First quantum computers need smart software

Early devices must solve real-world problems, urge Will Zeng and colleagues.

Rigetti Computing

An 8-qubit quantum processor built by Rigetti Computing.

The world is about to have its first quantum computers. The complexity and power of quantum hardware, such as ion traps and superconducting qubits, are scaling up. Investment is flooding in: from governments, through the billion-dollar European Quantum Technology Flagship Program, for example; from companies, including Google, IBM, Intel and Microsoft; and from venture-capital firms, which have funded start-ups. One such is ours, Rigetti Computing, which in June opened the first dedicated facility for making quantum integrated circuits: Fab-1 in Fremont, California. The vision is that commercial quantum- computing services will one day solve problems that used to be unimaginably hard, in areas from molecular design and machine learning to cybersecurity and logistics.1

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In Pursuit of Quantum Biology With Birgitta Whaley


As an undergraduate at Oxford University in the mid-1970s, K. Birgitta Whaley struggled to choose between chemistry and physics. Now, as a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and director of its Quantum Information and Computation Center, she doesn’t have to: Her research interests span all realms quantum, including both chemistry and physics, as well as computer science and her newest pursuit, quantum biology, where physics meets the life sciences. Leer Más



The concept of reality and the search for our ultimate reality has dogged humans ever since we stood upright and noticed the starry heavens above us. Much of our human existence is devoted to trying to make sense of our place in the universe and the role and interaction we have within that reality. Various schools of philosophical, spiritual and scientific thought now exist which attempt to explain this dominant question of our human existence. Leer Más