A superposition is the sum of multiple eigenstates, where an eigenstates are what you'd normally think of as definite and mutually exclusive states of affairs. Superpositions are fundamental to quantum mechanics as well as epistemic states in the form of multiple coexisting hypotheses.
When systems in superposition are observed, they collapse into a lone eigenstate from the perspective of the observer, because eigenstates are by definition possible observation outcomes. However, the system may (and in fact must due to the uncertainty principle) still be in superposition in a different measurement eigenbasis.
Eigenstates in superposition can have different relative amplitudes. In quantum mechanics, these amplitudes contribute to the probability of the system being measured in respective eigenstates. In epistemic superpositions, amplitudes may be interpreted as degrees of belief in respective hypotheses, and when an epistemic state is used as a generative frame for evidential simulation, amplitudes serve a similar function in the determination of probabilities as in quantum superpositions.
quotes about superposition
Books store text in static single-histories, but when the text is read, a dynamic virtual reality is induced in the reader’s imagination. The structure which corresponds to the meaning of a narrative as experienced by a reader is not a linear-time record of events but an implicit, counterfactual past/present/future plexus surrounding each point in the text given by the reader’s dynamic and interpretive imagination.
At each moment in a narrative, there is uncertainty about how dynamics will play out (will the hero think of a way out of their dilemma?) as well as uncertainty about the hidden state of the present (is the mysterious mentor good or evil?). Each world in the superposition not only exerts an independent effect on the reader’s imagination but interacts with counterfactuals (the hero is aware of the uncertainty of their mentor’s moral alignment, and this influences their actions).
A writer may have a predetermined interpretation and future in mind or may write as a means of exploring the interpretative and/or dynamic multiverse of a narrative (almost certainly both, and almost certainly it varies depending on the stage of writing). Regardless, as the shaper of the meaning and dynamics of the narrative a writer must be aware of the multiplicity which defines the readers' and characters' subjective experiences. The writer thus seeks to simulate and manipulate that multiplicity to the end of crafting a trajectory which will reanimate the most compelling sequence of multiverses when unraveled in the mind of a reader