Quantum computers capable of cracking sophisticated codes will one day be created, but such systems also will be able to create more advanced codes, writes David Kielpinski, a professor at Griffith University’s Centre for Quantum Dynamic. Kielpinski notes the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has been financially supporting non-classified quantum computing research at universities since the 1990s because of its applications in code-breaking. In addition, NSA is working on quantum cryptography to develop new security methods capable of resisting code-breaking attempts by quantum computers. Kielpinski says quantum cryptography is more ready than quantum computing for real-world use, and commercial ventures already exist that use quantum cryptography for banks and governments. Quantum computers can simulate advanced materials, such as high-temperature superconductors, at the atomic level, which could lead to civilian uses. However, Kielpinski says political and financial considerations are likely to shape the future of quantum computing.
More info: The Conversation (02/11/14) David Kielpinski