Australian and international researchers say they have designed a tiny crystal able to run a quantum computer so powerful it would take a computer the size of the known universe to match it. http://www.abc.net.au/news/20120426/supercomputer/3972832 "We've surpassed the computational potential of this system relative to classical computers by something like 10 to the [power of] 80, which is 80 orders of magnitude, a really enormous number," the University of Sydney's Dr Michael Biercuk told AM. My oath that is a big number; 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.00 I wonder if it could run BF3. 
Wow, imagine the Bitcoins you could farm with that!

I wonder if it could run BF3. I doubt it could render a single frame of pong. Quantum computing power is almost always exaggerated. Will look into it. 
I don't think that these things are designed for those types of tasks, so probably not, rather it's just about calculating physics using the real thing rather than a poor horriblycomplex mechanical simulation of reality.
Could also be wrong, I know very little. 
The quantum computer will move to a stage where it is so far out in front and performing such complex tasks it will be difficult to check if it is working accurately. "They're not easily checked by a classical computer which opens a whole variety of problems," Dr Biercuk said. Maybe build a second one and use that to check it? 
If this little tiny crystal can do all that, what's to say there isn't a mainframe of crystals all working together to render reality.
Will computers ever be powerful enough to simulate reality? Kinda like the matrix? 
Don't understand how they can use a crytsal to compute anything. Someone explain?

I think that's just the interconnected structure of the few atoms which make up the computer.

If this "Quantum" computer is proven then I think current Encryption tech will be pretty much gone, because in theory they'd be able to crack the key in real time using this new Quantum computing...

In quantum computing, a qubit or quantum bit is a unit of quantum information—the quantum analogue of the classical bit—with additional dimensions associated to the quantum properties of a physical atom. The physical construction of a quantum computer is itself an arrangement of entangled atoms, and the qubit represents[clarification needed] both the state memory and the state of entanglement in a system. A quantum computation is performed by initializing a system of qubits with a quantum algorithm —"initialization" here referring to some advanced physical process that puts the system into an entangled state. Crazy stuff 
Wow, imagine the Banks you could farm with that!FTFY 
Don't understand how they can use a crytsal to compute anything. Someone explain? I could tell you but you wouldn't be able to verify my answer without a quantum computer. My understanding is that it's a crystal which can have multiple configuration states. Inserting some energy (maybe via laser) will cause the crystal to have a different state, and then possibly be stable in that state. So instead of a light bulb which has two states with energy (on and off) you have a crystal with many states, which means you perform calculations in a fundamentally different way. That's my layman's understanding. 
How do they change the state of a single atom? Surely all 300 atoms would have to be precisely controlled?
edit: Addled fail, showing up when I'm logged in. Also, that video doesn't explain s***. Will have to wait until it is published in a journal, then I can use my sweet, sweet UQ Library to get at it. last edited by Tollaz0r! at 14:10:56 26/Apr/12 
It's in Nature, but I just meant that he touches on "what do we mean by crystal" in the video (i.e. it's an artificial construct).

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v484/n7395/full/nature10981.html
Is that the article? Way to spin it media. lol see what I did there. 
I see it.
Yeah that's the article. Gave up reading the summary though, I've never followed the explanations of quantum computing between: "QBits are strange, with states of either 0, 1, or somewhere between" (3 states? Infinite states? Or something else?) to "Quantum Computers are thus incredibly powerful" The closest that I think I've come to understanding the problem was when somewhere or other described it as an interconnected system of allpossibilities which collapses into the probable answer due to humanbrainincompatible nonmechanical properties of reality. Basically I don't understand it. 
It's in Nature, but I just meant that he touches on "what do we mean by crystal" in the video (i.e. it's an artificial construct). Nope that wasn't my question (probably yours!). I was asking how the crystal is used as a cpu, from the video you posted and what pinky said it sounds like they use the crystal for simulating quantum computing. Input is the laser (energy), somehow the configuration of the individual atoms is the out put or their spin or their charge or their magnetic field or a bunch of stuff. Nerfy this part from wiki might explain: A classical computer has a memory made up of bits, where each bit represents either a one or a zero. A quantum computer maintains a sequence of qubits. A single qubit can represent a one, a zero, or, crucially, any quantum superposition of these two qubit states; moreover, a pair of qubits can be in any quantum superposition of 4 states, and three qubits in any superposition of 8. In general, a quantum computer with qubits can be in an arbitrary superposition of up to different states simultaneously (this compares to a normal computer that can only be in one of these states at any one time). A quantum computer operates by manipulating those qubits with a fixed sequence of quantum logic gates. The sequence of gates to be applied is called a quantum algorithm.More states, MORE POWAH! 
Yeah that does help a little. I get the impression that it somehow goes through all the possible calculations, or would if the universe allowed it, but somehow spits out, or collapses into (whatever that means exactly) a single answer (in a task such as cracking a code, where it can only result in one valid answer, perhaps).

the idea is that the 2 states for a normal computer is on or off
quantum computing sees both states at the same time therefore being able to give the answer to any algorithm instantly in other words no matter what problem you throw at the computer the answer is already there.. it just extracts it.. 
Yeah, that's sort of fitting in with the impression that I have, but leaves me at a point of feeling terribly ignorant still. :P
Don't worry too much, I have a bunch of learnin tabs open and am finally going to have a good crack at understanding this... 
Don't need this s***. That other Aussie is giving us infinite graphics soon

therefore being able to give the answer to any algorithm instantly No, not quite  they're very good at some problems, and pretty rubbish at others. For instance: one of the famous ones that they're quite good at, prime factorisation of large numbers, works by running the superposition through a series of 'gates' that in effect perform a Fourier transform of the wavefunction, where the resulting frequencies are the factors you seek (within a certain degree of probability). It's not like it uses the superposition to brute force the answer in a similar style to conventional methods. You can't just run any old algorithm through a quantum computer. It's possibly also worth mentioning that the article says that this breakthrough provides a /special case/ of quantum computing  a quantum simulation  and not a fullblown quantum computer. The DWave machine is also a special case that can only handle specific types of problems, and has been around for a while. That said, this sounds a lot closer, and is definitely a cool breakthrough. 
So try and help those above, this is my understanding of a Quantum computer...
So we have a problem that three things added together gives us 7. a + b + c = 7 0 + 0 + 0 = 0 (2%) 0 + 0 + 1 = 1 (2%) 0 + 0 + 2 = 2 (2%) ... 2 + 2 + 3 = 7 (99.8%) A quantum computer would be able to compute the answer to the above questions for all possibilities in a single operation. Because in quantum mechanics everything is rated in a percentage chance of happening. A computer would have to brute force every permutation of combinations of those three numbers (each one a new operation  consuming power) within a reasonable range (aka 0 through to 10). The strength of quantum computing seams to come from the fact that it does literally every single permutation in a single operation. Please correct me if im wrong... i'm still trying to get my head around it myself. It never seams to get cleaer despite how many youtube vids I watch. 
O sweet, I figured that quantum computers would really only be suited to solve problems that involve quantum probabilities (or whatever you call it). I think there are two distinct quantum computer types in development.
The first type use quantum magic to solve quantum problems, things like simulating magnetic fields and whatnot. The other type is a computer that uses particles of light to do conventional calculations and is basically just a computer that runs close to the speed of light, possibly not even really a quantum computer. < this is the one media always bang on about, even if it is the first type. I guess there will be hybrids too. 
You know you're in to Quantum Computing when on the 6 sided dice you use for Dungeons and Dragons instead of 16, you have Up, Down, Top, Bottom, Strange and Charm on the faces.
The problem with quantum computing is we can't yet easily force or read certain states. This means we're still extremely limited in the output (or throughput) we can get. Problem 2 is, well... try explaining Bloch Spheres to a 6th grade student when you might currently be able to explain base number systems to them. To get in to the industry is going to require a PhD. 
Reading some of these posts I already feel like I'm one of those "ye olde binary computing machine" enthusiasts.

i thought the way quantum computers worked, is that instead of a bit being a 1 or a 0, a qubit is a 1 and a 0 at the same time.
