Foundations of Physics

, Volume 29, Issue 4, pp 631–643 | Cite as

A Foundational Principle for Quantum Mechanics

  • Anton Zeilinger


In contrast to the theories of relativity, quantum mechanics is not yet based on a generally accepted conceptual foundation. It is proposed here that the missing principle may be identified through the observation that all knowledge in physics has to be expressed in propositions and that therefore the most elementary system represents the truth value of one proposition, i.e., it carries just one bit of information. Therefore an elementary system can only give a definite result in one specific measurement. The irreducible randomness in other measurements is then a necessary consequence. For composite systems entanglement results if all possible information is exhausted in specifying joint properties of the constituents.


Quantum Mechanic Specific Measurement Composite System Elementary System Definite Result 
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© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anton Zeilinger

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