Lately I have been reading some of the recent literature on Quantum Information Theory.
I thought I might just catch up with references and then write out a few of my old scribblings from the bottom drawer.
You have to remember, it is twenty-six years since I first started work in this field and fully eighteen years since I last published anything on it of any substance.
With that introduction, there has clearly been a lot to catch up on.
Well, I have been diligently catching up…
My conclusion thus far: Boy, is this subject confused!
People in Quantum Information Theory do not seem to know if they are Arthur or Martha.
The lesson of Quantum Mechanics to the modern scribbler has been received and perfectly misunderstood. Go forth and multiply!
Take every well-founded subject known to man and turn it into pure mush.
There are interminable papers that claim to have re-invented pretty much everything.
We have, let’s count ’em:
Quantum Inference (guilty as charged)
Quantum Information Theory
Quantum Control Theory
and the list just keeps getting longer by the day.
It seems that the lesson of Quantum mechanics to physicists has been this:
Everybody else who ever thought about anything is wrong – let’s go raid their larder, eat their food and then present them with our “new improved” version of their subject.
I have some serious difficulty with this notion.
On reading the level of confusion expressed by physicists about their own subject I doubt they are competent to write about anything much at all.
Furthermore, it seems probable to me that the condition of “fixing up other subjects” merely betrays a psychological projection of pure animal fear. I think the physics community have a scent: something is wrong with our subject.
Indeed, there is something wrong with physics. It has abandoned the scientific method.
The late (and great) Edwin T. Jaynes put it very well.
Physics suffers from the Mind Projection Fallacy.
The way out of this mess is to start by cleaning up Quantum Information Theory.
This is a soufflé subject in need of singular encounter with reality.
There is a mess out there, believe me.
Time to take out the trash.