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November 9th, 2010
Significantly, I.B.M. has reconstituted what had recently been a relatively low-level research effort in quantum computing. I.B.M. is responding to advances made in the past year at Yale University and the University of California, Santa Barbara, that suggest the possibility of quantum computing based on standard microelectronics manufacturing technologies. Both groups layer a superconducting material, either rhenium or niobium, on a semiconductor surface, which when cooled to near absolute zero exhibits quantum behavior.
A fourth technology has been developed by D-Wave Systems, a Canadian computer maker. D-Wave has built a system with more than 50 quantum bits, but it has been greeted skeptically by many researchers who believe that it has not proved true entanglement. Nevertheless, Hartmut Neven, an artificial-intelligence researcher at Google, said the company had received a proposal from D-Wave and NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory to develop a quantum computing facility for Google next year based on the D-Wave technology.
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