Understanding: Quantum Computers

What is quantum computing? How do quantum computers work? How are they different from classical computers? How Quantum mechanics and computing are related?

The most talked about technological advancements nowadays are Artificial Intelligence and Quantum Computing. The concept of Quantum computers goes back to the 1980s when Richard Feynman found that the classical computers that we use do not have the required computational power to solve quantum mechanical problems. A quantum computer is basically a computer that works on the principles of Quantum mechanics. Let us see how.

How do Quantum computers work?

The classical computers which we use stores their information in bits. That is to say 0 and 1. If I have two bits then I can have combinations -00, 01, 10, and 11. And this is how all the calculations take place in classical computers. A binary bit can either be 0 or 1. But that is not the case with quantum computers.

Quantum computers on the other hand use Qubits. A Qubit is a particle (could be any quantum particle-electron, photon for example). Now because they work according to the principles of quantum mechanics. A Qubit exits in a state of superposition. Which means it can have values 0 and 1 both at the same time. Which was not the case with classical computers.  Now if I have two qubits that are entangled and because they have superposition states. I will have 4 bits of information from 2 qubits. From 3 qubits I will have 8 bits of information and so on.

It turns out that N (Quantum qubits) =2^ (N) classical bits. So if I have 300 qubits, then that`s 2^300 bits of information. That is more than the number of atoms in the universe. That is why quantum computers have superiority over classical computers.

Application of Quantum Computing

The power of quantum computing is unparalleled and so are their applications. We can run simulations to improve weather forecasting and changing climate by simulating the earth`s atmosphere. We can train more powerful AI models. We can have encrypted data which will be impossible for hackers to decrypt, this would be a major advancement in data protection and privacy.  

However, it is very early to say that quantum computers will replace classical computers. Because classical computers are still best at doing tasks like running application software, web browsers, opening a document, etc. Quantum computing is better suited for tasks like encrypting data and running simulations. And also they require a special environment to function. Quantum computers are still in their early stages of development, and it is not yet clear how they will be used in the future.

3 thoughts on “Understanding: Quantum Computers

  1. Hello. This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading this post reminds me of my previous room mate. He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this page to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing.

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