Brain hurt: do black holes suggest that spacetime (and gravity) is emergent?
I haven't thought about this stuff for ages, but it is great to do so.
Pressure is emergent, in that it is something we can measure (e.g. of a gas in a box) but is created from (is emergent from) the individual motions of gazillions of atoms.
The argument is something like this: we know that spacetime breaks down (the concept of spacetime breaks down?) at the singularity of a black hole, but black holes exist. Therefore we should reclassify spacetime (and gravity) as an emergent property, rather than an intrinsic part of the fabric of the universe.
This allows us to reconcile the incompatibility between quantum field theory and relativity by jettisoning part of relativity.
Two years ago several of my Sci Am colleagues and I had an intense email exchange over a period of weeks, trying to figure out what …