Re: Quantum Computer Hardware

Michael Nielsen (
Sat, 18 Apr 1998 11:00:59 -0600 (MDT)

On Fri, 17 Apr 1998, Dan Clemmensen wrote:

> Yes, I confused the terms. However, my point remains valid. The article
> was about quantum computing, and demonstrates that quantum computing
> is still primitive.

I certainly agree with you there.

> IMO quantum electronics is also still primitive,
> which was the point of departure for the rest of my message, which
> argued that nanoelectronics is harder than nanomechanics.

That quantum electronics is more primitive than attempts to do mechanics
at the quantum level may be so, although I haven't seen any especially
good indicators of this. I look in on the quantum electronics field every
few months, and things seem to be coming along quite quickly at the
moment. I hope we can agree that it is worth pursuing as one possible
path to nanotech!

> Basically
> quantum electronics is necessary for both nanoelectronics and
> quantum computing, but is not sufficient for quantum computing.

Quantum electronics is not necessary for quantum computing. Indeed, the
article posted by John Clark referred to NMR computing, which is based on
the nuclear spin magnetic moment. I believe that the nuclear coupling is
actually mediated by electrons, however for all practicial purposes
this is not an electronic device. Neither is the linear ion trap,
which is perhaps the strongest candidate we now have for medium scale
quantum computing.

Michael Nielsen

"I know the answer! The answer lies within the heart of all mankind!
The answer is twelve? I think I'm in the wrong building."
- Charles Schulz