IBM made history this month for being the first company to deliver quantum computing to the Cloud. The tech company encourages researchers and science enthusiasts alike to test out its platform and provide feedback that could bring useful quantum processing to the world. (via IBM)


Can you imagine a world where computer processing mimics the natural world? Science and technology are currently limited by binary computing. Some molecular structures, like caffeine, are impossible to duplicate with current computing technology, limiting pharmaceutical and other technological innovation. But quantum computing might solve all of that – and you can help.


Scientists at IBM have been working on a five-qubit quantum computer for some time now. Quantum computing in theory would mean the next era of the Digital Age. We are coming close to the reaching the maximum potential of our current computing technology, based on Moore’s Law, and quantum technology hopes to solve problems that are impossible to overcome with current technology.


In short, quantum computer would allow us to artificially simulate the way in which nature regulates growth. To be able to simulate the growth of a plant digitally is the beginning of an era where medicine can better align with the natural world, and support healthier living for billions of people on the planet. That reality is a long way away, but IBM recently released its quantum computing platform to the Cloud, in the hopes of accelerating that process.



An IBM researcher using the Cloud-based platform

The reality of using the platform is like using a binary computer in the 1980s. Unless you’re familiar with computing algorithms and functions, navigating IBM’s five-qubit Cloud computer might seem a bit archaic, and that’s OK. It’s not about what it can do now, but what it can tell researchers about how quantum computer process information – hence why they need lots and lots of user information.


Researchers, scientists, and science enthusiasts are encouraged to use the platform to execute different functions. The more use the platform gets, the better IBM quantum researchers will understand how the organic computer processes information, which will set the stage for developing more enhanced quantum computers that can fulfill our theoretical ideals for what the technology can do (and, of course, define what it cannot).


The Cloud platform is called the IBM Quantum Experience. If you want in, you’ll have to apply for entrance, but it’s free. Users can work with individual quantum bits, execute algorithms, and watch tutorials and interviews with some of the brightest minds in quantum computers, to gain a better understanding of the technology and its future.



IBM’s quantum computer, which must maintain extremely cold temperatures to keep qubits alive


IBM researchers hope the platform informs the development of the first universal quantum computer. The development of such a platform would revolutionize the internet, allowing for the fastest, most secure connections to date. The technology would open the door to the next era of technological advancement, and would revolutionize medicine, including finding a solution to the virus riddle. 


Anyone interested in tinkering on the platform can find more information about the IBM Quantum Experience, and IBM’s quantum research initiative here.


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