Recap of Week 1 and preview of Week 2

This brings us to the end of Week 1. We hope that you have a feel for why we are so excited about quantum computers, why we are “Wanting Quantum”.

Quantum computers will change the way we solve some important, but difficult, problems: factoring and search/optimization are perhaps the two best known, but quantum chemistry has a strong case for being the first area where significant contributions will actually be made, and there is a great deal of excitement these days around the integration of machine learning and quantum technology.

This week ended with a long Activity on waves, superposition and interference. These concepts are vital to understanding how quantum algorithms work, so if you don’t yet feel fully comfortable with them, plan to refer back to the corresponding Steps as necessary.

Next week we will introduce the basic ideas of qubits (first one, then larger groups), the enigma of quantum entanglement, and how superposition and interference solve problems for us, then connect these abstract notions to the real world by looking at the physical phenomena that will carry quantum data for us.

You might be feeling overwhelmed, excited, or both. Don’t worry, those feelings are natural! Quantum computing involves phenomena and ideas we don’t encounter in daily life, so naturally it results in a bit of a workout for your brain. We’re here to support your learning as best we can. See you in Week 2!

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This article is from the free online course:

Understanding Quantum Computers

Keio University