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2019 Gibbons Lecture 1: Quantum computing - What it is, and how we do it

8 May 2019: 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

University of Auckland,
Owen G Glenn Building,
Room OGGB 3/260-092,
Level 0,
12 Grafton Road,

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2019 Gibbons Memorial Lecture Series in association with ITP

Quantum Computing

What is quantum computing, what is the promise and what are the challenges?

Quantum computers are extremely complex machines that challenge almost everything we know about computing. Given their complexity, they are difficult to understand which, in turn, makes it difficult for us to understand their limits.

It is said they can crack all modern security algorithms and do immediate pattern recognition. If this is the case, what are the implications for not only computing but also wider society?

Quantum computing provides us with the opportunity to build new algorithms, and to rethink a lot of what has gone before.

Come along and hear the experts delve into this fascinating topic.

Lecture 1: Quantum computing - What it is, and how we do it

Dr Michael Dinneen will give an explanation (for novices) of what quantum computing is, and compare it to traditional digital/classical computing.

Currently there are three main types of quantum computers that are being proposed and built, which are based on quantum circuit gates, adiabatic quantum annealing, and quantum walks on graphs.

These are being promoted by big name companies like IBM, Google, D-Wave, Rigetti and IonQ.

Dr Dineen will discuss the School of Computer Science's active research using a D-Wave 2X quantum computer, which is located at the USC-Lockheed Martin Quantum Computation Center.

After introducing the basic computational model, Dr Dinneen will give a tutorial on how one formulates a simple (but NP-hard) computational optimisation problem so that one can then embed, run/solve, and process/decode the results obtained from these adiabatic quantum computers.

Join us for refreshments before each lecture from 6pm at 260.088, Level 0 Foyer, Owen G Glenn Building

About The Speaker

Dr Michael J Dinneen received his PhD from the University of Victoria, Canada, in 1996, and started as a lecturer at the University of Auckland the same year. He was hired to co-teach several algorithms classes (undergraduate and postgraduate) with Peter B Gibbons.

Prior to that he worked for several years at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, USA, working on grandchallenge combinatorial search and optimisation problems using supercomputers, such as those developed by Cray Research.

Besides his specialty of graph theory and algorithms, he does research on unconventional models of computation such as (adiabatic) quantum computing and membrane computing, culminating in over 100 research papers.

Registration Details:

Attendance is free, however please register below for catering and to secure your place.

Please note that this session may be video or audio recorded for viewing by other members at a later date. As it is possible that audience members may be incidentally recorded, please let us know if you specifically want to be excluded and we will ensure you are not shown.

Attendance Cost


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