The era of quantum supremacy is nigh.
Quantum computers, which make calculations with entangled particles, or qubits, are poised to overtake their conventional counterparts very, very fast.
And it’s all captured by a new law of computing, known as Neven’s Law, according to a fascinating new article in Quanta Magazine.
So, what exactly is Neven’s Law? Named after Hartmut Neven, the director of the Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab at Google who first noticed the phenomenon, the law dictates how quickly quantum processors are improving, or getting faster at processing calculations, relative to regular computers.
And it turns out, they’re gaining on ordinary computers at a spookily fast, “doubly exponential rate.” That means that processing power grows by a factor of 2^2^1 (4), then 2^2^2 (16), then 2^2^3 (256), then 2^2^4 (65,536), and so on. You can see that the numbers get mind-bogglingly huge very, very fast. Doubly-exponential growth is so huge, it’s hard to find anything that grows so quickly in the natural world, according to Quanta.