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Journal Articles Ethics and Information Technology Year : 2017

Narratives of quantum theory in the age of quantum technologies


Quantum technologies can be presented to the public with or without introducing a strange trait of quantum theory responsible for their non-classical efficiency. Traditionally the message was centered on the superposition principle, while entanglement and properties such as contextuality have been gaining ground recently. A less theoretical approach is focused on simple protocols that enable technological applications. It results in a pragmatic narrative built with the help of the resource paradigm and principle-based reconstructions. I discuss the advantages and weaknesses of these methods. To illustrate the importance of new metaphors beyond the Schr\"odinger cat, I briefly describe a non-mathematical narrative about entanglement that conveys an idea of some of its unusual properties. If quantum technologists are to succeed in building trust in their work, they ought to provoke an aesthetic perception in the public commensurable with the mathematical beauty of quantum theory experienced by the physicist. The power of the narrative method lies in its capacity to do so.
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cea-01550560 , version 1 (10-03-2021)



Alexei Grinbaum. Narratives of quantum theory in the age of quantum technologies. Ethics and Information Technology, 2017, 19, pp.295-306. ⟨10.1007/s10676-017-9424-6⟩. ⟨cea-01550560⟩
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