Google moves closer to a universal quantum computerI post this for the benefit of those who think that quantum computers have already been built. As you can see, Google is really itching to claim the first quantum computer, and it hopes to do so in the next couple of years.
Combining the best of analog and digital approaches could yield a full-scale multipurpose quantum computer.
For 30 years, researchers have pursued the universal quantum computer, a device that could solve any computational problem, with varying degrees of success. ...
This new approach should enable a computer with quantum error correction, says Lidar. Although the researchers did not demonstrate that here, the team has previously shown how that might be achieved on its nine-qubit device2.
“With error correction, our approach becomes a general-purpose algorithm that is, in principle, scalable to an arbitrarily large quantum computer,” says Alireza Shabani, another member of the Google team.
The Google device is still very much a prototype. But Lidar says that in a couple of years, devices with more than 40 qubits could become a reality.
“At that point,” he says, “it will become possible to simulate quantum dynamics that is inaccessible on classical hardware, which will mark the advent of ‘quantum supremacy’.”
I doubt it, but we shall see. Google has done better with artificial intelligence than I expected, but worse in robotics. I am predicting that it does not demonstrate quantum supremacy.