February 03, 2021 :

Mixed signals from the international community have heightened tensions surrounding two significant technological developments that, if they were to go beyond their current niche status in today’s world, would profoundly transform our lives. It has now become apparent that governments worldwide will soon be passing new regulations regarding both the development and use of quantum computing and gene editing.

The first of these is the ultimate tool of future scientists – a device capable of manipulating human DNA on a grand scale, so to speak. It will allow new insights into diseases such as cancer, but also allows all sorts of manipulation of our genetic make up, effectively paving the way for a major modification of the human species. How this may be achieved is something of a mystery, but its real significance is that this will be one of the greatest impacts of gene editing to date.

The other is the most fascinating and potentially disturbing development in the field of quantum computing, which is the ability to manipulate the state of very small objects – in this case electrons, in the absence of light. The ultimate goal is to enable computers of the future to factor numbers and thus create encrypted information. To achieve this, such quantum computers would use electron spin, and thus give the smallest processors ever created.

Quantum computing’s potential for the advancement of cybernetics was most recently showcased in a paper published in Nature, which analyzed how the energy in a single electron can be used to perform calculations that would normally be very difficult. On the surface this seems like science fiction, but in terms of scientific advancement the implications are potentially profound.

And they are big news to these scientists at The University of Alberta, the creators of the first working quantum computing processor. They will be among the first to run into trouble with their technology, but they have some ideas about how to overcome these issues.

The computer will soon be used to develop the smallest quantum computer ever created – a development which has already created many scientists’ interest in this new field. These developments were met with criticism by a number of countries around the world, who see this technology as an existential threat to their national security, and therefore decided to impose some rules to stop it from being used.

The rules were first put in place by the International Committee of Weights and Measures (CIPM) in the early 2000’s and in November of 2018 these rules were changed in an attempt to keep the technology in its current niche in society.

According to Dr. Arthur D. McDonald, who has overseen the development of the world’s first quantum computing processor, the amended regulations can now be found online, and many are concerned about the fact that governments are not planning to limit their impact.

“The CIPM rewrote the rules last year, and now anyone who wants to develop a quantum computer, has to get a license from the International Atomic Energy Agency, and cannot talk about it outside of the government-set parameters. You can’t even talk about the project. It’s put some of these researchers in a panic,” he told the National Post.

But Dr. McDonald is optimistic about the future, claiming that our current dependence on traditional computers can’t last much longer. “What you have to realize is, now, the stuff that we do on a daily basis, the stuff we rely on – Facebook, Google, the cloud – those are all systems that would have failed without the cloud.”

He also thinks that this would not be the end of computers, but rather, a new chapter in their evolution. “A quantum computer is a completely different paradigm for computing.”

With the ability to process huge amounts of data, faster and more efficiently than their older counterparts, and no negative effect on human safety, McDonald believes that quantum computing is the future, and the next advancement in the field will have a massive impact on society.

“There will come a day, not too far in the future, when we have computers and appliances that are connected directly to the internet, not through a computer network, but directly to the internet, without a network server or computer storing the information,” he said. “I think that will be a milestone in the evolution of computing.”

“The conventional computer, as we know it, will end up becoming obsolete and being converted into one of the other computers – the quantum computers, the neuromorphic computers, the information processing