New technologies affecting enterprise IT continue to be invented, commercialized and adopted. The latest batch looming on the horizon includes quantum computing, gamification, reactive programming, augmented reality, transient computing electronics and Named Data Networking.
Of those six, reactive programming and gamification are probably closest to general adoption, while augmented reality awaits better hardware. Transient computing and Named Data Networking remain in the proof-of-concept stage. As for quantum computing, there are multiple ways of looking at it -- of course.
A future generation of computers may be based on quantum mechanics rather than electronics. Experts are of two minds about the possibility -- which is only appropriate, considering the odd nature of the quantum world.
Quantum computing is based on the quantum bit or qubit, explains Mike Mosca, deputy director of the Institute of Quantum Computing at the University of Waterloo in Canada. While bits in conventional computers can be ones and zeroes, thanks to a quantum mechanical property called "superposition," a qubit can be simultaneously one or zero and therefore represent two bits. This makes the number of possible configurations two raised to the number of qubits, he explains.
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