HPS 2626 Phil 2626 
Topics in Recent Philosophy of Physics  Fall 2013 
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Schedule
Week  Date  Subject  Warm up 
Presenter 
1  Aug 29  Introduction  Norton  
The Three Principal Problems of Philosophy of Modern Physics  Norton  
2  Sep 5  Entropy and Information: Basic Readings Leo Szilard (1929) "On the Decrease of Entropy in a Thermodynamic System by the Intervention of Intelligent Beings," Translation of Zeitschrift fur Physik 53: 840–856. Landauer, R., 1961, “Irreversibility and heat generation in the computing process”, IBM Journal of Research and Development, 5: 183–191. Bennett, C.H., 1982, “The thermodynamics of computation—a review”, International Journal of Theoretical Physics, 21(12): 905–940. Background reading: Wayne C. Myrvold, (2011) "Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics: A Maxwellian View." 
I  Norton Powerpoint 
3  Sep 12  Entropy and Information: A Skeptical Critique John D. Norton, "All Shook Up: Fluctuations, Maxwell's Demon and the Thermodynamics of Computation," Prepared for the journal, Entropy. John D. Norton, "Brownian Computation is Thermodynamically Irreversible." Background: 
II  Norton Powerpoint 1 Powerpoint 2 
4  Sep 19  Time in Quantum theory Jan Hilgevoord "Time in Quantum Mechanics: A History of Confusion,” Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics, 36 (2005), pp.29–60. P. Busch, “The TimeEnergy Uncertainty Relation,” http://arxiv.org/abs/quantph/0105049 Read 3.13.2 and 3.5  3.6.1. Tom Pashby, "Time and Quantum Theory: A History and A Prospectus." 
III  Tom Pashby 
5  Sep 26  WellPosed Theories John D. Norton, "The Dome: An Unexpectedly Simple Failure of Determinism" Philosophy of Science, 75, No. 5, (2008). pp. 78698 or the short version in 
IV  Norton (30 min) Powerpoint 
Balazs Gyenis, " "Determinism, physical possibility, and laws of nature"," manuscript.  Balazs Gyenis  
6  Oct 3  Curie's Principle Pierre Curie (1894) "On symmetry in physical phenomena, symmetry of an electric field and of a magnetic field" 
V  Tyler Ahlstrom (15 min) 
Jenan Ismael (1997), "Curie's Principle," Synthese 110, pp.167–190.  George Borg (30 min)  
Roberts, Bryan W. (2012) The simple failure of Curie's Principle. [Preprint] http://philsciarchive.pitt.edu/9862/  Michael Miller (45 min)  
Background: A. F. Chalmers (1970), "Curie's Principle," British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 21, pp.13348.  
7  Oct 10  Reality of the Quantum State Framework for PBR defined in: 
Norton (45 min) notes 

Matthew F. Pusey, Jonathan Barrett, Terry Rudolph, “On the reality of the quantum state,” http://arxiv.org/abs/1111.3328  George Borg (45 min)  
Further reading: Maximilian Schlosshauer and Arthur Fine, “Is the Pusey–Barrett–Rudolph Theorem Compatible with Quantum Nonseparability?” http://arxiv.org/abs/1306.5805 

8  Oct 17  Discovery Exercise presentations  All  
9  Oct 24  A primer in modern cosmology. Andrew R Liddle, "An introduction to cosmological inflation" http://arxiv.org/abs/astroph/9901124 Scott Watson, "An Exposition on Inflationary Cosmology" http://arxiv.org/abs/astroph/0005003 
Norton Cosmology 001 inflation de Sitter spacetime 

The observed history of the universe  Nora Boyd (10 min)  
Background 

10  Oct 31  Observational Cosmology and Dark Matter/Energy Andreas Albrecht et al. Report of the Dark Energy Task Force. 2006. http://arxiv.org/abs/astroph/0609591 

Sections IIV. Summary and recommendations  Tyler Ahlstrom(30 min)  
Sections VIVII. Dark Energy Primer, DETF Model  Mike Miller (30 min)  
Section VIII. Staging Stage IV  George Borg (30 min)  
Sections IXX Performance Projections, Dark Energy Projects  Nora Boyd (30 min)  
11  Nov 7  Quintessence M. Barnard, A. Abrahamse, A. Albrecht B. Bozek, M. Yashar "Exploring Parameter Constraints on Quintessential Dark Energy: The AlbrechtSkordis Model" arXiv:0712.2875, Phys. Rev. D 77, 103502 (2008) M. Barnard, A. Abrahamse, A. Albrecht B. Bozek, M. Yashar "A measure of the impact of future dark energy experiments based on discriminating power among quintessence models" arXiv:0804.0413 Phys.Rev.D78:043528 (2008). 
VI  Nora Boyd 
12  Nov 14  No seminar meeting  
Nov 14  Term paper proposals due  
Friday Nov 15  Special meeting with Andreas Albrecht. 9:30am. G28CL.  
13  Nov 21  Epistemic Access to Other Worlds? The Inductive Problem
Eric Hatleback, "Cosmological Induction: A Familiar Philosophical Foe." 
Eric Hatleback  
Probability Across Worlds
Gibbons, G. W.; Hawkings, S. W. and Stewart, J. M. 1987. “A Natural Measure on the Set of All Universes.” Nuclear Physics B281: 73651. Gibbons, G. W. and Turok, Neil. 2008) “Measure Problem in Cosmology,” Physical Review, D77, pp. 063516112. Hawking, S. W. and Page, Don N. 1988 “How Probable is Inflation?” Nuclear Physics B298: 789809. 
Mike Miller  
Nov 28  Thanksgiving Recess  
14  Dec 5  Probabilities in Statistical Mechanics Roman Frigg, 'Probability in Boltzmannian Statistical Mechanics', in Gerhard Ernst and Andreas Hüttemann (eds.): Time, Chance and Reduction. Philosophical Aspects of Statistical Mechanics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010, 92118. http://www.romanfrigg.org/writings/Probability_in_Boltzmannian_SM.pdf 
Tyler Ahlstrom (30 min)  
Myrvold, Wayne C. (2012) “Probabilities in Statistical Mechanics: What are they?” http://philsciarchive.pitt.edu/9236/  Norton (briefly)  
Background Roman Frigg, ‘What is Statistical Mechanics?', forthcoming in Carlos Galles, Pablo Lorenzano, Eduardo Ortiz, and HansJörg Rheinberger (eds.): History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems Volume 4, Isle of Man: Eolss. http://www.romanfrigg.org/writings/What_is_SM.pdf 

General discussion  All  
Fri, Dec 13  Term papers due 