Andrew Chi-Chih Yao was born in Shanghai 65 years ago. He did his undergraduate studies at the National Taiwan University. He got a PhD in physics from Harvard Univ. in 1972. Then he got a second PhD in computer science from the Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1975.
He is the recipient of many prestigious computer science awards, including the Polya, Knuth and Turing awards. He has taught at many famous American Universities (MIT, Stanford, Berkeley, Princeton). He now works at Tsinghua Univ in Beijing.
Recently, Yao has become a serious advocate for quantum computing in China.
In Jan 2011, he inaugurated the Center for Quantum Information (CQI) (cookie?) at Tsinghua University. CQI is currently very busy recruiting a quantum computing dream team. They seem to have a bottomless money purse, courtesy of the Chinese government.
In the past year, Yao has given at many venues a talk entitled
Quantum Computing: A Great Science in the Making.
Here is a video of the talk when he gave it at Brown Univ.. Very instructive and revealing. Well worth viewing if you are a QC aficionado.
Yao’s history clearly shows that he is a very ambitious and competitive person. Like any ambitious coach, he will want his QC team to win big.
footnote: Yao’s middle name is chichi. According to Webster,
chi·chi adj. affectedly trendy
Let us hope this is not a cosmic joke about quantum computing
My previous blog posts about quantum computing in China
- China’s Muppet Communiqué
- What to do if you are a country that feels “left out” of the Facebook IPO
- China and India, Quantum Computing’s Two Slumbering Giants (Ed.2)
- China Needs Quantum Computers to do BioInformatics