The Uncertainty Principle at work

Science and life’s realities today

April 21, 2019 12:06 am | Updated 12:06 am IST

Taking decisions for the future man standing with many direction arrow choices, left, right or move forward

Taking decisions for the future man standing with many direction arrow choices, left, right or move forward

In Quantum Mechanics, the uncertainty principle developed by W. Heisenberg states that it is impossible to specify precisely and simultaneously the values of both members of particular pairs of physical variables that describe the behaviour of an atomic system, the variables happen to be position and momentum. It implies that in atomic domain, one cannot predict the future of the particles, while in the classical world, by applying the Newton’s law one can anticipate the probable future of an object.

Well, it may sound a bit puerile that despite belonging to the science community I am trying to establish an impalpable association between the atomic world and the classical world, where the same laws don’t hold water. Classical mechanics is the branch of physics that satisfies our common sense, while Quantum Mechanics deals with the obscurity observed at the atomic level, challenging the comprehension level of the human mind.

I see a typical Indian graduate confined in the same circumstances as an elementary particle. The future of an Indian graduate seems to be completely unpredictable, uncertain and gloomy. A person grows and develops throughout his formative years, enjoys college days and finally becomes a graduate. After graduation, an endless list of hopes, desires and aspirations lies before him. Graduates confront a moral burden, sometimes even an unnecessary schadenfreude , from society. Some look forward to cracking examinations such as those of the Union Public Service Commission and the Short Service Commission, some opt for further studies and a few even end up taking a PhD degree. This is a spontaneous cycle, where nobody seems to be breaking the rules. But in the end, the overarching thing that outstrips the inevitability of everything is a job that can sustain you and your family.

I often wonder about my childhood, when I was promised the moon by an astrologer who predicted my probable future. As I have grown up now and completed my graduation, a desperate need for a job has started tormenting me. My education is associated with the doctrines developed by Newton, Einstein, Schrodinger, Maxwell and many other intellectuals who transformed the world beyond recognition. I studied science, but see no reason to continue with the stream, and I too run for a job.


The impregnable desire of a graduate to achieve something in his life is thwarted by the feckless policies of the government. The schemes and announcements designed by the government are often highlighted with proper rhetorical ingredients and skilfully glorified by the leaders. With the shambolic implementation, government policies, with a goal to empower and equip people with skills and transform them into an epitaph of dexterity, seem to be a tremendous fiasco. Some schemes like Startup India, which were aimed at promoting and incentivising the innovative calibre of youth failed devastatingly. The repercussions of the deceitful promises could create a Stygian world for the downcast aspirant, where there would be no shred of sanguinity.

I was in Class 12 in 2014, when the Modi wave was gyrating across the nation. Its amplitude was boasting the exponential increment in the dividends that it could bring. Whenever I heard of Mr. Modi, he was broadcast as an epitome of a utopian world. The manifesto proposed by the BJP in 2014 was considered a doctrine of development.

It is 2019 now, and the promises have started to evaporate and the condensate has taken a new shape.

I anticipate an apocalypse. The 21st century is endowed with insurmountable technologies, with artificial intelligence and biotechnology leading the herd. With AI dominating the macrocosm of technology, the probability of getting a job for humans would decline exponentially. The inefficacies of the government coupled with the impeccable capabilities of technology make the equations unbalanced.

The graduate, like the electrons, revolve around the nucleus with uncertain predictability, languishing in the same manner. Whatever happens, he would remain a nebbish.

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