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Microsoft Announces a Free Preview of its Quantum Development Kit

Technology giant, Microsoft has announced a free preview version of its Quantum Development Kit. The kit includes the Q# programming language, a simulator as well as other resources for those who want to start writing applications for a quantum computer.

The Kit, which Microsoft announced in September at its Ignite conference, is particularly designed for developers who are interested in creating programs for quantum computers, even if they’re not experts in the field of Quantum physics.

For increasing interest as well as lowering barriers to entry, the Quantum Development Kit enables developers to immerse themselves in the world of quantum coding using familiar tools.

“It is deeply integrated into Microsoft Visual Studio, the set of Microsoft development tools, so its aspects will be familiar to people who are already developing applications in other programming languages,” said Microsoft representative Allison Linn.

And it is designed to work with a local quantum simulator, which is also released as part of the Quantum Development Kit, that can simulate around 30 logical qubits of quantum computing power using a typical laptop, which will be enabling developers debug quantum codes as well as test programs in small instances on their own PCs.

For larger-scale quantum challenges, the company is also providing an Azure-based simulator that can simulate over 40 logical qubits of computing power.

Along with the Quantum Development Kit, the company is also making a comprehensive suite of documentation, libraries as well as sample programs available.

“That will give people the background they need to start playing around with aspects of computing that are unique to quantum systems, such as quantum teleportation,” said Microsoft, referring to the method of securely sharing information across quantum computing bits.

“The hope is that you play with something like teleportation and you get intrigued,” said Krysta Svore, Microsoft principal researcher, who has led the development of the quantum software & simulator.

“The beauty of it is that this code won’t need to change when we plug it into the quantum hardware,” Svore added.

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