Scott Aaronson, Shtetl-Optimized, Quantum Computing in the newz, here.
Today the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded jointly to Serge Haroche and David Wineland, for “for ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems.” I’m not very familiar with Haroche’s work, but I’ve known of Wineland for a long time as possibly the top quantum computing experimentalist in the business, setting one record after another in trapped-ion experiments. In awarding this prize, the Swedes have recognized the phenomenal advances in atomic, molecular, and optical physics that have already happened over the last two decades, largely motivated by the goal of building a scalable quantum computer (along with other, not entirely unrelated goals, like more accurate atomic clocks). In so doing, they’ve given what’s arguably the first-ever “Nobel Prize for quantum computing research,” without violating their policy to reward only work that’s been directly confirmed by experiment. Huge congratulations to Haroche and Wineland!!
Tom Simonite, technology review, The CIA and Jeff Bezos Bet on Quantum Computing, here. Great, now Mercer County Cash Register is going to have to build Quantum Ice Cream Trucks to get the Venture Capital folks to fund Dyna Colo. On the other hand, consider the fantastic anxious Barney Fife impressions the Nanex/Themis boys and Felix Salmon are going to thrown down when the first quantum mobile colo trades print from a helicopter hovering over Brookdale park.
Inside a blocky building in a Vancouver suburb, across the street from a dowdy McDonald’s, is a place chilled colder than anywhere in the known universe. Inside that is a computer processor that Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and the CIA’s investment arm, In-Q-Tel, believe can tap the quirks of quantum mechanics to unleash more computing power than any conventional computer chip. Bezos and In-Q-Tel are in a group of investors who are betting $30 million on this prospect.
Adrian Cho, Wired, Nobel Awarded to Scientists Who Learned to Control Quantum Systems, here.
Serge Haroche, 68, of the Collège de France and the École Normale Supérieure, both in Paris, pioneered the sculpting of a quantum state of light and the control of its interactions with a single atom. David Wineland, who is also 68, of the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Boulder, Colorado, developed techniques for controlling single charged atoms, or ions, and showed how they could be used to perform computations.