Recently, Google announced a significant breakthrough in the journey towards quantum computing. Immediately there was excitement and praise from that side of the technological scale, but the blockchain-minded suddenly had a little to be worried about, or did they?
Andreas Antonopoulos, one of the most respected Bitcoin commentators, has weighed in on the matter of this latest breakthrough in quantum computing, and where it leaves Bitcoin and other blockchain-related projects. For Antonopoulos, there is nothing to fear.
Speaking as part of a Q&A session, Antonopoulos does the fears of Google’s recent quantum computing success and how it could impact cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.
“What is the effect on mining and the cryptocurrency world in general? Zip, bupkis, nada, nothing really happens,” he summarized.
However, that is not to say that quantum computing is something that should be put aside and forgotten about in the world of blockchain, as it still has the potential to pose a number of risks to the ecosystem. In fact, there are already people who are looking to build quantum-resistant coins.
However, the timeline of effective quantum computing that has the power to break and disrupt the current blockchain space is still a long way off, and this gives time for the ecosystem to put measures in place to make it more resistant to such problem-solving computing.
“Quantum supremacy, what Google described, is demonstrating the practical applicability of quantum computers to certain classes of problems,” he explained.
“Those classes of problems are not the same classes of problems we’re talking about when we talk about breaking cryptography.” still, becoming quantum-resistant, at least in terms of signature algorithms, is on Bitcoin’s roadmap as a necessary step, he added.
Another person to pour cold water on Google’s breakthrough was Johann Polecsak, CTO of QAN, a blockchain that is working to be quantum-resistant.
The notion of Google achieving a quantum breakthrough sounds very dramatic, but in reality, it’s hard to gauge the significance at this time. How can we be sure that Google’s quantum computer is more powerful than D-wave’s, for example, which surpassed 1,000 qubits four years ago?”
The overall feeling surrounding breakthroughs in quantum computing is that there seems to be enough time for the blockchain space to protect itself from the advances of this technology. The speed in which it is advancing is steady, but not so much that it cannot be caught.