Some technical papers for interested folks!

Lots of hits today! To help everybody understand what we’re doing I’ve linked here to some great scientific papers that review AQC & some algorithmic stuff. They are all pretty easy to follow as these things go.

Finding cliques by quantum adiabatic evolution

A Quantum Adiabatic Evolution Algorithm Applied to Random Instances of an NP-Complete Problem

Scalable Architecture for Adiabatic Quantum Computing of NP-Hard Problems

Scalable Superconducting Architecture for Adiabatic Quantum Computation

Hope these are helpful!

20 thoughts on “Some technical papers for interested folks!

  1. Ah, the good old days spent reading those papers in the office. I’ll be watching what happens next week.

    BTW, you’ve been slashdotted.

  2. Whoa . . . so over my head it’s not funny! Although I really liked physics in college (and I do remember the word “adiabatic”) I actually have an art degree . . .

  3. I’ve read some papers about QC and it really makes my head hurt with all these Dirac notations and huge matrices.

    Do you have anything more easily digestible in from a computer programmer point of view? Something along the lines of a toy statically typed programming language (I’d prefer imperative to functional) designed to show off the features of a quantum computer but with readable syntax and then implementing a simple algorithm (that performs better than classic computers) and analyzing the time and space complexity. All this written with programmers in mind as opposed to theoretical physicists.

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  5. I’m quite curious to see how much proof will be given during the demonstration that it’s actually a quantum computer performing the calculations, and not a classical computer simulating 16 qubits…

  6. Geordie,

    I am glad to call myself one of the proud love-the-smell-of-my-own-flatulence crowd that is part of Dr. Aaronson’s lay-readership. I had the great pleasure of reading a fascinating jermiad about D-Wave’s claims entitled anti-Hype FAQ (and comments) from the upstart anti-theorists and was finally provided clear answers to questions plaguing at least this QIP theorist, e.g., “But isn’t factoring an NP-complete problem?” I chuckled with uncertainty in response to his question . . . I am one of the 1% of QIP (and yes I am Ivy-League) people who know of his blog; but I hate to admit it, I didn’t know the answer! Fortunately I read further (the answer is “No”) and also found out that we are also not on the verge of faster than light travel. This due to Einstein. Therefore the second law of thermodynamics, therefore P != NP.

    ANYWAY . . . . What puzzled me was how they are able to make commentary about the parallel universe that is the real world from their stuffy microcosm of academia (i.e., how have they achieved inter-universe communication if they have not built a QC?). Between you and me, I had a chip on my shoulder too, but then I ate it. I believe it was Dewey Finn in the epic movie “School of Rock” who once ruminated: “Those that can’t do, teach.” So if they have such concern about how your contraption works, I would suggest you offer to them to submit resumes and interview for a visiting scientist position. You know, put-up or shut-up. Alas, in the end, it is you who must appease me and my fellow aca-demigods and I must agree with my fellow fart-sniffers that it is very unlikely that you will succeed.

    Warmest Regards,

  7. Sorry, but I hope you guys don’t succeed. If you scale up to the size required to break cryptographic problems, and modern cryptography falls by the wayside, then information networks turn into a tool useable solely for oppression. If there are no one-way problems, then the whole ability of anonymous speech on the internet goes away, leaving the world once again at the mercy of those in power. Only this time, the existance of a global network will only further the goal of tracking the enemies of those in power and stifling any dissent.

    Even if you can come up with some sort of one-way problem in the quantum world, you’re still going to have a gap for a long while where quantum computers are used to break crypto but aren’t in the hands of joe average in order to actually encrypt using the new method.

    Don’t tell me quantum cryptography is the answer. Quantum cryptography is akin to symmetric key cryptography – you need predistributed links. This only helps people with lots of resources (those in power) become more entrenched. It does nothing for anybody else.

    I’m not saying you should stop your research. I’m merely saying that for the sake of humanity, I hope that quantum computation isn’t possible on the level that it is thought to be.

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  9. check out for a lengthy interview with David Deutsch the father of quantum computers. I interpret his statements as build it and see if works. There is no controversy for him.

    I was at the Mountain View event and liked it. It helped me to better understand the Seth Lloyd papers.

    My blog ( has collected several of the mainstream and blog reactions to the event and has more of my own impressions. I think it is great work and await next year when the 512 and 1024 qubit machines will make it very clear what kind of performance gains there are.

  10. I attended the Vancouver presentation. Unfortunately Q&A was cutoff before I could get my answers. Lot of time wasted on the phluff at the beginning cut into Q&A time if you ask me. Are the programming details being deliberately obfuscated or is this just an oversight? For example, how many significant bits are available above noise to programmed qbit bias and link strength? Also, since all 16 qbits are not fully interconnected how does one guarantee an optimal solution or at least optimal best effort using the current machine? When will a fully interconnected machine be available and what size will it be? What is the cycle time for reliably convergent solution in microseconds? I have a constraint problem with solutions obtained by greedy algorithm and would like to check solution quality. Is this a valid application? Will there be some period of time where interested parties can evaluate their own programs on a non-trivial AQC for no fee or low fee? Please provide more practical details…

  11. @Peter

    I agree that the stuff at the beginning was pretty dull. But, you can see that that was mainly due to the fact that Haig (CEO) doesnt fully understand the technology(“It’s kinda like magic”). However, you could see they had him speak for the benefit of D-Wave’s long term investors/non-technical crowd who attended.

    I hope you had the chance to stay hang around after the Q&A session. Geordie made himself available to answer further questions from the audience members.

    All in all I enjoyed the event very much. And what a great place for the event (Children’s Science Museum). Nothing like a bunch of hands on science demos and a full bar!

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