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**Ieatclowns**
t1_j9p1w27 wrote

Reply to comment by **Gloriathewitch** in **Google announces major breakthrough that represents ‘significant shift’ in quantum computers** by **Ezekiel_W**

Forgive me for asking but how do they work on it if it's impossible to understand?

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**futuneral**
t1_j9psbdl wrote

You can make a paper airplane without knowing anything about fluid dynamics. It could be crappy. You try making different variants and finally arrive at a good design, and even come up with a folding formula for the best airplane. All without having to understand how fluid dynamics works.

"No one understands quantum mechanics" is a bit of a meme. Scientists have a good grasp on principles, the math there actually provides some of the most precise predictions we've ever seen. What's not known is "why" and "what does this mean". The "shut up and calculate" motto works really well for coming up with solutions for practical applications. The philosophy of it is lagging behind though. And many in the field only care about this while having beers at the bar on Tuesdays.

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**djmevans**
t1_j9pv505 wrote

I wish I could give you an award but I can't at the moment. You definitely deserve one for the thorough and easy to understand answer to genuine confusion.

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**riceandcashews**
t1_j9pwgqo wrote

QM is relatively straightforward. The concept is this: particles don't actually have a position or spin or charge or mass or velocity. Instead there are different probabilities that we will observe a spin/charge/mass/velocity at various positions. There are 'dense' areas of probability where there is high likelihood to observe the particle/property and there are 'light' areas of probability where there is low likelihood to observe the particle property. You can think of these 'dense' and 'light' regions as crests and troughs of a wave. And just like water waves can interfere with each other (a big crest and a big trough cancel out in water, etc), so to can probability waves. As a result, instead of interacting 'classically' as objects, the quantum observations we make interact as waves of probability that can interact with each other like waves, resulting in all kinds of complex interference.

If that makes sense?

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**BIGELLLOW**
t1_j9qlcx1 wrote

It's not that it's not understood, but not fully understood. For instance, you can know enough about gravity to be able to regularly predict the path of a thrown ball or to figure out how much thrust is needed for orbit without fully knowing how gravity is "communicated" over the vastness of space.

Enough is known about quantum entanglement for us to build computers using the phenomenon, even if there are still plenty of things about quantum physics we still don't fully comprehend.

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