CommBank throws AU$5m at UNSW quantum computer lab

Because everyone wants their bank balance stored as a superposition

Australia's Commonwealth Bank has decided to make a AU$5 million donation to the University of New South Wales' Centre for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology.

The money is intended to help two projects, namely an effort to “demonstrate entanglement in a scalable silicon based quantum computing architecture and then to coherently transport quantum information to create 'flying qubits' within the computer.”

CommBank CIO David Whiteing says the donation is in tune with the bank's support for Australian industry, suggests global attempts to develop a working quantum computer are akin to the space race and notes that a quantum machine would have useful applications in industries including finance.

Quantum computers are expected to be orders of magnitude faster than today's machines, hence the attraction to the Bank and other would-be users.

But because they're also conceptually rather more complex because instead of the silicon certainty of bit being either zero or one, a quantum bit – or Qubit – exists in all its possible states at once.

If the Commonwealth Bank eventually runs a quantum computer, it will therefore record your bank balance as all values between $0.00 and your actual balance. All at once.

Think on that before you ponder whether banks investing in quantum computers is a good idea. ®

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