QUBITS  *  AND THE CHANGING FACE OF INFORMATION  *


The idea behind this project is to think about how the rise of quantum computing will effect the way that artists visualize digital information as well as the way that society thinks about computers and digital spaces.

What is quantum computing?

"A fundamentally new mode of information processing that can be performed only by harnessing physical phenomena unique to quantum mechanics (especially quantum interference).  "
qubit.org  

"Today, the bit is king. A conventional computer is just a series of hundreds of millions of switches whose on and off positions represent the values 1 and 0. And every operation a computer performs, whether calculating your waiter's tip or simulating the explosion of a nuclear warhead, comes down to a series of actions that flick those switches from 0 to 1 and back again.
Familiar stuff. But in a Q[uantum] C[omputer], the bit is upgraded to a quantum bit, or qubit, that doesn't need to choose between 1 and 0. It can be both at once. As a result, a memory array of n qubits can represent every number between 1 and 2n simultaneously."

Wired 09.01


This new kind of thinking about information is already occurring in simulators even though large scale quantum computers are not available.

"Since there is not yet a physical quantum computer of any significant size, a simulator allows for the development of quantum algorithms without such a machine at hand."
Open Qubit

Why is this important?

This is a chart I found online portraying information.  It looks like a computer motherboard.  This chart shows the influence that our perceptions of the digital world has on how we visualize and display information.  Post QC I think this notion will change.  We won't think of connections in terms of line of copper or cables but as encompassing spheres.  The notion that allows for molecules to effect one another instantaneously is called "entanglement" for a very good reason.  In side the QC's of the future electronic components won't be connected; they will be entangled.  This will change how we visualize information; perhaps ideas will be represented over lapping or absent the neat and tidy boxes that current system designs create.  

Metaphors!

INFORMATION SUPER HIGHWAY.  WEB SURFING.  CYBER SPACE.

Computers and digital information have been subject to a variety of comparisons and personifications.  One of the most elaborate visualizations of the digital world to ever be done was conducted by Mainframe Entertainment in their computer animated television show ReBoot!


ReBoot focused on the lives and loves of the sprites of Mainframe, a digital city inside a personal computer.  It brought to life characters like sprites, search engines, viruses and even binary numerals.  The image of Mainframe City (above) is once again related to a motherboard or layout of a computer chip.  The city floats out in cyber space, which is presented as empty space without limit.  Since in a QC qubits are molecules floating in a liquid the notion of cyber space will be replaced with a "cyber ocean".  The mainframe of the future could very well be closer to a coral reef than an urban metropolis.  


[Mainframe Up close]

Future face of digital.

Computer Systems Cohabitate a Cyber Ocean
I painted this in water colors to represent how i view the future of visualizing digital information.  Computer systems are no longer a series of boxes but nebulous clouds of information.  The system no longer allows for metaphors like building or highways.