Google launches TensorFlow Quantum

Original article can be found here (source): Artificial Intelligence on Medium

Google launches TensorFlow Quantum

An add-on to the open-source software toolkit which enables developers to reuse code for quantum machine-learning apps

Quantum computers have been quite the rage recently with different tech companies vying for the top spot when it comes to building the most powerful quantum machine. While IBM and Google were in the headlines last year for achieving quantum supremacy, other companies like the Industrial giant Honeywell have been quietly working on its own quantum tech.

The company plans to make available its quantum machine to clients via the internet in the next three months. However, Honeywell’s approach is a little different than the traditional quantum computers which use superconducting qubits to operate. Honeywell’s quantum computer uses a different technology, called ion traps, which hold ions in place with electromagnetic fields.

Superconducting quantum chips are faster than the traditional silicon-based chips, and ion traps are even more accurate than the quantum chips and hold their quantum state for longer. Honeywell posted its complete research to the arXiv pre-print repository yesterday.

Google is now upping its game by launching an add-on to its popular TensorFlow toolkit. In case you don’t know, TensorFlow is an end-to-end open-source platform for machine learning, which provides an extensive set of tools for developers to build and deploy Machine Learning powered apps.

TensorFlow simplifies the deep neural networks and provides reusable code so that the new machine-learning apps don’t have to be written from scratch. The newly released TensorFlow Quantum will do the same for quantum machine learning. Basically, developers will be able to write quantum apps without worrying about the details of the quantum hardware they are running on.

A switch would let you alternate between a quantum computer and a classical machine so that you can debug your simulation on a traditional computer before running it on a full-blown quantum computer. Project Lead, Masoud Mohseni believes the developers will be able to develop fundamental new reusable algorithms.

This, however, is not the first toolkit for quantum machine learning. Toronto-based quantum computing startup Xanadu has a similar platform dubbed as Pennylane. Burnaby (B.C, Canada) based quantum computing company D-Wave Systems recently released Leap software for quantum app development. Leap is actually been used by several large corporations to develop in-house quantum software.

Although quantum machine learning is still a niche segment, the involvement of big techs like Google would help developers build communities that would foster innovation and growth.