Dixie State University to host forum on quantum computing

Explaining quantum computers and how they might impact the future, Brigham Young University professor Dr. John Colton will be the featured speaker at the next installment of Dixie State University’s weekly lecture series Dixie Forum: A Window on the World.

Colton’s presentation, “Quantum Computing: Quantum Supremacy. . .is it Real? Is it Important? What is it?” is set to take place at noon on Tuesday, Dec. 3 in the Dunford Auditorium, located in the Browning Resource Center on the Dixie State campus. Admission is free, and the public is encouraged to attend.

During his presentation, Colton will explain quantum computing and how it works as well as explore the different implementations of it. The foundation for his presentation emerged in October when Google scientists announced they had achieved quantum supremacy, claiming their quantum computer was able to do a calculation that could never be done in any reasonable time by a regular computer. According to Colton, Google asserts that their calculation, done in 200 seconds, would have taken a state-of-the-art supercomputer 10,000 years to complete, although the IBM creators of the supercomputer disagree. Colton will discuss the architecture of Google's Sycamore quantum computer and explore how quantum computers might impact the world in the future.

Graduating from Brigham Young University in 1994 with degrees in physics and mathematics, Colton then went on to the University of California, Berkeley and earned his doctorate in experimental condensed matter physics. Additionally, he did a two-year post-doctorate at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington D.C. and then began working as a professor in 2003 at University of Wisconsin – La Crosse. He returned to his alma mater in 2007, where he has worked for the past 12 years.  

Dixie Forum is a weekly lecture series designed to introduce the St. George community and DSU students, faculty and staff to diverse ideas and personalities while widening their worldviews via a 50-minute presentation. This will be the final forum for the Fall semester.