**burdges**and I gave 5 years ago at a Georgia Tech quantum computing colloqium. For some reason, qc has never caught on at UCSC, but

**geheimnisnacht**has been trying to drum up some interest from professors here. I figure giving this should help on the student side of things. It also gives me a chance to briefly plug David Deutsch, author of the greatest popular science book ever, philosopher, libertarian, and my personal hero. Here's the invite I sent:

Richard Feynman proposed the idea of a quantum computer in the early 80's. Shortly thereafter, David Deutsch showed that a new computational class of devices called Quantum Turing Machines could be theoretically constructed out of universal 2-bit gates. In 1994, interest in quantum computing exploded when Peter Shor published his polynomial-time algorithm for prime factorization of large numbers. I will discuss Shor's algorithm and its significance to public-key cryptography.

- Current Mood: optimistic

## Comments

neurochemistryspoonlessSeveral groups have already built quantum computers, the largest being IBM's 7-bit success in 2001. The only question is whether we can scale it up to the few thousand-bits which is needed to break most of the world's cryptography. Some people think it will happen in the next decade or two, others don't think it will happen for at least a century. Either way, it's hard to imagine it would be

impossibleto scale up. I worked in Mike Chapman's "quantum computing lab" for a while and he was optimistic about it. Although I think he's moved on to looking at other things now. I never had Gole, but he seemed like a fun guy at Joe's wedding!neurochemistrytroyworksspoonlessburdgesSuch a negative principle is quite possible, but evidence for it would itself be interesting enough to justify all the work on quantum computing, i.e. we either get better computers or evidence for something resembling a law of physics. So my guess is that the research is not "full of shit" per se.