… the universe is the sum total of all that is in existence. Physically, a (physical) observer outside of the universe would require the breaking of gauge invariance, and a concomitant alteration in the mathematical structure of the theory. Similarly, RQM conceptually forbids the possibility of an external observer. Since the assignment of a quantum state requires at least two “objects” (system and observer), which must both be physical systems, there is no meaning in speaking of the “state” of the entire universe.

This is because this state would have to be ascribed to a correlation between the universe and some other physical observer, but this observer in turn would have to form part of the universe, and as was discussed above, it is impossible for an object to give a complete specification of itself. Following the idea of relational networks above, an RQM-oriented cosmology would have to account for the universe as a set of partial systems providing descriptions of one another. The exact nature of such a construction remains an open question.

— Wikipedia on *Relational quantum mechanics*

2012.03.27 Tuesday ACHK