While quantum computing is still in its infancy, a team of computer scientists has various ways to overcome some of the obstacles to building a functional quantum computer. A joint team of researchers has been able to build a Fredkin gate, a device that serves as an interchanging node.
Even though the concept of quantum computing has been proposed in the early ‘80s, this piece of technology was much too complicated to bring to life. However, recent leaps in terms of computer technology have allowed the research to put together a small, yet functional quantum computer.
As explained before, a traditional computer is working with bites. It can encode information in binary language. This means that any piece of information can either have the value 0 or 1, true or false. Quantum computers go beyond the binary. Such a device has atom-sized bites, and information, previously encoded as 0 or 1 can exist at the same time.
And now, with the construction of a Fredkin gate, the dream of building a fully-functional quantum computer draws ever closer. Quantum computers need logical units to operate. The Fredkin gates are essential in the process of constructing a functional quantum computer.
These gates are one of many building blocks of a quantum computer. Doctor Raj Patel, the leading scientist on the project, explained that to build something, that person requires a brick. Use way too many blocks, and the whole construction will be hard to execute. But with larger blocks, these being Fredkin gates, the construction will be over in a jiffy.
As the scientist explains, Fredkin gates are used by the quantum computer for information exchange. In such a place, two quantum bits containing significant amounts of information can be swapped. This process depends on the presence of a third variable that conditions the swapping or the changing process.
But, as the team pointed out, the device could have been built. However, the process required the presence of five logic operations. In layman’s terms, this means that if one were to add Fredkin gates to the whole ensemble, then the whole project would have been scrubbed clean because the number of components needs was much too high.
The team managed to simplify the process by using light particles, and a physical property of light particles called entanglement. According to another publication, the team uses this method to simplify the swapping process within the Fredkin gates.
We are still far from constructing a fully-functional quantum computer. However, we have taken those hard first steps.