(NextGov) While quantum supremacy is an important milestone, it doesn’t really have any practical value by itself. The real goal will be using quantum computing to enhance or even supercharge other efforts.
Let’s assume that quantum supremacy was achieved. Just like for a dog that finally catches one of those cars that it’s always been chasing, the question then becomes, what do we do now? Certainly, we will continue to improve the speed and especially the accuracy of quantum computing. One of the biggest problems right now is that quantum machines return a lot of junk answers (what the scientists refer to as noise) to almost any question mixed in with the actual solution.
One thing we might try, which could solve a lot of the problems of quantum right now, is to plug it into, or merge it with, an artificial intelligence. This was suggested by AI entrepreneur Gary Fowler in a recent article in Forbes.
As Fowler explains it, today’s computer intelligences are limited by the amount of data they have access to, and how quickly they can analyze it. Many of the problems affecting AI today, including things like accidentally programming inherent bias into their systems, could be caused by the limitations of the datasets they are using. Employing quantum computers to give an AI quick access to trillions more data points could supercharge its accuracy and usefulness.
Another argument for government to bring AI into its quantum computing program is the fact that the United States is a world leader in the development of computer intelligence. Congress is close to passing the AI in Government Act, which would encourage all federal agencies to identify areas where artificial intelligences could be deployed.