A cat, along with a flask containing a poison and a radioactive source, is placed in a sealed box. If an internal Geiger counter detects radiation, the flask is shattered, releasing the poison that kills the cat.
Doesn't have to be a cat, could be a city, an elephant, a rather fine vanity production quarto. Could be you or me, could be the tree that falls in the forest.
In all of these cases - until the box is opened, we do not know if the cat is dead. So therefore, if the box remains closed, the cat remains alive in potentia, but also potentially dead.
This, we are told by people with lots of letters after their names, is a paradox which says an awful lot about quantum mechanics and laughably its practical application, like it surpasses the photo-electric effect and so on.
Schrödinger, we are told, was making a pretty snazzy point about all this.
From someone who has adopted his name, I can tell you this is a load of cobblers. What our friend Schrödinger, erstwhile Austrian national hero, was telling us, is that most things don't matter. And that quantum mechanics is bull anyway, as Einstein tells us, we are rooted in reality
Originally Posted by A. Einstein
The cat is independent of the act of observation- but is well documented that people behave differently when they are knowingly observed, just as the behaviour of light in a double-slit experiment changes from wave to particle behaviour.
In my stories, the people do not, generally, know that they are being observed, but it is interesting to wonder how they would behave if they knew they were being written and read about. How would you change your life?
What I do aim to do, is maintain the assumption of reality. Every word is real.