A Shortcut Through Time: The Path to the Quantum Computer

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Dec 18, 2007 - Science - 224 pages
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In this remarkably illustrative and thoroughly accessible look at one of the most intriguing frontiers in science and computers, award-winning New York Times writer George Johnson reveals the fascinating world of quantum computing—the holy grail of super computers where the computing power of single atoms is harnassed to create machines capable of almost unimaginable calculations in the blink of an eye.

As computer chips continue to shrink in size, scientists anticipate the end of the road: A computer in which each switch is comprised of a single atom. Such a device would operate under a different set of physical laws: The laws of quantum mechanics. Johnson gently leads the curious outsider through the surprisingly simple ideas needed to understand this dream, discussing the current state of the revolution, and ultimately assessing the awesome power these machines could have to change our world.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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A SHORTCUT THROUGH TIME: The Path to the Quantum Computer

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

New York Times science writer Johnson (Strange Beauty, 1999, etc.) explains why quantum computers are expected to be the next major breakthrough.The author begins by recalling his youthful ... Read full review

A shortcut through time: the path to a quantum computer

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

The simplicity of binary logic, on or off, 1 or 0, is what enables today's desktop and supercomputers to process data. Quantum computing, on the other hand, operates under a different set of rules in ... Read full review


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Notes and Sources
Acknowledgments 193

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About the author (2007)

George Johnson writes about science for The New York Times. His most recent books, Strange Beauty: Murray Gell-Mann and the Revolution in Twentieth-Century Physics and Fire in the Mind: Science, Faith, and the Search for Order, were finalists for the Aventis and Rhone-Poulenc science book prizes. He has also won the AAAS Science Journalism Award. He is codirector of the Santa Fe Science-Writing Workshop and a former Alicia Patterson fellow. Mr. Johnson lives in Santa Fe. He can be reached on the World Wide Web at talaya.net.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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