Google will pay $5 million to those who can figure out what to use quantum computers for

If you’ve ever wondered what quantum computers actually do, you’re not alone. The truth is that no one knows what modern problems this technology can solve. Google on Monday launched a multi-year global competition to find real-world applications of quantum computing with a $5 million prize fund.

While there are many reasons to be optimistic about the potential of quantum computers, we are still in the dark about the full range of how, when, and for what real-world applications this technology will be most disruptive. We hope this competition will help shed light on these questions.

Google launched the XPRIZE Quantum Applications competition in collaboration with the Geneva Science and Diplomatic Center (GESDA). Twenty finalists will share the $1 million prize and advance to the finals. They will need to provide technical specifications and prove that quantum computing is faster or more accurate than traditional computing solutions. The top winners will receive $3 million, and the runners-up will split another $1 million.

Google has invested millions in quantum computing, but we still don’t know what to do with it. Most research into quantum computers concerns abstract problems rather than real-world scenarios. The technology promises to speed up drug development, unlock the mysteries of dark matter and help solve fundamental mysteries of the universe. But it is not yet clear why it is more useful than your laptop.

However, this is not a reason to be discouraged. In the 1950s, computers were the size of trucks and had very little practical use. Quantum computers are still in this early stage of development, but have the potential to revolutionize the world. The question is how exactly.

Google’s competition doesn’t guarantee that we’ll have practical applications of quantum computing within three years, but it’s a step in the right direction.

The competition will be judged by scientists from Google, Amazon and leading universities around the world. Hopefully the competition will generate real use cases for the next generation of computing and put this powerful technology to work.