Quote Originally Posted by Dirac View Post
There is a lot of agreement that 'observation' collapses the wavefunction, but the word is not meant in the colloquial sense (at least, not anymore).

You cannot recreate the double slit experiment unless you physically interfere with a measurement device. If you don't physically interfere with the wavefunction it will not collapse. We do recognise that the measurement device interferes with the result, that is the whole point of the double slit experiment; I'm not sure how that implies a hidden variable.
You asked "why bring consciousness into it? Why could it not be the interaction of the particle with ... a measurment device) which causes the collapse?".

If such an interaction were something that could be predicted by classical physics, it would be a local hidden variable. Something we just haven't discovered yet that behaves deterministically.

It's not all that relevant how I interact with the measurement device. If I set up a camera and then later retrieve the tapes and view them on a TV, that's analogous to me looking through a lens and waiting for light that reflected off of an object to focus on my retina and form an image in my brain. The constant is that I must consciously interact with the measurement device. A measurement device is only such when we use it as such.