Abstract:

A bulge surface, on a time reflection-symmetric Cauchy slice of a holographic spacetime, is a non-minimal extremal surface that occurs between two locally minimal surfaces homologous to a given boundary region. According to the python’s lunch conjecture of Brown et al., the bulge’s area controls the complexity of bulk reconstruction, in the sense of the amount of post-selection that needs to be overcome for the reconstruction of the entanglement wedge beyond the outermost extremal surface. In this talk I will explain the geometry of bulges in a variety of classical spacetimes, where we discover a number of surprising features that distinguish them from more familiar extremal surfaces such as Ryu-Takayanagi surfaces: they spontaneously break spatial isometries, both continuous and discrete; they are sensitive to the choice of boundary infrared regulator; they can self-intersect; and they probe entanglement shadows, orbifold singularities, and compact spaces. Finally, I will comment on the interpretation of some of the geometric properties that we find, like the non-extensivity of the complexity of reconstruction, and talk about possible limitations of the pythonâ€™s lunch conjecture.