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Quantum Computing: The Global Race for Computing Supremacy

By Dick Weisinger

The race to build the first viable quantum computer is on, and the race is global.

In the US there are tech companies like IBM, Microsoft and Intel. Universities and startups are jumping in too. In October 2019, the Trump administration pledged $1.2 billion for quantum computing research. The European Union has pledged $1 billion over the next ten years. The Chinese have invested billions of dollars. India has joined the race too.

And the goal? The potential benefits of quantum computing are many. Quantum computing will be able to solve problems of many orders of magnitude more complex than are possible with existing computers.

The types of problems that would see benefit include:

  • Artificial Intelligence of a much higher order than is currently possible.
  • Molecular modeling to help with developing advances in energy, pharmacology and biology.
  • Cryptography that could enable security coding that would be impossible to hack.
  • Financial and economic modeling for both investors and governments.
  • Weather forecasting much more accurate than currently possible.
  • Particle Physics research.

The Department of the Army said that “the race to conquer the quantum domain is among the most fiercely competitive in today’s world of technology.”

David Reilly, who leads Microsoft’s quantum lab at the University of Sydney, Australia, said that “this is a marathon and it’s only 10 minutes into the marathon.”

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