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A "Photon Machine Gun" For Quantum Computers

kdawson posted about 5 years ago | from the entangle-this dept.

Hardware 143

An anonymous reader writes "Generating entangled photons in a reliable way is impossible right now, stalling the development of the optical quantum computers that would use entangled photons as quantum bits (qubits). Because entangled photons can only be produced at random — which takes time — the most powerful optical quantum computing device use only 6 qubits. UK and Israeli quantum physicists have designed a blueprint for a 'quantum machine gun' that fires out barrages of entangled photons on demand. They think within a few years this device will be built, and could lead to quantum computing using 20 to 30 qubits. Every additional qubit doubles the computing power, so these quantum computers could outperform any existing classical computer, the researchers say. The quantum machine gun is described as 'one of the most exciting theoretical proposals I've read in five years' by a leading quantum physicist." The research was published in Physical Review Letters earlier this month.

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For certain problems. (4, Interesting)

JorDan Clock (664877) | about 5 years ago | (#29562547)

Every additional qubit doubles the computing power, so these quantum computers could outperform any existing classical computer, the researchers say.

But only for probabilistic algorithms. It's not going to be faster at everything.

Re:For certain problems. (5, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29562681)

But only for probabilistic algorithms. It's not going to be faster at everything.

So Whpt if we occjsion?lly fl#p a fwe bits.
   

Re:For certain problems. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562697)

imagine a giant penis gracing your lips, going down the hatch, and deep inside your throat. that's about how much i liked your lame joke.

Re:For certain problems. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562753)

If you are gay, then I'll take it as a complement.

Re:For certain problems. (1)

DanAndDusty (790100) | about 5 years ago | (#29563721)

Lol.. Shame you were marked as troll.. I thought that was a nice comeback.. Offtopic as is this.. but a good comeback

Re:For certain problems. (1)

Canazza (1428553) | about 5 years ago | (#29562913)

It'll be like a Quantum Rambo. You'll take out a hell of a lot of Scenery with your spray

no peeking (4, Funny)

RuBLed (995686) | about 5 years ago | (#29562713)

It's not going to be faster at everything.

It's going to be faster at everything.

Re:no peeking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562785)

Oh yeah? Well is it... like... going to be faster at... like... not being a quantum computer? Didn't think so.

Re:no peeking (1)

Mr.Whitney (1645557) | about 5 years ago | (#29562977)

yea theyre not going to be able to do anything that a classical computer cant but they will be way more efficient and faster, a lot of military funding going into research they will obviously help a lot with decoding

Re:no peeking (1)

moon3 (1530265) | about 5 years ago | (#29563401)

Entanglement switches are rated 10000x speed of light (physics experiment performed in Geneva, Switzerland -- this is from Wikipedia) and upper limit is not even estimated.

Re:no peeking (2, Interesting)

plastbox (1577037) | about 5 years ago | (#29564061)

One (*err* more) thing I don't get.. How do they know quantum entanglement even happens? They entangle a pair of particles. Then they measure the state of one, causing the other to collapse into the same state with no regard to distance between the two.

However, as it is impossible to measure the quantum properties of these particles without collapsing them into a non-super state, how do we know that the entanglement wasn't just the two particles gaining the same properties at the moment of entanglement? Obviously, this would result in them having the same properties once measured.

How do we know that this super state exists, when it is impossible to measure? If a piece of equipment paints two balls a random color and puts them in separate boxes aren't the balls, by the same definition, in a super state as we can't know their color until we open the box? And can they be said to be entangled, as once you open the first box and observe that the ball inside is for example red, the other ball will also be red even though it has yet to be "measured"?

This might be a bit of a Captain Obvious statement, but I don't freaggin get it! =(

Re:no peeking (3, Informative)

Artifakt (700173) | about 5 years ago | (#29564455)

First, let's look at a fair attempt to explain why quantum indeterminacy is not just the same thing as classical indeterminacy (like your two particles, which by your question were presumably determinate in the classical model, at least until they became entangled). You seem to be reasoning much as the following note claims early quantum physicists tried to, when they first grappled with Heisenberg's uncertainty principle and the question of knowing the position and velocity of an electron simultaneously. I give you someone deliberately trying to put the concept in normal, natural language and not use any actual math:

http://www.uhh.hawaii.edu/~ronald/310/Quanta.htm [hawaii.edu]

One point is, the interpretation that we can't know both position and velocity at the same instant, therefore the electron doesn't have both at the same instant, doesn't explain that thing you refer to as "with no regard to distance". This is what sometimes gets called "Spooky action" and is related to non-locality in general. Starting from the interpretation that it's not our not knowing that causes the indeterminacy but the indeterminacy which causes our not knowing turns out to be putting the horse back in front of the cart. Once people started working from the idea that the indeterminacy is fundamental and not like your example of the balls (where there is a definite color for each, and the observer just doesn't know it yet), they started making progress on figuring out how entanglement could be faster than light.

http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Quantum_indeterminacy [absoluteastronomy.com]

This is about what non-locality really means: One consequence is that we can't assign a local cause (such as: a localized observer hasn't looked yet) to explain why something on the quantum level is determinate, or we lose the ability to explain how the faster than light part happens.

Just as the original QM problem was about determining position and velocity, talking about "non-localizable" (position), and instantanious/faster than light (velocity) is two ends of the same stick. The more you prove that the action happens much faster than the limitation of light-speed, the more you can't claim the action is caused by anything in a particular locale.

Re:no peeking (1)

Bakkster (1529253) | about 5 years ago | (#29564509)

However, as it is impossible to measure the quantum properties of these particles without collapsing them into a non-super state, how do we know that the entanglement wasn't just the two particles gaining the same properties at the moment of entanglement? Obviously, this would result in them having the same properties once measured.

How do we know that this super state exists, when it is impossible to measure? If a piece of equipment paints two balls a random color and puts them in separate boxes aren't the balls, by the same definition, in a super state as we can't know their color until we open the box? And can they be said to be entangled, as once you open the first box and observe that the ball inside is for example red, the other ball will also be red even though it has yet to be "measured"?

IANAQP, but this is pretty much correct. For the most part, the particles do get their properties matched upon creation, so your analogy is initially correct. However, the property could be one randomly determined while in the separate boxes, yet the second ball still matches the properties of the first ball after opening. This is basically the 'quantum-ness' that is, in general, incredibly confusing.

There's a reason even Einstein mocked this as "spooky action at a distance" and said that if it were true he would rather be a cobbler or a casino employee. It's confusing and not completely understood. However, while Einstein believed it to be measurement error, it's it a pretty well established phenomenon now.

Re:no peeking (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563675)

It's not going to be faster at everything.

It's going to be faster at everything.

It's going to be simultaneously faster and not faster at everything.

Re:no peeking (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 5 years ago | (#29563911)

Well yes and no

Re:no peeking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29564313)

Is this a Schrodinger's yes and no?

Re:no peeking (2, Funny)

jellomizer (103300) | about 5 years ago | (#29564411)

Well... it is both.

Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562727)

Reading the original article [newscientist.com] causes us to think: Why have Europeans (including ethnic Jews) accomplished so many breakthroughs in technology?

Certainly, the Europeans dominate the winners of Noble Prizes in science.

Germans invented the jet aircraft, the guided missile, the computer, calculus, etc. The English invented calculus. The French developed the metric system. Also, the Japanese have done quite well. They invented the blue light-emitting diode, hybrid engines for cars, process technologies for cost effectively producing large LCD screens, etc.

The one group that is missing from this arena of technical accomplishments is Africans and African-Americans. Why are they absent?

We know that African IQ is small than Japanese/European IQ by about 20 points. Can this large difference in IQ explain the gross failure of all societies dominated by Africans?

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

Atlantis-Rising (857278) | about 5 years ago | (#29562831)

They're not absent, you just don't know them.

How about the first known ships? African. Irrigation? African. Early mathematics? Early medicine? African.
 

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

plastbox (1577037) | about 5 years ago | (#29562893)

Horribly off topic, and feeding trolls but..

How about sports? Africans seem to dominate near every sport that doesn't involve skies or ice skates. The middle-east was the epicenter of early civilization, math, science and astronomy for a long time, as were the Asian regions of the world. Scientific aptitude on a geographical scale isn't about genetics, it's about your part of the world having the money and government for you to not worry about who's shooting at you today and instead get a proper education, job and research grants.

If the nazies with their love of athletes and sports, were in fact looking for a "master race", they should have looked south rather than north. Racism is crap but I do acknowledge that my genes are inferior to those coming from the very cradle of human life, perhaps as a result of me coming from a comparatively tiny population just south of the North Pole. =P

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562941)

] How about the first known ships? African. Irrigation? African. Early mathematics? Early medicine? African.

That statement just confirms the comment by the original writer. Africans never progressed beyond primitive arithmetic.

The Japanese, the Germans, the English, etc. developed science and technology to such an extent that they live comfortable lives in the West. Meanwhile, the Africans live in squalor.

Note that Japan is a barren rock without any natural resources. The Japanese transformed this desert into the 2nd richest nation on the planet.

The IQ difference between the Japanese and the Africans nicely explains why the Japanese succeeded but the Africans failed.

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

someone1234 (830754) | about 5 years ago | (#29563301)

Calling the Egyptians 'African' is a kind of stretching.
Well, they lived mostly in geographical Africa, but the rest of Africa didn't really adopt their culture/inventions.
Europe, on the other hand did.

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

Aris Katsaris (939578) | about 5 years ago | (#29563737)

"Calling the Egyptians 'African' is a kind of stretching"

Bullshit.

If what are you talking about black people, then say "black people". If you want to use the word "African" then Egyptians are included by necessity.

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

Jurily (900488) | about 5 years ago | (#29563785)

If what are you talking about black people, then say "black people". If you want to use the word "African" then Egyptians are included by necessity.

Tell that to those who call themselves African American.

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1, Interesting)

Aris Katsaris (939578) | about 5 years ago | (#29563775)

"Note that Japan is a barren rock without any natural resources. "

It has a huge amount of sea, same as Ancient Athens, same as the Roman Empire, same as Phoenicia and Venice and Great Britain and America, but unlike most of the African nations. (Egypt had its river).

History tells us that it's the sea-abundant civilizations that created the greatest amounts of culture -- contrast Athens to Sparta, Venice to Prussia, America to the Soviet Union -- and yeah Japan to Africa.

One of the reasons is because the sea-bordered nations have *natural* borders, thus they can spend less of their time in border-defense or neighbour-conquests and more of their time in other pursuits.

Barren rocks prosper when they have lots of sea around them. Jungles and savannahs don't. It's geography, not skin-color, that forms national destiny.

As for the IQ difference, you have it backwards: it's an advanced civilization that creates the IQ difference, not the IQ difference that creates the advanced civilization.

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 5 years ago | (#29564029)

How about Australia and New Zealand before they were colonized then? They were hardly more advanced than Africa and are islands.

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | about 5 years ago | (#29564443)

They invented tourism and penal colonies.

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

Pikoro (844299) | about 5 years ago | (#29564311)

"One of the reasons is because the sea-bordered nations have *natural* borders, thus they can spend less of their time in border-defense or neighbour-conquests and more of their time in other pursuits."

How come I always get raided by boat driving barbarians in Civilization then?

You left out the loudest group of idiots (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563483)

The Moslems!

Loud and arrogant and self-righteous and completely void of all logical ability, and... did I mention loud?

Re:Anglo-Saxon and Jewish Intelligence (1)

ciderVisor (1318765) | about 5 years ago | (#29563691)

Also, the Japanese have done quite well. They invented the blue light-emitting diode, hybrid engines for cars, process technologies for cost effectively producing large LCD screens, etc.

You forgot tentacle pr0n and bukkake.

Re:For certain problems. (1)

physburn (1095481) | about 5 years ago | (#29562987)

It certainly depends if an quantum algorithm has been made for the problem, thats very hard, and not been done for most things. Most of us have heard that a quantum computer can solve factorisation in order n^3 thanks to Grovners algorithm. While classical computer take exponential time in n. Quantum computers (with Quantum storage), can also search data in a unsorted database table, in order sqrt(n), compared with the classical n. Neither of these are to be sniffed at, a very strong increase in speed. Neither of the above are probabilistic algorithm, there guaranteed to find a the exact answer if one exists. As far as a know it not yet known if a quantum computer can turn NP complete problems, in polynomial problems at all, or for what problems this is possible. However it looks like the travelling salesman problem may be done in polynomial time on a quantum computer, ArXiv:0601151.

.

For those that don't understand the maths of the speed of computer algorithms. The above goes to say, that yes quantum computers are really much faster for a lot of problems. They're very also good for education, as each new algorithm is probably worth a PhD.

---

Quantum Computers Feed [feeddistiller.com] @ Feed Distiller [feeddistiller.com] - needs your QC blogs

Re:For certain problems. (2, Informative)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 5 years ago | (#29563315)

As far as a know it not yet known if a quantum computer can turn NP complete problems, in polynomial problems at all, or for what problems this is possible.

Of course, as of yet it isn't even known if a classical computer can calculate NP complete problems in polynomial time. P!=NP is still a conjecture.

BTW, the correct arXiv reference is arXiv:quant-ph/0601151 [arxiv.org] . After all, there's also astro-ph/0601151, cond-mat/0601151, hep-ph/0601151, hep-th/0601151, math/0601151 and physics/0601151, none of which are relevant here.

Re:For certain problems. (1)

Big Hairy Ian (1155547) | about 5 years ago | (#29563659)

Every additional qubit doubles the computing power, so these quantum computers could outperform any existing classical computer, the researchers say.

As all the photons are entangled with the same electron it simply means that 1 qubit is going to be easier to read because it is being represented by multiple photons and an electron the idea that the more photons you entangle the more qubits you get is nonsence because they are all essentially linked so any change on one will be mirrored on the others

Qubit does not double power in traditional sense? (3, Insightful)

religious freak (1005821) | about 5 years ago | (#29562555)

Every additional qubit doubles the computing power, so these quantum computers could outperform any existing classical computer, the researchers say.

I thought that the "power doubling" was not in a traditional sense.. the qubit is fantastic at pattern matching and search functions, but no better than a classical computer for something like, say, a video game requiring finite mathematical calculations. I'd state this as a fact, because I've read this in at least a couple places, but seeing as how quantum physicists haunt this forum, I can't say I know as well as them. But this power is only useful in very specific circumstances, AFAIK.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (2, Interesting)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 5 years ago | (#29562635)

I thought that the "power doubling" was not in a traditional sense.. the qubit is fantastic at pattern matching and search functions

Which is all that really matters for breaking encryption, and is the whole reason we have computers in the first place.
So my question is how many bits of encryption do I need to keep a 20~30 qbit computer out of my truecrypt partition?

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562755)

With what I can tell... 256 or 512 should keep you safe from that.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

Big Hairy Ian (1155547) | about 5 years ago | (#29563757)

For how long?

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (2, Informative)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about 5 years ago | (#29562957)

If you are very unfortunate, n qubits can map 2^n -1 bits. -1 because 2^0 = 1, and that'd just be weird.

If this is the case, then a 6 qubit machine maps 63 bits, but 20 would map 1,048,575 bits (1 Mbit of information) and 30 would map 1 Gbit of information.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

thisisntme (1617485) | about 5 years ago | (#29563039)

That doesn't sound right to me. Do you have a citation? Or did you just make that up?

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563117)

Yeah, seems wrong to me too. I bet he's wrong.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

MartinSchou (1360093) | about 5 years ago | (#29564251)

I honestly haven't a clue. I just figured that 2^n would give you an exponential power gain to the point where 20-30 qubits would be enough to brute force most types of encryptions.

If you have a device that can brute force a 1 Mbit to 1 Gbit key in a single step, your regular encryption types are dead.

But I haven't a clue how it maps from qubit to bit. The maths shown on the Wiki page [wikipedia.org] and on quantum computer [wikipedia.org] is way above my head. The last one notes: "For example, a 300-qubit quantum computer has a state described by 2^300 (approximately 10^90) complex numbers, more than the number of atoms in the observable universe."

But - no clue. I wasn't aiming for informative, I was hoping for interesting (as in, that's an interesting thought, let's see what the experts say).

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563235)

the whole thing about quantum computers is that they should be able to factor numbers extremely fast, so no matter how many bits of encryption you choose, you'll still be screwed.

I've heard that there are now new encryption algorithms which should be able to withstand quantum computers. I don't know anything about them, so maybe someone else could explain.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563391)

Correctly implemented symmetric encryption with 512 to 1024 bit keys should remain safe for some time. Public key encryption will be broken entirely, regardless of the key size because decryption without key will not be significantly enough slower than encryption with key.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

Pikoro (844299) | about 5 years ago | (#29564351)

why not just factor encryption keys in like base 7 or something? All the keys I've heard discussed so far seem to be base 2 based...

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | about 5 years ago | (#29564425)

cp /dev/random ~/unencryptableMessage.txt On a serious note, I haven't heard of such algorithms. Are Quantum computers good with cracking all encryptions, or just many of the methods used for such?

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563687)

If you are very unfortunate, n qubits can map 2^n -1 bits. -1 because 2^0 = 1, and that'd just be weird.

Uh, how many states can no bits exist in? I would've said 1, myself.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

Jurily (900488) | about 5 years ago | (#29563797)

Uh, how many states can no bits exist in? I would've said 1, myself.

Return type void is always the same.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

Anpheus (908711) | about 5 years ago | (#29562705)

On the other hand, some problems like collision testing are really just pattern matching or search functions, and that has a huge amount of applicability to game design. There are many other similar problems that, at first blush, sound easy, but turn out to be quite difficult, and I've yet to see a modern game with physics that doesn't somehow manage to get objects stuck in floors or falling through levels.

Why not? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562737)

Even for traditional computers, adding 1 bit of memory doubles the size of problems you can tackle with a log-space algorithm. There's nothing magic about it.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562953)

Alright, here's how it works: A quantum computer can efficiently execute algorithms the class BQP, which means "Bounded error, quantum, polynomial time". Since all quantum algorithms are probabilistic, "bounded error" means just that - that you can, basically speaking, run the algorithm as many times as you want to get the error as low as you want. Polynomial time means the time you have to wait increases relatively slowly with respect to the size of the input[1].

What the previous comments seem to be talking about here is either EXPTIME (things that take exponential time, period, like solving chess when the input to the problem is the size of the board), or NP (puzzles where, if someone gives you a potential solution, you can check whether it's right rather quickly). Let's be clear, ahead of all: BQP is not EXPTIME. Whether BQP contains NP is an unsolved question, but so is whether P == NP (that is, whether you can use an ordinary computer to solve puzzles where you can recognize a solution quickly, for any sort of such puzzle).

The short of it is: for some algorithms, like Shor's algorithm (which cracks certain types of public key cryptography), there will be an exponential speedup. Quantum computers can break RSA. However, this does not mean that quantum computers will be of much help in breaking AES[2]. Some public key algorithms may also be resistant to cracking by quantum computers - the Lamport signature definitely is (but can be only used once, or a finite number of times in a tree configuration), while other candidates without this finite-use limit include McEliece [wikipedia.org] and NTRU [wikipedia.org] .

[1] Yes, I know about how 1.0001^n is, in practice, efficient, while n^10000 is not, but you'll rarely happen upon such algorithms.
[2] Grover's algorithm means you have to double the number of bits in your key to get the same security given the same power, but I find it very unlikely that we're going to see quantum computers as fast as the quickest deterministic code cracking machines (no quantum Deep Crack yet), so this most likely isn't a threat.

Re:Qubit does not double power in traditional sens (1)

nathan.fulton (1160807) | about 5 years ago | (#29564737)

Even if you were right, I'm sure there's plenty of searching and pattern matching in video games. Especially searching.

Regardless, video games are not nearly as interesting an encryption.

Not particularly useful against an insurgency (4, Funny)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | about 5 years ago | (#29562587)

Israeli quantum physicists have designed a blueprint for a 'quantum machine gun'

In other news, Palestinian quantum physicists have designed shoulder-mounted quantum launchers and quantum vests in response.

Civilians are hopeful for peace and terrified for escalation of hostilities.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1, Interesting)

eonlabs (921625) | about 5 years ago | (#29562655)

It's a sad world we live in, that in the presence of scientific breakthroughs and ingenuity, one of the first thoughts that arises is of the fighting that surrounds that part of the world. I suppose Yom Kippur is a surprisingly appropriate time for reflection on that though.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (0, Troll)

Idiomatick (976696) | about 5 years ago | (#29562715)

My first thought when I read "UK and Israeli quantum physicists" was 'UK and Israeli quantum entangled physicists ' but I digress. My second thought went to the situation in the area.

I think that while off topic this isn't a bad thing. Israel is a harmful harmful force in the region. And it is sort of disconcerting that they can afford to do this type of research while simultaneously submitting their neighbors to situations where they routinely cannot afford electricity or sometimes even clean water depending on Israel's mood. While Israel's essential occupation of the middle east is not news for nerds it is stuff that matters. That said I don't think it was right to bring the topic up, just healthy to keep it in mind.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29562725)

jeewwwwsssssssssssssssss

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (4, Informative)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | about 5 years ago | (#29562765)

Harmful harmful force? Dude i think you need to re-evaluate your worldview if you want to blame the group being constantly attacked and threatened with the explicit goal of genocide for everything wrong. The mere presence of jews in the middle east produces the reaction you see from Hamas and friends, whether or not Israel was officially a state would have fuck all to do with anything other than the success of those attempts at genocide.

Hell Hamas' own govt charter explicitly blames the jews (merchants of death) for everything from the french and russian revolutions to both world wars while outright demanding the death of every jew and anyone who refuses to participate in said genocide.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (2, Insightful)

Ma8thew (861741) | about 5 years ago | (#29563711)

If Israel wishes not to be treated as the bad guy, then they should stop acting like the bad guy. Demolishing people's homes, closing borders to make Gaza a prison and handing down collective punishment do nothing for Israel's image, and gives the religious extremists in the region a concrete reason for the destruction of Israel. If you think Israel are the innocent victims of Palestinian oppression, then you really need to re-evaulate your worldview.

Why troll? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563903)

Why is this modded troll? The poster has stated a legitimate argument and I'd mod him up if I could but I'm on a public computer and can't remember my password.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (4, Insightful)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | about 5 years ago | (#29564065)

So in other words you want them to do the exact opposite of the only thing keeping the number of rockets and mortars fired at Israeli (arab AND jew) civilian targets in the low to mid thousands rather than much higher.

What did we do with vietcong tunnels in vietnam? The ones used for moving and storing weapons and occasionally fired from. We demolished them. What does israel do with houses build on top of tunnels or used as weapons caches. They demolish them. If people don't want their house bulldozed all they need to do is say "No you cannot indiscriminately attack civilians from my house or store/transport the weapons you use to do that in/through my house."

As for the borders, wtf do you suggest they do? Just open them up for MORE weapons to get smuggled through?

The religious extremists in the region already HAVE a concrete and unarguable reason for doing what they do, it's called genocide. This has NOTHING to do with Israel as a state and everything to do with the fact that there are jews and christians (but mostly jews) over there that aren't dead yet. Read the Hamas charter sometime, the slaughter of all jews everywhere is listed as mandatory for the messiah to come in it. If you think anything Israel does has ANY bearing on anything the palestinians do you're delusional.

There's a palestinian couple living a few apartments away from me, do you know what he calls palestinians that don't want to kill all the jews? Israelis. Just like the million and a half arabs living in israel that are ALSO a target of palestinian violence because they don't join the genocidal crusade Hamas is currently leading.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

Exception Duck (1524809) | about 5 years ago | (#29563849)

Try to look up Israel on a map from before 1940...

They just moved in and now are keeping the previous land owners hostage in their own country (Palestine) ....

I can kind of understand their resentment of Israelis.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | about 5 years ago | (#29564003)

They ARE the previous land owners despite other people constantly trying to wipe them off the face of the earth with varying degrees of success. You REALLY don't know your world history do you... let me help you, what was the region called before the romans renamed it after the philistines after (suprise suprise) forcing the jews out. Or for a more recent example who was it that got all the "palestinians" to move to where they are today so that which nations' militaries would have a clear path to push the jews into the sea...

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

Exception Duck (1524809) | about 5 years ago | (#29564053)

Quoting the good book are we ?

I don't think you can show up after 1000 years and claim your land.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | about 5 years ago | (#29564113)

Actually I considered my history book pretty bad but it's hard to make a history textbook interesting so I guess it's to be expected.

So should I take it that you think the region was completely uninhabited by jews since the roman diaspora then?

I think you should wait until you pass your 8th grade history class before trying to make smartass comments about how the bible's the only thing connecting the jews to the region. It's not like, yknow, there were vast numbers of them living there continuously since the diaspora that were constantly subject to oppression.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

Exception Duck (1524809) | about 5 years ago | (#29564485)

No I realize there were Jews there before.

But the influx of Jews during the 20th century kind of threw it off balance, and ended up being a major cause for the current problems.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29564493)

Let's give the Americas back to the indians then, shall we?

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (2, Interesting)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 5 years ago | (#29564091)

If you go further back in history the Jews are supposed to originate from ancient Sumeria. This is one of the reasons they incorporated [noahs-ark-flood.com] the Epic of Gilgamesh [wikipedia.org] into their own mythos. With all historic movements nearly no one is from the place they are at.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29564567)

Nonsense. The previous owners are long dead and buried. If you think you own some land because your ancestors lived there, you are seriously deranged. Seriously.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29564101)

Hell Hamas' own govt charter explicitly blames the jews (merchants of death) for everything from the french and russian revolutions to both world wars while outright demanding the death of every jew and anyone who refuses to participate in said genocide.

Care to link to said government charter that demands genocide?

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

linzeal (197905) | about 5 years ago | (#29562769)

I wonder if in 50 years the bad guys in the movies will be more likely to be Israeli or from an Islamic Country.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | about 5 years ago | (#29563449)

It would help if they hadn't chosen to call it a "machine gun". What's wrong with "photon ejaculator"? Make love, not war.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

bar-agent (698856) | about 5 years ago | (#29564049)

What's wrong with "photon ejaculator"? Make love, not war.

Hey, baby, wanna light up your life? Let me shoot my rays into your black hole!
My light bulb goes in your socket, you cute thing, you, my lamp in your room, you dig?

Yeah, the innuendo is transparent, better to let my intentions shine through.

Re:Not particularly useful against an insurgency (1)

Covalent (1001277) | about 5 years ago | (#29563515)

In other other news, the Trekkies are all thinking about the photon torpedo due to arrive within the next 15 years.

Klingons! (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#29562671)

Again, Trek predicts the future.

Re:Klingons! (1)

religious freak (1005821) | about 5 years ago | (#29562869)

? Trek talked about a quantum computer? I was so young, I might've missed it, but I think you may be mistaken. I don't remember that at all.

Re:Klingons! (1)

Arimus (198136) | about 5 years ago | (#29564221)

I suspect he's thinking of a photon torpedo rather than a photon bullet... :)

I do wonder though whether you could also use this photon machine gun to any form of fancy imaging etc...

So what you're really trying to say is... (1)

Capsy (1644737) | about 5 years ago | (#29562741)

That when this technology is finally put to practical use, i.e. home computers, the cost of hardware is going to go up? Isn't there an implied health risk involving high speed protons, such as in the form of radiation? Granted, it would be on a very weak level, alpha particles, but consistent exposure to said particles over time would have an impact on ones health. I suppose that could be stopped by the case though... Just a thought.

Re:So what you're really trying to say is... (1)

Engine (86689) | about 5 years ago | (#29562845)

Photons, not protons. And there is plenty of practical use of computers outside your home.

Re:So what you're really trying to say is... (1)

Capsy (1644737) | about 5 years ago | (#29562951)

Yet still, this technology would increase the cost of computers in theory, yes?

Re:So what you're really trying to say is... (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 5 years ago | (#29563357)

Yet still, this technology would increase the cost of computers in theory, yes?

I'm not sure that the quantum computer would be more expensive than the supercomputer needed otherwise to solve the sort of problems quantum computers are good at.

Re:So what you're really trying to say is... (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | about 5 years ago | (#29563851)

involving high speed protons,

Bt wot abt deez hispeed *photons*?

Do they go *whoosh*?

ObCompJoke... (3, Funny)

Tastecicles (1153671) | about 5 years ago | (#29562745)

imagine a Beowulf cluster of... NO! NONONO!

Re:ObCompJoke... (2, Funny)

Yoozer (1055188) | about 5 years ago | (#29562907)

I tried to imagine a cluster of photon machine guns and all I could come up with was a container full of Mag-Lites.

bad movie quote?? (1)

iCodemonkey (1480555) | about 5 years ago | (#29562747)

say hello to my little friend... (Please try to keep minds out of the gutter if possible)

Explain the hype, please? (2, Interesting)

plastbox (1577037) | about 5 years ago | (#29562847)

Ok, so on this site bursting with intelligent, educated folk, the following question(s) might make me look like a village idiot, but what the hell. It's damn interesting stuff and I want to know!

Exactly how does quantum computing work? I have a fleeting grip the basic stuff; qubits existing with states 0, 1 and "superposition" (i.e. all possible states) and that by actively measuring it's state (sending a photon or whatever bumping into it) you collapse it, and it's entangled mate, into a "classical state". If I place a shot glass in a dark room and tell you it could be empty, full or anything in between but the only way for you to find out is to A) Take the shot, or B) dump another 4cc of Tequila into the glass and see if it spills over, is the shot glass a cubit? To you, it is in a "superstate" until you actively measure it, an act that in itself makes the glass full or empty.

How does this equate to computing? I might just have spent too much time with Proteus fiddling about with gates and stuff trying to make a very basic functional computing device, but isn't some sort of computing device needed to compute something? Even with Quantum Gates [wikipedia.org] , 30 qubits seem like a very insignificant amount of building blocks to compute anything..

Lastly, how would/will qubits be used to revolutionize storage? I get the allure of storing bits on a subatomic level but if the whole hype is about storage density, it sort of kills the magic for me.

Re:Explain the hype, please? (4, Funny)

noundi (1044080) | about 5 years ago | (#29562935)

Ok, so on this site bursting with intelligent, educated folk...

You lost me at "Ok".

Re:Explain the hype, please? (4, Informative)

maxwell demon (590494) | about 5 years ago | (#29563267)

Ok, I just wrote a lengthy reply, and then by accident hit "refresh", and all the text was gone :-(

Therefore here the short version:

  • The speedup is basically because for quantum systems the dimension of the configuration space grows exponentially rather than linearly with the size of the system (i.e. number of qubits). The fact that we can't simply measure the complete state is actually a limitation, because it means we cannot directly access an arbitrary unknown state.
  • You can do quantum computing by just doing measurements because every measurement modifies the measured system, and with entangled states, this change is non-local (i.e. you also modify parts of the system where you didn't just destroy any entanglement by your measurement). However you need special entangled states to do universal measurement-based quantum computing (i.e. to allow arbitrary transformations with measurement only); one state which works is the cluster state produced by this "photon machine gun"
  • They didn't claim that qubits revolutionize storage, but that if emulating the 20 to 30 qubit quantum computer on a classical computer, it would not fit into computer storage. However I doubt that; storing the state of 30 qubits needs about 16 GB, which is large, but perfectly doable in todays computers (and may be actually standard by the time this photon gun is realized). The problem with simulating the quantum computer would not be storage, but time.

Re:Explain the hype, please? (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | about 5 years ago | (#29563879)

storing the state of 30 qubits needs about 16 GB, which is large, but perfectly doable in todays computers

I can haz ur USB for teh ReddyBoozt?

kthxbai.

Your Sig (1)

nameer (706715) | about 5 years ago | (#29564675)

I checked the patent in your link. It was re-examined in 2003, and all claims canceled. Whew, my kids are safe.

Re:Explain the hype, please? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563285)

Bad analogy time.

The simplest way to factor a large number is to just try to divide it by 2, by 3, etc. Once you've divided it, you now have 2 smaller numbers to factor. Repeat until you get a prime. This takes a long time for a large number because you have to try it over and over again.

With a quantum computer you can do all of these computations in parallel, and then arrange for all of the non-factors to cancel each other out, meaning that you can only measure a legitimate factoring. (Getting all of the non-answers to cancel out is the trick in quantum computing, and it isn't a particularly easy one to pull off. These are not general purpose computers!) If it keeps giving you 1*n as your factoring, eventually you conclude it is prime. Otherwise the first time it gives you something else, you've broken the number down into 2 easier ones.

To break RSA you only have to factor one number. So everyone cites that as the classic problem. But you can't factor a number you can't put in. With 20-30 qbits you can only input 20-30 bit numbers so you can't factor anything bigger than that. By contrast a motivated person these days with a few PCs and a few months to devote to it can factor a general 600 bit number. Most people's codes are 1024 bits or longer.

Therefore this research is cool, but any claim of an immediate threat to cryptography is waaay overblown.

Re:Explain the hype, please? (1)

plastbox (1577037) | about 5 years ago | (#29563671)

Thanks for the long reply, but I don't think you got the whole "me being the village idiot"-part. Your post doesn't really impart any understanding of a qubit as a computational unit. =/

Yes, I understand the benefits of parallel processing. Hook up huge number of MUC's, send every MCU in "level 1" the same number, have MCU nr. 1 divide the incoming number by '2', MCU nr. 2 by '3', and so on, and pass on only the results that are whole numbers to the next level. Lather, rinse and repeat for however many steps the number takes to factor. Given enough MCU's (or a proper system, not a nerd-rant), it would almost certainly factor any number faster than my computer could ever dream of.

Ok, so parallel processing is cool. Still, how does this thingie most commonly visualized as a small, spinning ball, actually process anything? How does a qubit divide a number by 5 any more than the shot glass? I can't for the life of me see how this works..

And how do you "feed" a qubit anything? Following the (allegedly poor) shot glass analogy, do you simply "take the shot" to "write zero", I mean, do we know from measuring what to do to make the qubit collapse into the desired state? If true, I see how 1 qubit == 1 bit write-once storage, but the rest still doesn't make sense to me.

Please, please don't leave me scratching my scraggly beard while reading "how quantum computing works"-articles written by people with no more understanding of the subject than me, while trying to contemplate how a n*(shot glass in the dark) can factor numbers! This technology is way too cool for me to not understand at all!

How Shor's algorithm works (the problem with QC) (2, Interesting)

professorguy (1108737) | about 5 years ago | (#29564233)

The quantum algorithm for factoring does not just divide repeatedly "in parallel." Shor's algorithm really describes a specially built machine for factoring (which converts factoring to period finding, and a fourier analysis is forced and sampled).

In fact, I first studied Shor's algorithm in order to understand why good programmers weren't looking at it, generalizing it, and writing a million more algorithms. I was disappointed to learn that we are not far enough along to describe a universal quantum computer and are still in the mode of building special-purpose machines. Like the early bomb dropping "computers" of WW2, results are still being generated but without a concept of universality.

We don't have the math for universal quantum computation since it is still unknown what they are capable of (what their universe consists of). Until the math arrives, we're stuck with this scatter-shot approach.

Duh..... (1)

IHC Navistar (967161) | about 5 years ago | (#29562899)

It's called a "Strobe Light", stupid.

I know.....bad joke.....

Dont say Photon Machine Gun (1)

known_ID (1629159) | about 5 years ago | (#29563243)

Say flashlight.

Moore's Law (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29563319)

Traditional computer's performance doubles too, so we don't care!

Dirty Erwin (5, Funny)

ciderVisor (1318765) | about 5 years ago | (#29563635)

I know what you're thinking: "Did he flip six qbits or only five?" Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I kind of lost track myself. But being as this is a Photon Machine Gun, the most powerful quantum entanglement source in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself one question: Is the cat dead or alive ? Well, is it, punk ?

Re:Dirty Erwin (1)

plastbox (1577037) | about 5 years ago | (#29564335)

Is the cat dead or alive ? Well, is it, punk ?

Well, yes.. yes it is. Or not.

Heh (4, Funny)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about 5 years ago | (#29564129)

The quantum machine gun is described as 'one of the most exciting theoretical proposals I've read in five years' by a leading quantum physicist.

The long winter nights must just fly by.

Light bulb? (1)

karlwilson (1124799) | about 5 years ago | (#29564329)

So... Is "photon machine gun" another would for a light bulb?

Re:Light bulb? (1)

karlwilson (1124799) | about 5 years ago | (#29564573)

uhhh meant to write "word" not "would." Damn waking up so early.

Within a few years this device will be built (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29564543)

...And maybe a few years after that we'll have 32-qubit machines, so we can start factoring unsigned ints.

For now, we're just going to stick to factoring 15 though.

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