Posted: Mar 13, 2011 12:19 pm
by hackenslash
Paul Almond wrote:Regarding parsimony - there's a whole discussion to be had there, in my view, about what parsimony should be taken to mean and what we should demand of a theory.

Indeed. For me, parsimony is useful up to a point, but a very important point. When we have two models that explain precisely the same thing, the more parsimonious should take precedence over the less, up until the point where the less parsimonious model explains something that the other does not. This is what Einstein was talking about when he said 'Things should be as simple as possible, but no simpler' (although parsimony as simplicity is a mis-statement). The thing is, Everett's model doesn't explan anything that, say, the path integral formulation doesn't, so it should be discarded until something crops up that it, uniquely, can explain.

I think it is worth pointing out, however, that whether Everett's model (the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics or the relative state formulation) is true or not isn't going to make any difference here. The many-worlds theory does not allow you to jump between universes to make money - or whatever is this man is selling. We could have conclusive proof, tomorrow, that Everett was right and many-worlds is true - and this get-rich-quick scheme would still be fraud.