Volume 1

Volume 1, Number 46

December 27, 2003

9 pages629 K bytes

The Quantum Computing (QC), Quantum Encryption (QE), and Quantum Information (QI) Curriculum (Why? Now? Never?)

Ronald I. Frank
Pace University
Pleasantville, NY 10570 USA

Abstract: The curriculum needs for Quantum Computing (QC), Quantum Information (QI), and Quantum Encryption (QE) is discussed. QC is an application of Quantum Mechanics (Messiah, 1958) to the problem of defining a computer using quantum phenomena. QI is an expansion of quantum mechanics analogous to classical information theory, and QE is an application of QI. Now that the first venture capital activity in QC (Maney, 2003) has occurred, it is time to start considering where, if at all, the interrelated topics QC, QI and QE belong in the Information Systems (IS) curriculum. It is argued that the topics are not premature nor are they mature, so that at present they should be inserted as descriptive topics in a hardware course and a telecommunications course. Although they will probably never be a fitting topic for a full IS course, they already are part of our culture. Someday soon they may come out of the research labs and begin to affect the business world. There will always be the problem of how to effectively introduce QC and QI ideas in a “layperson’s overview”. To begin the consideration of QC and QI curriculum, I first review the intellectual machinery needed to actually study basic QC and QI as outlined in Nielson (2000). Second I review similar problems in covering the IS effects of some deeper technologies. I discuss the alternatives and why we should bother. I outline four action items for starting the process of including at least an overview of these technologies in our curriculum. As a reference, I briefly discuss four “educated layperson’s” introductions. The first is for ideas of QC/QI. Two and three are for a general background for quantum mechanics. One and two form an initial measure of the effort to introduce the ideas into the IS curriculum. The fourth has a specific chapter on QE. There is no mention of QC, QI, or QE in the 2002 IS curriculum (Gorgone, 2002).

Keywords: quantum computing, QC, quantum information, QI, quantum encryption, QE

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Recommended Citation: Frank (2003). The Quantum Computing (QC), Quantum Encryption (QE), and Quantum Information (QI) Curriculum (Why? Now? Never?) Information Systems Education Journal, 1 (46). http://isedj.org/1/46/. ISSN: 1545-679X. (A preliminary version appears in The Proceedings of ISECON 2003: §2132. ISSN: 1542-7382.)