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A quantum computing primer: What makes quantum different

What makes quantum computing so different from classical computing that it may lead to breakthroughs in chemistry, physics, medicine and finance? In classical digital computing, data is encoded in binary digits (bits), which are always in one of two definite states, 0 or 1. Quantum computers are based on qubits, which operate according to two principles of quantum mechanics: superposition and entanglement. Quantum computing takes advantage of the ability of subatomic particles to exist in more than one state at a time. Superposition means each qubit can represent both a 1 and 0 at the same time. Entanglement means...

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