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AMD Says Not to Count on Exotic Materials for CPUs in the Next Ten Years, Silicon Is Still Computing's Best Friend

AMD's senior VP of AMD's datacentre group Forrest Norrod, at the Rice Oil and Gas HPC conference, said that while graphene does have incredible promise for the world of computing, it likely will take some ten years before such exotic material are actually taken advantage off. As Norrod puts it, silicon still has a pretty straightforward - if increasingly complex - path down to 3 nanometer densities. And according to him, at the rate manufacturers are being able to scale down their production nodes further, the average time between node transitions stands at some four or five years - which makes the jump to 5 nm and then 3 nm look exactly some 10 years from now, where Norrod expects to go through two additional shrinking nodes for the manufacturing process.

Of course, graphene is being hailed as the next best candidate for taking over silicon's place at the heart of our more complex, high-performance electronics, due, in part, to its high conductivity independent of temperature variation and its incredible switching resistance - it has been found to be able to operate at Terahertz switching speeds. It's a 2D material, which means that implementations of it will have to occur in deposited sheets of graphene across some other material.

IBM Expands Strategic Partnership with Samsung to Include 7nm Chip Manufacturing

IBM today announced an agreement with Samsung to manufacture 7-nanometer (nm) microprocessors for IBM Power Systems , IBM Z and LinuxONE , high-performance computing (HPC) systems, and cloud offerings. The agreement combines Samsung's industry-leading semiconductor manufacturing with IBM's high-performance CPU designs. This combination is being designed to drive unmatched systems performance, including acceleration, memory and I/O bandwidth, encryption and compression speed, as well as system scaling. It positions IBM and Samsung as strategic partners leading the new era of high-performance computing specifically designed for AI.

"At IBM, our first priority is our clients," said John Acocella, Vice President of Enterprise Systems and Technology Development for IBM Systems. "IBM selected Samsung to build our next generation of microprocessors because they share our level of commitment to the performance, reliability, security, and innovation that will position our clients for continued success on the next generation of IBM hardware."

Intel Starts Testing Smallest 'Spin Qubit' Chip for Quantum Computing

Intel researchers are taking new steps toward quantum computers by testing a tiny new "spin qubit" chip. The new chip was created in Intel's D1D Fab in Oregon using the same silicon manufacturing techniques that the company has perfected for creating billions of traditional computer chips. Smaller than a pencil's eraser, it is the tiniest quantum computing chip Intel has made.

The new spin qubit chip runs at the extremely low temperatures required for quantum computing: roughly 460 degrees below zero Fahrenheit - 250 times colder than space. The spin qubit chip does not contain transistors - the on/off switches that form the basis of today's computing devices - but qubits (short for "quantum bits") that can hold a single electron. The behavior of that single electron, which can be in multiple spin states simultaneously, offers vastly greater computing power than today's transistors, and is the basis of quantum computing.

The Future of Quantum Computing is Counted in Qubits

At CES 2018 in January, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich predicted that quantum computing will solve problems that today take months or years for our most powerful supercomputers to resolve. Krzanich then unveiled Intel's 49-qubit superconducting quantum test chip, code-named "Tangle Lake."

Quantum computing is heralded for its potential. Leaders in scientific and industrial fields are hopeful quantum computing will speed advances in chemistry, drug development, financial modeling and climate change.

Intel Sees Promise of Silicon Spin Qubits for Quantum Computing

Quantum computing is heralded for its potential to tackle problems that today's conventional computers can't handle. Scientists and industries are looking to quantum computing to speed advancements in areas like chemistry or drug development, financial modeling, and even climate forecasting.

To deliver on quantum computing's potential, Intel initiated a collaborative research program in 2015 with the goal of developing a commercially viable quantum computing system. While there's been significant progress, quantum computing research is still nascent. The industry is at mile one in a marathon, and to realize this new computing paradigm, many problems must be solved and many architectural decisions must be made. For example, it's not yet clear what form quantum processors (or "qubits") will take. That's why Intel is placing two major research bets and investing in them equally.

Intel Advances Quantum and Neuromorphic Computing Research

Today at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Intel announced two major milestones in its efforts to research and develop future computing technologies including quantum and neuromorphic computing, which have the potential to help industries, research institutions and society solve problems that currently overwhelm today's classical computers.

During his keynote address, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich announced the successful design, fabrication and delivery of a 49-qubit superconducting quantum test chip. The keynote also noted the promise of neuromorphic computing.

DARPA Believes the Future of Security to be in Additional Processing Hardware

DARPA seems to be taking to heart engineer and cyber-security experts' opinions that hardware-based security would be the best security. The Defense Advanced Research Agency (DARPA), which has appeared in every other sci-fi war movie, has started its System Security Integrated through Hardware and Firmware (SSITH) program, with an initial kick worth $3.6 million to the University of Michigan. The objective? To develop "unhackable" systems, with hardware-based security solutions that become impervious to most software exploits.

Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) of the University of Michigan Professor Todd Austin, lead researcher on the project, says his team's approach, currently code-named Morpheus, achieves hack-proof hardware by "changing the internal codes once a second". Austin likens Morpheus' defenses to requiring a would-be attacker to solve a new Rubik's Cube every second to crack the chip's security. In this way, the architecture should provide the maximum possible protection against intrusions, including hacks that exploit zero-day vulnerabilities, or those that cybersecurity experts have yet to discover. Morpheus thereby provides a future-proof solution, Austin said. "This race against ever more clever cyberintruders is never going to end if we keep designing our systems around gullible hardware that can be fooled in countless ways by software," SSITH program manager Linton Salmon of the Agency's Microsystems Technology Office.

The Future is Quantum: Microsoft Releases Free Preview of Q# Development Kit

So you want to learn how to program a quantum computer. Now, there's a toolkit for that. Microsoft is releasing a free preview version of its Quantum Development Kit, which includes the Q# programming language, a quantum computing simulator and other resources for people who want to start writing applications for a quantum computer. The Q# programming language was built from the ground up specifically for quantum computing.

The Quantum Development Kit, which Microsoft first announced at its Ignite conference in September, is designed for developers who are eager to learn how to program on quantum computers whether or not they are experts in the field of quantum physics. It's deeply integrated into Visual Studio, Microsoft's suite of developer tools, so aspects of it will be familiar to people who are already developing applications in other programming languages. And it's designed to work with a local quantum simulator, also released as part of the kit, that can simulate around 30 logical qubits of quantum computing power using a typical laptop computer. That will allow developers to debug quantum code and test programs on small instances right on their own computers.

Japan Opens Prototype Quantum Computing System for Public, Worldwide Use

Japan's Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Company (NTT) is opening up its prototype quantum computing system for public use over the internet, giving users around the world access to one of the most elusive pieces of tech that this world has yet seem. Maybe we haven't seen it, though; observation does change the outcome, and these quantum physics really are as finicky as they come. Starting Nov. 27, Japan joins China and the U.S. in the race to develop the world's most advanced computers - and Japan has chosen the free, quantum-democratizing approach.

The NTT quantum computing solution is a state-sponsored research project, developed in conjunction with the National Institute of Informatics, Osaka university, and other partners. It has taken a different technical approach from other quantum computing developers, in that this particular computing system is exploiting the properties of light. Widely (un)known as Linear Optics Quantum Computation (LOQC), this particular approach foregoes qubits (which are extremely difficult to keep from decohering, and usually require very exotic cooling techniques to increase the qubits' stability. LOQC abandons qubits and uses photons to represent them as information carriers through linear optical elements (such as beam splitters, phase shifters, and mirrors). This allows the machine to process quantum information, using photon detectors and quantum memories to detect and store quantum information.

Intel Delivers 17-qubit Superconducting Chip with Advanced Packaging to QuTech

Today, Intel announced the delivery of a 17-qubit superconducting test chip for quantum computing to QuTech, Intel's quantum research partner in the Netherlands. The new chip was fabricated by Intel and features a unique design to achieve improved yield and performance. The delivery of this chip demonstrates the fast progress Intel and QuTech are making in researching and developing a working quantum computing system. It also underscores the importance of material science and semiconductor manufacturing in realizing the promise of quantum computing.

Quantum computing, in essence, is the ultimate in parallel computing, with the potential to tackle problems conventional computers can't handle. For example, quantum computers may simulate nature to advance research in chemistry, materials science and molecular modeling - like helping to create a new catalyst to sequester carbon dioxide, or create a room temperature superconductor or discover new drugs. However, despite much experimental progress and speculation, there are inherent challenges to building viable, large-scale quantum systems that produce accurate outputs. Making qubits (the building blocks of quantum computing) uniform and stable is one such obstacle.

Rambus Explores Future Memory Systems

Rambus Inc. (NASDAQ: RMBS) today announced it will collaborate with Microsoft researchers in the exploration of future memory requirements for quantum computing. The expertise of Rambus in high-bandwidth, power-efficient memory architectures, combined with Microsoft researchers' knowledge of advanced system and data center design will be applied to drive new technology platforms.

"Existing computer architectures are reaching limits due to the ever increasing demands of real-time data consumption, which is driving the need to explore new high-performance, energy-efficient computer systems," said Gary Bronner, vice president of Rambus Labs. "By working with Microsoft on this project, we can leverage our vast expertise in memory systems to identify new architectural models."

Announcing a Breakthrough in Quantum Communication

A team of scientists at the MPQ realizes a first elementary quantum network based on interfaces between single atoms and photons. Whether it comes to phoning a friend or to using the internet - our daily communication is based on sophisticated networks, with data being transferred at the speed of light between different nodes. It is a tremendous challenge to build corresponding networks for the exchange of quantum information. These quantum networks would differ profoundly from their classical counterparts: Besides giving insights into fundamental questions in physics, they could also have applications in secure communication and the simulation of complex many-body systems, or they could be used for distributed quantum computing. One prerequisite for functional quantum networks are stationary nodes that allow for the reversible exchange of quantum information.

A major breakthrough in this field has now been achieved by scientists in the group of Professor Gerhard Rempe, director at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics and head of the Quantum Dynamics division: The physicists have set up the first, elementary quantum network (Nature, DOI: 10.1038/nature11023, 12 April 2012). It consists of two coupled single-atom nodes that communicate quantum information via the coherent exchange of single photons. "This approach to quantum networking is particularly promising because it provides a clear perspective for scalability", Professor Rempe points out.
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