What Is Google’s Quantum Supremacy?
On 23 October 2019, The tech journal “Nature” announced that Google achieved Quantum Supremacy. Google also released a video of their Quantum Supremacy on their Official YouTube channel on the same day.
Many people must be aware of what exactly the quantum technology is that creates a buzz in the tech world. Quantum computers can easily perform any task assigned in a few seconds which a normal traditional computer can take years.
As per Google, its Quantum Supremacy experiment can perform a task in 200 seconds which world fastest supercomputer can take 10,000 years for similar output.
The Quantum Computing topic has been around from 30 years in the Tech industry. It is a big and risky step Google has taken. And Google named this experiment as Quantum Supremacy. The project was quite risky because the main aim was to make a computer that is powerful and programmable, but the problem was it fails even if a single component is not good enough.
The Quantum Supremacy experiment was run on a fully programmable 54-qubit processor named “Sycamore”.
It’s comprised of a two-dimensional grid where each qubit is connected to four other qubits. As a result, the chip has enough connectivity that the qubit states can quickly interact throughout the entire processor, making the overall state impossible to emulate efficiently with a classical computer.
The success of the Quantum Supremacy experiment was due to the improved two-qubit gates with enhanced parallelism that reliably achieves record performance, even when operating many gates simultaneously.
How Quantum Computer works?
Traditional computer processor process the command in binary bits where they can process 1 or 0 one at a time. But in quantum supremacy sycamore process the command in qubits and the it can process both 0 and 1 at a time.
The Sycamore Processor is of 54 qubits.
Scientists entangled those 54 qubits into a complex superposition state, then had Sycamore perform a task akin to random-number generation. The results were then compared with simulations run on the Summit Supercomputer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.
Summit is currently the world’s leading supercomputer, capable of carrying out about 200 million billion operations per second”.
It comprises of roughly 40,000 processor units, each contains billions of transistors (electronic switches), and has 250 million gigabytes of storage. Approximately 99% of Summit’s resources were used to perform classical sampling.
Sycamore finished it in about 3.5 minutes, and the Summit’s work suggested that even the most powerfull traditional supercomputer would have taken ound 10,000 years.
In this experiment one qubit was not working so the task was carried out by only 53 qubits.
What task did Sycamore performed in the experiment?
The task Google set for its Quantum Computer is “a bit of a weird one”, says Christopher Monroe, a physicist at the University of Maryland in College Park. In 2016, Google’s physicists first crafted a problem, and it was designed to be extremely difficult for an ordinary computer to solve. The team challenged its computer known as Sycamore to describe the likelihood of different outcomes from a quantum version of a random number generator. They did this by running a circuit that passes 53 qubits through a series of random operations. This generates a 53-digit string of 1’s and 0’s with a total of 253 possible combinations (only 53 qubits were used because one of Sycamore’s qubit was broken).
The process is so complex that the outcome is impossible to calculate from first principles, and is therefore effectively random. But owing to interference between qubits, some strings of numbers are more likely to occur than others. This is similar to rolling a loaded dice — it still produces a random number, even though some outcomes are more likely than others.
As the Google’s Quantum Supremacy is not for commercial use so specifically there are no applications in practice.
Controversies regarding Google’s Quantum Supremacy!
Quantum Supremacy is a thing which is revolving around in the tech world from the last three decades. I is a very complicated task to achieve but Google claims it has achieved Quantum Supremacy also stating that it can perform the task which the world’s fastest supercomputer IBM Q System One can take 10,000 years. specifically, Google did not mentioned the IBM Q System One name, but it seemed like they were comparing it with them.
And in the experiment Google only draws out a pseudo-random number and and claimed it has achieved the Quantum Supremacy.
Many experts claim it was a marketing stunt. nothing else. People’s opinion on Google is that Google Was underestimating the competition creating a false hype.
The device described by Google in a paper published in the journal Nature. In the paper, it is argued that their device reached “Quantum Supremacy” and that “a state-of-the-art” supercomputer would require approximately 10,000 years to perform the equivalent task.” IBM argues that an ideal simulation of the same task can be performed on a classical system in 2.5 days and with far greater fidelity. This is in fact a conservative, worst-case estimate, and we expect that with additional refinements the classical cost of the simulation can be further reduced.
Because the original meaning of the term “Quantum Supremacy,” as proposed by John Preskill in 2012, was to describe the point where Quantum Computers can do things that classical computers cannot, this threshold has not been met. Comment down below and tell us what are your thoughts about it.