Thursday, February 22, 2024

Chinese Deflate Quantum Hype Again

Sabine Hossenfelder is now doing short daily physics news videos, and her latest is on Bad News for Quantum Computing: Another Advantage Gone.

In short, quantum computing researchers have been claiming quantum supremacy for years. Some call it quantum advantage. However, there has never been any convincing demonstration that quantum computers have any speedup at all over conventional computers.

The latest is that IBM claimed last year to do a quantum calculation on a "noisy" quantum computer. Some thought that they had outdone Google. But a Chinese group outdid them by doing the calculation faster and better on a classical computer.

The quantum enthusiasts will argue, as usual, that this does not disprove quantum computing, and maybe a more clever experiment would show an advantage. I am waiting.


  1. While this doesn't prove quantum computing isn't a 'thing', it does prove what they are calling a quantum computer isn't very advantageous or economically viable. This is yet another indication that quantum computing isn't exactly what it purports to be.

    In a rather strange comparison, I've noticed for some time that there is a similar correlation between quantum computing and PC video games. New games are constantly coming out that heavily stress you need the latest and greatest rather expensive graphics cards (GPU), and processors (CPU). After the game has been out for a time, you notice suddenly that the same game can be played on much lower end hardware, often not requiring anything new to be purchased at all, sometimes with even better performance than the same title on higher end hardware initially. This is a clear indication that the games are not even remotely optimized at all, most likely intentionally, as this drives graphics card and new computer sales, you can tell this so because they often trumpet how you need a particular brand hardware from a particular manufacturer. This issue is almost entirely bad programming in the name of fleecing the gullible well heeled, and then once the higher end fruit has been plucked, they court the far larger but poorer low end, It's not really a lack of capable hardware, almost entirely like the what the Chinese are clearly demonstrating.

  2. To the commenter above "this doesn't prove quantum computing isn't a thing" maybe not, but that's proving a negative. The burden of proof is on THEM. It's just another nail in the coffin showing that their claim is far less reasonable than stated. If they're shown to be be wrong time and again by someone developing a classical algorithm that's just as fast as their voodoo majickal computer, than their claim loses credibility. This has happened time and time again. So the evidence that we have seen up to this point goes far more to support MY longstanding claim that quantum superposition is a fraud, quantum computing is not realizeable, and the complexity class "BQP" can be fully realized with classical algorithms, more specifically "BQP=BPP". How many times have the Chinese come out with evidence for my position? At least a half a dozen times now.

  3. Scott Aaronson argues that the burden of proof is on the quantum computing skeptics to show that it is impossible.

  4. Roger,
    Scott Aaronson would apparently not understand basic logic or rhetoric then. The burden of proof is for the existence of any said magic computer, not the non-existence of one. Pointing out that apparently such a magical quantum computer has not yet been known to have been built by humans really isn't a strain however, as if Mr. Aaronson knew of one, he would be touting it as evidence.