The human brain is often described as a powerful computer, a metaphor that leads many experts to fear AI could one day become sentient. But what if developers seeking to create machines that think are barking up the wrong tree? Our minds, according to some, are actually quantum computers. And, if that’s true, today’s deep learning techniques will never lead to general artificial intelligence (the singularity) without a serious hardware upgrade. All of the most advanced classical supercomputers on the planet combined won’t hold a candle to the 100 qubit quantum sytems that are on the way. Google is confident it’ll reach quantum…
During GDC 2018 this week we got something of a blast from the past as we checked out Shift Quantum from Fishing Cactus, which is set to be published by Red Panda on Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Playstation 4, and PC. The origins of the game date back to over a decade ago with the original Shift Flash game, which you can still play today. The main hook is that each level is made up of black areas and white areas, and pressing the shift key would switch which area would be the “active” one. So say the ground was black and the sky was white, hitting the shift key would flip things so the white would become the ground and the black become the sky. This is used to solve various puzzle platforming levels, and that original Shift even made its way to iPhone way back in 2009 and was a perfect fit for the touchscreen. Shift Quantum takes that defining shifting mechanic and builds it out with new levels, a fantastic new art style, a compelling narrative, and even a fully featured level editor. While sadly a mobile version of Shift Quantum isn’t in the cards, it’s at least coming to the Nintendo Switch as well as the other major consoles and PC, so check out our hands-on time with the Switch version below and look for a launch in the next coming months.
The release of Firefox 57 ‘Quantum’ last year included several major changes to the browser’s structure, including a new CSS engine known as Quantum CSS (formerly called ‘Stylo’). Simply put, Quantum CSS is the browser component that figures out what styles should be applied to what elements. Because modern sites often use thousands of lines of CSS with many overriding styles, the feature was designed to take advantage of multiple CPU cores, giving Firefox 57 a performance boost over previous versions.
Mozilla today announced the beta release of Firefox Quantum for Enterprise, which lands on Wednesday. This is the latest and greatest version of the open source browser, but with several tweaks geared for business users. The enterprise version of Firefox Quantum isn’t vastly dissimilar to the standard browser aimed at home users. What distinguishes this is the purported ease with which it can be configured and deployed across a company’s IT infrastructure. Firefox Quantum for Enterprise comes with administrative controls baked-in, and allow administrators to deploy pre-configured versions of the browser. So, an administrator can ensure Firefox has certain features…
Apple engineers will lead a collection of unusual panel discussions at Display Week, a Los Angeles-based symposium and trade show running from May 20-25 this year, MacRumors discovered today. Apple’s participation is atypical in two ways: Its management typically does not allow engineers to take public roles in events, and several of the topi…Read More Apple – VentureBeat
Given all the buzz, you might be surprised you don’t have your very own quantum computer yet. The field of quantum computing — in which a processor handles a range of inputs and outputs at once — has pushed new bounds over the last few years. But quantum computers are still largely used for research. For users, the day in which quantum computers are ubiquitous, or even useful, has yet to arrive.
We still aren’t there yet. But today, we get a step closer — Google unveiled Bristlecone, its latest quantum processor, and its most powerful to date.
Here’s what you need to know about Bristlecone.
It’s Packing A Lot of Qubits
Qubits, or quantum bits, are the basic units of information in a quantum processor. The more qubits a processor has, the more information it can process at once, and the more powerful it is overall.
The various companies pursuing quantum hardware are always keen to brag about how many qubits their latest system possesses, and though that’s not the deciding factor of a quantum processor’s functionality, it’s definitely important.
It Needs To Make Fewer Errors
In spite of recent advances, today’s qubits are still unstable, and hardware needs to be sturdy to run them. Quantum computers need to keep their processors extremely cold and protect them from external shocks. Even accidental sounds can cause the computer to make mistakes.
To operate in even remotely real-world settings, quantum processors need to have an error rate of less than 0.5 percent for every two qubits. Google’s best has be 0.6 percent using its much smaller 9-qubit hardware. The blog post didn’t state Bristlecone’s error rate, but Google has made it clear that the company strives to improve upon its previous results.To drop the error rate for its high-qubit processor, engineers need to figure out how software, control electronics, and the processor itself can work alongside one another without causing errors.
It’s A Serious Push For Quantum Greatness
Researchers are working so hard to bring us quantum computers because they believe the devices will inevitably outperform classical supercomputers. The term “quantum supremacy” refers to the prospect of a quantum computer solving a problem that a classical system cannot. Some researchers suspect this could happen when quantum computers reach 100 qubits. When it does happen, quantum supremacy will be a “watershed moment” for the field, according to Google’s blog post on Bristlecone.
Bristlecone doesn’t quite get us there. But the Google team is “cautiously optimistic” that the new processor could hasten the process. And the result will mean quantum computers could then become “functionally useful,” The Next Web writes.
Like every other major tech company, Google has designs on being the first to achieve quantum supremacy — the point where a quantum computer could run particular algorithms faster than a classical computer. Today it's announced that it believes its… Engadget RSS Feed
Microsoft has announced the first major upgrade to its Quantum Development Kit since its introduction last year. It has added several new features designed to open the platform to a wider array of developers, including support for Linux and macOS, as well as additional open source libraries. Further, the kit will be interoperable with the Python computing language. Microsoft announced the Quantum Development Kit at its Ignite conference last fall. It launched the free preview about three months later, featuring the new Q# programming language. TechNewsWorld
Quantum computers are getting popular, and all the cool publications are writing about them. But, for the most part, it’s all very serious and cautious reporting. That’s a shame, because quantum mechanics are wild and wacky. So, let’s have some fun. The world of quantum mechanics, and by extension quantum computing, is full of difficult to grasp concepts like time travel, teleportation, and parallel universes. It captivated both Einstein and Schrodinger and many of its secrets still allude scientists today. That’s because none of it makes any damn sense. Even though we’re already making them, nobody quite knows how they work.…