Error correcting the things that go wrong at the quantum computing scale

6 Oct 2017

Computing power has grown exponentially over many decades, so why is the much-promised next leap of quantum computers taking so long to arrive?

One reason is that the information in a quantum system is sensitive to error-inducing noise in a way that classical information is not. This noise is everywhere and unavoidable, arising from microscopic oscillations of atoms and electrons in all matter. So we have to invent new ways of dealing with quantum errors.

When you make a phone call in a congested network, or scratch a CD, the technology can still work: conversations remain comprehensible and music still plays.

This article appeared on the Conservation on 5 October 2017. Its author Associate Professor Thomas Stace.

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