As I said before I am missing the acknowledgement that a negative has already been processed. Digital photography doesn't produce a negative. The positive print can be made directly using a computer and printer. A negative is not the purpose of photography it is a means to get a positive image. THAT is the end result. I can print a digital image on photographic paper and develop it in chemicals to get an image. Is that a real photo then? If not why not?
I don't think the used technology defines what "real"photography is. I mean that in the same way that a train run by electricity is still a train. Just like a locomotive is. Or a mag lev train is. The last one doesn't have an engine on board that is located in the track.
The fact that you call it digital is just to distinguish between the two different techniques used to get to the some end result. A photograph.
The analogy with the atom bomb is not correct. If I see an image on the computer screen that would be the same is your virtual explosion. If I print that same image that would be like the real explosion.