With at least six federal agencies supporting quantum computing research and at least 10 agencies supporting synthetic biology research, more collaboration is needed to effectively marshal the agencies’ efforts to maintain U.S. competitiveness, according to a new report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).
An explosive report published by Bloomberg Businessweek on Thursday claimed the Chinese military sabotaged circuit boards used by dozens of major American companies and government contractors by implanting a tiny chip that gave the People’s Liberation Army backdoor access to supposedly secure systems. The report cited a U.S. investigation long in progress but only now revealed to the public.
The United States government has unveiled a slew of different Quantum Information Science (QIS) projects, with several different initiatives set to help the nation prepare for a future with quantum computers and quantum communications systems.
Nearly two out of three U.S. kids spend more than two hours a day looking at screens, a new analysis of activity levels finds. And those children perform worse on memory, language and thinking tests than kids who spend less time in front of a device, the study of over 4,500 8- to 11-year-olds shows.
Quantum computing leverages principles from quantum mechanics (a branch of physics), notably the unique behaviors of subatomic particles such as electrons and photons, to enable new, extremely powerful computing architectures.
“It does seem like it’s a fairly good initiative overall,” said Elsa Kania, adjunct fellow of the Technology and National Security Program at the Center for New American Security, or CNAS, and co-author of a report released the same day calling for greater focus on the quantum race against China. “It generally hits a lot of the right points.” But Kania also argued that the U.S. needs more specific guidance from Congress.
Last Thursday the U.S. House of Representatives passed the National Quantum Initiative Act (NQIA) intended to accelerate quantum computing research and development. Among other things it would establish a National Quantum Coordination Office within the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to oversee a “whole-of-government” effort.
The promise, and threat, of quantum computing is still years away. But quantum experts fear a lack of government emphasis and coordination on research strategy could upend U.S. digital and national security.
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The National Science Foundation (NSF) has made a $60 million award to fund the largest and most powerful supercomputer the agency has ever supported to serve the nation's science and engineering (S&E) research community. The new high-performance computing (HPC) system, to be called Frontera, will be located at the University of Texas at Austin's (UT Austin) Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC).