The problem with the holographic universe is that it is topological, i.e., it only tells you that the universe has x number of surfaces with y area. It doesn’t tell you their shape or configuration with respect to one another. The holographic universe represents all of the information about the real universe, but the actual position and momentum of the massive particles in it would need to be filtered into place by an unknown process.
Which comes first? It isn’t possible to say whether the information came from the particles or the particles came from the information. Is the hologram representative of, or foundational for, the mass? One can’t exist without the other, and while you can imagine a topological universe of pure information, how it evolves is entirely dependent upon the actual configuration of its massive particles.
It from bit makes sense in quantum information theory, but it is just as valid to say bit from it. Bit takes primacy because we need to make calculations. Either way, e=mc2 isn’t quite complete because information could be substituted for either e or m. You could say that information is in the equal sign, but it isn’t clear how that would work. Energy is equivalent to mass but not freely convertible into mass. Photons will only create massive particles near an existing massive nucleus, and they will only create particle/antiparticle pairs that will annihilate each other if left alone. Information is directly linked to mass by the specific quantity of resonators corresponding to the mass of the body, where each resonator contains a single quantum of information, which increases with the frequency of the resonance. Information is then coupled to the energy of the body by the number of resonators and their frequency through the Planck formula. The problem is that if e=ic2, then we still don’t know what mass is, only that it is directly related to energy.
Information may take the form of force, radiation, or space, but in each case the operative condition may be the boundary between matter and space. Matter is central to force, secondary to radiation and absent from space, but the relationship between space and matter forms the basis for the notion of information. A quantum of spacetime bounded by matter is another form of information, which seems to be the lesson of Hawking’s black hole entropy, where the information absorbed by the black hole is translated into an increase in the area of the event horizon. There is some concern that this area is two dimensional rather than three dimensional, but bearing in mind that the information is binary, and the volume of the black hole itself is zero, it is not surprising that the information would be proportional to an area rather than a volume. E=ic2 has the secondary benefit of slotting cleanly into the configuration energy of a system whose mass is small but whose volume, or the area of spacetime bounding the mass, is large. If you think of spacetime as localised on the area of its boundary with matter, both the energy of space and the area of Hawking entropy become intuitive. Unfortunately, we still have no idea what matter is or why it exists.
It seems that gravity is also related to the boundary between matter and space so that relativistic and holographic gravity are complementary in Bohr’s terms, coming at the phenomenon from opposite perspectives. The holographic universe is a perfect representative of the informational entropy or informationscape of the universe (the quantum of communication across the universe), but it probably isn’t helpful for the physical entropy of ordinary matter.
If we can take it for granted that space is not internally local, then there is a holographic representation of all of the information in the universe at the outer “boundary”. But that hologram will only tell you the number of particles, the number of their bonds and the energy in their resonance. What it will not tell you is the actual configuration of the particles. It would be like having a two dimensional projection of every particle in your body. All of the information would be there, but you couldn’t do anything with it. Your configuration matters in the same way that protein configuration matters far more than the number and type of atoms that go into each molecule. Spider silk proteins are useless unless they are configured by running through the spider spinnerets. Similarly, the information about the matter that falls into a black hole is projected onto its boundary area, but the configuration of that matter is lost. This is, however, one of the ways in which mass is equivalent to information. But the most interesting thing about the holographic principle is the atavistic reversion to the primacy of information over matter that was already projected in Plato’s myth of the cave and evident as far back as the book of Genesis. It seems that one of the habits of the intelligent mind is a profound desire to escape the confines of physical configuration, the entropy of matter, and establish an existence in pure information, isolated in a bath of pure thoughts.
In the end, the failure to predict climate change was a tremendous failure for theoretical physics. If you look back to the work of Clausius, Gibbs, Boltzmann, Planck, Bohr and Heisenberg, the information and the theory are all there. Climate change was never considered by theoretical physics, and its first rigorous investigator was, ironically, a steam engineer named C.S. Callendar. Physics turned a blind eye to the entropy of configuration, and fully committed itself to the energy of information in transmission. This may have been a financially driven result rather than a decision, but many years of study have been lost in the mirage of holographic information. Meanwhile, the actual earth is burning.