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Microsoft’s New Quantum Programming Language QDK

29 December 2017

Microsoft is getting serious with Quantum Computing by the release of its new development kits. 

Microsoft has firmly joined the Quantum areana alongside other heavyweights IBM, Rigetti Computing and D-Wave Systems; all three have also released their own quantum programming software and sdks, with D-Wave having a Quantum Computer since February 13th, 2007 and the D-Wave One, “the world’s first commercially available quantum computer” since May 11th 2011.

Microsoft doesn’t yet have a real physical quantum computer though it can be assured they are in long research phase and building towards a slightly different architecture, ie topological.

The Quantum Development Kit, QDK, allows developers to write, test and debug programs on a local machine upto max 30 Qubits. The QDK can also hook up a to a more powerful simulator, running in the Azure Cloud, that can provide upto 40 qubits of computing power.

Programs will have to be written in Microsoft’s new language designed just for Quantum Computing, Q# (Q-Sharp) which is tightly integrated into Visual Studio. Developers already programming in C# and F# it should fairly quick process to up and running with Q#.

Visual Studio QDK Q#

The QDK comes with libraries, sample programs and documentation with more resources available online. The QDK requires an intel post 2011 processor, 64-bit version of Windows and Visual Studio 2017 before the QDK can be installed. Simulating 30 Qubits will need 16 Gb RAM. For every Qubit less halves the requirement and for every Qubit more, doubles the RAM. 40 Qubits in the cloud will need 16 terabytes of RAM.

If you want to be learning something thats as new and cutting edge as it comes then Quantum Computer Programming is something that you should look into. It should be noted that Quantum Computers are designed for very complex calculation based simulations and research, such as molecule interaction, DNA processes, weather predicting etc.

Quantum Programming QDK can be download here.

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