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Google Walkout Organisers Face Retaliation at Work

Some 20,000 Googlers had protested last year against the Internet giant’s handling of sexual harassment and, more broadly, its workplace policies around equity and transparency

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The Google name is displayed outside the company's office in London, Britain. VOA

Two Google employees have said they have been retaliated against for helping to organise a walkout among thousands of company workers in November 2018 and are planning a meeting to discuss alleged instances of retaliation, the media has reported.

Some 20,000 Googlers had protested last year against the Internet giant’s handling of sexual harassment and, more broadly, its workplace policies around equity and transparency.

“We prohibit retaliation in the workplace, and investigate all allegations,” a Google spokesperson was quoted as saying by the Fortune on Monday.

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FILE – A woman walks past the logo for Google at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai, Nov. 5, 2018. VOA

Claire Stapleton, another walkout organiser and 12-year company veteran, said in the email two months after the protest she was told she would be demoted from her role as marketing manager at YouTube and lose half her reports, according to The Wired.

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Organisers of #GoogleWalkout had published a list of demands for management, including an “end to forced arbitration in cases of harassment and discrimination for all current and future employees” and a “clear, uniform, globally inclusive process for reporting sexual misconduct safely and anonymously”. (IANS)

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Google Builds A Quantum Computer That Is Far Ahead Than Supercomputers

Google has reportedly built a quantum computer that is way ahead than world's top supercomputers in calculation

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One of the main building at Google's headquarters for European operations in Dublin Ireland. Wikimedia Commons

Google has reportedly built a quantum computer that is way ahead than world’s top supercomputers in calculation – solving tasks in nearly three minutes that would otherwise take current supercomputers 10,000 years to achieve.

According to a report in Financial Times on Friday, a Google research paper has claimed the feat, saying “their processor was able to perform a calculation in three minutes and 20 seconds that would take today’s most advanced classical computer, known as Summit (from IBM), approximately 10,000 years”.

“To our knowledge, this experiment marks the first computation that can only be performed on a quantum processor,” wrote the Google researchers.

In March 2018, Google unveiled its 72-qubit quantum computer chip Bristlecone, saying it was “cautiously optimistic that quantum supremacy can be achieved with Bristlecone”.

Not just Google but several tech giants like Microsoft, IBM and Intel have joined the race to build a scalable quantum computer.

Earlier this week, IBM unveiled its quantum computer with 53 qubits.

A quantum computer can solve complex problems that would otherwise take billions of years for today’s computers to solve. This has massive implications for research in health care, energy, environmental systems, smart materials and more.

According to Google, if a quantum processor can be operated with low enough error, it would be able to outperform a classical supercomputer on a well-defined computer science problem, an achievement known as “quantum supremacy”.

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To our knowledge, this experiment marks the first computation that can only be performed on a quantum processor. Pixabay

These random circuits must be large in both number of qubits as well as computational length (depth).

“Although no one has achieved this goal yet, we calculate quantum supremacy can be comfortably demonstrated with 49 qubits, a circuit depth exceeding 40, and a two-qubit error below 0.5 per cent,” Google said recently.

“We believe the experimental demonstration of a quantum processor outperforming a supercomputer would be a watershed moment for our field, and remains one of our key objectives,” it added.

Researchers at Microsoft are also busy writing the software to build a scalable computer that will help humanity unlock solutions to problems in areas such as clean energy, global warming, materials design and much more – including solving the mysteries of our universe.

If all goes well, Microsoft is confident about having one such scalable super machine within the next five years.

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Based on quantum bits, the computer will not use classical bits but qubits which are not limited to binary and can have properties of 0 and 1 simultaneously, thus trying every possible number and sequence simultaneously to unlock vast amounts of data.

The current bits in computers store information as either 1 or 0, thus limiting the potential to make sense when faced with gigantic volumes of data.

“We’re looking at a five-year timeframe to build a quantum computer and what we need are roughly 100-200 good qubits with a low-error rate,” Krysta Svore, Principal Research Manager, Microsoft Quantum Computing, recently told IANS. (IANS)