Visuals: Science and technology

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Comparison of Processing Power of a Classical Computer and a Quantum Computer

Because of the superposition of qubits, quantum computer processing power grows exponentially with each additional qubit. For example, 1 qubit is equivalent to 2 bits; 2 qubits are equivalent to 4 bits; 3 qubits are equivalent to 8 bits; 4 qubits are equivalent to 16 bits; 5 qubits are equivalent to 32 bits; 6 qubits are equivalent to 64 bits; 7 qubits are equivalent to 128 bits; 8 qubits are equivalent to 256 bits; 9 qubits are equivalent to 512 bits; 10 qubits are equivalent to 1,024 bits; 50 qubits are equivalent to 1,125,899,906,842,620 bits; 100 qubits are equivalent to 1,267,650,600,228,230,000,000,000,000,000 bits; 250 qubits are equivalent to 2 to the power of 250 bits; and 1,000 qubits are equivalent to 2 to the power of 1,000 bits.

Examples of Solutions to Combinatorics Problems That Quantum Computers Could Provide in Various Sectors

Using quantum computers to solve combinatorics problems could lead to advances in various fields, including agriculture, finance, information and technology, science and in the production chain. Agriculture: More accurate weather forecasts to optimize activities and the development of more efficient fertilizers. Finance: Faster financial calculations, portfolio optimization, improved arbitrage for international trade, better credit scoring and the detection of fraud. Information and technology: Boosting of artificial intelligence through increased data processing and the optimization of telecommunication network infrastructure and routing. Science: Use of quantum simulations to predict the properties of new molecules, speeding up efforts to discover new medications; development of novel quantum materials to acquire, process, store and distribute information and energy; and analysis of large quantities of data to improve the effectiveness of treatment plans. Production chain: Rapid identification of faults in complex production chains and optimization of delivery routes.

Projections of the Economic Impact of the Quantum Technology Industry in Canada

Shows the total economic impact of the quantum technology industry in Canada (including indirect and induced effects) by 2025 up to 2045. This industry is expected to create 1,100 jobs by 2025 and 209,200 jobs by 2045. The economic impact of this industry is projected to grow from $533 million by 2025 to $138.9 billion by 2045.

Selected Groups in STEM and STEM-Related Occupations Compared to the Overall Canadian Workforce, 2021

Average Employment Income in the Natural and Applied Sciences – Selected Groups Compared to the Overall Canadian Workforce, 2015

In Canada, the average annual employment income in the natural and applied sciences in 2015 was $73,365. For visible minorities, it was $71,391 for men and $60,545 for women. For people identifying as Indigenous, it was $67,917 for men and $54,471 for women.

Quantum Research in Selected Countries

Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, certain countries of the European Union, China and Australia have national quantum strategies. All these countries except for Australia also have regional quantum programs. Canada is investing C$621 million in the quantum industry. Budget 2021 announced spending of C$360 million over seven years starting in 2021–2022 on its national quantum strategy. The United States has announced over $US1.9 billion in funding for its quantum industry. Its National Quantum Initiative Act has authorized up to US$1.275 billion to support various organizations. The United Kingdom has allocated over US$1 billion to the quantum industry. Between 2014 and 2019, US$540 million was provided to launch the National Quantum Technologies Programme. The European Union has awarded over US$1 billion to the quantum industry. Between 2018 and 2021, US$181 million was allocated to its Quantum Flagship program, which includes numerous projects in various sectors in several European countries. China will invest over US$15 billion in its quantum industry, including the creation of a national quantum laboratory. Australia has committed US$121 million to its quantum industry. Between 2017 and 2024, the Australian Research Council will have invested nearly US$100 million in three centres of excellence that focus on quantum research.

Read the HillNote: The Tremendous Potential of Quantum Technologies: Risks and Opportunities (2023)


Examples of 5G Technology Applications

Figure 1 shows examples of 5G technology being applied in people’s daily lives. Here we see a person shopping online from home using virtual reality; a farm with a connected tractor and where land irrigation is facilitated by ground sensors that send signals to a smartphone; smart traffic lights; a connected vehicle; a connected home where several functions can be managed from a smartphone, including lighting, heating/cooling and locks; an ambulance connected to the hospital to allow emergency treatment to begin even before arrival; and a bank that allows customers to conduct transactions remotely with their mobile devices.

Read the HillNote: 5G Technology: Opportunities, Challenges and Risks (2020)


Types of Digital Ledgers

There are three types of digital ledgers: a centralized ledger, a public distributed ledger and a private distributed ledger. A centralized ledger is accessed by authorized users through a trusted central party, who can make any necessary changes to the ledger. Users cannot interact directly with each other. Examples include a bank chequing account and a government land title registry. With public and private distributed ledgers, there is no trusted central party and instead all users have a real-time copy of the entire ledger. Users can interact directly with each other. A public distributed ledger is open to the public and any user on the ledger's network can make changes to the ledger. Examples include Bitcoin and Ethereum. A private distributed ledger is restricted to authorized users and only certain users on the ledger's network can make changes to the ledger. A private distributed ledger could be used by a government organization to replace a centralized ledger.

Read the HillNote: Beyond Digital Currencies: Blockchain in the Public Sector (2019)

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