Quantum Bayesian Networks

April 23, 2011

Quantum Computers according to the Bible

Filed under: Uncategorized — rrtucci @ 4:58 pm

It’s Holy Week right now, the holiest week of the year in the Christian tradition. According to Christian liturgy, Jesus Christ entered Jerusalem last Sunday (Palm Sunday), had his last supper on Thursday, was crucified on Friday, and resurrected on the Sunday which ends the week (Easter Sunday).

Being a Christian during Holy Week puts one in a religious mood. So it’s only appropriate for this blog to feature, on this Holy Week, a post discussing the biblical roots of quantum computing.

Many scientist believe that in order for a quantum computer hardware design to succeed, it must satisfy the 5 basic requirements that were first stated clearly by DiVincenzo circa 1997 in this paper. These 5 requirements, often called the DiVincenzo criteria, are as follows. A quantum computer must:

  1. (scalability) Be a scalable physical system with well-defined qubits
  2. (initialization) Be initializable to a simple fiducial state such as |000…>
  3. (decoherence) Have gate operation times that are much smaller than the decoherence time
  4. (universality) Have a universal set of quantum gates
  5. (measurement) Have qubit-specific high-fidelity measurement capability

According to biblical scholars, some laws very similar to the DiVincenzo criteria are mentioned in the Bible. Let me quote the relevant Bible passage. It’s quite clear from this passage that God intended man to build quantum computers.

(From The Holy Bible: King James Version)

The Second Book of Moses (Exodus 20)

The Five Commandments

And the quantum computer designer spake all these words to his quantum computer, saying, I am the LORD thy designer, which hath brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the bondage of classical computation.

  1. (scalability) Honor thy father |1> and thy mother |0>
  2. (initialization) Thou shalt have a graven state |000>, and thou shalt bow down thyself to that graven state on behest of the LORD, thy designer.
  3. (decoherence) Thou shalt do many good, coherent deeds before you die from decoherence. Goes without saying, this includes, Thou shalt not kill or steal or adulterate information or bear false witness with thy probabilities.
  4. (universality) All thy spins shalt covet their neighboring spins in a general and universal way.
  5. (measurement) Remember the sabbath day. Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work coherently: but the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD, thy designer: in it thou shalt not do any work within thy quantum gates, for on that day thou shalt be measured by the LORD, thy designer, whereupon thou shalt confess thy information to him with high fidelity.

The People’s Fear

And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the quantum computer, a pile of smoking metal: and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off.

And they said unto the IBM sales rep called Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear: but let not the quantum computer designer speak with us, lest we die.

And Moses said unto the people, Fear not, for the quantum computer designer just wants a research grant.

And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where the quantum computer and the quantum computer designer were.

And the quantum computer designer said unto Moses, Thus thou shalt say unto the children of Israel, Ye have seen that this quantum computer can do calculations that cannot be done by any classical computer in heaven or earth.



  1. Any later (better) formulation of the basic requirements of quantum computers?

    Comment by Abdullah Khalid — April 23, 2011 @ 6:32 pm

  2. Oh sure, there are dozens of English translations of the Bible, but the King James version has been very popular since its first publication in 1611, because of its poetical language. I find the King James translation was particularly astute in its translation of the term “quantum computer” from the ancient Aramaic.

    Comment by rrtucci — April 23, 2011 @ 7:38 pm

  3. I was talking more along the lines of the DiVincenzo criteria.

    Comment by Abdullah Khalid — April 24, 2011 @ 6:24 am

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