The sale of a new quantum computer for $ 15 million


Canadian company D-Wave is considered one of the pioneers in the production of commercially available quantum computers . Release of the first models was held back in 2007. Then it was a 16-kbit and 28-kbit Orion computer. In May 2011, the D-Wave One model with a 128-bit chip, and then the D-Wave Two with a 512-chip chip, went on sale. On this D-Wave decided to stop. The D-Wave 2000Q computer comes on sale with a 2000-kbit processor at $ 15,000,000.

If you think that such a car will be unclaimed, then you are mistaken. A new model of a quantum computer is gradually building a line of customers. And this is despite the fact that many leading world scientists are not completely sure of the advisability of purchasing such expensive equipment. The first owner of the new computer will be Temporal Defense Systems, a computer security company. The company’s management is confident that a quantum computer will allow to solve the most complex problems faced by security experts as quickly as possible. The computer was also interested in scientists developing rovers for the study of other planets.

Compare the performance of a quantum computer with the work of a traditional computer is not an easy task. Somewhere he wins in the speed of computation, sometimes tens of thousands of times, especially when using algorithms adapted for him, but somewhere he loses. Manufacturers of D-Wave 2000Q claim that their new offspring are particularly successful in machine learning. In any case, the software must be carefully adapted to work on a quantum computer, which can take a lot of time and effort. Be that as it may, D-Wave is not going to stop the development of new models, and in the near future we are waiting for even more powerful “quantum monsters.”

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Scientists on a supercomputer modeled a 45-qubit quantum computing system


Because of the high complexity of the principles of the operation of quantum computing systems, an increase in the number of simulated quantum bits (qubits), thanks to which such systems operate, requires an increase in processing power. Because of this, it is very difficult to create these systems. However, researchers from Switzerland in the near future are going to conduct calculations of the mathematical model of a quantum computer with 49 qubits. This is one of the most complex quantum systems at the moment.

Behind the research are Thomas Xener and Damian Steiger from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. To calculate this model will be used supercomputer Cori II, which is the 5th largest in the world. Located Cori II at the Lawrence National Laboratory in Berkeley. A computer consists of 9034 computer nodes, each of which has a 68-core Intel Xeon Phi 7250 processor with a clock speed of 1.4 GHz. The system has a memory capacity of 1 petabyte, and its performance is 29.1 petaflops. Testers from Switzerland with the help of Cori II have already managed to model quantum systems with 30, 36, 42 and 45 qubits.

Image of a section of the quantum system model

In a series of calculations of quantum computer models, Xener and Stager constantly made changes to the source code of the model, removing all unnecessary from it, optimizing and accelerating the work of existing sites. As a result of this work, the current code works much faster than the code used in the very first models.

The current mathematical model uses floating-point numbers to calculate the most complex processes and amplitudes of quantum oscillations. The specialists are sure that there are several possibilities in the used code for its further optimization, which will allow them to make calculations of the computer model with 49 qubits in a short time, using 8192 nodes for this purpose.

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Neuroset has learned to hide from the bosses the windows open on the desktop


Neural networks can become good assistants and reliable friends – this was proved by the Japanese programmer Hiroki Nakayama, who created the program, which automatically hides from the eyes of the approaching superiors all the windows open on the display.

The programmer named the system simply – Boss Sensor, and it works as follows way: watches with the help of a web camera for those who approach the workplace and, if there is a boss among them, immediately hides all open windows, unfolding the user-defined picture on the whole screen.

First, Hiroki Nakayama pumped up a lot of photos of his boss from social networks, and then, based on the photo archive, created a large database, which he gave to study the neural net. Further – it’s easier. After the network showed itself well in the work, he wrote a script that unfolds on the whole screen a picture with something for which the authorities do not exactly violate. The ideal option is a screenshot with a program in which it should work instead of sitting in social networks, for example.

Nakayama’s chief sits just a few meters from the enterprising programmer, so the neural network had to work quickly and instantly to think. The system did not fail and works quite quickly – it takes only 4-5 seconds to make a decision.

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IBM creates a cloud-based service based on a quantum computer


At the moment, with an increase in the amount of computing, developers are increasingly focusing on the creation of quantum computers. But even considering that today it is already possible to create some similar systems, their use and maintenance is extremely expensive, and not everyone can afford it. IBM decided to help, which plans to launch a cloud computing service based on a universal quantum computing system called IBM Q, which anyone can rent.

Cloud service IBM Q is built on the basis of another development of IBM, called Quantum Experience, which at the moment is an experimental quantum computer with five qubits, but the developers intend to increase the number of qubits by at least 10 times. It is worth recalling that the qubits (or quantum bits) are rearranged. Unlike the “ordinary” bits, the quantum bits, in addition to the standard states 0 and 1, can be in the third state – the quantum superposition. Due to this, as the number of qubits increases, the computing power of the quantum system increases exponentially.

IBM plans that users of the Quantum Experience service will use the capabilities of a quantum computer to develop and pre-debug applications, which will then be launched on a large quantum computer IBM Q. Already, the number of IBM Quantum Experience customers is more than 40 thousand companies, and the number created in its application framework exceeded the mark of 275 thousand.

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How did the legendary Solitaire for Windows appear?


On Friday, April 14, Great Big Story published an interview with Wes Cherry, who created the famous solitaire “Kindergarten” (not in the sense of a solitaire, but in terms of its software embodiment for the operating system), being an intern at the company.

“In fact, the” Kosynka “for Windows appeared from boredom. Since then there were few games for the computer, we decided to create it, “he said.

In 1998, Cherry was trained in Microsoft, then the game was developed. He says that he did it to make it more fun to work, but when the popularity of personal computers went up, the company’s management came up with a legend: “The kerchief” was created in order to teach people to use the mouse. The very founder of Microsoft Bill Gates negatively expressed himself about the game in 1990, because it was not easy to win in it.

It turned out that in the distant 1990 in the workplace in the office it was impossible to play, and “Kindergarten” became popular among office workers. Therefore, it introduced a special button Boss Key, when pressed, the game was hidden in the tray.

Cherry says that he was not paid a kopek for the “kerchief”, but he would be very rich if every copy of the game brought him at least a cent. Now he is engaged in the production of cider.

The legend that games like “Saper”, “Cherv”, “Klansky” and “Free Cell” were developed to teach people to use the capabilities of the OS, became known in August 2015.

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Opera has released a browser with protection from mining for smart devices and PCs


The developers of the Opera browser have paid attention to the problem of hidden mining for a long time , so they decided to protect users of PCs and smart devices from the actions of intruders. First they released a secure version for computers, and the other day a new browser for mobile devices appeared in time.

In a press release published on the developers website, it says that hidden mining damages users’ devices, negatively affecting their performance and wearing gadget batteries. Therefore, the creators of the new Opera decided to challenge hackers and prevent such situations from happening again.

According to researchers in the field of cybersecurity, hidden programs-miners, using the computing power of computers around the world, are built into millions of sites. When a user of a PC gets to such a resource, the miner starts to load the victim’s “iron”, which at that time does not suspect anything, helping unscrupulous resource owners to earn a little crypto currency.

“When you browse such a site, a computer or other device does not signal that the program-miner is running, but if you do not leave the site for a long time, the battery will start to discharge very quickly, and the performance of the device will fall many times,” explained the developers of the protected browser Opera.

The new version of Opera, designed for PCs and mobile devices, automatically blocks the miners using the enhanced ad blocking function. Until the hackers write the current “patch” blocking the protection of Opera, you can sit on the Internet and not worry that you are stuffing someone with cryptoshelves, while “killing” your tablet or smartphone. You can download the new version in the application stores and on the developers site.

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Apple plans to release a budget MacBook


Over the past few years Apple has been actively updating its flagship MacBook Pro laptop, forgetting about the Air line. However, according to the latest reports, this year the apple company can finally return to the production of miniature notebooks. Moreover, the new laptops that will replace the MacBook Air, will belong to the so-called budget segment and will cost much less than the current Pro-version.

The new development of the Cupertinovs is written by Inverse with reference to General Interface Solutions. The latter has been manufacturing MacBook accessories since the end of 2017, and now the company has received an order for LCD screens “for the new 12-inch MacBook budget segment.” It is reported that the new MacBook will go on sale in the second half of 2018. Given that the cost of MacBook Air is about 1200 US dollars, the cost of a new laptop should not exceed this amount.

In this case, Apple may completely abandon the further production of MacBook Air in favor of the new product, since as early as 2015, the Cupertino released a 12-inch MacBook of a new design, designed for those who need a laptop only for everyday tasks and who do not need the power of a professional series. In addition, as reported by the insiders, the new MacBook can also help Apple solve the problems that have arisen with the new keyboard, which, due to the new mechanism and the extremely thin case, was clogged with dust, which caused hardware breakdowns. About the correction of another “sick” topic in the form of the lack of additional connectors and the presence of only USB-C ports nothing is reported.

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Results of the Microsoft presentation


Terry Myerson, the head of the Windows development department, opened the presentation. He started with the fact that the Windows operating system is developed for all people, so it is important to make it available to specialists in a certain area, and ordinary users, including those whose capabilities are limited. Developers take into account the interests of those who work on the computer, but do not forget about gamers. Stressing that Microsoft’s technologies are used in different ways, he mentioned the Windows Insider testing program and the augmented reality of HoloLens, and finished the introduction with a capacious and striking slogan: Windows is a desktop in any place.

At the event, new information was announced on the next big update for devices running Windows 10 and Windows 10 mobile. Previously, it was known only that it will appear in the spring of 2017 and is code-named “Redstone 2”. During the presentation it was revealed that the update will be called “Windows 10 Creators Update”.

They confirmed that the devices will be updated in the spring, after which they began a story about new features and applications of Windows designed to reveal the talents and potential of users.

The presentation continued under the motto “3D for Everyone”. The display of the colorful video was not limited, after which Megan Saunders, head of the department working on 3D-technologies, began the story about the future and the three-dimensional possibilities that will become a reality thanks to the development of Microsoft.

“Applications and technologies that allow users to create and work in three dimensions should be accessible to everyone, and the process of creating 3D models simply must become simple and understandable for everyone. Access to these technologies should not be limited to a PC, they can be used and needed on mobile devices, “Megan Saunders said.

Next, she showed the process of creating a three-dimensional model of a sand castle using the HP Elite x3 smartphone on Windows 10 mobile.


After the spectacular and demonstrative demonstration that reinforced her words, the announcement of Paint 3D, an updated version of the popular application from the set of standard programs for the family of Windows operating systems, took place. As you can understand from the title, soon with the help of the new “Paint” it will be possible not only to draw scribbles and sketches on Surface tablets, but also to process 3D objects.


Yes, you can work with the newly created three-dimensional model of the castle. All about the same as in the script for that commercial, remember?

Microsoft will cooperate in this direction with other development companies, so during the presentation, a partnership was announced with SketchUp, a software manufacturer for 3D modeling – Paint 3D users will have access to the portal and a collection of models directly from the application. In Paint 3D, you can work with a pen, creating 3D models directly in the program, and the results of the work directly from the program can be shared with colleagues and friends on social networks. 3D support will also appear in PowerPoint, as well as in a number of other applications, in the Edge browser, for example, which, incidentally, will be the first browser to support HoloLens! The created three-dimensional projects can be shared on a special site Remix3D.

During the next demonstration, HoloLens showed variations in the use of the augmented reality set in everyday life, trying on a new chair in the interior. Three-dimensional space each user can decorate and customize at will, “hung” with his favorite applications, a beautiful view of nature and so on. As we already wrote earlier, new virtual reality glasses will cost from 299 US dollars. The helmets of virtual reality will support and develop the spheres of their application.

In the game block, the presentations told about new entertainment services for Xbox and Windows 10, showing the Beam service, which allows to stream the game process to the Network by simply clicking the corresponding icon in the taskbar of Xbox and Windows 10 for the PC.

Spring update will allow gamers to conduct their own game championships. All that is needed is to choose a game, come up with a name for the competition, choose the mode and time of the tournament.

At the end of the game block, recalled about Xbox Play Anywhere: buy one game and run it on all devices. The developers emphasize that the games in 4K resolution will look great on Windows 10.


The “Creators Update” update will have many new opportunities for communication, thanks to which it will be possible to quickly and easily keep in touch with close people and colleagues: a special panel will allow you to simply transfer the file to the right person by mouse – for this you do not even have to open new windows or turn off already open. Want to throw a photo to parents – just drag it to the People Bar in the contact icon of your mom or dad. The colleague asks to show the intermediate result of the work? Drop the file directly from OneDrive. Conveniently! More People Bar are “friends” with Skype.

After that, we moved on to the devices, drawing attention to the Surface Book. The laptop-transformer is convenient for work and suitable for entertainment, and the pen can very quickly and efficiently take notes in OneNote and draw in graphic editors, so Microsoft decided to develop the idea by creating an updated version of the popular Surface Book, which received a new design, new processors and impressive battery life. At one charge the novelty will be able to work up to 16 hours!


The updated Surface Book will run on Intel Core i7 Kaby Lake, it is equipped with a PixelSense display and put up a price of 2399 US dollars. But there is good news: last year’s Surface Book has fallen in price and now costs only 1499 dollars, and Surface Pro – 899 dollars.

Presented and a new candy bar Surface Studio, the thickness of its display – only 12.5 millimeters. This is not a simple monoblock, it was created specifically for professional designers. Touch TrueColor-display with a 3: 2 aspect ratio can boast of an impressive diagonal of 28 inches and a huge resolution. The display will have several modes of operation, so the user can switch between DCI-P3 and sRGB on the go to see how his project will look on other, simpler monitors. In the monoblock there is a camera, a microphone and support for “Cortana” (in Russia and the CIS, as in many other countries, it is not yet available).

The stuffing is good: a new Intel Core i7, an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M graphics card, 32 GB of RAM and a 2 TB hybrid disk. On the rear panel there are four USB 3.0, Ethernet, Mini DisplayPort, audio output and a card reader. Yes, all the “iron” fit in this elegant and miniature podstavochke. The display bends well and turns, allowing the owner to work on the new Surface Studio while lying down – there would be a desire. For the new monoblock, the remote control Surface Dial will be released, which will allow you to switch colors when drawing, flip pages, rewind music, videos and do many more interesting things.

The pre-orders for Surface Studio are already open, you can choose the model you like:
1TB / Intel Core i5 – 8GB RAM / 2GB GPU – $ 2999
1TB / Intel Core i7 – 16GB RAM / 2GB GPU – $ 3499
2TB / Intel Core i7 – 32GB RAM / 4GB GPU – 4199 dollars

The presentation ended with a spectacular performance by a Madefire employee who made several sketches and drawings right on the stage, demonstrating the effectiveness of the work with the help of the new Surface Studio and the Surface Pen pen.


The event was finished by Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, summarizing all of the above and thanking those present for their attention.

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Acer began selling the “lightest laptop” Swift 5 in Russia


In Russia, sales of the new ultrabook Acer Swift 5 began. According to the company, the laptop is made of special alloys, which explain its light weight – the device weighs less than 1 kilogram. The 14-inch notebook is equipped with the latest Intel Core 8-generation processor, an IPS-touch screen with a resolution of Full HD and will be sold at a price of 79,990 rubles.

Also, configurations with more powerful stuffing – Intel Core i7 processor, increased capacity of the drive, increased memory capacity are available. The older configurations will be sold at a price of 99,990 and 107,990 rubles, respectively.

The main emphasis in the new version of Acer makes on the ease of the notebook (970 grams), the thickness of 9.2 mm and the narrower frame.

“Acer Swift 5 will especially appeal to users who appreciate the combination of stylish appearance, performance and convenience of transportation in the notebook,” the press release said.

The main feature of the new ultrabook is the case. It is made of special ultra-light and strong magnesium-lithium and magnesium-aluminum alloys. The laptop weighs 42% less if you compare the option, made in a completely aluminum housing. Also on the body is applied a special polymer coating, created with the help of plasma electrolytic oxidation. A lightweight and portable laptop will be convenient for those who spend a lot of time on the road and need a small but powerful device with a good battery. The battery capacity of 4670 mAh allows the laptop to work up to 8 hours from one battery charge.

Swift 5 has an HDMI port, two USB 3.0 ports and a USB 3.1 Type-C port that supports data transfer speeds of up to 5 Gb / s, an image output of 4K, and can also charge connected gadgets. For connection to the network, the laptop is equipped with a wireless communication module 2 × 2 802.11ac. The central body of the laptop is the Intel Core 8-th generation processor. Windows 10 comes with a built-in fingerprint sensor with Acer Bio-Protection technology, which supports the Windows Hello function to identify the user and unlock the system.

The following Swift 5 models will be available in retail:

  • Acer Swift 5/14 “FHD IPS Multi-touch LCD / Core i7-8550U / 16 GB LP DDR3 / 512 GB SSD – 107 990 rub.
  • Acer Swift 5/14 “FHD IPS Multi-touch LCD / Core i7-8550U / 8 GB LP DDR3 / 512 GB SSD – 99 990 rub.
  • Acer Swift 5/14 “FHD IPS Multi-touch LCD / Core i5-8250U / 8 GB LP DDR3 / 256 GB SSD – 79 990 rub.
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