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In this article, we will examine new fundamental aspects of "emergence" and "information" using novel approaches to quantum mechanics which originated from the group around Aharonov. The two-state vector formalism provides a complete description of pre- and post-selected quantum systems and has uncovered a host of new quantum phenomena which were previously hidden. The most important feature is that any weak coupling to a pre- and post-selected system is effectively a coupling to a "weak value" which is given by a simple expression depending on the two-state vector. In particular, weak values, are the outcomes of so called "weak measurements" which have recently become a very powerful tool for ultra-sensitive measurements. Using weak values, we will show how to separate a particle from its properties, not unlike the Cheshire cat story: "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in all my life!" Next, we address the question whether the physics on different scales "emerges" from quantum mechanics or whether the laws of physics at those scales are fundamental. We show that the classical limit of quantum mechanics is a far more complicated issue; it is in fact dramatically more involved and it requires a complete revision of all our intuitions. The revised intuitions can then serve as a guide to finding novel quantum effects. Next we show that novel experimental aspects of contextuality can be demonstrated with weak measurements and these suggest new restrictions on hidden variable approaches. Next we emphasize that the most important implication of the Aharonov-Bohm effect is the existence of non-local interactions which do not violate causality. Finally, we review some generalizations of quantum mechanics and their implications for "emergence" and "information." First, we review an alternative approach to quantum evolution in which each moment of time is viewed as a new "universe" and time evolution is given by correlations between different moments. Next, we present a new solution to the measurement problem involving future boundary conditions placed on the universe as a whole. Finally, we introduce another fundamental approach to quantum evolution which allows for tremendous richness in the types of allowable Hamiltonians.


This article was originally published under license in Journal of Physics: Conference Series, volume 504, issue 1, in 2014. Article is available online at DOI: 10.1088/1742-6596/504/1/012029

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