Quantum Letdown: First Commercial Quantum Computer Debuts, Severely Disappoints

Illustration for article titled Quantum Letdown: First Commercial Quantum Computer Debuts, Severely Disappoints

The quantum computer that many—us included—doubted would ever materialize showed up yesterday. However, I think it's fair to say that we're a little disappointed with what actually materialized. Sure, the hack thing to do is to praise its ability to solve Sudoku puzzles, but to me there's quite a difference between changing the way the world computes and solving a silly puzzle.

Advertisement

Another knock against D-Wave, the Canadian company that developed the computer, is that its computer is too small and underpowered to really do anything that quantum computers are supposed to do. And it looks like the cryptography community will have to continue to rely on current methods of cracking codes because D-Wave's baby can't be used to crack any encrypted communication. Overall, a disappointing launch, but not one that couldn't have been predicted.

First "Commercial" Quantum Computer Solves Sudoku Puzzles [Scientific American]

DISCUSSION

I've retyped this comment a number of times before submitting it, because I'm not sure how to say this. But I'm sick of trying, so here goes:

The blurb on the gizmodo article just goes to show how ignorant the general public is on Quantum tech. This thing is incredible. Sure, it's underpowered. So is just a single or two or four transistors. The incredible thing is that this thing has been built at all! They have solved for a small set of qubits the decoherence problem. THIS IS HUGE.

Scoffing at this is like scoffing at the introduction of the transistor. Yeah, it can't solve huge problems (yet), but that ain't the point of this thing. The haters here are ignorant of QM and the implications of this, because this tech scales, and when it does scale it can do what QC purports to do.

And whilst IANAP, I will be soon. So maybe it takes three semesters of QM to appreciate what this thing does.