Thursday, November 10, 2011

Nonlocal Correlations without Alignment or Calibration

Nonlocal correlations are one of the spookiest things about quantum mechanics. Einstein didn't much care for quantum mechanics, he tried to show that quantum mechanics was inconsistent with his special theory of relativity with the EPR paradox. While thought provoking, the EPR paradox did not end up being viewed as a fatal flaw for quantum mechanics.
Experimental schemes for actually testing quantum nonlocality have required quite a bit of alignment and calibration of different parts of the experiment which might make a skeptic wonder if such experiments really are an ironclad test of nonlocality. The preprint Guaranteed violation of a Bell inequality without aligned reference frames or calibrated devices is a clever test of quantum nonlocality which doesn't require a lot of the alignment and calibration steps used in other approaches.

Einstein and controversy in Weimar Germany

Einstein's theory of general relativity was astonishingly controversial around 1920, even at the level of the general public. Einstein was caught up in the politics and anti-semitism rampant in Germany at the time. See the preprint Reactionaries and Einstein's Fame: "German Scientists for the Preservation of Pure Science," Relativity, and the Bad Nauheim Meeting
Cut with a kitchen knife, Dada through the last Weimar beer belly culture of Germany, 1919/1920 - Hannah Höch