What is quantum computing and why does the future of Earth depend on it?

Computing power is reaching a crisis point. If we continue to follow a trend in place since computers were introduced, by 2040 we will not have the capability to power all of the machines in the world. Unless we can crack quantum computing.

Quantum computers promise faster speeds and stronger security than their classical counterpart and scientists have been striving to create a quantum computer for decades. But what is quantum computing and why have we not achieved it yet?

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Quantum information is teleported from Earth into orbit for the first time

Quantum information has been teleported from Earth into orbit for the first time ever, in a breakthrough towards developing a global quantum network.

Cracking entanglement at long distances is crucial to developing a network for quantum-encrypted communication and quantum computing. Now, with the publication of two new papers, a team of researchers in China has brought us closer to this goal.

Read more on WIRED

Physicists ‘breed’ largest ever Schrödinger’s cat – and it could help unlock the quantum world

Physicists have created the largest experimental version of Schrödinger’s cat – or the quantum superposition of two states – to date, and they believe the set-up could be used to test the limits of quantum mechanics.

The famous thought experiment, proposed by Erwin Schrödinger in 1935, consists of a cat inside a box with a radioactive substance and a flask of poison. The radiation and poison could both kill the cat but we can’t see inside. As a result, the cat is considered both dead and alive until the box is opened and its state can be seen.

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‘Impossible’ state of matter made of ‘time crystals’ has been created in a lab

A bizarre new state of matter, known as a time crystal, has been created in the lab for the first time. While some may associate the word ‘crystal’ with crystal balls and jewellery, in scientific terms a crystal is a material that has a repeating atomic structure.

This means if you started at one atom, and looked along any direction you chose, you would see a repeating pattern of other atoms. This structure happens a lot in nature, for example in snowflakes, salt or diamonds.

Now, researchers have created a completely new type of crystal, a time crystal, which repeats its pattern in time rather than space.

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Inside the weird world of quantum computers

In a world where we are relying increasingly on computing, to share our information and store our most precious data, the idea of living without computers might baffle most people.

But if we continue to follow the trend that has been in place since computers were introduced, by 2040 we will not have the capability to power all of the machines around the globe, according to a recent report by the Semiconductor Industry Association.

Read more on WIRED

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