Sunday, April 23, 2017

Politics and a bit on the symmetry properties of the commutator and the Jordan products


This week I am thorn between a physics and politics. On one hand I have the scheduled physics topics to talk about, and on the other hand there are very juicy political topics. So let me start with some political commentary which I will attempt to keep at the minimum.

If you do not live in US, it is hard to understand the amount of political pressure on science which comes from the right. GOP is at war with science because of three factors:  the political elites are corrupt and depend on lobby money from corporations who make more money when they wreck the environment, the religious right is at war with evolution, and lastly the inbred rednecks swallow hook, line, and sinker the toxic sludge of propaganda of Fox News in the name of "freedom". 

So it was a breath of fresh air the recent march for science in which people sick and tired of the GOP war on science took a stand for the facts that 2+2 is still 4, humans cause global warming, and Earth is older than 5000 years. And then I opened my email and I see an alert about a new post by Lubos Motl defending Bill O'Reilly. I normally delete those notifications and I don't really know how I am subscribed to them because I only get about one a week - it is strangely inconsistent. So I said to myself: how fitting. The (naked) emperor of physics who wanted once to reclassify an archive paper to the general physics section after it was published in PRL, the climate change denier and the open apologist of the murderer Putin, con-man Trump, and white trash Sarah Palin throws his support behind the another toxic sorry propagandist like himself. Would have been too much to expect him to defend science instead? Out of curiosity I followed the link to see the pro O'Reilly rant, and I was not disappointed: it was choke full of imbecilic nonsense as I expected. But then I saw the icing on the cake: I see in the history list that Lubos did write a rant against the march for science too calling it misguided and unethical. Wow! Now in France (like in US or UK) there is no shortage of stupidity which just propelled Marine LePen into the final for presidency. The global village idiots will flock to her side and I have no doubt Lubos will support her too.

OK, the political topics took too much and I want to continue with the series topic on quantum mechanics reconstruction. Let me just say what the products \(\alpha\) and \(\sigma\) will turn out to be. In the classical mechanics case it can be constructively proven that \(\alpha\) is the Poisson bracket while in the quantum case, \(\alpha\) is the commutator. The other product \(\sigma\) is the regular function multiplication in classical mechanics and the Jordan product (the anti-commutator) in quantum mechanics. 

Now the Poisson bracket and the commutators are anti-symmetric: \(f\alpha g = - g\alpha f\), and the regular function multiplication and the Jordan product are symmetric products: \(f\sigma g = g\sigma f\). The symmetry properties are preserved under system composition as we can see from the fundamental relationships:

\(\Delta (\alpha) = \alpha \otimes \sigma + \sigma \otimes \alpha \)
\(\Delta (\sigma) = \sigma \otimes \sigma - \alpha \otimes \alpha\)

because S*S = S, S*A = A, A*A = S

Incidentally, this observation opens up another way into quantum mechanics reconstruction (from the operational point of view) but I will not talk about it in this series. Instead next time I will show how to prove the fact that the product \(\alpha\) is anti-symmetric. Again Leibniz identity will come to the rescue. Then using the fundamental relationship we must have that the product \(\sigma\) is symmetric.  Eventually all their mathematical properties will be obtained. Please stay tuned. 

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