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On the application of quantum mechanics to mortality tables

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  18 August 2016

R. D Anderson
Affiliation:
Assistant Actuary of the Commercial Union Assurance Co., Ltd.

Extract

If you have had your attention directed to the novelties in thought in your own lifetime, you will have observed that almost all really new ideas have a certain aspect of foolishness when they are first produced. Prof. A. N. Whitehead, Science and the Modern World.

1. Quantum Mechanics is a portentous name; the alternative—Wave Mechanics—is almost as bad. The mathematics are formidable, the literature large and growing rapidly, and the subjectmatter dealt with is the behaviour of physical things, such as electrons, protons, atoms, and so on. Why, then, should actuaries as such take any interest in the subject?

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Institute and Faculty of Actuaries 1943

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References

page 228 note * Elementary Quantum Mechanics, R. W. Gurney, M.A., Ph.D.

page 229 note * Nothing to do with the ‘normal’ curve of error.

page 230 note * Relativity Theory of Protons and Electrons, p. 115.

page 230 note † Cf. The relation between probability and statistics, Dr W. F. Sheppard, T.F.A. Vol. xII, p. 38.

page 231 note * Cf. Space, Time, Matter, Hermann Weyl, p. 23.

page 236 note * Cf. the fact that the index in the normal curve of error is −x 2/c 2 implying the assumption that positive and negative errors are equally likely.

page 236 note † ‘No deduction of a really geometrical kind can be legitimately based on statements of which any particular conception of distance forms a part; such statements are equivalent only to statements in regard to the behaviour of particular measuring instruments, which must rest on physical hypotheses’ (H.F. Baker, Principles of Geometry, Vol. 11, p. 186)

page 242 note * Relativity Theory of Protons and Electrons, Eddington, p. 96.

page 244 note * Quantum Mechanics, P.A.M. Dirac, p. 6.

page 244 note † The Philosophy of Physical Science, Eddington, p. 26.

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