The A-Z of AI

Quantum computing

A new generation of computers that process information in a completely different way.

Quantum computers are a new wave of machines with the potential to use AI to solve problems that would take conventional computers a very long time.

These quantum machines process information in entirely different ways and dimensions to the computers that power AI systems of today. Whereas conventional computers process information as a series of 0s or 1s (binary code) — quantum computers can use 0 and 1 simultaneously.

Just as humans are capable of holding a 0 and 1 in their mind at the same time, quantum computers can essentially do the same.

Their ability to perform many computations at once substantially cuts processing time, meaning that quantum computers could enable AI systems to complete tasks in seconds that would take the fastest supercomputers thousands of years. Thus, giving researchers the capacity to find meaningful answers to complex problems almost instantaneously.

While it is unclear how long it will be until these machines make their way out of the research labs and into the world, they have the potential to dramatically speed up computational tasks — to such a degree that it could become possible to granularly analyse medical treatment and find out whether a particular medicine is effectively targeting specific molecules in the body.