Quantum Bayesian Networks

November 20, 2009

Quantum Computer Programmers Get Some Respect from NIST

Filed under: Uncategorized — rrtucci @ 4:28 pm

I thought I was ugly, but then I realized I could have been born with this man's face. Some people get no respect, even after they're dead.

One of the best quantum computers currently in existence is the one built by the Colorado-NIST Ion Storage Group, headed by David Wineland. Multiple Beryllium ions are trapped in an ion trap at very low temperature and pressure. Then the quantum states of the ions are manipulated with laser beams. This QC design is very intricate and difficult to build and operate successfully. Hopefully, someday we will discover simpler QC designs. But, for now, this one is fine because, despite its complexity, it works! It is teaching us many valuable lessons that will probably be applicable to future designs. And, best of all for aspiring quantum computer programmers like me, the device with 2 qubits has been made to run 160 different (mind numbingly simple) quantum computer programs.

What the public is saying:

  • Bery Cool
  • No way! You mean you actually move ions around physically from chamber to chamber…Rube Goldberg would be proud of you.
  • It’s ugly as hell, but it works, dammit
  • What do you mean “programmable”? You mean you load proofs of complexity theorems into it?
  • MIT quantum computer = { }
  • Caltech quantum computer = { }
  • Perimeter Institute quantum computer = { }

More References:

  • NIST press releases, here
  • Jack Woehr’s prize winning report of his NIST visit, here
  • arxiv publications with Wineland as coauthor, here
  • home page of NIST Ion Storage Group, here

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