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III. Ecosmos: A Revolutionary Fertile, Habitable, Solar-Bioplanet Lifescape

1. Quantum Organics in the 21st Century

Tan, Ryan, et al. Towards Quantifying Complexity with Quantum Mechanics. arXiv:1404.6255. As many current papers report, a century after the quantum revolution began, via our human to humankind transition, a radical revision is underway through realizations that this subatomic domain is actually graced by the same nonlinear dynamics as everywhere else. Here researchers from China, Singapore, Australia, and the United Kingdom, including Vlatko Vedral and Jayne Thompson, open one more window, through certain terminologies, upon the vital reunion of micro quantum and macro classical nature.

While we have intuitive notions of structure and complexity, the formalization of this intuition is non-trivial. The statistical complexity is a popular candidate. It is based on the idea that the complexity of a process can be quantified by the complexity of its simplest mathematical model - the model that requires the least past information for optimal future prediction. Here we review how such models, known as ϵ-machines can be further simplified through quantum logic, and explore the resulting consequences for understanding complexity. In particular, we propose a new measure of complexity based on quantum epsilon-machines. We apply this to a simple system undergoing constant thermalization. The resulting quantum measure of complexity aligns more closely with our intuition of how complexity should behave. (Abstract)

Are there any universal laws governing the evolution of complexity? While the second law of thermodynamics indicates ever increasing entropy, complexity seems to behave differently. The hot, smooth plasma near the Universe's birth and the final state of thermal equilibrium predicted by its heat death both appeal to our intuition of simplicity. Yet between these extremes, where there are stars, galaxies and life, the universe is complex; and because of that it is interesting. To answer this question, one must first quantify complexity. (1)

Epsilon-machines are minimal, unifilar presentations of stationary stochastic processes. They were originally defined in the history machine sense, as hidden Markov models whose states are the equivalence classes of infinite pasts with the same probability distribution over futures. In analyzing synchronization, though, an alternative generator definition was given: unifilar, edge-emitting hidden Markov models with probabilistically distinct states. The key difference is that history epsilon-machines are defined by a process, whereas generator epsilon-machines define a process. We show here that these two definitions are equivalent in the finite-state case. (arXiv:1111.4500, Equivalence of History and Generator Epilson Machines)

Torlai, Giacomo, et al. Neural Network Quantum State Tomography. Mature Physics. May, 2018. We cite this paper by Perimeter Institute, D-Wave Systems, and ETH Zurich physicists as an example in the late 2010s of a novel view of “quantum” phenomena. In regard, this deep realm is presently being treated in several ways as brain-like, computational/informative, while other entries may view it in a genomic sense. A further attribute, similar to everywhere else, seems to be a tendency to settle into and exhibit critically poised states.

The experimental realization of increasingly complex synthetic quantum systems calls for the development of general theoretical methods to validate and fully exploit quantum resources. Quantum state tomography (QST) aims to reconstruct the full quantum state from simple measurements. Here we show how machine learning techniques can be used to perform QST of highly entangled states with more than a hundred qubits, to a high degree of accuracy. This approach can benefit existing and future generations of devices ranging from quantum computers to ultracold-atom quantum simulators. (Abstract excerpt)

Tran, Minh, et al. Locality and Digital Quantum Simulation of Power-Law Interactions. Physical Review X. 9/031006, 2019. This entry by an eight person team based at the University of Maryland Joint Center for Quantum Information including Alexey Gorshkov is one more instance of how quantum nature, long seen as strangely off-putting, has lately been brought into a common systems fold.

Valentini, Antony. Beyond the Quantum. Physics World. November, 2009. A British physicist now at the Perimeter Institute has been in pursuit for some years of a novel “non-equilibrium” version. As a reference is cited the famous 1927 Solvay Conference on quantum mechanics, attended by Einstein, Bohr, and every player at the time. Although certain presentations, such as by Louis De Broglie, made note of dynamical “wavefunction” or “pilot wave” aspects (in the 1950s “hidden variables” by David Bohm), the meeting tended to a “particle” bias or paradigm still in place to this day. If one might then gloss this history and paper, of its arcane terms in translation, Valentini strives to revive a once and future “relational” nature, where such holistic, “non-local,” connections are equal and complementary to discrete units alone.

Today we realize that De Broglie’s original theory contains within it a new and much wider physics, of which ordinary quantum theory is merely a special case – a radically new physics that might perhaps be within our grasp. (33) Pilot-wave theory…is then not merely an alternative formulation of quantum theory. Instead, the theory itself tells us that quantum physics is a special “equilibrium” case of a much wider “non-equilibrium” physics. (35)

Walleczek, Jan, et al, eds. Special Issue: Emergent Quantum Mechanics – David Bohm Centennial Perspectives. Entropy. 21/2, 2019. In a special issue with this title, senior physicists JW, Germany, Gerhard Grossing, Austria, Paavo Pylkkanen, Finland and Basil Hiley, UK (a lifetime collaborator with Bohm) introduce 32 papers from the Emergent Quantum Mechanics 2017 (www.emqm17.org) conference Towards Ontology of Quantum Mechanics and the Conscious Agent, held at the University of London in October. His sage insights about the fundamental nature and affinity of universe and human, cosmos and consciousness, seem to become more relevant as years pass. I have heard David (1917-1992, search) speak on several occasions in the 1970s and 1980s. Some entries are The Philosophical and Scientific Metaphysics of David Bohm by William Seager (search), What Constitutes Emergent Quantum Reality? By Arno Keppens, A Lenient Causal Arrow of Time? by Nathan Argaman, and Why Bohmian Mechanics? by Nicolas Gisin.

This Special Issue explores the possibility of an ontology for quantum mechanics. The focus is the search for a "deeper level" theory for quantum mechanics that interconnects three fields of knowledge: emergence, the quantum, and information. Contributions will be featured that present current advances in realist approaches to quantum mechanics, including new experiments, work in quantum foundations, and the physics of the quantum observer and the conscious experimenter agent. Some (edited) topics are: Quantum Contextuality, Information Measures in Quantum Theory, Quantum Observation, Nonlinear Methods, and Self-organization and Quantum Emergence.

Wei, Bo-Bo, et al. Phase Transitions in the Complex Plane of Physical Parameters. Nature Scientific Reports. 4/5202, 2014. As a good example among a growing number, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Centre for Quantum Coherence, (see quote) physicists proceed to treat subatomic phenomena as a similar thermodynamic, evolutionary system.

At low temperature, a thermodynamic system undergoes a phase transition when a physical parameter passes through a singularity point of the free energy. This corresponds to the formation of a new order. At high temperature, thermal fluctuations destroy the order. Here we show that the quantum evolution of a system, initially in thermal equilibrium and driven by a designed interaction, is equivalent to the partition function of a complex parameter. Therefore, we can access the complex singularity points of thermodynamic functions and observe phase transitions even at high temperature. We further show that such phase transitions in the complex plane are related to topological properties of the renormalization group flows of the complex parameters. (Abstract)

Quantum coherence is the origin of novel physics in quantum matters such as cold atoms/molecules, topological insulators, and superconductors, and is the basis for future technologies such as quantum communication, quantum computing, and quantum metrology. The research on quantum coherence is an exploding frontier of modern physics and calls for innovative efforts from both theorists and experimentalists. The centre has a mission to provide a platform for enhancing academic exchange and collaborations, both internally and externally. The Center aims to tackle some grand challenges in understanding and exploiting quantum coherence with a synergy of theoretical and experimental expertise from diverse backgrounds including quantum optics, atomic, molecular and optical physics, condensed matter physics, and materials science. (Center for Quantum Coherence, Chinese University of Hong Kong)

Wei, Zong-Wen, et al. Renormalization and Small-World Model of Fractal Quantum Repeater Networks. Nature Scientific Reports. 3/1222, 2013. As the title conveys, University of Science and Technology of China, and Hangzhou Normal University, physicists are able to find in this previously arcane realm the same complexity phenomena as everywhere else in classical nature.

Quantum networks provide access to exchange of quantum information. The primary task of quantum networks is to distribute entanglement between remote nodes. Although quantum repeater protocol enables long distance entanglement distribution, it has been restricted to one-dimensional linear network. Here we develop a general framework that allows application of quantum repeater protocol to arbitrary quantum repeater networks with fractal structure. Entanglement distribution across such networks is mapped to renormalization. Furthermore, we demonstrate that logarithmical times of recursive such renormalization transformations can trigger fractal to small-world transition, where a scalable quantum small-world network is achieved. Our result provides new insight into quantum repeater theory towards realistic construction of large-scale quantum networks. (Abstract)

Wetterich, Christof. Quantum Scale Symmetry. arXiv:1901.04741. In a theoretical 100 page paper a University of Heidelberg physicist describes a natural cosmic repetition which emerges in kind from this fundamental realm. An array of topics run from Classical scale invariant standard model, Particle scale symmetry, and Flow in field space to Naturalness of the Fermi scale, Crossover in quantum gravity, and Cosmon inflation (see 1303.4700). And as we log in such technical entries, within this resource website it ought to be recorded that the Grail goal of complex network systems science from the 1960s and 1980s into the late 2010s to discern, quantify and realize an exemplary recurrence everywhere has at last been achieved.

Quantum scale symmetry is the realization of scale invariance in a quantum field theory. No parameters with dimension of length or mass are present in the quantum effective action. Quantum scale symmetry is generated by fluctuations via the presence of fixed points for running couplings. We review consequences of scale symmetry for particle physics, quantum gravity and cosmology. For particle physics, scale symmetry is closely linked to the tiny ratio between the Fermi scale of weak interactions and the Planck scale for gravity. For quantum gravity, it is associated to the ultraviolet fixed point which allows for a non-perturbatively renormalizable quantum field theory. In cosmology, approximate scale symmetry explains the almost scale-invariant primordial fluctuation spectrum which is at the origin of all structures in the universe. (Abstract excerpt)

For scale invariant inflation no intrinsic mass scale plays a role during the inflationary epoch. Quantum scale invariance can be considered as an exact symmetry. If a single scalar field has a non-vanishing cosmological value, it is a Goldstone boson. Its evolution settles early to a constant value. Inflation, if realized, does not end for a scale invariant model with a single scalar field. One therefore needs at least two physical scalar degrees of freedom. An example is “scale invariant Starobinski inflation”. The constant Plank mass for Starobinski inflation is replaced by a scalar field X. (71)

Wiebe, Nathan. Using Quantum Computing to Learn Physics. arXiv:1401.4507. A Microsoft Research, Quantum Architectures and Computation Group, theorist contends that as this fundamental subatomic domain becomes more understood in terms of innate information conveyance and network phenomena, it can serve in an exemplary way for scientific instruction.

Since its inception at the beginning of the twentieth century, quantum mechanics has challenged our conceptions of how the universe ought to work; however, the equations of quantum mechanics can be too computationally difficult to solve using existing computers for even modestly large systems. Here I will show that quantum computers can sometimes be used to address such problems and that quantum computer science can assign formal complexities to learning facts about nature. Hence, computer science should not only be regarded as an applied science; it is also of central importance to the foundations of science. (Abstract)

A New Way to Approach Physics: A quantum computer is more than just a computational device: it also is a universal toolbox that can emulate any other experimental system permitted by quantum theory. Put simply, if a quantum computer were to be constructed that accepts input from external physical systems then experimental physics would become computer science. When seen in this light, computational complexity becomes vital to the foundations of physics because it gives insights into the limitations of our ability to model, and in turn understand, physical systems that are no less profound than those yielded by the laws of thermodynamics. (7)

Wolchover, Natalie. How Space and Time Could Be a Quantum Error-Correcting Code. Quanta Magazine. Online January 4, 2019. The physical science writer gathers papers, conjectures and findings by frontier theorists to report how the whole cosmos seems to be taking on a holographic essence as it arises from dynamic quantum networks. In so doing, a nascent view of a universal reality deeply distinguished by generative codings function appears in the air. Notable citations herein are Quantum Error Corrrection in AdS/CFT by Ahmed Almheiri, Xi Dong and Daniel Harlow (1411.7014), De Sitter Holography and Entanglement Entropy by Xi Dong, Eva Silverstein and Gonzalo Torroda (1804.08623), and Simulating Quantum Field Theory by John Preskill (1811.10085).

It’s important to note that AdS space is different from the space-time geometry of our “de Sitter” universe. Our universe is infused with positive vacuum energy that causes it to expand without bound, while anti-de Sitter space has negative vacuum energy, which gives it the hyperbolic geometry of one of M.C. Escher’s Circle Limit designs. Escher’s tessellated creatures become smaller and smaller moving outward from the circle’s center, eventually vanishing at the perimeter; similarly, the spatial dimension radiating away from the center of AdS space gradually shrinks and eventually disappears, establishing the universe’s outer boundary. AdS space gained popularity among quantum gravity theorists in 1997 after the renowned physicist Juan Maldacena discovered that the bendy space-time fabric in its interior is “holographically dual” to a quantum theory of particles living on the lower-dimensional, gravity-free boundary. (4)

In exploring how the duality works, as hundreds of physicists have in the past two decades, Almheiri and colleagues noticed that any point in the interior of AdS space could be constructed from slightly more than half of the boundary — just as in an optimal quantum error-correcting code. (5)

Anti-de Sitter Space In mathematics and physics, n-dimensional anti-de Sitter space (AdS) is a maximally symmetric Lorentzian manifold with constant negative scalar curvature. Anti-de Sitter space and de Sitter space are named after Willem de Sitter (1872–1934), professor of astronomy at Leiden University and director of the Leiden Observatory. Willem de Sitter and Albert Einstein worked together closely in Leiden in the 1920s on the spacetime structure of the universe. (Wikipedia)

Yang, Jianhao. A Relational Formulation of Quantum Mechanics. Nature Scientific Reports. 8/13305, 2018. We have shown that quantum mechanics can be constructed by shifting the starting point from the independent properties of a quantum system to the relational properties among quantum systems. (14) We cite this highly mathematical contribution by a Qualcomm, San Diego physicist as a good exposition of the same archetypal complements of (me) elemental aspects and (We) interconnective dynamics, which are similarly being found to distinguish each and every other manifest natural and social/cultural realm.

Non-relativistic quantum mechanics is reformulated here based on the idea that relational properties among quantum systems, instead of the independent properties of a quantum system, are the most fundamental elements to construct quantum mechanics. This idea, combining with the emphasis that measurement of a quantum system is a bidirectional interaction process, leads to a new framework to calculate the probability of an outcome when measuring a quantum system. In this framework, the most basic variable is the relational probability amplitude. The properties of quantum systems, such as superposition and entanglement, are manifested through the rules of counting the alternatives. Schrödinger Equation is obtained when there is no entanglement in the relational probability amplitude matrix. (Abstract excerpts)

Zhang, Zeodong and Jin Wang. Landscape, Kinetics, Paths and Statistics of Curl Flux, Coherence, Entanglement and Energy Transfer in Non-Equilibrium Quantum Systems. New Journal of Physics. 17/043053, 2015. SUNY Stony Brook chemists delve into material depths to report the presence of similar dynamic and geometric phenomena as elsewhere throughout nature and society. See also papers Landscape and Flux Theory of Non-equilibrium Dynamical Systems with Application to Biology in Advances in Physics (64/1, 2015) and The Universal Statistical Distributions of the Affinity, Equilibrium Constants, Kinetics and Specificity in Biomolecular Recognition in PLoS Computational Biology by Wang and colleagues.

We develop a population and flux landscape theory for general non-equilibrium quantum systems. We illustrate our theory by modelling the quantum transport of donor-acceptor energy transfer. We find two driving forces for the non-equilibrium quantum dynamics. The symmetric part of the driving force corresponds to the population landscape contribution which mainly governs the equilibrium part of dynamics while the anti-symmetric part of the driving force generates the non-equilibrium curl quantum flux which leads to the detailed-balance-breaking and time-irreversibility. Finally it is surprising that the non-equilibriumness quantified by voltage has a non-trivial contribution on strengthening the entanglement, which is attributed to the non-local feature of the quantum curl flux. (Abstract excerpts)

The non-equilibrium system is everywhere around us, ranging from plants, animals to our Earth, Sun and galaxies. The non-equilibrium quantum processes are important in physics, chemistry, biology, even sociology and economics . On the large and small scales, there are abundant examples for non-equilibriumness in action: baryon genesis in early universe, transport and phase transition of quark-gluon-plasma, the black hole evaporation, transport in stars etc. (1)

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