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MIT And HP Announce Joint Quantum Computer Project

timothy posted more than 12 years ago | from the closer-ever-closer dept.

Technology 174

MetaCow writes: "CNN is running this article which describes a joint effort between MIT and HP to build a quantum computer. Nothing expected any time soon, though: 'Quantum computing research is farsighted, and it may take 10 years to develop a fully operational quantum computer ...'"

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174 comments

Hey bitches (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199285)

Call me. I suck you long time.

Second (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199290)

Second Post?!?!?!!?!?

[#452338 ] large numbers of trolls in user base (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199588)

Date: 2001-08-17 20:02

Priority: 5

Submitted By: Nobody/Anonymous (nobody)

Assigned To: Nobody/Anonymous (nobody)

Category:

Users Status: Closed

Summary:

large numbers of trolls in user base
A large nest of trolls seems to have built a nest
somewhere in the nether regions of the slashdot system.
Perhaps they live under the router (after all, it's
sort of like a bridge).

Anti-troll measures should be built into slashcode to
repel the beasts post haste. I've been told thoughtful
debate can have that effect. So try giving that fat
fucka JonKatz d4 b00t!

Rising tide of law suits keeps IPO market busy (-1, Offtopic)

The IPO Guy (516794) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199294)

IPO VIEW - Rising tide of law suits keeps IPO market busy

By Elena Molinari

NEW YORK, Aug 19 (Reuters) - The market for new stock offerings has dried up, but a rising tide of legal wrangling is keeping Wall Street bankers busy.

No initial public offerings are expected this week. And only one company, reinsurer Max Re Capital Ltd., made it to market last week. That brought this year's IPO tally to 61 -- 80 percent less than a year ago -- and the total amount raised to $27.5 billion, considerably down from $60.7 billion in the same period of 2000.

At the same time, lawsuits are filed every week against companies that went public during the IPO craze of 1999 and early 2000 and their underwriters -- the Wall Street firms that marketed the offerings.

The suits essentially claim investment banks and their big customers conspired to inflate prices of newly public companies. Those deals caused many IPOs to skyrocket on their first day of trading only to deflate later, hurting small investors who bought into the craze, the suits allege.

Wall Street executives by-and-large maintain it was business as usual during the IPO boom -- with orderly distribution of shares and no secret deals to inflate prices. Insatiable demand for Web companies caused the bubble, they say.

It's tough to keep track of the complaints, because many are filed each day and some target the same company or investment bank. As of Wednesday, Aug. 15, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York had received 680 complaints. At least 50 new cases were filed last week alone.

The suits could be the real star of the IPO market in the next months, possibly resulting in billion-dollar settlements by Wall Street firms, plaintiffs' lawyers say. Even the start-up companies that raised money could be on the hook, if investors prove the IPO prospectus was misleading and failed to disclose the alleged secret agreements between bankers and institutions, they say.

That's what plaintiffs will try to prove in the case against supplier of Web-based software VA Linux Systems Inc. Linux's stock had the biggest first-day pop ever, rising 698 percent when it started trading on December 1999, and has become the symbol of the IPO excesses. The company's shares closed Friday at $1.83 on Nasdaq

That case by itself could turn into several million of dollars, said Melvyn Weiss, partner of New York law firm Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach, which is the lead counsel in the case against Linux and its underwriters. Milberg -- a firm specializing in shareholder law suits -- already has filed 134 IPO-related lawsuits.

The first deadline for the cases alleging securities fraud is Sept. 7, when Judge Shira Scheindlin of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York will hold a first hearing.

LAWYERS FOLLOW SEC PROBE

The suits, most of which are seeking class action status, are riding on the coattails of regulatory and criminal probes into the way Wall Street firms doled out IPOs. The U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the National Association of Securities Dealers all are conducting their own investigations.

Both the criminal and the civil lawsuits allege that, when the demand for new stocks reached its peak in 1999, it was common for institutional investors to enter quid-pro-quo agreements with investment bankers to get shares of the most sought-after deals.

Some institutions paid Wall Street firms set a percentage of their IPO profits in unusually high trading commissions or agreed to buy more of the new issue on the first day of trading -- guaranteeing a ``pop,'' or solid rise in the new issue's stock price, the suits allege. That practice artificially inflated the prices of many new stocks, mostly in the Internet and technology sectors, on their first trading day, the suits claim.

Chances that shareholders can recover the damages they allegedly suffered largely depend on the success of the government's probe, securities law experts say.

``It's costly and difficult for law firms to prove these frauds,'' said Jack Keeney, a lawyer at Washington law firm Hogan & Harston. ``And usually cases filed following a federal investigation tend to have more merit and settle on higher amounts than suits brought independently.''

The suits already have put the spotlight on investment bankers and the way they manage IPOs.

``Brokerage houses are going to be more cautious in allocating IPO shares in the future,'' said John Coffee, professor of securities law at Columbia University. ``In this market, however, some manipulations wouldn't even be possible. I don't see the same inflated expectations of big gains that generated past excesses.''

But some things will never change.

``Even in a slow market, the best deals always go to the big money managers,'' said Ross Sakamoto, portfolio manager of the Chase H&Q IPO Emerging Company Fund.

Stephen King, author, dead at 54 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199296)


I just heard sad news on talk radio -Horror/fiction writer Stephen King was found dead in his Maine house this morning. I'm sure we'll all miss him - even if you didn't read his books you've probably enjoyed one of his movies. Truly an American icon.

Re:Stephen King, author, dead at 54 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199468)

Brittney Sphere is dead too...
She passed away in her home in California
this morning from dehydration. Even if you didn't like her songs you've probably enjoyed
her luscious beast and bountiful ass.
Truly a righteous ho.

#2199291? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199299)

Could it be?

What about a Beowulf cluster of these (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199303)

How about a Beowulf cluster of these not-as-of-yet-existant computers? Hmmm, think how much better a bunch of nothings linked together would be than a single nothing!

Re:What about a Beowulf cluster of these (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199338)

In the spirit of troll solidarity, today, I let you slide. We must focus our energies on making life hell for the usual bunch of idiots since they decided to escalate teh arms race.

warmest regards,

The anti-Beowulf-cluster-troll troll

slashcode 2.2 -- "it's trollapalooza!"

Correction needed... (2, Insightful)

RyanFenton (230700) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199304)


Alright, a little 'bit picky', but

"While the classical bit can store any number between 0 and 255 on each of its eight bytes, ..."

Byte and bit should be reversed in this sentence fragment.

:^)

Ryan Fenton

Re:Correction needed... (3, Insightful)

IvyMike (178408) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199366)

Actually, that still doesn't make sense. Perhaps, "While the classical byte can store any number between 0 and 255 using all of its eight bits"?


Indeed. (1)

RyanFenton (230700) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199406)

There should be a new law passed that all computer-related articles would have to be edited by Slashdot boards. Then it would be easy to recognize any computer-related article by it's first words - "First post!"

;^)

Ryan Fenton

Re:Indeed. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199450)


There should be a law that Ryan Fenton is anally raped and his ass filled with the jizz of several large black men. That's about all his worthless ass is good for.

"I'll do it!" - Nastard.

Ryan, meet my friend Nastard. His name is a combination of Nads + Turds. He will suck you off, let you spill your ball batter all over his turd, and then smear it on his nuts for you to lick off.

You sickos.

Re:Correction needed... (2)

sharkey (16670) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199583)

Well, that's probably why they are having problems reading the information back, as mentionad farther on in the article. If MIT and HP cannot figure the difference between bits and bytes, then they are simply providing a demonstration of the adage, "Crap in, crap out".

On the other hand, the "article-typer" probably heard the words "quantum" and "qubit" and decided to write an article. His research probably consisted of noticing that his 56 kilobit modem was getting transfer rates of ~5 kilobytes on Win9x reported connection of ~40kps, and deduced that bits are bigger than bytes.

Following this, he decided that he was an Authority (search for False Authority on /. when the indexes have been rebuilt) on conned a PHB editor with a deluge of buzzwords into letting him publicy insert his foot into his mouth.

Still fp? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199305)

I can't believe there are still people performing "first posts." Will the carnage ever end?

Don't you see? (-1, Troll)

Wind_Walker (83965) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199327)

It's not the number that matters... it's the fact that you get the first post on a story that counts. You hit "Submit", then look, and see that there's only one comment, and that is yours...

A truly beautious vision, if ever there was one.

Idiot.

I R0X0R! slascode 2.2 SUX0R! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199367)

2199327th Postus, Beeotchii!!!

[slashdot.org]

[slashdot.org]

[slashdot.org]







pleeease?

They may or may not succeed. (3, Funny)

SpanishInquisition (127269) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199314)

Someone will have to observe them to get a definitive answer.

Re:They may or may not succeed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199616)

but what does one do with a whole bunch of dead cats in a server farm ?

'byte' my ass. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199318)

While the classical bit can store any number between 0 and 255 on each of its eight bytes


C'mon, people, let's get some writers with at least a *little* techincal background.

time frame (1)

ritlane (147638) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199323)

<i>and it may take 10 years to develop a fully operational quantum computer ...</i>
<br><br>
Which means the NSA should be turning thiers on, rights..... about...... <b>now</b>

Re:time frame (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199567)


ha ha you dipshit.

Re:time frame (1)

dragons_flight (515217) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199605)

I actually got to tour the main NSA facility devoted to quantum computing research as a potential employee. (If they have more than one major lab working on this, no one told us).

They actually don't have anything working right now, beyond what many public labs have. What they do have however is an essentially inexhaustible supply of money being thrown at this. They can hire the best talent and get any equipment they want.

The NSA isn't there yet, but they sure do want to be first.

What? (1)

steveo777 (183629) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199329)

While the classical bit can store any number between 0 and 255 on each of its eight bytes, the qubit can store all the numbers between 0 and 255 on a byte of eight qubits.


Please tell me this is just bad grammer. I mean, Doesn't this sound like you need 64 bits to make 255 on a binary computer (which we all know is false) and that somehow these "magical" quantum computers can do it in only 8 bits?...

Imagine the compression we could have by not using a whole byte to store a bit of information...

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199408)

The first part is just a mistake, as was pointed out by an earlier post.

The second part I took to mean that a qbyte of 8 qbits could represent all the numbers from 0-255 *at the same time*.

In essence it would work much like a bit mask, but could do with 8 qbits what would normally take 255 bits.

This of course is the interesting part of quantum computers.

JMU and Red Hat alliance (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199331)



I find it interesting that this makes /. news yet James Madsion University [128.121.12.52] and Red Hat announced somthing very similar [128.121.12.52] last year. Personally I find this more interesting because it is a smaller university and Red Hat, not some lumbering corporate giant.

nice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199334)

Quantum computing research is farsighted, and it may take 10 years to develop a fully operational quantum computer

That's great! That means it'll be ready just in time for the completion of the GNU/HURD operating system. Maybe they can do a port. Nice.

/me ducks as things are thrown at him from all angles

Some real info...article lacks it (4, Informative)

akiaki007 (148804) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199341)

Quite a lame article, IMO.

The article fails to make any real points. It's merely a PR article for HP and MIT.

Unlike classical bits, the qubit can be not just 0 or 1 but a superposition of both, in differing proportions.

Um...wrong. The qubit can be in the 0 or 1 state, but can also be both at the same time, and have varying rotations. Which is what makes it immpossible for us to decode them. It is the multiple state position that is what is interesting to us, and what does the parallel computing. We just don't know how to utilize it just yet. There have been various articles. Quibit.org [qubit.org] is a great place to start reading up on this stuff. The IBM Almaden [ibm.com] has a nice article [ibm.com] that will actually tell you something useful.

Re:Some real info...article lacks it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199423)

In each quantum computing news article, the reporter tries to write a one-paragraph explanation of quantum computing that their average reader can understand. They always fail. These wanna-be science reporters should just give up and say nothing.

GOATSE.CX LINK (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199470)

The article above contains a goatse.cx link in disguise. A bug in Slash 2.2 does not show it as a link to goatse.cx but instead to IBM.com. Mod it down to the basement.

Ah Richard P Feynman... (2)

kypper (446750) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199344)

The brilliant physicist who first visualized this concept.


His biography is quite the read. You can get it here [amazon.com].

only $25 million in funds? (2)

garcia (6573) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199346)

The article mentions only $25 million. For a project that *could* take over the estimated 10 years it just seems small...

With the results that a Quantum computer could generate I cannot believe that there isn't a larger sum designated for this project...

Re:only $25 million in funds? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199585)

years 0-7: pizza, beer, sleep till 3pm every day.
year 8: go see what CMU has done with Quantum computing
year 9: reimplement & call press conferences to upstage CMU, cuz we're MIT dammit

What sort of interface will it have? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199347)


That far into the future one can only speculate ... but it MUST be a simple interface because the layer between human and machine is only getting more complex.

Anyway, here is the simplest computer around, and the interface is perfect because we are all born with it - the interface is human DRIVE. The computer works like this: I stick my pee sprout in your mom's poop chute for 1, and I stick it in her pee hole for 0.

poop chute = 1
pee hole = 0

Sometimes I stick it in her mouth, but that is for parity.

Sometimes complex operations can take a long time to complete, but that's okay! We're looking for simplicity here, not speed. And waiting for this interface isn't that bad.

This simple computer is very susceptable to visuses. In fact, it comes pre-loaded with several.

For review:

poop chute = 1
pee hole = 0

This computer also fits into Microsoft's .Net strategy - namely, pay per use. It costs $10 per computation, or 15 minutes, whichever comes first.

poop chute = 1
pee hole = 0

Yo Mama (1)

dbCooper0 (398528) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199478)

hehe - I stumbled across this one while counting the number of how many bytes make a bit? posts - an interesting, metaphorical, and damn funny post! (imho)(not caps because i'm so humble, or at least my opinion is...)

This is progress? (2, Funny)

Glock27 (446276) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199349)

It seems that a quantum computer could calculate every possible double answer simultaneously, given a 64 qubit processor. The only problem is that, if the answer is read out, its guaranteed to be wrong! ;-)


This is something of a drop from conventional computer performance, in which the answer is merely often wrong.


Somehow I think this article 'dumbed things down' a bit too much...


186,282 mi/s...not just a good idea, its the law!

Re:This is progress? (2, Funny)

UberLame (249268) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199460)

Err, I thought it was only wrong if you tried to read the answer before the computation was done.

Quantum computing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199355)

Well, my school, Calif. State U. Fullerton, just added an upper division course in Quantum Computers. And they don't offer a single class in: Perl, CGI, the c++ standard template library, MFC, Com, corba or xml.

Re:Quantum computing (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199434)


Well, your school, Calif. State U. Fullerton, is also full of faggots and queers. I bet my pal Nastard goes there. Nastard's name is a combination of Nads + Turds. He could suck you off and your could cum on his turd. He then smears it all over his nutsack, and you get to lick it off. Mmmm ... like a milky chocolate shake to you homos. You can clean up afterwards with your degree; that's about all it's worth.

Quick, somebody call the FBI (1)

chrisatslashdot (221127) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199364)

These evil crackers are trying to circumvent factor based encryption, a copyright protection scheme. Lock 'em up

Re:Quick, somebody call the FBI (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199410)

Somebody already did! Free Brian K Now! [broody.org]

Slashdot might not care about oppressed hackers but you should.

And what about UVA? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199370)



HP has done something like this before, developing a super-cooled RISC processor [128.121.12.52] with a group of reasearchers and students at the University of Virginia. [128.121.12.52] They weren't successful, but that isn't the point of these sort of things - they are more an academic exercise and HP relalizes that these Engineers are the future innovators.

uhm... what? (0, Redundant)

pergamon (4359) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199379)

this doesn't sound right:
While the classical bit can store any number between 0 and 255 on each of its eight bytes, the qubit can store all the numbers between 0 and 255 on a byte of eight qubits. This allows much more information to be stored on a quantum bit than a classical bit...

Re:uhm... what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199529)

I guess that NASA scientist found a new job.

Re:uhm... what? (2)

unitron (5733) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199547)

Just think of the qubit as a quasi-analog device. It can be pure red or pure blue or 6 other values representing blends of red and blue in different proportions.

Of course when you look to see what color it is, the act of looking changes the color.

Why HP? (2)

Ars-Fartsica (166957) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199380)

HP has cast itself as the manufacturer of all of the disposables of computing (PCs, printers, cameras, etc.). While it is laudable for them to go after future marketspace, their R&D might be better focused on how to beat Dell at low-cost manufacturing and inventory management, seeing as this is the commodity market they have chosen to compete in.

As it stands, without some serious changes in senior management and a total overhaul of their product line, it is unlikely HP (as we know it) will see 2010....they're on the 3COM/SGI track right now.

cracking on a whole new level. (1)

allknowing (304084) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199383)

Imagine the power we will have to crack passwords when this quantum computing goes through

Re:cracking on a whole new level. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199438)

Imagine the power we will have to get laid when quantaum computing goes through...

THE BABES!! (Alyson Hannigan)

Free Brian K. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199386)

Free Brian K Now! [broody.org]

Slashdot might not care about oppressed hackers but you should.

Great but.... (1)

mattsking (472366) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199394)

This is all nice, but:

What sort of frame rates will I be getting in Quake3?

Fnord!

Re:Great but.... (1)

tbmaddux (145207) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199425)

"What sort of frame rates will I be getting in Quake3?"

All of them, but of course you won't be able to see them.

Nastard ... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199411)


Nastard, your name is almost a combination of Nads + Turds.

Nastard dips his nads in turds! Eeewwe! Nastard likes having his dick sucked off by guys, lets his jizz drip down onto the floor, and then poops on it! And he eats it!

Nastard like licking the greasy shit from other guys balls! Nastard, you sick faggot you! I can't beleive that you like to lick the sweat, cum, and shit out of some random black guy anus! You are such a fucking pervert. I can't believe you like it when a whole bunch of guys jack off all over your face and you sit there and swallow every last drop, and then vomit it all up and let them all shit on it and then suck it up with a straw.

You queer, demented homo!

Nastard, how many times are your going to take your sister's used tampons, stick them up your ass so they soak up 12 guys cum, put it in a blender with your mother's shit, and make a milkshake out of it?! How many times are you going to drink it on your webcam?

You are one sick fucker, you!!

Microsoft on reading data from quantum computers (2)

hillct (230132) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199413)

This excerpt pretty much sums up the state of this vapor(hard)ware:
Problems arise when it comes to reading the information back. Any interactions with the environment -- including trying to read the information stored -- affect the qubits so that they change from a pure quantum state to a mixed state. This is known as decoherence and any reading taken from this state will be wrong.
Bill Gates: "Yes! This computer works perfectly. You just don't have the technology to read the result without currupting the data, but for $5 per compute cycle, Microsoft will be happy to license our proprietary qbit data reading technology to you."

--CTH

I want my Quantum PC (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199415)

With Alyson Hannigan on top...

Covered in Hot Grits....

With Natalie Portman in a bikini helping me Beowulf network them to my Linux boxes...

AAHHH...

Ten years not such a long time, think of 1991 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199416)

Desert Storm... The Sierra Madre Earthquake in LA... Collapse of the Soviet Union... "Real Life With Jane Pauley" debuts... ugh... feeling old... never mind, the point is lost...

Can you imagine..... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199430)

a beowu.... ah, nevermind.

The Quantum Computing Swindle (2, Interesting)

HEbGb (6544) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199441)

This is a re-post of a fine piece by nightlight3 some months ago. I'd simply post the link [slashdot.org], but slashdot archives aren't working. (I retrieved this from google cache).

This isn't flamebait - it's definitely a subject worthy of discussion. I, for one, have great reservations about whether this is a viable technology. This is especially important since so much money and attention is being poured into research, perhaps often without a real understanding of the basic principles. I happen to know people in Gershenfeld's lab, and know full well their tendencies to let the hype get out of hand.

Perhpas HP is spending the money as a marketing/PR effort, rather than them intending to get real work done. That would explain the press release.

So here it is; I hope nightlight3 will chime in.
- - - - -

"If one existed, a quantum computer would be extremely powerful; building one, however, is extremely challenging,"

Extremely challenging, like in "it can't work and it won't ever work, but I hope the government and the industry sponsors won't find that out, at least until I retire, preferably after I am dead."

The whole field of Quantum Computing is a mathematical abstraction (fine, as any pure math is, as long as you don't try to claim that's how the real world works). Its vital connection with the real world is based on a highly dubious (even outright absurd, according to some physicists, including Einstein) conjecture about entangled quantum states (roughly, a special kind of "mystical" non-local correlation among events) which was actually never confirmed experimentally. And without that quantum entanglement the whole field is an excercise in pure abstract math with no bearing on reality.

While there were number of claims of an "almost" confirmation of this kind of quantum correlations (the so-called Bell inequality tests), there is always a disclaimer (explicit or, in recent years, between the lines as the swindle got harder to sell), such as "provided the combined setup and detection efficiency in this situation can be made above 82%" (even though it is typically well below 1% overall in the actual experiment; the most famous of its kind, Aspect experiment from early 1980s had only 0.2% combined efficiency, while 82% is needed for actual, "loophole free" proof) or provided we assume that the undetected events follow such and such statistics, etc. The alternative explanations of those experiments (requiring no belief in mystical instant action-at-a-distance), which naturally violate those wishfull assumptions, are ignored, or ridiculed as unimportant loopholes when forced to debate the opposition, by the "mystical" faction. After all, without believing their conjecture all the magic of quantum computing, quantum cryptography, quantum teleportation, along with funding, would vanish.

For those interested in the other side of these kinds of claims, why it doesn't work and why it will never work, check the site by a reputable British physicist Trevor Marshall, who has been fighting, along with a small group of allies, the "quantum magic" school for years:

Quantum Mechanics is not a Science [demon.co.uk]

Unfortunately, the vast bulk of the research funding in this area goes to the mystical faction. As long as there are fools with money, there will always be swindlers who will part the two.

For a more popular account, accessible to non-physicists, of the opposing view, you can check a site by a practical statistician (and general sceptic) Caroline Thompson:

Caroline Thompson's Physics [aber.ac.uk]

Quantum Computing Is One ofthe Biggest Hoaxes Ever (1, Troll)

Louis Savain (65843) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199607)

Extremely challenging, like in "it can't work and it won't ever work, but I hope the government and the industry sponsors won't find that out, at least until I retire, preferably after I am dead."

This is so true. David Deutsch is a half-crazed crackpot and con artist who manage to convince a bunch of gullible people that his chicken faether voodoo physics is real science. I never thought I'd live to see the day when science is turned into in-your-face superstition by a bunch of swindlers. Do physicists think that there are beyond public scrutiny? Do they really think they can throw any crap at the public and that the public is forced to swallow it? I think they should be careful because the public is not as stupid as they want us to belive. One day, we'll wake up from our stupor and wipe that smug superiority smile off their faces. After all we pay their salaries and we reserve the ultimate right to decide what is good science and what is not.

It is up to us, it is up to the citizens of a free society to either accept the chauvinism of science without contradiction or to overcome it by the counterforce of public action. Paul Feyerabend

DMCA vs Quantum computers (3, Interesting)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199444)

I wonder if DMCA would render building, selling and using such machines illegal, since quantum computers can be used to compute securitykeys for any encryption algorithms in a feasible amount of time?

Interesting Implications (2, Interesting)

PureFiction (10256) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199446)

Here are a few things that quantum computers (when fully realized and sufficiently powerful) may bring with them in the future:

1. No more encryption. Quantum computers can crack block ciphers with ease, as well as assymetric public key cyphers. Bigger keys? Just use more qubits. Hmm... can anonymous networks (MixMaster, Freenet, Publius, etc...) exist without encryption? Can banking exist without encryption? How about online transactions in general?

2. Uber compression. Everything digital occurs in the Pi sequence somewhere right? Well, quantum computers might be able find that offset and length within Pi, LCG's, or any other kind of sequence.

Imagine downloading a 4 hour DIVX using 20 bytes. 4b sequence ID, 8b offset, 8b length. That is the same length as an IP header...

3. Massive optimization. Remember all those NP-complete problems you learned in comp. sci. ? No more simmulated annealing, genetic algorithm, guesstimation methods. Qubits can find the optimal solution instantly. No more intense calculations for hours/days to find meager 'near' optimal solutions. P.S. NP-complete type problems shows up in almost every complex system in every field / domain.

So what are the implications of this kind of computing becoming available in ten years? It's a wonder we dont hear more about this when reading about quantum computers. The effect they will have when available is almost more interesting than the implementation ;)

Re:Interesting Implications (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199485)



Imagine downloading a 4 hour DIVX using 20 bytes. 4b sequence ID, 8b offset, 8b length. That is the same length as an IP header...

But it isn't ... your math is off.

The 8b offset is where you're mistaken. You're forgetting about the 1-bit checksum [128.121.12.52] that gets inserted in there, that makes the header have odd parity so error checking can be done faster - the initial calculation can be done with a simple even/odd query.

Still, interesting point you raise. The potential for this is almost endless.

Re:Interesting Implications (2)

MindStalker (22827) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199504)

About the PI think, most combinations are most likly to be found at a numerically higher offset, than the number itself is, therefor making the total bigger ;(

Re:Interesting Implications (2)

geomcbay (263540) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199548)

You are correct. The offset into PI will be larger than the data segment you are trying to find in it in all but the most trivial cases. Simple information theory dictates this.


If it weren't the case, people would already be using PI as a compressions scheme on not-so-large data -- sure it might take days/weeks/months to find the encoding of a specific piece of data in PI, but considering how fast it would uncompress (if they offset were really significantly smaller than the data it was compressing, which wouldn't be often) it would be worth it for some uses.

Re:Interesting Implications (1)

Rumagent (86695) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199521)

You are forgetting that same technology that allows you to break all conventional encryption, also you to create imbreakable encryption - Not only that, but it will also be impossible to intercept a quantum coded message, without alerting the reciever.

The only problem is that very few people have a quantum computer:)

Not quite that good (1)

KM1 (409622) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199599)

"Massive optimization. Remember all those NP-complete problems you learned in comp. sci. ? No more simmulated annealing, genetic algorithm, guesstimation methods. Qubits can find the optimal solution instantly."

This is actually not quite true. So far no one has found a quantum computer algorithm which solves an NP-complete problem in polynomial time. This is perhaps one of the things that tend to get people overly exicted about quantum computers. They will most likely be built and become more or less practical, depending on the amount of technological progress, but they are not magic. So far most problems for which there are fast quantum algortihms are problems which can be solved in less than exponential time on an ordinary computer. There are a few exceptions like simulating a quntum system, but these problems are not NP-complete.
However there is no mathematical proof that a polynomial time quantum algorithm for an NP-complete problem could not be found, but the same is true for a classical algortihm for NP-complete problems.

Wait, wait.. a "computer"? (4, Insightful)

mcc (14761) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199462)

I am really curious as to what they mean by a "computer" in this specific case. I mean, i have heard that they've done quantum computers capable of picking phone numbers out of a list of four, and such. Which while a HUGE accomplishment is still rather primitive.. Is this just going to be another one of those? A simplistic test machine?

Or is this going to be, like, you know, a real *computer*? Something that can be given general calcuations and work through them? By using the word "computer", are they thinking that what they make is actually going to be something turing-complete, or at least comparable to ENIAC, or maybe even one of the bethemoths that used to sit in the basement of a college (where the computer science students would sign up for a block of time, then come by, drop off large stacks of punchcards, and then wander by the next day to collect the results of the program)?

More importantly, though-- and this is what i'm really wondering about-- if they actually are building a quantum computer that is capable of going into the realm of *running actual programs of some sort*.. what programming language will be used? How will these programs be written? What will the "machine code" look like, and how possible will it be to write software for this in high level languages? (I.e. will it be possible to do HLL abstractions as we do with current computers, at least at first, or will hand-optimisation be too necessary to allow things like "compiling"? I am not 100% sure what a "von neumann" architecture is, but as far as i understand things there are some implicit assumptions in the way that things like C work that kind of only make sense if computers are designed at least generally the way they are now. How different would the architecture of a quantum computer be in a general sense, and how much would current programming languages have to change to make sense in that architecture? Which language is in its current state closest to something that would make sense for the creation of programs on a quantum computer architecture-- C, Python/java, LISP/scheme, Haskell/ML, or APL/Mercury? Or something i've never heard of?

Or is it that special boards or setups whatever will have to be hardwired and specially set up for each specific task (although it will do those tasks really quickly), and this will not be a general-purpose computer capable of doing things like loading and executing an arbitrary written-as-software program?

And to get into the complete castles-in-the-air-speculation realm.. if it is a true general-purpose computer, are they going to try to give it, like, you know, an operating system with things like a kernel and process manager and networking capabilities? Are they going to just stick with letting programs be fed in manualy, or is the thing that they say will take ten years something that is at least realistic to think that you could build one, set it in the basement of a college, and let all the students telnet to it and build and run programs while using some equivilent of unix talk/write to message each other and tyrannical sysadmins constantly watch to see if anyone is playing quantum games so they can kill those processes? (I don't care if they acctually *do* that. Just if that's realistic, my mind is totally blown. I doubt it's realistic.)

Or is anything that may be completed so far in the future they can't really say what it will look like at this point?

I am deathly curious. I desire explanations, or at least links to academic webpages explaining, what sorts of things this computer would do and in what way we would go about giving it its programmatical instructions. Pleasepleaseplease i thank you in advance?

-mcc
If It Can't Process Church Numerals Then What Good Is It

Re:Wait, wait.. a "computer"? (2)

PureFiction (10256) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199557)

Quantum computers are strange, in that they are good for mainly one kind of computation: Combinatorial optimization / state space search.

Normal computers would still be needed to work with quantum computers, and in fact, any kind of quantum computer would likely be a regular digital computer with a 'Quantum CoProcessor' to crunch on the difficult combinatorial optimization / state space search part of the problem.

Everything else would be done by the digital computer.

So, as a short answer to your question, think of Quantum Computers as a math coprocessor that you use in tandem with a digital computer to solve very complex problems that cannot be solved using conventional digital computers (or take prohibitively long to do so).

MIT (0, Offtopic)

Captain Pooh (177885) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199465)

Anyone have friends at MIT?

Re:MIT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199503)

Anyone here have friends?

Re:MIT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199543)


I have a friend, Nastard. His name is a combination of Nads + Turds. He likes to suck off guys and spit their nad nectar onto his turd. Then he rubs it on his nuts. He's a real sicko.

Re:MIT (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199508)


No, they're all a bunch of fags.

clu#!%! (0)

UberLame (249268) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199476)

Hmm, no one seems to have yet said "How about a beowulf cluster of these things!" yet. People are starting to slack around. Get to work anonymous cowards!!!

Yeah, I know, off topic.

Re:clu#!%! (0, Offtopic)

UberLame (249268) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199507)

Overrated!?! Who moderated that? How do you call something still on it's default rating overrated?!?

Re:clu#!%! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199555)

Kiss myass. [128.121.12.52] I can't post because I'm getting my cock sucked by Nastard. His name means Nads + Turds.

Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199510)

Wow, actual progress in the quantum computing field. I'm surprised

Now, meanwhile, can anyone tell us how far along exactly that the Optical Computing people are at this point?

Scheduling challenges (3, Funny)

isomeme (177414) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199513)


The project, announced last week, is part of a $25 million, five-year alliance launched in June 2000.

Of course, we won't know if the project worked or not until someone looks inside the lab in 2005.

Nakoruru is at MIT (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199520)


I have a friend who goes to MIT. His name is Nakoruru. Here is an account of when I first met him:

Nakoruru, what is that, Indian? Go make me a slurpee, Nakoruru, and give me one of those little "wassup" ligthers, too. I love that shit. Is it true you people eat your own children? I think I'll pass on that hot dog, Nakoruru. I don't want to be muching on little Nakoruruette. Hey, what are you doing? Why are you unzipping your pants? Put your pants back on! Oh ... I get it. "Little Nakoruruette." Ha ha. Cripes, look at that thing. Looks like a fleck of curry. How do you wack off with that, wrap that little dot on your head around it? Okay, I gotta go Nakoruru. See you tomorrow morning when I get my paper and coffee, ya little sand nig you.

MIT's press release (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199533)

MIT has put out a press release [128.121.12.52] about the alliance. Nothing that isn't in the CNN article, but there are some photos of the people involed.

Re:MIT's press release (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199553)

WELL there is yet another way around it, ey folks?

Hey Taco, I thought you WEREN't gonna put any race conditions into Slashdot. You boner!

I am getting this funny feeling..... (1)

crumbz (41803) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199550)

...that the world is beginning to look like a long game of Alpha Centuri. We do we see the /. article on Threshold of Transcendance.

-Approaching the singularity

First (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199558)

Post

So long! (2)

SmileyBen (56580) | more than 12 years ago | (#2199566)

God! TEN WHOLE YEARS for something that will revolutionise computing, and perhaps even make us reassess every way in which we view the world! So long! What are these scientists wasting our time for, surely they should have produced this yesterday - it sounds easy enough.

Ten Years?! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2199579)


That's about how long it takes a nigger to get through college! Which he got into my taking a deserving cracker's place.

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