Scientists Tire of Quantum Computing’s Hype
(Wired) Meet the mysterious Twitter figure with the name of Quantum Bullshit Detector who is posting anonymously to comment on purported breakthroughs in quantum computing—claims with a common sentiment “Bullshit.” The anonymous account is a response to growing anxiety in the quantum community, as investment accelerates and hype balloons inflate.
The Twitter provocations perplexed experts in the field. Because of the detector’s familiarity with jargon and the accounts it chose to follow. People discussed online whether to take the account’s opinions seriously.
In the subsequent months, the account has called bullshit on statements in academic journals such as Nature and journalism publications such as Scientific American, Quanta, and WIRED.
People now tag the detector, @BullshitQuantum, to request its take on specific articles, which the account obliges with an uncomplicated “Bullshit” or sometimes “Not bullshit.” Not everyone celebrates the detector, with one physicist calling the detector “ignorant” and condemning its “lack of talent and bad taste” in response to a negative verdict on his own work. But some find that the account provides a public service in an emerging industry prone to hyperbole.”
In addition, many researchers object to the phrase quantum supremacy because it evokes white supremacy and suggest the term ‘quantum advantage’ instead. Chemist Leonie Mueck, who works at Riverlane, a UK-based quantum computing startup says, “We can’t afford to alienate women and minorities. We really need to work hard to attract them to the field, and I think we need to build it into everything we do.”