Theoretical Physics

17 April 2012
Time: 15:00 to 16:00
Location: E C Stoner SR 8.62

Pablo Arrighi (Grenoble, France)

The physical Church-Turing thesis and the principles of quantum theory

Notoriously, quantum computation shatters complexity theory, but is innocuous to computability theory. Yet several works have shown how quantum theory as it stands could breach the physical Church-Turing thesis. We draw a clear line as to when this is the case, in a way that is inspired by Gandy. Gandy formulates postulates about physics, such as homogeneity of space and time, bounded density and velocity of information --- and proves that the physical Church-Turing thesis is a consequence of these postulates. We provide a quantum version of the theorem. Thus this approach exhibits a formal non-trivial interplay between theoretical physics symmetries and computability assumptions.



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