Quantum Computing Breakthrough
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Quantum Computing Breakthrough

If you are among the group of people who either are
really into quantum physics, or people who have used a computer, there’s some
big news this week. But it took place on a very small scale. researchers at the
University of New South Wales in Sydney, have just created a kind of quantum
logic circuit out of silicon, clearing the way for actual -were not just talking
about the many- where we can actually build one now: quantum computers.
Quantum computers are exciting because they could carry out multiple computations at once. This won’t make browsing the internet any faster, but it will, for example, let
drug companies test all of the possible outcomes of different chemical
combinations at the same time, which could make discovering new drug
treatments exponentially faster. But how would a computer like that work?
Well, the fundamentals would be kind of the same as they are now. The computer or phone or tablet
you’re using right now renders data in binary bits. Bits are
binary because they can only be in one of two states; one or zero. So if you have
two bits they can be in any of the following positions. 00 01 11 or 10. Those
are all of the four combinations you can make out of two bits. But while each bit
can be in any of those positions, they’re only in one of them at a time. In a
quantum computer, two bits could be in all four of those positions
at once. Now! how in the name of Schrodingers cat, is that possible? well if you’ve ever heard of doctor
Schrodingers’s famous thought experiment, the same logic that applies to the cat,
applies here. In conventional computers, bits are encoded by circuits that are
either on or off, 1 or 0, by using an electrical current, which is just a flow
of electrons. But quantum computers could use quantum bits called qubits, by using a
single electron. And unlike a digital circuit an electron can be doing all
sorts of things at once. A single-electron for example might either
be spinning in alignment with the nearest magnetic field or spinning
perpendicular to it. But until you measure the electron, it’s actually doing both at
the same time. It doesn’t have a defined state. This is called quantum
superposition. Now, you still have to measure this spin to get a value for that
qubit, so you’re still going to get a 1 or a 0. But by measuring it in parallel, you can
get multiple values for a single qubit at the same time. So with two qubits
wired together you could get four values and if you have three qubits you can
have eight, and so on. But guess what? Making actual circuits with qubits is
incredibly hard. What the New South Wales team managed to do is build on all of these ideas to create a quantum logic gate. qubits that could interact with each
other. logic gates are the basis of any digital circuit, they take data from bits
apply programmed logic, to the information and then output new data
based on the results. So the team took the existing technology in a silicon
microchip, and reinvented its transistor. The tiny switch that turns off and on to
create ones and zeros. But instead of being controlled by a current or a flow of
electrons, each transistor basically trapped a single electron and stored it
spins as information. They then use microwaves and electrodes in the chip, to
change the spin of one electron, and therefore the information in that qubit.
That information then change the state of the qubit that it was connected to. The
result was a sort of quantum if/then command, where the state of 1 qubit
depended on the state of the other. The researchers have worked out how to scale
up this design from two qubits, to hundreds or potentially millions. And they’ve patented
this design based on the same manufacturing methods that are used to
make microchips today. So quantum physics is weird, but quantum computing would be
amazing. Thank you for watching this sci-show news, brought to you by Audible, which is
giving away free audiobook to sci-show viewers. Check out audible.com/scishow
where you can download books like the pleasure of finding things out, the best
short works of Richard P Fineman or practically any other book for free. go to audible.com/scishow to learn more.


  • Sirellyn Y

    He forgot to mention how a quantum computer could bypass all current encryption methods. Meaning the first person with a slightly powerful one would be able to treat all encrypted information anyone on the net as unencrypted.

  • pumpkinpie78

    This is crazy but it is how the future will be possible. I'm talking AI, space travel, etc. Let's take one aspect – communication. Let's assume there was a very advanced civilization that was not bound to just one planet but this civilization's sphere of control span an entire galaxy with fleets of spaceships and colonies all over the galaxy. How will it communicate? Internet? Not possible. Conventional radio waves? Too slow. No no no, they would use quantum computing that employs quantum entanglement – instantaneous transfer of information across the galaxy!

  • Tyler Stone

    Oo That was one of the best explanations of Quantum computing I've ever heard. I'm a graduating senior in CSE right now, and I have 1 question: Is it probabilistic? Sure if you had 2 qubits, and you measured then in parallel 4 times, you could get {00,01,10,11}, but isn't it also possible to get a same measurement twice? Is it possible to force a measurement value? Because if not, then it's possible you could get {11,11,10,11}, and if you scale that up into the millions, you've got an almost zero chance of ever actually being able to get EVERY possible combination, unless you want to have some amount of measurements dependent on the number of qubits, probably with some ugly/gross/inefficient function, or redundantly repeat the fixed number of parallel measurements an obscene number of times looking for those last 3 possible combinations that you haven't seen yet, each with a 1/(2^n) probability of being found. Not that if you're willing to settle for less than perfect precision, which would be extremely easy to do, this could most definitely have its incredible speedups, but then this would undergo the same problem, especially at large scales, as the current infamous Global Maxima problem in Artificial Intelligence (my focused area over the past year): Sure you'll get an answer, but you have no way of knowing for sure if there's a better one that exists without brute force (or being very clever).

  • Terra Florim

    Best quantum computing video I've seen. Even with Veritasium's stupid chinese lantern costume, he still could not explain it properly.

  • pinoy skeptic

    computes we use today will be like abacus once quantum computers are commercialized, and kids in the future will laugh at us for using digital computers

  • SerpentStare

    Quantum physics IS weird and tends to feel deeply intuitively wrong, but I presume that's because I don't know enough about it.

  • snake698

    Please all of you play quantum moves! It's a game in which you help make better prototypes of quantum computers (you are a laser beam and you have to push the electron's info to de designed area). That way you'll help science!

  • Петя Табуреткин

    I have watched dozens of videos about quantum computer and i still don't understand how would you make an output to send an electron into a gate? Is it just the same current with clocks?

  • Jack Archer

    isn't it cool how electronic computing started with big machines gettin' smaller while quantum computing is starting from little machines getting bigger?

  • brendan Allen

    so theoretically, with a quantum computer you could essentially break any password encoded thing by sending every possible value of what the password is or could be.

  • MegaCake1234

    These explanations of quantum mechanics I keep seeing might be fundamentally accurate, but they do not portray purpose at all, and only talk about the physics, never the actual workings.

    This would be an example of how it would work if I was right (as in from what I understand about computing and constantly being told about qubits when I look them up):

    For every qubit you add you double the resulting byte, so you can basically get 64 bits out of 6 qubits, except you can modify multiple bits all at the same time, and either have them all represent one specific piece of data or multiple separate pieces of data. This means you can perform multiple calculations on this byte at the same time to get multiple different answers at the same time (which is probably the reason you'd not want it for commercial use, most commercial use requires straightforward single answer results, multiple possible answer calculations would likely tank performance)

    Just to point out, I'm aware I like fucked my understand, but this would at least be a better way to explain it then what everyone keeps saying (This paragraph was made with computer engineering in mind, if I had the right idea, I could easily also convert this for non-computer people)

  • John Liu

    I never truly understand how this can be applied to computers. If data can be two at the same time, won't it corrupt the data (unless your're really luck)?

  • JackassBauer1

    My computer has been quantumized a long time ago… from time to time I put an half dead cat in the PC case and then it the computer's decision to keep the cat alive or to kill it, therefor making quantum decision according to Schrodinger's principle.

  • Shavono

    i think that eventually we're gonna have "quantum cards" in our computers alongside traditional hardware, such as a processor or a graphics card.

  • Odysseus

    IBM, Almaden, and others, were demonstrating these effects already with the electronic version of qbits.

    There is always a lot of hand-waving when this conversation shifts to how useful these clumsy cryo-circuits will actually be. Getting a faster probability distribution is not what is holding up most pressing computation issues.

  • Mick

    D-Wave made quantum computers in 2007… do you ever do any actual research for these fucking videos or just say random ass shit that comes to you in dreams or something?

    also, superpositions are not fact, they are predicted aspects of popular, untested, hypotheses.

  • MegaMGstudios


    um, i dont want to be picky, but its bits, not binary bits, since bit is short for BInary digiT, and binary binary digit sounds just weird

  • Jonothan Stevens

    Wait… but… what… why? I'm so confused please help. How can something that is being measured not have a set measurement.

  • ToxicTiki

    My question is, how do you know that something exists in 2 states until it is observed, if you need to observe the value to find out?

  • Robert Hambrook

    I have a hard time with understanding how the position of an electron is useful. My understanding is that electrons are like bees buzzing around a hive. How is it useful to measure one "bees" position in a cloud of bees? How do you control that one "bee" in order to make it do something you want it to do? How do you make that bee keep doing that something until you come back to it and see what it is doing? How do you know it is doing what you told it and not just part of its natural behaviour. How do you measure multiple bees at once and get anything useful? It seems to me you are trying to measure chaos. I am not a scientist just an everyday person trying to understand the concept.

  • thomas barlow

    You know what Hank???
    I like to think of myself as a pretty knowledgeable person but I can't even wrap my head around all this quantum malarkey. Seems like black magic to me lol

  • TheSpecialistGamerX2

    I love quantum computers as they are an obvious and wonderful example of how very crazy scientific discoveries (like quantum super positioning (they originally found out about this by replicating Newton's rings with a single photon)) are useful to humanity (I am highly likely to head the path of a theoretical physics when i finish school (not necessarily because I'm good at it, but also because I have a passion for it))

  • Ian Hollis

    My first thought was the use of this in relation to Artificial Intelligence. Yay! Here comes the singularity!

  • Arnold Van Kampen

    It is now August 2017 and afaik so far no quantum computer broke into any prime number encrypted connection, nor did any one blow up the blockchain based cryptocurrencies.

  • John Jackson

    If the Qubits are both 0 & 1 at the same time, how the hell do you do any meaningful computation with them? Surely its a case of GIGO – Garbage in, Garbage out.

  • LMacNeill

    Quantum computers will absolutely ruin current encryption technology. All you'd need to break a 2048-bit encryption key is a 2048-bit quantum computer. It can find the decryption key via "brute force" — by looking at all of the possibilities simultaneously. So in the tiniest fraction of a second, it could break any encryption we have today. Unlike the computers we have right now, which would need a tiny fraction of a second to look at one possible key, and then would have to do that 2^2048 times — which is longer than the universe has been around.

    We'd better have some sort of "quantum encryption" ready to go, once quantum computers are perfected. Otherwise there will be zero privacy anywhere.

  • Raul Corrêa

    When will people stop saying the non-sense that quantum computers do multiple computations at once???
    You should have some serious quantum information theorist as an adviser for the next videos on quantum stuff.

  • Someone Else's Name

    Except rapidly searching servers is one of quantum computers potential uses. So it will make browsing the internet faster, eventually.

  • Sariel Reigns Сариэль Царствует

    China transferred data of a subatomic particle to space , with it's quantum​ Satellite this year

  • cak01vej

    Hey, I think I got the equations for the logic system at 2:31 : (¬A∨¬C)∧(B∨D). This means that the solutions are

  • theblackdeath357

    So if I take one arm and spin it in one direction and spin my other arm in the other direction, then do the same with my legs at the same time, then randomly change the direction of a random limb at a random time, am I in a quantum superposition?

  • CLow

    Stop the disinformation and stay with the facts pls. There is a new internet on the horizon, so the surfing the internet statement is not fact.

    Also these computers have been used for many years. Again, stick to facts. Also there are not millions of Qbits. Not yet. That will take many more years of progress! Just over 500 was the last I found. See D-Wave 2.

  • N G

    Can you analyze facts and info about Quantum Energy Pendant? People are selling these kinds of things, saying it has some negative ion blah blah blah…

  • NeilIsBored2

    Everything is both a sandwich and not a sandwich until observed to be one or the other. Your move, schrodinger.

  • TBA Pending

    I've known about quantum computers for some time now. The scary part is quantum computers + bitcoin mining. Then it hits me, RIP bitcoin mining rigs. And even worse, the "what if" craziness of "quantum computing/mechanics", I think this will have the potential to break bitcoin
    "unhackable" feature. I sense the imminent demise of blockchain technology when quantum computing goes mainstream.

  • Joe Deglman

    So you are saying that according to quantum, we can never know the position or orientation of an electron, but we have found a way to control them to get them into the position and orientation that we want. Sounds like the uncertainty principle is invalid and electrons actually do have a defined position and orientation. We just haven't figured how out to test random ones yet. Sounds like if we can figure out how the Aether interacts with them we can get them to do what we want them to do.

  • johneygd

    But if on is yes and off is no, then it means that if a qbut is in a both on & off state atonce then it means thaf it actually say’s i don’t know, wich explains why qbits are so unstable because they might can’t slways give & hold the right ansure!!!

  • Joey Cook

    I don't like criticizing SciShow, but that one almost looked like Hank couldn't get through it fast enough for fear of revealing that he had no idea how this s**t works lol

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