Microsoft Launches Free Preview Version Of Its Quantum Development Kit

  • Microsoft Launches Free Preview Version Of Its Quantum Development Kit

Microsoft Launches Free Preview Version Of Its Quantum Development Kit

MICROSOFT WANTS TO PLAY in the qubit sandpit, as it's released a preview version of its own quantum computing development kit. The then-unnamed language was meant to bring traditional programming concepts-functions, variables, and branches, along with a syntax-highlighted development environment complete with quantum debugger-to quantum computing, a field that has hitherto built algorithms from wiring up logic gates.

"The beauty of it is that this code won't need to change when we plug it into the quantum hardware", Krysta Svore, a principal researcher at Microsoft, said. And because the kit is integrated into Microsoft's Visual Studio developer tool suite, many aspects of the new kit will be familiar.

Microsoft is engaged in a global race to build a functional quantum computer, and is pursuing a topological approach to forming quantum bits - qubits - using quasiparticles called non-abellian anyons. Users requiring simulations that can handle 40 logical qubits or more can tap an Azure-based simulator designed for that objective, added Linn.

Microsoft highlights that quantum computers could enable scientists to address major problems such as the risky effects of climate change; breakthroughs of this nature is made possible thanks to the abilities of quantum computers; one such example is carrying out calculations in hours or even minutes "that would take the lifetime of the universe for even the most advanced classical computers in use today". The Quantum development Kit can be downloaded now. Microsoft's Allison Linn wrote, "Experts believe quantum computers could allow scientists to address some of the world's toughest challenges, such as world hunger or the unsafe effects of climate change". Microsoft calls it the most approachable high-level programming language for quantum computers.

Artificial intelligence is another field quantum computers can help support in a big way.

It might sound like this sort of technology is a way off in the distance, but there's some interesting news, and it's particularly curious if you've been keen to give yourself a project to do over the summer: you can now learn quantum computing. Google and IBM have produced machines that are thought to be close to achieving "quantum supremacy" - the ability to tackle a problem too complex to solve on any standard supercomputer.

"What you're going to see as a developer is the opportunity to tie into tools that you already know well, services you already know well", said.

Todd Holmdahl, the corporate vice president in charge of Microsoft's quantum effort, noted that it's up to Microsoft to figure out the quantum physics - and then to deliver tools like the Quantum Development Kit that people without a quantum physics degree can use.