Living With Quantum Computing

Dr. S. S. Verma, Department of Physics, S.L.I.E.T., Longowal, Distt.-Sangrur (Punjab)-148106

2017-09-01 09:11:42



Importance of computers in the present day of life all over the world is well known to everyone of us. Computers have almost taken over man-power all over and mostly for the betterment except so called unemployment. Still people are expecting computers to be more useful and powerful in times to come and different computing technologies of future are always on constant watch.  The futures of computing and how new fields of computer sciences are paving the way for the next digital revolution are always the topics of discussion. In this direction, quantum computing technologies and their emergence in near future are discussed most. It is expected that quantum computing technologies will reach to people by 2020 and therefore, this article presents how quantum computing will change lives, society and the economy and a working system.

   Computing technologies in general are based on a series of assumptions:

·   A technological society could eventually achieve the capability of creating a computer simulation that is indistinguishable from reality to the inhabitants of the simulation.

·   Such a society would not do this once or twice. They would create many such simulations.

·   Left to run long enough the societies within the simulations would eventually be able to create their own simulations, also indistinguishable from reality to the sub-simulations inhabitants.

Certain difficult tasks that have long been thought impossible (or “intractable”) for classical computers will be achieved quickly and efficiently by a quantum computer. Quantum computers will be millions of times more powerful than conventional computers and quantum computing could lead to huge improvements in machine learning, artificial intelligence, computer simulations and cryptography. All of which could fundamentally alter the way our society operates. Quantum computers will be able to outperform conventional computers in fields such as machine learning (training computers to use data to, effectively, make decisions without additional human input, to run search engines, spam email filters, voice or facial recognition technologies, or self-driving cars, for example) and simulation technologies.

Quantum computing

Quantum computing is essentially harnessing and exploiting the amazing laws of quantum mechanics to process information. A traditional computer uses long strings of “bits,” which encode either a zero or a one. A quantum computer, on the other hand, uses quantum bits, or qubits. A qubit is a quantum system that encodes the zero and the one into two distinguishable quantum states. Qubits represent atoms, ions, photons or electrons and their respective control devices that are working together to act as computer memory and a processor. But, because qubits behave quantum mechanically, we can capitalize on the phenomena of "superposition" and "entanglement." Superposition is essentially the ability of a quantum system to be in multiple states at the same time — that is, something can be “here” and “there,” or “up” and “down” at the same time. Entanglement is an extremely strong correlation that exists between quantum particles — so strong, in fact, that two or more quantum particles can be inextricably linked in perfect unison, even if separated by great distances. The particles remain perfectly correlated even if separated by great distances. The particles are so intrinsically connected, they can be said to “dance” in instantaneous, perfect unison, even when placed at opposite ends of the universe. These quantum effects are extremely useful to the future of computing and communications technology. Thanks to superposition and entanglement, a quantum computer can process a vast number of calculations simultaneously. Whereas a classical computer works with ones and zeros, a quantum computer will have the advantage of using ones, zeros and “superpositions” of ones and zeros.

Current status

These qubits could be made of photons, atoms, electrons, molecules or perhaps something else. But qubits are notoriously tricky to manipulate, since any disturbance causes them to fall out of their quantum state (or “decohere”). Decoherence is the Achilles heel of quantum computing, but it is not insurmountable. The field of quantum error correction examines how to stave off decoherence and combat other errors. While quantum computers have been theoretically demonstrated to have incredible potential, and scientists are working around the world to realize that potential, there is much work to be done before quantum computers hit the market. There are quantum computers already, but not of sufficient power to replace classical computers. While practical quantum technologies are already emerging — including highly effective sensors, actuators and other devices — a true quantum computer that outperforms a classical computer is still years away. Theorists are continually figuring out better ways to overcome decoherence, while experimentalists are gaining more and more control over the quantum world through various technologies and instruments. The pioneering work being done today is paving the way for the coming quantum era.

Potential applications

Quantum computers will be able to efficiently simulate quantum systems. it will allow to study, in remarkable detail, the interactions between atoms and molecules. This could help us design new drugs and new materials, such as superconductors that work at room temperature. Another of the many tasks for which the quantum computer is inherently faster than a classical computer is at searching through a space of potential solutions for the best solution. Researchers are constantly working on new quantum algorithms and applications. But the true potential of quantum computers likely hasn’t even been imagined yet.  The future uses of quantum computers are bound only by imagination. Quantum technologies offer ultra-secure communications, sensors of unprecedented precision and computers that are exponentially more powerful than any supercomputer for a given task. These technologies are destined to fundamentally change our lives and the first commercially available quantum devices are only now beginning to emerge. Quantum computing has the capability to unlock answers to some of humanity's most pressing questions that are presently unsolvable with current computing technologies. It is expected that in less than ten years quantum computers will begin to outperform everyday computers, leading to breakthroughs in artificial intelligence, the discovery of new pharmaceuticals and beyond. The very fast computing power given by quantum computers has the potential to disrupt traditional businesses and challenge our cyber-security. Businesses need to be ready for a quantum future because it's coming. The technology could herald radical changes for the following areas, to name a few:

·     Safer airplanes—lockheed Martin plans to use its D-Wave to test jet software that is currently too complex for classical computers.

·     Discover distant planets—quantum computers will be able to analyze the vast amount of data collected by telescopes and seek out               Earth-like planets.

·     Win elections—campaigners will comb through reams of marketing information to best exploit individual voter preferences.

·    Boost GDP—hyper-personalized advertising, based on quantum computation, will stimulate consumer spending.

·   Detect cancer earlier—computational models will help determine how diseases develop.

·   Help automobiles drive themselves—Google is using a quantum computer to design software that can distinguish cars from landmarks.

·    Reduce weather-related deaths—precision forecasting will give people more time to take cover.

·    Cut back on travel time—sophisticated analysis of traffic patterns in the air and on the ground will forestall bottlenecks and snarls.

·   Develop more effective drugs—by mapping amino acids, for example, or analyzing DNA-sequencing data, doctors will discover and design superior drug-based treatments.


Developed countries are investing in large amounts in the development of quantum technologies in order to become the epicenters of this technology revolution in near future.  Quantum computers are soon going to be affecting our everyday lives. However, quantum computing might struggle to impact everyday life is that it may be suppressed by those opposed to changes it might bring.