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Entropy 2018, 20(8), 619; https://doi.org/10.3390/e20080619

A Classical Interpretation of the Scrooge Distribution

Department of Physics, Williams College, Williamstown, MA 01267, USA
Received: 25 June 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 15 August 2018 / Published: 20 August 2018
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Abstract

The Scrooge distribution is a probability distribution over the set of pure states of a quantum system. Specifically, it is the distribution that, upon measurement, gives up the least information about the identity of the pure state compared with all other distributions that have the same density matrix. The Scrooge distribution has normally been regarded as a purely quantum mechanical concept with no natural classical interpretation. In this paper, we offer a classical interpretation of the Scrooge distribution viewed as a probability distribution over the probability simplex. We begin by considering a real-amplitude version of the Scrooge distribution for which we find that there is a non-trivial but natural classical interpretation. The transition to the complex-amplitude case requires a step that is not particularly natural but that may shed light on the relation between quantum mechanics and classical probability theory. View Full-Text
Keywords: subentropy; GAP measure; accessible information subentropy; GAP measure; accessible information
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Wootters, W.K. A Classical Interpretation of the Scrooge Distribution. Entropy 2018, 20, 619.

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