Quantum Supremacy: Can A Computer Do A Difficult Task In Just 200 Seconds?
If you are thinking about the title’s answer, well, it’s a yes! Google in 2019 successfully developed a quantum computer that did a task in 200 seconds, a job that could have apparently taken a supercomputer 10,000 years to complete! Reportedly, Google used a 53-qubit processor to generate a sequence of millions of numbers and Google’s quantum computer Sycamore took just 200 seconds to complete the task! Well, is this an achievement? If yes, then how important? Keep on reading as we break down the meaning of Quantum Supremacy!
Let’s dive right into it!
What’s The Deal With Quantum Supremacy?
In simpler terms, Quantum Supremacy refers to a programmable quantum device that can solve a problem that would take any classical computer years to complete. From the engineering point of view, it involves the building of a powerful quantum computer and the task of finding a problem that can be solved by that quantum computer. Since quantum computers don’t look like the laptop or computer you have, instead, they represent stacks of central processing units with millions of untangled wires.
You do know that all classic and conventional computers take information in bits or 1s or 0s. However, quantum computers compute in quantum bits (qubits) and work on the properties of quantum physics. In this scheme, quantum computer processors can process information in 1s and 0s simultaneously, a state known as quantum superposition. This enables a quantum computer to solve a problem involving a lot of data, a task that is even beyond the capabilities of the most powerful supercomputers. Scientists have been working on the idea of quantum computers since the 1990s, but the machines have come into being from around 2011.
How Is The Technology Beneficial For The world?
Well, ever since the digital revolution came in, the problem of processing a huge amount of data in the minimum possible time has been around us, and quantum computers seek to eliminate precisely that! For example – if you have millions of bank accounts to scan to look for a particular individual, a classical computer will take a million steps to scan each and every profile, and quantum computer might take just a thousand steps to complete the task, which technically means that it would consume much less energy than conventional computers. Quantum computers, in theory, can surpass all limits of handling complex mathematical problems.