The quantum landscape: view of the elusive subatomic neutrino tracks showing electrons and muons caught in a nanosecond Photograph: Dan Mccoy - Rainbow/ Dan McCoy - Rainbow/Science Faction/Corbis

Photograph: Dan Mccoy – Rainbow

When I read articles, such as the two I’m featuring here from the BBC this week: Do quantum computers threaten global encryption systems? Brain-inspired chip fits 1m ‘neurons’ on postage stamp, my brain goes in all kinds of interesting directions. I think about my stories for one thing. How does this information influence or back up concepts that I’m trying to incorporate into my stories?

The first article is about how the development of quantum computers will inevitably force us to change the way we use encryption in security systems. The article speculates that we may have to go back to cash buying or bartering because we won’t be able to keep our personal and financial information safe. They’ve got a point because the idea with quantum computing is that processes can happen a lot faster because you can have a single machine doing multiple tasks at one. Ultimately that means that the computer can handle being both 1 and 0 at the same time. By the time you’ve secured your information, the quantum computer has cracked your system. Hmm… That creates a quandary. This especially provides problems for government agencies.

Then I found the second article just as relevant because of the idea that scientists are trying to mimic the multitasking abilities of the human brain and applying it to a computer so small that it occupies a space the size of a postage stamp. The idea of a computer the size of a postage stamp is pretty mind-blowing. The applications of such a technology are endless. Google glass is one application. New spy technology was probably why it was made in the first place. The article suggests a visor similar to that of Geordi La Forge from Star Trek the Next Generation. What about finally having that paper-thin iPad? Or the voice activated communications device the size of a brooch? And of course you have to ask yourself: should it be done? There are always pros and cons to every technology, which is why I like science fiction because it forces us to ponder such questions.

Glasses to help visually impaired people navigate could also benefit from a “neuromorphic” system for analyzing the visual scene

Multitasking and quantum computing isn’t the same thing. In multitasking the 1s and 0s are still in a straight line and can’t occupy the same spot at the same time, but who’s to say that can’t become possible in the near future?  The idea of a powerful technology being created that is the size of a postage stamp and perhaps in the future quantum technology being applied to that- WOW! Excites my brain. Perhaps we can create a positronic brain after all or intelligent nanotechnology.

I use robots and nanotechnology a lot in my stories, especially The Jention Chronicles, so it’s fun to find articles that substantiate some of my imaginings.

Pin It on Pinterest

%d bloggers like this: