Twist, a new language for Quantum Computing

Twist, a new language for Quantum Computing

Scientists from MIT‘s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence (CSAIL) created their own programming language for Quantum Computing called Twist.

Twist can describe and verify which pieces of data are entangled in a quantum program, through a language a classical programmer can understand. The language uses a concept called purity, which enforces the absence of entanglement and results in more intuitive programs, with ideally fewer bugs. For example, a programmer can use Twist to say that the temporary data generated as garbage by a program is not entangled with the program’s answer, making it safe to throw away.

The researchers measured how well the programs performed in practice in terms of runtime, which had less than 4 percent overhead over existing quantum programming techniques.

An important next step is using Twist to create higher-level quantum programming languages. Most quantum programming languages today still resemble assembly language, stringing together low-level operations, without mindfulness towards things like data types and functions, and what’s typical in classical software engineering. (Techxplore)

The team presented the research at last week’s 2022 Symposium on Principles of Programming conference in Philadelphia (for the paper, see here).

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