The next generation, quantum computers


In April 2016, Justin Trudeau, the Canadian Prime Minister who was in office for less than a year, explained in 35 seconds on a public occasion what a quantum computer was. The film was widely posted and discussed on the Internet; the economy was added in March of the following year. Scholars magazine takes the theme of “Quantum Leap” and introduces the prospects of quantum technology, allowing quantum computers to reach the public view.

Satya Nadella, chief executive of Microsoft, has also listed artificial intelligence (AI), mixed reality (MR), and quantum computers as three pioneering technologies that reshape the world of the future. Google, IBM Recently, Intel, Microsoft, and many researchers have also targeted the creation of commercially available quantum computers. Although this computing technology that subverts previous thinking is still only the starting point, you and I should start to understand quantum computers from now on. This technology will play a key role in the future.

The concept of quantum computers came from the idea that physicist Richard Feynman used quantum systems in computations in 1982, but in those years it was only limited to theoretical derivation, but it was also an important key to flipping modern computer science. In a nutshell, the computing speed of a quantum computer can surpass current life, the traditional computer you and I use, and solve problems in your life faster.

General computers (including desktops, laptops, tablets, and smart phones) all use the “bit” calculation unit of the binary system, which means a dichotomy of 0 and 1 and only 0 or 1 at a time. One state is the “yes / no” form; quantum computers use the “qubit,” which is a “superposition” feature that can show both 0 and 1 at the same time, producing 00, 01, The superposition state of 10, 11 is the “yes / no / both” form.

The Wall Street Journal once compared that if the traditional bit is a stationary coin, it can only appear positively or negatively at a time. The qubit is like a spinning coin. Both sides can appear at the same time; or you can imagine the traditional computer as A single instrument, a quantum computer, is like a symphony orchestra composed of many instruments and can play different passages at the same time.

The reason why quantum computers are called “the next generation of computing tools” is that they can find answers in a multi-pronged, simultaneous testing of various possibilities. Through quantum computers, it can help humans to complete general computer tasks in a short time. Problems that can be solved for decades. The reason why we can have such a fast calculation speed depends on the superposition of quantum and the quantum entanglement.

Quantum superposition means that each unit can be 0 or 1, and 0 and 1 are superimposed on each other to form four combinations of 00, 01, 10, and 11; quantum entanglement means that the qubits can be grouped and aggregated, and all kinds of possibilities can be computed simultaneously. Because of this, the computing power can be greatly improved.

The technology of quantum computers has truly existed, but there are still many difficulties that need to be overcome in order to be practically used in commercial applications. At present, the stability of quantum computers is not enough, and they are vulnerable to external environmental interferences such as heat and electromagnetic radiation. Therefore, processors must be stored. In an environment of absolute zero temperature (minus 273 degrees Celsius), humans and quantum computers can work together. So far, the establishment of such environmental conditions still requires quite difficult technologies, and it has also led to a limitation in the development speed of quantum computers.

In addition, in order to achieve the commercialization goal, the processor must achieve the standard of 50 quantum bits (qubit) and double qubit error rate of less than 0.5% to meet the definition of “quantum supremacy”, Google in March this year. The introduction of the 72 qubit processor “Bristlecone” has reached the standard, but the current error rate is still a key issue.

Finally, quantum computers must really play a role, and the simultaneous development of quantum software is also critical. Due to the high computational complexity, developers must possess a certain degree of physics, mathematics, and software engineering knowledge. However, due to the initial development of quantum computer hardware, Inconsistent specifications, so most of the software must be customized.

Quantum computers are expected to move from the laboratory to commercial use within 10 years. This will bring tremendous shocks to human life. In the future world, whoever masters quantum computer technology will have the advantage of hegemony and will therefore be a major technology company. The governments of all countries are actively fighting against each other, just as Craig Mundie, the former chief strategy officer of Microsoft, said: “This is the first time in 70 years that we have built a completely different computing system. It is not an upgrade or Improvement is a new thing with a completely different nature.”


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