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Big Toy Models: Representing Physical Systems As Chu SpacesRatings: (0)|Views: 50|Likes: 1

Published by isotelesis

We pursue a model-oriented rather than axiomatic approach to the

foundations of Quantum Mechanics, with the idea that new models

can often suggest new axioms. This approach has often been fruitful

in Logic and Theoretical Computer Science. Rather than seeking to

construct a simplified toy model, we aim for a ‘big toy model’, in which

both quantum and classical systems can be faithfully represented —

as well as, possibly, more exotic kinds of systems. To this end, we

show how Chu spaces can be used to represent physical systems of

various kinds. In particular, we show how quantum systems can be

represented as Chu spaces over the unit interval in such a way that

the Chu morphisms correspond exactly to the physically meaningful

symmetries of the systems — the unitaries and antiunitaries. In this

way we obtain a full and faithful functor from the groupoid of Hilbert

spaces and their symmetries to Chu spaces. We also consider whether

it is possible to use a finite value set rather than the unit interval;

we show that three values suffice, while the two standard possibilistic

reductions to two values both fail to preserve fullness.

foundations of Quantum Mechanics, with the idea that new models

can often suggest new axioms. This approach has often been fruitful

in Logic and Theoretical Computer Science. Rather than seeking to

construct a simplified toy model, we aim for a ‘big toy model’, in which

both quantum and classical systems can be faithfully represented —

as well as, possibly, more exotic kinds of systems. To this end, we

show how Chu spaces can be used to represent physical systems of

various kinds. In particular, we show how quantum systems can be

represented as Chu spaces over the unit interval in such a way that

the Chu morphisms correspond exactly to the physically meaningful

symmetries of the systems — the unitaries and antiunitaries. In this

way we obtain a full and faithful functor from the groupoid of Hilbert

spaces and their symmetries to Chu spaces. We also consider whether

it is possible to use a finite value set rather than the unit interval;

we show that three values suffice, while the two standard possibilistic

reductions to two values both fail to preserve fullness.

We pursue a model-oriented rather than axiomatic approach to the

foundations of Quantum Mechanics, with the idea that new models

can often suggest new axioms. This approach has often been fruitful

in Logic and Theoretical Computer Science. Rather than seeking to

construct a simplified toy model, we aim for a ‘big toy model’, in which

both quantum and classical systems can be faithfully represented —

as well as, possibly, more exotic kinds of systems. To this end, we

show how Chu spaces can be used to represent physical systems of

various kinds. In particular, we show how quantum systems can be

represented as Chu spaces over the unit interval in such a way that

the Chu morphisms correspond exactly to the physically meaningful

symmetries of the systems — the unitaries and antiunitaries. In this

way we obtain a full and faithful functor from the groupoid of Hilbert

spaces and their symmetries to Chu spaces. We also consider whether

it is possible to use a finite value set rather than the unit interval;

we show that three values suffice, while the two standard possibilistic

reductions to two values both fail to preserve fullness.

foundations of Quantum Mechanics, with the idea that new models

can often suggest new axioms. This approach has often been fruitful

in Logic and Theoretical Computer Science. Rather than seeking to

construct a simplified toy model, we aim for a ‘big toy model’, in which

both quantum and classical systems can be faithfully represented —

as well as, possibly, more exotic kinds of systems. To this end, we

show how Chu spaces can be used to represent physical systems of

various kinds. In particular, we show how quantum systems can be

represented as Chu spaces over the unit interval in such a way that

the Chu morphisms correspond exactly to the physically meaningful

symmetries of the systems — the unitaries and antiunitaries. In this

way we obtain a full and faithful functor from the groupoid of Hilbert

spaces and their symmetries to Chu spaces. We also consider whether

it is possible to use a finite value set rather than the unit interval;

we show that three values suffice, while the two standard possibilistic

reductions to two values both fail to preserve fullness.

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https://www.scribd.com/doc/27173252/Big-Toy-Models-Representing-Physical-Systems-As-Chu-Spaces

08/27/2010

text

original

Big Toy Models: Representing Physical Systems AsChu Spaces

Samson AbramskyOxford University Computing Laboratory13-10-2009

Abstract

We pursue a model-oriented rather than axiomatic approach to thefoundations of Quantum Mechanics, with the idea that new modelscan often suggest new axioms. This approach has often been fruitfulin Logic and Theoretical Computer Science. Rather than seeking toconstruct a simpliﬁed toy model, we aim for a ‘big toy model’, in whichboth quantum and classical systems can be faithfully represented —as well as, possibly, more exotic kinds of systems. To this end, weshow how Chu spaces can be used to represent physical systems of various kinds. In particular, we show how quantum systems can berepresented as Chu spaces over the unit interval in such a way thatthe Chu morphisms correspond exactly to the physically meaningfulsymmetries of the systems — the unitaries and antiunitaries. In thisway we obtain a full and faithful functor from the groupoid of Hilbertspaces and their symmetries to Chu spaces. We also consider whetherit is possible to use a ﬁnite value set rather than the unit interval;we show that three values suﬃce, while the two standard possibilisticreductions to two values both fail to preserve fullness.

1 Introduction

Models vs. Axioms

The main method pursued in the foundations of quantum mechanics has been

axiomatic

; one seeks conceptually primitiveand clearly motivated axioms, shows that quantum systems satisfy theseaxioms, and then, often, aims for a

representation theorem

showing that theaxioms essentially determine the “standard model” of Quantum Mechanics.1

Or one may admit non-standard interpretations, and seek to locate QuantumMechanics in a larger “space” of theories.There is an alternative and complementary approach, which has beenless explored in the foundations of Quantum Mechanics, although it hasproved very fruitful in mathematics, logic and theoretical computer science.Namely, one looks for conceptually natural

constructions of models

. Often anew model construction can suggest new axioms, articulated in terms of newforms of structure. There are many examples of this phenomenon, sheavesand topos theory being one case in point[19], and domain-theoretic modelsof the

λ

-calculus another [30].A successful recent example of gaining insight by model constructionis the well-known paper by Rob Spekkens on a toy model for QuantumMechanics[33], which has led to novel ideas on the connections betweenphase groups and non-locality [5].

Big Toy Models

We shall also, in a sense, be concerned with “toy mod-els” in the present paper; with building models which exhibit “quantum-like” features without necessarily exactly corresponding to the standardformalism of Quantum Mechanics. Indeed, the more diﬀerent the modelconstruction can be to the usual formalism, while still reproducing manyquantum-like features, the more interesting it will be from this perspective.However, there will be an important diﬀerence between the kind of model weshall study, and the usual idea of a “toy model”. Usually, a toy model willbe a small, simpliﬁed gadget, which gives a picture of Quantum Mechanicsin some “collapsed” form, with much detail thrown away. By contrast, weare aiming for a

big

toy model, in which

both quantum and classical systemscan be faithfully represented

— as well as, possibly, many more exotic kindsof systems.

Results

More precisely, we shall see how the simple, discrete notions of Chu spaces suﬃce to determine the appropriate notions of state equivalence,and to pick out the physically signiﬁcant symmetries on Hilbert space in avery striking fashion. This leads to a full and faithful representation of thecategory of quantum systems, with the groupoid structure of their physicalsymmetries, in the category of Chu spaces valued in the unit interval. Thearguments here make use of Wigner’s theorem and the dualities of projec-tive geometry, in the modern form developed by Faure and Fr¨olicher[11,34].
The surprising point is that unitarity/anitunitarity is essentially

forced

bythe mere requirement of being a Chu morphism. This even extends to sur-2

jectivity, which here is

derived

rather than assumed.We also consider the question of whether we can obtain a natural rep-resentation of this form in Chu spaces over a ﬁnite value set. We showthat this can be done with just three values. By contrast, the two standardpossibilistic reductions to two values both

fail to preserve fullness

.The use of Chu spaces for representing physical systems as initiated inthis paper seems quite promising; a number of further topics immediatelysuggest themselves, including mixed states, universal models, the represen-tation of convex theories, linear types, and local logics for quantum systems.The plan of the remainder of the paper is as follows. In Section 2, weshall provide a brief overview of Chu spaces. Section 3 contains the maintechnical results, leading to a full and faithful representation of quantumsystems and their symmetries as Chu spaces and morphisms of Chu spaces.Section 4 presents the results on ﬁnite value sets. Finally, Section 5 containsa discussion of conceptual and methodological issues.

2 Chu Spaces

We shall assume that the reader is familiar with a few basic notions of category theory.

The bare deﬁnitions of category and functor will suﬃcefor the most part.Chu spaces are a special case of a construction which originally appearedin [4], written by Po-Hsiang Chu as an appendix to Michael Barr’s mono-graph on

∗

∗

∗

-autonomous categories provide models for Classical Mul-tiplicative Linear Logic (and with additional assumptions, for the whole of Classical Linear Logic)[31]. The Chu construction applied to the category

Set

of sets and functions was independently introduced (under the nameof ‘games’) by Yves Lafont and Thomas Streicher[17], and subsequently(under the name of

Chu spaces

) formed the subject of a series of papers byVaughan Pratt and his collaborators, e.g. [6,25,26]. Recent papers on Chu
spaces include[8,22].
Chu spaces have several interesting aspects:

•

They have a rich type structure, and in particular form models of Linear Logic.

1

3

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