The Python's Lunch: geometric obstructions to decoding Hawking radiation



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Recording Details

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PIRSA Number: 
20050061

Abstract

Harlow and Hayden [arXiv:1301.4504] argued that distilling information out of Hawking radiation is computationally hard despite the fact that the quantum state of the black hole and its radiation is relatively un-complex. I will trace this computational difficulty to a geometric obstruction in the Einstein-Rosen bridge connecting the black hole and its radiation. Inspired by tensor network models, I will present a conjecture that relates the computational hardness of distilling information to geometric features of the wormhole - specifically to the exponential of the difference in generalized entropies between the two non-minimal quantum extremal surfaces that constitute the obstruction. Due to its shape, this obstruction was dubbed "Python's Lunch", in analogy to the reptile's postprandial bulge.