Entangled Things Episode 1

A gentle introduction into the fabulous world of Quantum Computing

Posted by Ciprian on February 11, 2021

So, the wait is over! Episode 1 of Entangled Things, your Quantum Computing podcast with Patrick and Ciprian, is now available for listening.

This first episode is where we lay down our vision of this podcast, we explain the rationale behind it, and we take a 30000ft view of Quantum Computing (QC). In the past few years, I've faced the challenge of providing understandable explanations of Quantum Computing to people who were merely looking the get the idea. It proved more difficult than I thought. That's because most of the concepts behind it are so counterintuitive that you almost automatically slip into math to describe them.

Patrick and I had several iterations over the topics to cover on this introductory episode (you can imagine why :) ). Eventually, it distilled to addressing the following: Why do we need QC after all? What is QC? How do we think of algorithms in QC, and why is that quite hard? Challenges of building the machines for QC Who are some of the QC players?

We start by pointing out some of the Classical Computing (CC) limitations and their impact in critical areas like materials science, agriculture, medicine, etc. That's where the promise of an approach that uses nature's way to "compute" becomes very important. Next, we introduce QC by talking about its fundamental building block, the qubit. Alongside the qubit, we introduce concepts like superposition, measurement, state collapse, and entanglement. As you might imagine, all these will be topics for multiple future episodes of our podcast.

The discussion moves then towards the difficulties of imagining and designing actual algorithms in QC. By collapsing the qubit's superposition state when a measurement occurs, nature has put a significant roadblock in front of us. Luckily, human ingenuity found ways to circle this limitation. Algorithms are not the only challenge in QC, though. The task of building the physical machines that do QC is perhaps an even more daunting one. We're discussing some of the difficulties, including the unbelievably low temperatures at which these machines operate. Finally, we're providing a glimpse into who are the major players today in the field of QC.

Enjoy our very first episode of the Entangled Things podcast! We invite you to follow us along with what promises to be a challenging, mind-bending, and hopefully entertaining journey into the fabulous world of Quantum Computing.