Very nicely written article. I have something to add, though. I know the issue with respect to free will, is a thorny one, but I believe I have a simpler explanation.
DELAYED CHOICE DOUBLE SLIT EXPERIMENT
When you shine light, as a wave front, onto a barrier with two closely approximated slits, the light projected through those slits will hit the back wall (behind those slits) to create a pattern that is striped. The striped pattern is called an interference pattern because it has several stripes (more than two) of alternating light and dark bands that coincide with the wave nature of the light, causing constructive versus destructive interference. This can be illustrated and explained on a piece of paper using simple geometry. Easy peazy.
When you send a single photon, not a wave front, through those slits one at a time (let’s say one every second) and you do this for a long time… and record the light hitting the back wall… you will still get the same interference pattern. So, at this point, you will agree that the interference pattern has nothing to do with the wave front geometry that initially explained the pattern. Somehow the photons are interfering with themselves one at a time. At this point you should start thinking that something isn’t quite right.
When you send a single photon, again not a wave front, through those slits one at a time, but now decide to place a sensor to detect which of the slits the photon has passed through… you no longer get an interference pattern. Instead, you get two stripes. One stripe for the left slit, and one stripe for the right strip. So, observation or measurement, has unexpectedly changed the result.
Background info: when you take a photon and split it in half, such that there are two new photons, those two photons will be entangled. Entangled particles exhibit the behaviour that if you measure one of the particle’s properties, its entangled partner will have the opposite quality. For instance, if you measure one photon and determine that it has vertical polarization, then its partner will have a horizontal polarization.
Now, when you take a photon and split it in half and allow one of the halves to go through a double slit at a close distance, and allow its partner to go through a double slit at a much longer distance away, something very strange happens. When you place a sensor at the very long distance double slit to detect which slit the photon went through, it will show you the expected absence of interference pattern… with only two stripes of light… one left and one right. When you don’t do measurements with the slit sensor the pattern goes back to the expected interference pattern… with many bands of light. Good so far? The photon that travels to the short distance double slit will have already collided with the wall, before its twin reaches the long distance double slit. So, if you measure the long distance photon, by slit detector, even though the event for the short distance photon is already over… the short distance photon will behave according to the decision made to observe-or-not-observe made in its future. Furthermore, if you create a random decision maker to observe-or-not-observe after the short photon’s event is over but before the long photon’s event, you will still get the same result. In other words, it seems that a decision made in the future alters the past.
ANY CARD ANY NUMBER
There is a card trick performed by a magician from England named, David Berglas. The card trick is impossible, and yet is not faked.
The magician places a deck of cards on a table, on stage in front of an audience, and does not touch the cards again. He then stands at the opposite end of the stage, well away from the cards.
He next asks an audience member to come onto the stage, to face the audience, and to think of a card and to tell the audience verbally what card he has chosen. Let’s say the person choses, “Queen of Hearts.” He then asks that person to point to another audience member at random.
He then asks that second audience member to pick a number between 1 and 52, and to say it out loud. They say, for example, “31.”
He then gets the first audience member, the one still on stage, to go over to the deck of cards and to start flipping the cards over one-at-a-time… while counting out loud. “One, two, three, four…”
When he gets to “31” it will be the “Queen of Hearts.”
So, why have I told you about the DELAYED CHOICE DOUBLE SLIT EXPERIMENT and the ANY CARD ANY NUMBER card trick?
Because both phenomena are the same. They are pre-recorded.