Qubits and Crashes

Since I work in this industry, the New Scientist article on quantum computing and online Poker held a fair bit of interest for me.

The point here is that the world we usually interact with is, in fact, a classical approximation of what’s really going on, at a quantum level. I suppose the online software could, at the moment, be recoded with Schrodinger’s equations – but the result would not be noticeably different from what we see right now. The probability of the squash ball passing clear through the wall of the court is so small that we’ve decided, for all intents and purposes, that it’s not going to happen.

But what takes place when our hardware is governed by the laws of Quantum Mech.? Possibilities open up which we had been ignoring, up to now – like a superposition of states in which you simultaneously bet and fold on the same hand.

I guess this is what Rupert Sheldrake means when he states that we’ve decided on a model of reality and, through habit, it rules our lives. Habit, not physics.

In any case, being the eternal sunny optimist that I am, I’m not going to worry too much about my company’s Poker software becoming obsolete. I firmly believe that we’re too far over the peak of technology now to go much further. We’re coasting, downwards, but that coasting velocity is increasing under the gravity-like pull of our combined culture of insanity.

In other words, my bets are on us hitting the ground before we see a single qubit in cyberspace.


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