Microsoft releases Q#, a language for writing quantum algorithms


Originally published at:


I’m simultaneously impressed/unimpressed.


As a software engineer, I continue to find quantum computing utterly baffling. This is where the post-singularity machines are going to wreck us.


Bah! Perl has had that for more than a decade:


Needs more blockchain.




Hydrogen is a molecule?




Actually, funny story, if QM gets solved a lot of encryption algorithms including some that power blockchains are going to be, at best, severely dinged, and at worst just broken. You can solve that, there are QM-safe algorithms for most things, but I’m not sure if the BTC infrastructure can be moved seamlessly to new everything.

Either way. Feathers will fly.


I’m with you. I just don’t see the applications for this and the idea of a “floating” 1/0 state fills me with unease and despair.

Anybody have an ELI5?


Surely this is more of an amusing toy meant to advertise for Microsoft rather than something novel and useful?


How do you feel about it now that I have read your comment?


It’s a computing framework for topological quantum computers. There’s a new compiled language with primitive types for qubits, and such. It has a standard library with stuff that’s useful for quantum algorithms. You can run in a simulator, or for research purposes, you can do a trace simulation that doesn’t actually execute anything, but debugs the classical components of the program and tells you what quantum resources would be needed for your program.

Here’s more info on the topological approach that Microsoft prefers:

I’m inclined to give MS a rare thumbs up on this one, since basic research has become a rare thing in the corporate setting. The topological quantum computer is based on some weird quasiparticle that may not even exist!


Now your quantum computing code can contain 10x as many security vulnerabilities!

Seriously, though, does this mean it comes with Clippy? Ok, not so seriously.

But inquiring minds want to know, why would anyone want to slow down their quantum computer 1000x by loading windows on it?


It is easy and popular to poke fun at MS and lump them with other big tech monoliths, but here is news that they’ve just released an innovative software package for free, and reminds us that MS continues to keep 1000 researchers in a variety of foundational fields on their payroll.


Depends if you were reading it to know where the comment was or how fast it was going.


I will wait for Q.js


Including a Fields medalist, Michael Freedman.


They have many excellent mathematicians, in a variety of fields. I think they started the manifolds group back when it seemed to be the key to understanding the human genome



Or Q@!#?@!