Posts Tagged ‘Honeywell’

Pushing Quantum Onto the Cloud

September 4, 2020

Did you ever imagine the cloud would become your quantum computing platform, a place where you would run complex quantum algorithms requiring significant specialized processing across multi-qubit machines available at a click? But that is exactly what is happening.

IBM started it a few years back by making their small qubit machines available in the cloud and even larger ones now. Today Xanadu is offering 8-qubit or 12-qubit chips, and even a 24-qubit chip in the next month or so, according to the Toronto-based company.

Xanadu quantum processor

As DancingDinosaur has previously reported, there are even more: Google reports a quantum computer lab with five machines and Honeywell has six quantum machines. D-Wave is another along with more startups, including nQ, Quantum Circuits, and Rigetti Computing.

D-Wave is another along with more startups, including nQ, Quantum Circuits, and Rigetti Computing.In September, Xanadu introduced its quantum cloud platform. This allows developers to access its gate-based photonic quantum processors with 8-qubit or 12-qubit chips across the cloud.

Photonics-based quantum machines have certain advantages over other platforms, according to the company. Xanadu’s quantum processors operate at room temperature, not low Kelvin temperatures. They can easily integrate into an existing fiber optic-based telecommunication infrastructure, enabling quantum computers to be networked. It also offers scalability and fault tolerance, owing to error-resistant physical qubits and flexibility in designing error correction codes. Xanadu’s type of qubit is based on squeezed states – a special type of light generated by its own chip-integrated silicon photonic devices, it claims.

DancingDinosaur recommends you check out Xanadu’s documentation and details. It does not have sufficient familiarity with photonics, especially as related to quantum computing, to judge any of the above statements. The company also notes it offers a cross-platform Python library for simulating and executing programs on quantum photonic hardware. Its open source tools are available on GitHub.

Late in August IBM has unveiled a new milestone on its quantum computing road map, achieving the company’s highest Quantum Volume to date. By following the link, you see that Quantum Value is a metric conceived by IBM to measure and compare quantum computing power. DancingDinosaur is not aware of any other quantum computing vendors using it, which doesn’t mean anything of course. Quantum computing is so new and so different and with many players joining in with different approaches it will be years before anadu see what metrics prove most useful. 

To come up with its Quantum Volume rating, IBM  combined a series of new software and hardware techniques to improve overall performance, IBM has upgraded one of its newest 27-qubit, systems to achieve the high Quantum Volume rating. The company has made a total of 28 quantum computers available over the last four years through the IBM Quantum Experience, which companies join to gain access to its quantum machines and tools, including its software development toolset, 

Do not confuse Quantum Volume with Quantum Advantage, the point where certain information processing tasks can be performed more efficiently or cost effectively on a quantum computer versus a conventional one. Quantum Advantage will require improved quantum circuits, the building blocks of quantum applications. Quantum Volume, notes IBM, measures the length and complexity of circuits – the higher the Quantum Volume, the higher the potential for exploring solutions to real world problems across industry, government, and research.

To achieve its Quantum Volume milestone, the company focused on a new set of techniques and improvements that used knowledge of the hardware to optimally run the Quantum Volume circuits. These hardware-aware methods are extensible and will improve any quantum circuit run on any IBM Quantum system, resulting in improvements to the experiments and applications which users can explore. These techniques will be available in upcoming releases and improvements to the IBM Cloud software services and the cross-platform open source software development kit (SDK) Qiskit. The IBM Quantum team has shared details on the technical improvements made across the full stack to reach Quantum Volume 64 in a preprint released on arXiv, today.

What is most exciting is that the latest quantum happenings are things quantum you can access over the cloud without having to cool your data center to near zero Kelvin temperatures. If you try any of these, DancingDinosaur would love to hear how it goes.

Alan Radding, a veteran information technology analyst, writer, and ghost-writer, is DancingDinosaur. Follow DancingDinosaur on Twitter, @mainframeblog, and see more of his work at http://technologywriter.com/.

D-Wave and NEC Advance Quantum Computing

June 22, 2020

IBM boasts of 18 quantum computer models, based on the number of qbits, but it isn’t the only player staking out the quantum market. Last week D-Wave, another early shipper of quantum systems, announced a joint quantum product development and marketing initiative with NEC, which made a $10 million investment in D-Wave.

D-Wave NEC Qauntum Leap

The two companies, according to the announcement,  will work together on the development of hybrid quantum/classical technologies and services that combine the best features of classical computers and quantum computers; the development of new hybrid applications that make use of those services; and joint marketing and sales go-to-market activities to promote quantum computing. Until quantum matures, expect to see more combinations of quantum and classical computing as companies try to figure out how these seemingly incompatible technologies can work together.

For example the two companies suggest that NEC and D-Wave will create practical business and scientific quantum applications in fields ranging from transportation to materials science to machine learning, using D-Wave’s Leap with new joint hybrid services. Or, the two companies might apply D-Wave’s collection of over 200 early customer quantum applications to six markets identified by NEC, such as finance, manufacturing and distribution.

“We are very excited to collaborate with D-Wave. This announcement marks the latest of many examples where NEC has partnered with universities and businesses to jointly develop various applications and technologies. This collaborative agreement aims to leverage the strengths of both companies to fuel quantum application development and business value today,” said Motoo Nishihara, Executive Vice President and CTO, NEC.

Also, NEC and D-Wave intend to create practical business and scientific quantum applications in fields ranging from transportation to materials science to machine learning, using Leap and the new joint hybrid services. The two companies also will apply D-Wave’s collection of over 200 early customer applications to six markets identified by NEC, such as finance, manufacturing and distribution. The two companies will also explore the possibility of enabling the use of NEC’s supercomputers on D-Wave’s Leap quantum cloud service.

“By combining efforts with NEC, we believe we can bring even more quantum benefit to the entire Japanese market that is building business-critical hybrid quantum applications in both the public and private sectors,” said Alan Baratz, CEO of D-Wave. He adds: ” We’re united in the belief that hybrid software and systems are the future of commercial quantum computing. Our joint collaboration will further the adoption of quantum computing in the Japanese market and beyond.”

IBM continues to be the leader in quantum computing, boasting 18 quantum computers of various qubit counts. And they are actually available for use via the Internet, where IBM keeps them running and sufficiently cold–a few degrees above absolute zero–to ensure computational stability. Quantum computers clearly are not something you want to buy for your data center.

But other companies are rushing into the market. Google operates a quantum computer lab with five machines and Honeywell has six quantum machines, according to published reports. Others include Microsoft and Intel. Plus there are startups: IonQ, Quantum Circuits, and Rigetti Computing. All of these have been referenced previously in earlier DancingDinosaur, which just hopes to live long enough to see useful quantum computing come about.

DancingDinosaur is Alan Radding, a veteran information technology analyst, writer, and ghost-writer. Follow DancingDinosaur on Twitter, @mainframeblog, and see more of his work at http://technologywriter.com/


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