I could do with $100,000…but

Scott Aaronson has offered $100,000 to anyone that can show that viable quantum computers are fundamentally impossible.

The question is not a practical one, there seems many technical difficulties that have prevented the primitive quantum processors being scaled up to working quantum computers. The question is deeper than this and asks is our understanding of quantum mechanics right?

What is true is that the scaling up of quantum computers cannot be forbidden by some obvious or trivial reason within quantum mechanics. So the bet is to come up with some convincing reason why practical scaled up quantum computers cannot be realised.


Scott Aaronson’s blog

IEEE Spectrum

Scott Aaronson’s homepage

2 thoughts on “I could do with $100,000…but”

  1. I would first have to ask for a definition of ‘quantum computer’. I mean technically solid state is already quantum in its nature being that the switching mechanism employs quantum tunneling. Regardless I hope there isn’t a winner as the ideas presented are meant to increase our present state of technological advancement. If someone does find a valid reason to refute the concepts, I hope at the very least it increases our knowledge in such a way as to create an avenue that does achieve what the original research had intended to.

  2. A scaled quantum computer will decay by dissipation while it is being configured, running, and being read. Whether that is a fundamental or technological limit on problem size is debatable. Somebody must discover or synthesize a real world usable, deeply state-stable vs. temperature q-bit.

    As nobody knows what what that is or how to do it, managed research will magnificently fail in creating it. Discovery is, by definition, off PERT-chart and off allocated budget. Discovery disciplines management rewarded for enforcing process.

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