- Working Paper
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
In order to better understand a complex theory like quantum mechanics, it is sometimes useful to take a step back and create alternative theories, with more intuitive foundations, and examine which features of quantum mechanics can be reproduced by such a foil theory. A prominent example is Spekkens' toy theory, which is based off a simple premise: "What if we took a common classical theory and added the uncertainty principle as a postulate?" In other words, the theory imposes an epistemic restriction on our knowledge about a physical system: only half of the variables can ever be known to an observer. Like good science fiction, from this simple principle a rich behaviour emerges, most notoriously when we compose several systems. The toy theory emulates some aspects of quantum non-locality, although crucially it is still a non-contextual model. In this pedagogical review we consolidate different approaches to Spekkens' toy theory, including the stabilizer formalism and the generalization to arbitrary dimensions, completing them with new results where necessary. In particular, we introduce a general characterization of measurements, superpositions and entanglement in the toy theory. Show more
Journal / seriesarXiv
Pages / Article No.
Organisational unit03781 - Renner, Renato / Renner, Renato
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