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D-Wave's 16 qubit quantum computer is the pride of current quantum computers   (Source: D-Wave)
A team from Australia suggests that not only will ternary data be helpful in the budding field of quantum computing, but practically necessary

Generations of computer scientists grew up under the notion that ternary computing was just around the corner. Modern computers store information in a binary system, a logical representation of true and false.  Ternary computing, on the other hand, stores information as a representation of false, null and true; 0, 1, 2 or -1, 0 and 1. 

Computer storage methods going back to punch cards made binary computing methods sensible.  When storage moved to magnetic and transistor-based alternatives, the binary system continued to flourish -- and any reason to switch to a ternary system was nonessential with prolific and scalable storage.

But with the advent of quantum computing, ternary computing has a new cause.  Universal quantum logic gates, the building blocks of infant quantum computing, require hundreds of gates in order to complete any useful work.  D-Wave's quantum computer, announced last year, consists of only 16 qubits -- just enough for a controlled NOT gate. 

It's an inevitability that quantum computers will continue to scale, even based on current technologies. In the meantime a team lead by University of Queensland's B. P. Lanyon proposed a new method to scale quantum computers faster by exploiting the well researched fields of ternary computing.

The modern representation of true or false can be expressed as a bit.  The quantum computing equivalent of a bit is dubbed a qubit.  Traditional computers that store data in ternary operations are dubbed trits; the quantum equivalent is called a qutrit.

What makes Lanyon's method truly innovative is that by using qutrits for universal quantum gates instead of qubits, researchers can reduce the number gates needed in a computer significantly. 

Lanyon proposes that a computer that would traditionally take 50 conventional quantum gates could use as few as 9 gates using the ternary method. 

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By KristopherKubicki on 4/6/2008 6:54:00 PM , Rating: 3
Mmmm :) Interesting topic. With our current understanding of time travel, it seems like only subatomic particles stand much of a chance of surviving a wormhole -- which might be enough for a future communication device. And at that it seems like it would only be useful for single direction communication (from the future to the past).

But then you could run the simulation, return the results to your past self and then never have to run the simulation in the first place.

I guess the strongest argument against universe-folding paradoxes is that Academia would never accept that, so who would do it!

By exanimas on 4/6/2008 7:31:35 PM , Rating: 5
Mmm, future communication devices.

*Calls future self*: "What's the biggest invention of your time and how can I make it so we can be rich?... Also when will I get laid next?"

By FITCamaro on 4/7/2008 8:34:00 AM , Rating: 5
Also when will I get laid next?

Sadly the answer will still be never.

By geeg on 4/7/2008 8:43:13 AM , Rating: 2
If you sit at the computer this much.. dont need a computer to know.

By FITCamaro on 4/7/2008 9:16:06 AM , Rating: 1
You're right I don't. Will be Tuesday night since that's the next time I'll see the girlfriend.

By Samus on 4/8/2008 1:42:28 PM , Rating: 1
You only have one girlfriend!? pfft. n00bs...

By freeagle on 4/8/2008 2:20:12 PM , Rating: 2
girlfriend != hand

By ZaethDekar on 4/6/2008 11:21:11 PM , Rating: 2
However, private institues or government agencies (NASA in particular) would love having that.... imagine needing a few months to see if this new design will hold up to intersteller travel... but getting the results instantly. However... in theory, you can have it all done on one computer.. connected to itself, multiple times through time.

So then a super computer wouldn't be how many CPU's it has it would be how many times its there multiplied by the number of CPUs. So 100 computers could become 1000's. and it would take less power per computer however then it comes into play of how much power it would take to open a hole in time. Would it be 1 mass amount or would it be a constant? Granted... I am sure there would be a way to gain a part of that power back though the time hole.

Mmmm I can't wait for the day time isn't a concern.

By AvidDailyTechie on 4/8/2008 2:43:56 AM , Rating: 2
The implications of Einstein’s theory of relativity lead to the closest things I'v ever seen to plausible "time travel".

Anyways, violating the idea that you cannot meet your father before he has birthed you leads to catastrophic consequences in physics…

Rather than trying to redefine everything, and include a really cool idea, why not try to account for phenomena in more constructive ways. :-)


By desertvet on 4/8/2008 11:52:56 AM , Rating: 4
As I remember Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity, time travel was possible by the act of someone accelerating and traveling near the speed of light relative to someone that was static. But the direction of time travel was to the future for the person traveling near the speed of light, never to the past.

"Nowadays, security guys break the Mac every single day. Every single day, they come out with a total exploit, your machine can be taken over totally. I dare anybody to do that once a month on the Windows machine." -- Bill Gates
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