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"Hacking the Cosmos" --Photon-Based Quantum Computing

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  • derhexerus
    URL to an interesting article from The Daily Galaxy http://tinyurl.com/cbcg2uc I read that quantum computers will be available at Best Buy by Christmas 2014.
    Message 1 of 1 , May 13, 2013
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      URL to an interesting article from The Daily Galaxy
      http://tinyurl.com/cbcg2uc

      I read that quantum computers will be available at Best Buy by Christmas
      2014. Be
      the first in your neighborhood to get answers BEFORE you ask the questions!

      First few paragraphs
      "
      "_Quantum computers_ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_computer) can
      efficiently render every physically possible quantum environment, even when
      vast numbers of universes are interacting. Quantum computation is a
      qualitatively new way of harnessing nature," according to _David Deutch_
      (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Deutsch) , an Israeli-British physicist at the
      _University of Oxford_
      (http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=51.7611,-1.2534&spn=0.01,0.01&q=51.7611,-1.2534 (University%20of%20Oxford)&t=h) who pioneered the
      field of quantum computation and is a proponent of the many-worlds
      interpretation of quantum mechanics. Quantum computers, says Deutch, have the
      potential to solve problems that would take a classical computer longer than the
      age of the universe.
      In a new development, scientists from the Group of Philip Walther from the
      Faculty of Physics, University of Vienna succeeded in prototyping a new and
      highly resource efficient model of a quantum computer -- the boson
      sampling computer. Quantum computers work by manipulating quantum objects as, for
      example, individual photons, electrons or atoms and by harnessing the
      unique quantum features.
      Not only do quantum computers promise a dramatic increase in speed over
      classical computers in a variety of computational tasks; they are designed to
      complete tasks that even a supercomputer would not be able to handle. In
      recent years, there has been a rapid development in quantum technology the
      realization of a full-sized quantum computer is still very challenging.
      While it is still an exciting open question which architecture and quantum
      objects will finally lead to the outperformance of conventional supercomputers,
      current experiments show that some quantum objects are better suited than
      others for particular computational tasks.
      The huge advantage of photons -- a particular type of bosons -- lies in
      their high mobility. The research team from the University of Vienna in
      collaboration with scientist from the University of Jena (Germany) has recently
      realized a so-called boson sampling computer that utilizes precisely this
      feature of photons. They inserted photons into a complex optical network
      where they could propagate along many different paths.
      "According to the laws of quantum physics, the photons seem to take all
      possible paths at the same time. This is known as superposition. Amazingly,
      one can record the outcome of the computation rather trivially: one measures
      how many photons exit in which output of the network," explains Philip
      Walther from the Faculty of Physics.
      A classical computer relies on an exact description of the optical network
      to calculate the propagation of the photons through this circuit. For a few
      dozen photons and an optical network with merely a hundred inputs and
      outputs, even today's fastest classical supercomputer is unable to calculate
      the propagation of the photons. However, for a boson sampling computer this
      ambitious task is within reach. The researchers met the challenge and built
      their prototype based on a theoretical proposal by scientists at the
      _Massachusetts Institute of Technology_
      (http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=42.35982,-71.09211&spn=0.01,0.01&q=42.35982,-71.09211
      (Massachusetts%20Institute%20of%20Technology)&t=h) (USA).
      "It is crucial to verify the operation of a boson-sampling computer by
      comparing its outcome with the predictions of quantum physics. Ironically, this
      test can only be performed on a classical computer. Fortunately, for small
      enough systems classical computers are still able to accomplish this," as
      Max Tillmann, first author of the publication, points out. Thus, the
      researchers successfully showed that their realization of the boson-sampling
      computer works with high precision. These encouraging results may lead the way
      to the first outperformance of classical computers in the not-so-far
      future.
      Meanwhile, astrophysicist Paul Davies at _Arizona State University_
      (http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=33.4211111111,-111.931666667&spn=0.01,
      0.01&q=33.4211111111,-111.931666667 (Arizona%20State%20University)&t=h) proposes that
      information, not mathematics, is the foundation on which physical reality,
      the laws of nature, are is constructed. Meanwhile at MIT, computer scientist
      _Seth Lloyd_ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seth_Lloyd) , develops Davies
      assumption, by treating quantum events as "quantum bits," or qubits, as the
      way whereby the universe "registers itself."
      Lloyd proposes that information is a quantifiable physical value, as much
      as mass or motion -that any physical system--a river, you, the universe--is
      a quantum mechanical computer. Lloyd has calculated that "a computer made
      up of all the energy in the entire known universe (that is, within the
      visible “horizon” of forty-two billion light-years) can store about 1092 bits
      of information and can perform 10105 computations/second."
      The universe itself is a quantum computer, Lloyd says, and it has made a
      mind-boggling 10122/sec computations since the Big Bang (for that part of the
      universe within the “horizon”).'

      Chris

      (Madness takes its toll. Please have exact change)


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