out with the gravitons


Can someone explain this new attempt to explain gravity to me? Here are some edited excerpts from the article:

Gravitational attraction could be the result of the way information about material objects is organized in space.

Consider the concept of fluidity in water. Individual molecules have no fluidity, but collectively they do. Similarly, the force of gravity is not something ingrained in matter itself. It is an extra physical effect, emerging from the interplay of mass, time, and space.

This explanation uses the holographic principle to consider what is happening to a small mass at a certain distance from a bigger mass, say a star or a planet. Moving the small mass a little means changing the information content, or entropy, of a hypothetical holographic surface between both masses. This change of information is linked to a change in the energy of the system.

Then, using statistics to consider all possible movements of the small mass and the energy changes involved, we find movements toward the bigger mass are thermodynamically more likely than others. This effect can be seen as a net force pulling both masses together. Physicists call this an entropic force, as it originates in the most likely changes in information content.

This is one of those items that my poor brain tries to make sense of, but can’t really pull it off. Maybe it’s not possible to do justice to this without a deep mathematical background, but I would love to comprehend this, if only in a very general way. This could be an incredible step forward in our understanding of the universe (if it really pans out), but I may be on the sidelines, wondering what the heck physicists are talking about.


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