How and why quantum computers

Yesterday I was at the IBM #ThinkMadrid2018, a great event in which thanks to the very kind IBMers, among other things I learned how to program a quantum computer. In classical computers we have a general purpose circuit that allows to execute all kinds of programs. Once the program has been entered into the computer, the data goes through this program and circuit, generating an output from an input. In the quantum computer, on the other hand, the physical machine is the data, really all the possible data, representing every possible bit in a qbit. In some way we could say that it is the program that goes through the data, a program that tries to collapse all the possible combinations of data in that combination that solves the problem. Quantum computing is presented as a desire machine that will allow us to do things that previously seemed impossible, increasing the risks of lack of control of a possible Artificial General Intelligence (or next to “General”). This makes it extremely important to know what we want to achieve with this great capacity.

There are many things that we consider valuable such as complexity, beauty, life, love, virtue, transcendence, knowledge, power, intelligence, etc. At this very moment innumerable beings are experiencing wonderful things like love, pleasure, orgasm, recognition or friendship. But also many others (human and non-human) are now being tortured, dying of cold, hunger, thirst, fire, diseases, etc. If we are able to put ourselves in the place of others, we should recognize that alleviating the intense suffering of those beings who are desperately struggling to stop suffering should be our highest priority and the first desire to ask this fantastic machine.

Posted by Manu Herrán

Research associate at the Organisation for the Prevention of Intense Suffering (OPIS).