quantum theory, and (3)
assuming the information-theoretic constraints are in fact satisfied in our
world, no mechanical theory of quantum phenomena that includes an account of
measurement interactions can be acceptable, and the appropriate aim of physics
at the fundamental level then becomes the representation and manipulation of
information.
1 aBub, Jeffrey uhttp://arxiv.org/abs/quant-ph/0402149v1