Tell me what you think of this thought experiment:
How significant are our decisions? Are they meaningless, as in they are determined, and we are just objects set in motion with no control of our destiny. Or are the decisions we make ours and we are therefore in control of our own destiny? One such area in physics which might set light on this is quantum mechanics, and in particular the double slit experiment. The double slit experiment is an experiment, in which either electrons or photons are fired towards a two slit assembly, resulting in an interference pattern emerging. This experiment has been performed on all sorts of objects, such as molecules, atoms, and even carbon bucky balls. However the experiment has never been performed on living organisms. Imagine a scenario in which we take a small airborne bacteria, or even a non airborne bacteria and place it in a double slit experiment situation. This experiment would differ considerably in that the experiment is probing whether the decision of the microbe was quantum mechanical or not. The experiment works by placing microbes in a box with a two slit assembly one at a time on one side of the box, while on the other side of the two slit assembly there is a detector screen with food in order to attract the microbes over. Rather than being fired across the microbes will make the decision to travel towards the food on the detector screen. They will not be set in motion. It has been proven that single cellular organisms are capable of making basic decisions. One of these decisions is the ability to travel towards food molecules and they can in fact sense molecule gradients as small as one molecular per micron in a background of just 1000 molecules per cell volume. The first possible outcome of this experiment is that an interference pattern of these microbes forms, which suggests that our actual decisions are quantum mechanical, which is derived from the fact that the bacteria made the decision to travel through either one of the slits to a particular piece of food. This therefore means that if an interference pattern forms the decision of the microbe to travel to the detector screen was as a result of random wave function collapse and therefore effectively the bacteria under those circumstances were not making those decisions because the end result was just an emergence of the property of random wave function collapse. One could therefore draw the philosophical conclusion that our actions are therefore insignificant. However there is a second outcome, which is that no interference pattern forms, which tells us that our decisions are not quantum mechanical because the microbes, would in this scenario be able to evade random wave function collapse. In addition this experiment could shed light on the role of the observer in quantum mechanics, as to whether consciousness plays a role in wave function collapse. This might be implied if an interference pattern isn't formed because the microbe was able to observe itself and the wave function therefore collapsed. Although this experiment is not complete at this stage it is about the principle, and there are many questions left to solve such as how such a small interference pattern. The De Broglie( length of a bacteria traveling at 80km/h with a mass of 2e-17kg is 1.49e-9nm, and therefore does not have a large wavelength so the interference will be negligible. Another point which needs development is an exact experimental technique to carry this out, which is currently being worked on.