Thursday, November 19, 2020

What kind of revolution will the advent of quantum computing lead to?

Quantum physics has changed our lives. Because of the invention of lasers and transistors-both are products of quantum theory-almost every electronic device we use today is a real-world example of quantum physics. As we tried to use more quantum world power amount of the occasion, we may now be on the verge of a second quantum revolution. Quantum computing and quantum communications can affect many industries, including healthcare, energy, finance, security, and entertainment. Recent research predicts that the quantum industry will reach billions of dollars by 2030. However, we need to overcome major practical challenges to achieve this large-scale impact.

Quantum and tradition

Although quantum theory has a history of more than a century, the current quantum revolution is based on the recent realization that uncertainty—the basic property of quantum particles—can be a powerful resource. At the level of individual quantum particles, such as electrons or photons (particles of light), it is impossible to know exactly every attribute of the particle at any given moment. For example, the Global Positioning System (GPS) in your car can tell you your location, speed and direction at the same time, and it is accurate enough to get you to your destination. However, quantum GPS cannot accurately display all the properties of an electron at the same time, not because of design flaws, but because the laws of quantum physics do not allow it. In the quantum world, we must use probabilistic language, not deterministic language. In a computing environment based on bits such as 0 and 1, this means that qubits may be 1 or 0 at the same time.

This imprecision is disturbing at first. In our daily traditional computers, 0 and 1 are related to the closing and closing of switches and electronic circuits. From a computational point of view, it doesn't make much sense to not know whether they are closed or closed. In fact, this can lead to calculation errors. However, the revolutionary idea behind quantum information processing is that quantum uncertainty-the fuzzy superposition between 0 and 1-is not actually a loophole, but a characteristic. It provides new means for more powerful communication and data processing methods.

Current quantum communication and quantum computing

Probabilistic quantum theory mass made as a result of quantum information can not be precisely replicated. From a security perspective, this is a game changer. Hackers who attempt to copy the quantum key used to encrypt and transmit information will be frustrated, even if they have access to a quantum computer or possess other powerful resources. This basically unbreakable encryption is based on the laws of physics, not the complex mathematical algorithms used today. Plus math secret techniques can be very powerful enough computer to crack, but crack quantum cryptography will need to violate the laws of physics.

Just as quantum encryption is fundamentally different from current encryption methods based on mathematical complexity, quantum computers are fundamentally different from current traditional computers. The difference between the two is like a car and a carriage. Compared with horse-drawn carriages, cars are based on the use of different laws of physics. It allows you to reach your destination faster and allows you to go to a new destination that you could not reach in the past. Compared with traditional computers, quantum computers can be said to be the same. Quantum computers use the laws of probability of quantum physics to process data and perform calculations in a new way. It can complete certain computing tasks faster, and can perform new tasks that were impossible in the past, such as quantum teleportation, that is: the information encoded in quantum particles will disappear somewhere, and then it will Recreate precisely (but not instantaneously) in another remote place. Although this sounds like a science fiction story, this new form of data transmission is likely to become an important part of the future quantum Internet.

A particularly important application of quantum computers may be the simulation and analysis of molecules in drug development and material design. Quantum computers are particularly suitable for this task because they operate on the same laws of quantum physics as the molecules they simulate. Using quantum devices to simulate quantum chemistry may be more efficient than using today's fastest traditional supercomputers.

Quantum computers are also perfect for solving complex optimization tasks and for performing fast searches on unorganized data. This can be significant for many applications, from the collation of climate, health or financial data, to the optimization of supply chain logistics, labor management or traffic flow.

Prepare for the quantum future

The quantum race has already begun. Governments and private investors around the world have invested billions of dollars in quantum research and development. The onboard quantum key distribution encryption technology has been demonstrated, laying the foundation for the establishment of a potential global communication network based on quantum security. IBM, Google, Microsoft, Amazon and other companies are investing heavily in the development of large-scale quantum computing hardware and software. No one has achieved the goal yet. Although small quantum computers are now in operation, one of the main obstacles to expanding this technology is dealing with errors. Compared with binary bits, qubits are incredibly fragile. Even the slightest interference from the outside world is enough to destroy quantum information. This is why most of the current machines need to be carefully protected in an isolated environment, and their operating temperature must be much lower than the temperature of outer space. Although a theoretical framework for quantum error correction has been developed, putting it into practice in an energy-saving and resource-saving manner has brought major engineering challenges.

Considering the status quo in this field, it is unclear when or if the full capabilities of quantum computing will be realized. Even so, business leaders should consider developing strategies to deal with problems in three main areas:

Develop a quantum security plan. The current data encryption protocol is not only fragile for future quantum computers, but also fragile for more powerful traditional computers. New encryption standards (whether traditional or quantum) are inevitable. The transition to a quantum security architecture and supporting infrastructure for data security requires planning, resources, and quantum expertise. Even though quantum computers may be 10 years away from us, it will be too late to wait until then to adapt. The time to start this process is now.

Identify use cases. No one has foreseen that traditional computers will affect every aspect of our lives in countless ways. Predicting quantum applications is also challenging. This is why in order to fully tap the potential of quantum computing, business leaders and experts in different industries such as health, finance or energy must establish contacts with quantum researchers and hardware/software engineers. This will promote the development of quantum solutions for specific industries, which are tailored based on existing quantum technologies or quantum computing that can be widely promoted in the future. Interdisciplinary expertise and training are essential to the establishment and development of quantum application stores.

Give full consideration to responsible design. Who will develop and use quantum technology, and how will users interact with it? The impact of artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain has shown that it is necessary to consider the social, ethical and environmental impact of new technologies. Now is the early stage of the quantum industry, which provides us with a rare opportunity to implant inclusive practices from the beginning to develop a responsible and sustainable roadmap for quantum computing.

The rapid development of quantum technology in the past five years is exciting. However, the future is still unpredictable. Fortunately, quantum theory tells us that unpredictability is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, two qubits can be locked together in some way, so that, individually, they are still uncertain, but when combined, they are completely synchronized-both qubits are either 0 or both 1. . This combined certainty combined with the unpredictability of its own—a phenomenon known as quantum entanglement—is a powerful stimulus for many quantum computing algorithms. Perhaps this also provides a reference for how to establish a quantum industry. By planning responsibly, while also accepting future uncertainties, companies can increase their chances of preparing for the quantum future.

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