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Homepage of Ilja Schmelzer

I'm an independent scientist. The independence allows me to develop theories and approaches which are nor fashionable, nor supported by the actual mainstream. But, on the other hand, I care a lot of the viability of my theories. As a consequence, the alternatives I propose are compatible with the known empirical evidence, and I have published them in peer-reviewed mainstream journals.

Foundations of Physics

is my main scientific interest. The consideration of the problem of quantization of gravity has lead me to the conclusion that an ether theory of gravity can be easily quantized - last but not least, we know how to quantize classical condensed matter theories. Therefore I started to study the possibility of an ether interpretation of general relativity, or of some viable modification of it. The result have been the following

Ether theories compatible with all of modern physics

General Lorentz Ether Theory

The General Lorentz Ether Theory which I propose is an ether theory of gravity very close to General Relativity. The Einstein Equivalence Principle holds exactly, and it gives, in some natural limit, the Einstein equations of GR. This leads also to an ether interpretation of the GR equations. It has been published in a peer-reviewed mainstream journal:

Schmelzer, I. (2012). A Generalization of the Lorentz Ether to Gravity with General-Relativistic Limit. Advances in Applied Clifford Algebras 22(1), 203-242, resp. arxiv:gr-qc/0205035.

While the gravitational field describes density, velocity and the stress tensor of the ether, other properties of the ether are described by matter fields.

Cell Lattice Model for particle physics

The Cell Lattice Model describes a simple model for such an ether which appears sufficient to explain the Standard Model of particle physics. It gives all the fermions of the SM, allows to compute the gauge group of the SM from first principles, and contains, beyond this, some additional scalar fields. Some of them provide nice cold dark matter candidates, while other may be, hopefully, appropriate to describe the Higgs fields. It has been published in a peer-reviewed mainstream journal:

Schmelzer, I. (2009). A Condensed Matter Interpretation of SM Fermions and Gauge Fields, Found. Phys. 39(1) 73-107, resp. arxiv:0908.0591.

Realistic interpretations of quantum theory

The interpretation of quantum theory is a domain of physics full of various problems, like the measurement problem, as well as the problem what follows from the violation of Bell's inequalities.

Defending realism in the light of Bell's theorem

As can be illustrated considering a simple game, Bell's theorem is an extremely strong argument in favor of some hidden causal influences distributing faster than light.

Based on proofs of the Bell inequality, to save Einstein causality one has to reject realism in a quite weak form (the EPR criterion of reality). Moreover, causality itself has to be weakened - one has to reject Reichenbach's principle of common cause. I have found an even stronger result - one has to reject even logic: The logic of plausible reasoning, also known as the objective Bayesian interpretation of probability, is already sufficient to prove Bell's inequality.

The Interpretation of Quantum Theory

A main argument in favor of rejecting such fundamental principles is that, given the strangeness of quantum theory, they have to be rejected anyway. The main counterargument is, in this case, the existence of viable realistic interpretations of quantum theory, in particular the de Broglie-Bohm interpretation and Nelsonian stochastics. Among them, I favor Caticha's entropic dynamics, which describes reality by a configuration space trajectory \(q(t)\in Q\), while the wave function \(\psi(q,t)\) describes only our incomplete knowledge of the system. I also propose a minimal realist interpretation, which avoids all, even minor, steps beyond Schrödinger's wave mechanics.

It is worth to note that such realistic "hidden variable" interpretations of quantum theory are closely connected with ether interpretations of relativistic gravity, because both require a (more or less hidden) preferred frame. For the discussion of all such "hidden variable" proposals for the foundations of physics, as well as of other similar approaches to modern physics, I have started a forum, the

Hidden Variables Forum

The forum is open for many alternative proposals for modern physics, but they should be compatible with modern physics, so, the proponents should be at least familiar with the established theories, in particular with GR, the SM of particle physics and the SM of cosmology.

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Comments on various aspects of relativity

I have something to comment about also beyond my own theories. In particular, I criticize the usual way how inflation is presented in popular (and not only popular) descriptions. I also reject Hawking radiation, because the derivations have a serious problem called "trans-Planckian problem".

I have also written a text about the "twin paradox".

Libertarian Political Theory

is the other domain of interest for me. My approach is quite comparable to the one I use in ether theory: While I'm open to alternative ideas - in this case, an anarchistic society - I care a lot about reasonable counterarguments, thus, reject proposals which are unrealistic simply because they appear unable to solve simple well-known problems.

The reputation-based society

The first thesis is that a society where enforcement of contracts is based on a working reputational system is superior to one where it is based on a system of police and courts provided by the state. This seems to be in agreement with observation and historical record: Whenever a reputational system works, it is preferred by the participants.

The second thesis is that the main problem of reputational systems - that they work only for a small number of participants - can be easily solved with modern information technology. The necessary structure is a globally accessible black list, which contains records about contract violations of a special type, containing 1.) the contract signed by the contract breaker, especially the acceptance of an arbiter by the contract breaker, 2.) the decision by the accepted arbiter that the contract breaker has broken the contract, and not accepted the arbitrage decision.

Given that such a global reputational system is possible, and will be preferable for contract enforcement for its participants, we predict that the creation of this new type of reputation-based society, which will be based on freedom of contract, and, therefore, basically libertarian, is unavoidable, it cannot be prevented.

The interesting question is how it will coexist with the existing states. We predict that in such a reputation-base society many functions of actually existing states appear unnecessary as well as unenforcable, and, therefore, will disappear. Even if some functions may survive, the resulting society will appear much more libertarian than the actual one. The transformation toward the reputation-based society will be evolutionary, and, therefore, quite unproblematic.

Foundations of Libertarian Ethics

We argue in favor of a Stirnerian, individualist justification of ethics. The basic ethical principle, then, appears to be the Golden Rule. It is remarkable that, with the Golden Rule as the basic ethical principle, we have to reject the state.

about the climate hysteria