A new research project aims to harness the power of quantum computers to build a new type of neural network — work the researchers say could usher in the next generation of artificial intelligence.
“My colleagues and I instead hope to build the first dedicated neural network computer, using the latest ‘quantum’ technology rather than AI software,” wrote [professor] Michael Hartmann.
A neural network is a type of machine learning algorithm loosely modeled on a biological brain, which learns from examples in order to deal with new inputs. Quantum computers take advantage of subatomic particles that can exist in more than one state at a time to circumvent the limitations of old-fashioned binary computers.
By combining the two, Hartmann believes, his team will be able to jump-start a new era in AI research that could manage extraordinarily complex problems like directing traffic flow for an entire city in real-time.
To date, quantum computers have struggled to solve problems that are a piece of cake for classical computers.
“[O]nce we have shown that quantum neural networks can be more powerful than classical AI software in a real world application, it would very quickly become some of the most important technology out there,” [says Hartmann.]