Archive for the ‘computing’ category: Page 530

Dec 31, 2017

Progress to turning silicon transistors into qubits which could enable billion qubit quantum computers

Posted by in categories: computing, mobile phones, quantum physics

Japanese RIKEN researchers are trying to adapt existing the silicon metal–oxide–semiconductor field-effect transistors (MOSFETs) to integrate qubits with current electronics, offering the potential for scaling up quantum devices and bringing quantum computing closer to becoming a reality.

Keiji Ono and colleagues from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science and the Toshiba Corporation in Japan, in collaboration with researchers from the United States, are investigating the properties of qubits produced by imperfections or defects in silicon MOSFETs. In particular, they are exploring their potential for developing quantum computing devices that are compatible with current manufacturing technologies.

“Companies like IBM and Google are developing quantum computers that use superconductors,” explains Ono. “In contrast, we are attempting to develop a quantum computer based on the silicon manufacturing techniques currently used to make computers and smart phones. The advantage of this approach is that it can leverage existing industrial knowledge and technology.”

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Dec 19, 2017

Bio-programming toolkit maker Asimov launches with $4.7M from Andreessen Horowitz

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, computing, nanotechnology

Biotech is one of today’s many hot frontiers of technology, but one thing holding it back is that it’s significantly less amenable to traditional computing techniques than other areas. A new startup called Asimov, spun off from research at MIT, is working on bridging the gap between the digital and the biological by creating, essentially, a set of computer-aided biology design tools. It’s a prescient enough idea that it has attracted $4.7 million in seed funding.

The problem that Asimov addresses is this. Say you’re a pharmaceutical company trying to make a tiny biocompatible machine that holds a certain amount of medication and releases it when it senses some other molecule.

In order to do so, you’d have to — well, among about a million other things — design what amounts to a logic gate and signal processor that works at the molecular scale. This is a daunting prospect, as creating molecular machinery is a labor-intensive process often involving creating thousands of variations of a given structure and testing them repeatedly to see which works.

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Dec 17, 2017

Toshiba’s New 14TB Helium Hard Drive Sets Capacity Records

Posted by in category: computing

The flip side is there’s only a tiny storage density improvement in play here; Toshiba is using 1.56TB platters, while its competitors are back on ~1.5TB. Shoving more platters into a drive while retaining a 3.5-inch form factor is mechanically impossible after a certain point. And while hydrogen gas is only about half as dense as helium, that’s still a much smaller improvement than what helium offered compared with Earth’s atmosphere.

The MG07ACA14TE (14TB) and the MG07ACA12TE (12TB) are both 7200 RPM drives with SATA 6G support. The 14TB drive is rated for 260MB/s of sequential read performance, while the 12TB drive is rated for 250MB/s. Toshiba has talked about a 16TB drive, according to Anandtech, but that much space would require roughly 1.8TB platters, a significant jump over what the company is using today.

Seagate has pledged to bring the next leap in recording technology, Heat-Assisted Magnetic Recording (HAMR) to market, alongside helium-filled drives of at least 18TB. Those drives could be on the market as soon as 2018. Western Digital is backing a technology known as MAMR (Microwave-Assisted Magnetic Recording), in which microwave fields emitted by a spin-torque oscillator allows drives to use weaker magnetic fields when writing data. This is supposed to boost densities up to 4.5Tbits/inch over time, which would theoretically enable 40TB hard drives, eventually. MAMR may be ready by 2019, though all timelines should be taken provisionally; some of these technologies have been in the works for a decade or more.

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Dec 16, 2017

BREAKING: Engineers Just Unveiled The First-Ever Design of a Complete Quantum Computer Chip

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics

Practical quantum computing has been big news this year, with significant advances being made on theoretical and technical frontiers.

But one big stumbling block has remained – melding the delicate quantum landscape with the more familiar digital one. This new microprocessor design just might be the solution we need.

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Dec 16, 2017

IBM Stuffs a Whopping 330TB of Data into a Tiny Cartridge

Posted by in categories: computing, nanotechnology, particle physics

Some of the earliest computers relied upon tape drives for storage, but we’ve since moved on to faster and more versatile storage technologies. Still, tape drives continue to exist in enterprise, and they’ve been advancing by leaps and bounds while you haven’t been paying attention. IBM just announced a new record in data storage density — 201 gigabits per square inch on a magnetic tape (that’s one square inch of it above). That works out to a whopping 330TB of uncompressed data on a single tape drive cartridge.

IBM reached this plateau in magnetic tape density by developing several new technologies. Older versions of IBM’s magnetic tape used a thin film of barium ferrite particles applied to the surface like paint. “Sputtered tape” uses several layers of thin metal film that are applied using a new vacuum technology. A layer of lubricant is also applied to the reading surface of the tape to keep the tape in good working order as it’s run through the drive. The higher density arrangement of magnetic nanoparticles will, of course, require new drive technology to read.

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Dec 13, 2017

Releases free preview of Quantum Development Kit

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics

So you want to learn how to program a quantum computer. Now, there’s a toolkit for that.

Microsoft is releasing a free preview version of its Quantum Development Kit, which includes the Q# programming language, a quantum computing simulator and other resources for people who want to start writing applications for a quantum computer. The Q# programming language was built from the ground up specifically for quantum computing.

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Dec 10, 2017

Scientists just transferred quantum data between two different materials in major breakthrough

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics

The new research highlights how hybrid quantum computers can be developed by using various storage nodes.

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Dec 8, 2017

Optically tunable microwave antennas for 5G applications

Posted by in categories: computing, engineering, internet

Multiband tunable antennas are a critical part of many communication and radar systems. New research by engineers at the University of Bristol has shown significant advances in antennas by using optically induced plasmas in silicon to tune both radiation patterns and operation frequency.

Conventional antenna tuning is performed with diodes or Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) switches. However, these approaches have significant drawbacks as systems become more complex and move to higher frequencies, which is anticipated for 5G systems.

The first paper, published in IET Optoelectronics, co-authored by Dr Chris Gamlath, Research Associate in RF Engineering during his PhD, shows how a silicon superstrate placed over a slotted microstrip patch can be used to tune radiation patterns.

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Dec 8, 2017

This Was the Portable Hard Drive of 1985—Clocking In at 20MB

Posted by in categories: computing, habitats

Portable hard drives seem like they’re bound to go way of the dinosaur, thanks to the rise of services like Dropbox and Google Drive. But if you wanted to take a large file home with you back in 1985, you didn’t have quite so many options. Your best bet? Maybe this hard drive from Maynard.

“Leave the computer, take the drive!” the ad said in big, bold letters in the July 1985 issue of Byte magazine. And look at just how portable that thing is!

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Dec 8, 2017

Physicists Just Invented an Essential Component Needed For Quantum Computers

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics

In 2016, the Nobel Prize in Physics went to three British scientists for their work on superconductors and superfluids, which included the explanation of a rather odd phase of matter.

Now, for the first time, their discovery has a practical application – shrinking an electrical component to a size that will help quantum computers reach a scale that just might make them useful.

In a collaboration with Stanford University in the US, a team of scientists from the University of Sydney and Microsoft have used the newly found phase of matter — topological insulator — in shrinking an electrical component called a circulator 1,000 times smaller.

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