Friday, February 16, 2007

Quantum computing kicks into life

Brian S. emailed me to with the news that "the world's first commercial quantum computer has been demonstrated." Quantum computers use the quantum nature of matter to exponentially expand the computing power presently possible in a machine, even with today's super-computers. News here, at the Daily Tech site.
The demonstration of the technology was held at the Computer History Museum [in Mountain View, California], but the actual hardware remained in Burnaby, British Columbia where it was being chilled down to 5 millikelvin, or minus 273.145 degrees Celsius (colder than interstellar space), with liquid helium.
If true, this is massive news. This "breakthrough in quantum technology represents a substantial step forward in solving commercial and scientific problems which, until now, were considered intractable," says the CEO of the company whose computer this is.

LINKS: World's first quantum computer demonstrated - Daily Tech

RELATED:
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5 Comments:

Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

Brian,

Did David Deutsch get involve in this project? If not, then why not?

2/16/2007 11:59:00 am  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

If such machines could be made available to climate scientist modelers of today, then perhaps the difficult task of modeling highly non-linear multi-couple feedback climate systems would be less difficult. I think, however that warmist scientists wouldn't be that enthusiastic about using such superfast machines as it would solve difficult modeling problems in a short time period thus revealing the inaccuracy , inefficiency & incompleteness of the current climate models which could reveal that we're not warming at all, just natural variability.

2/16/2007 12:07:00 pm  
Blogger Brian S said...

FF,

All modern digital computers have their origin in Alan Turing's famous 1936 paper:

"On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem"

Similarly, all quantum computers have their origin in David Deutsch's famous 1985 paper:

"Quantum theory, the church-turing principle and the universal quantum computer"

Both papers are classics of 20th century science. In neither paper will you find any practical details for building a computer. Yet without the information in these papers, digital and quantum computers would be impossible.

Now I know you are just trying to wind me up, but it is silly not to give Deutsch his due. This in no way minimizes the contribution of those brilliant researchers whose job it is to actually construct a working quantum computer.

Anyway, Deutsch is interviewed here about the developments at D-wave systems. As the piece says:

"while he [Deutsch] wasn't in attendance at the D-Wave announcement, perhaps it's safe to say as well that he was."

Oh, D-wave's founder, Geordie Rose (superb name!), has a blog. Some interesting stuff there.

2/17/2007 10:16:00 am  
Anonymous hemi said...

I think, however that warmist scientists wouldn't be that enthusiastic about using such superfast machines as it would solve difficult modeling problems in a short time period thus revealing the inaccuracy , inefficiency & incompleteness of the current climate models which could reveal that we're not warming at all, just natural variability.

what a load of crap. Any scientist would jump at the chance to have more number-crunching ability at their finger-tips.

2/19/2007 01:21:00 pm  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

Hemi said...
Any scientist would jump at the chance to have more number-crunching ability at their finger-tips.

Yes, sure, they would jump at the chance to adopt such fast machines as for simulations in areas that are perhaps don't polarize the global citizens such as Cosmology, Bio-molecular Dynamics, Quantum Mechanics, Fluid Dynamics, Computational Econonics.

This is why one of the reason that the 4th IPCC (2007) is downgrading some of the alarms raised in the 3rd IPCC (2001), because of simulation using faster computer since then. With increase in machine memory power over recent years, thus allow faster convergence of numerical linear algebra solution to the simulation, which revealed the over-hyped in the projections of 3rd IPCC (2001) models. Now scientists who revised some of the climate models from 3rd IPCC (2001), know that one of the reasons for wrong projections was because of using machines (even if they're super-computer) which were inefficient implementation of its floating point architecture.

Of course , climate scientists who don't hold a pre-determined view of global warming would love to use such super-fast machines, however some alarmists might want to avoid it as it might show the inefficiencies of their earlier models.

2/19/2007 03:00:00 pm  

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