An Introduction to Quantum Computing For African Youth
What I find interesting about technology today is the pace at which mathematical and scientific concepts transition into technology. A good example of this is Quantum computing, which acts as an intersection for not just maths and physics but also computer science.
What Is Quantum Computing?
In simple terms, quantum computing is a new technology that seeks to address the problems that classical computers find impossible to achieve. To do this, it borrows from the rules of quantum physics.
Quantum physics on a simpler scale is the set of rules used to study the behavior of things on an atomic/quantized level. Before this, the behavior of things around us was only studied using classical physics.
In the history of technology, storing bits using punch cards and compact disks required innovators to follow the rules of classical physics. Later on, the question then became ‘What if computers stored bits following the rules of Quantum physics?’
Hence the birth of the qubit(Quantum bit) and subsequently the Quantum computer.
Why is Quantum Computing Important?
Currently, when scientists and mathematicians encounter these complex problems they turn to classical supercomputers, which are very powerful. However, these supercomputers are not able to handle all the problems presented to them.
A good example of such a problem is modeling or trying to understand the behavior of an individual atom within a molecule. The reason why this is difficult has to do with the different interactions among the electrons in that space. If at this point you are confused, then you’ve just begun understanding the world of quantum.
If I can break down what is referred to as a complex problem, I’d have to say that just as with other problems, complex problems have variables attached, what makes them complicated is the scale of these variables. A complex problem has enough variables to ’cause a headache’ for a classical supercomputer. Thus we need a solution that can manage these variables effectively.
Resources To Study Quantum Computing
- Foundations of Python programming by ALX Africa and Udacity
- Introduction to Quantum computing by IBM
- Educational resources by google Quantum AI
- Quantum Computing Summer schools by IBM
- Introduction to Quantum Information on Coursera
Jobs in Quantum computing
To end this I’ll leave you with a tour of the Google Quantum AI campus that I am completely obsessed with.