Alice in Quantumland

Topics: Quantum mechanics, Electron, Photon Pages: 3 (1009 words) Published: May 20, 2013
Alice in Quantumland
1. Electrons have no distinguishing features except spin
Upon falling into the quantum wonderland while in her living room, Alice finds herself faced with a new reality of existence that seems to baffle her. She is first met with some strange-looking dweller of the new and vastly strange wonderland that she could not make out. She politely introduces herself as Alice, thereby invoking a response from her companion to the effect that it was an electron. Alice also noted that nearby was another similar looking figure to the electron, to which the new acquaintance explained was a different electron. To Alice, the two electrons looked strikingly alike, down to the umbrella they seemed to have been carrying. Her new friend explains to her that the other electron is actually different; that is, it has a different spin. In essence, the two electrons have absolutely no distinguishing features except for their direction of spin. In the real world, however, things are quite the opposite. Two people, even identical twins, always seem to have distinguishing character traits, which are readily observable. This latter truth, however, is only implemented to the larger macro-world of classical mechanics, which was espoused by Sir Isaac Newton. 2. Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle

Alice’s escapade continues to get more and more bizarre as she notices that her electron companions seemed to always be moving too fast. She in fact asks them to try and slow down a bit so that she can make out how they look like more clearly. As soon as one of her electron friends attempts to reduce his speed, he begins to expand and spread out, filling the entire space around him. This makes it even harder for Alice to discern how he really looks like. He then tells her that this is part of the standing rule; that they cannot slow down lest they get too cramped together into the entire space available. This concept is especially abstruse. It is...
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