January 17, 2019 | Written by: IBM Research Editorial Staff
Categorized: Quantum Computing
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To encourage more teachers and students to take advantage of the IBM Q Experience and the IBM Qiskit development platform, we announced in January 2018 a number of challenges and prizes to inspire people to take the quantum leap.
Today, we’re happy to announce the winners of the fourth IBM Q Award: the IBM Q Teach Me Quantum Challenge, which offered one first place prize of $7,000, one second place prize of $2,000 and one third place prize of $1,000 for the best university-level course materials for a lecture series incorporating the IBM Q Experience and QISKit.
Congratulations to our first-place winner, Miguel Ramalho of the University of Porto, our second-place winner, Peter Wittek of the University of Toronto and our third-place winner, Mirko Amico of the City University of New York.
The panel of judges cited the complete, well-designed and well-structured set of notes, slides and exercises presented in a traditional classroom style as well as the extensive use of Qiskit Aqua in Miguel’s coursework as the top reasons his submission was selected for first place. “I feel honored for receiving this award and excited to see what the near future of quantum computing holds,” says Miguel. “Disrupting the state of the art is what defines merit. This is what I see IBM doing with IBM Q and Qiskit. It is also what I aimed for when designing the course. I have tried to come up with a methodology in line with how I wanted my quantum education to have been, sure enough this will help others with similar learning tastes. It is open source and hopefully people will share it, use it and improve it with their own efforts.”
Peter’s coursework was noted for its excellent introduction, focus on machine learning and overall advanced level. “We are facing a shortage in quantum computing professionals: demand far exceeds supply,” says Peter. I created this course to help people understand what is possible to do with quantum computers in machine learning today and in the distant future, so they can jump on board and join the blooming quantum software industry.”
Mirko’s materials described several quantum algorithms in addition to the standard Grover and Shor algorithms complete with small exercises and example codes and is fully based on Jupyter notebooks. “It’s an honor for me to share my understanding of the subject with the community,” says Mirko. “Preparing the set of lectures for the contest really helped me distill the important ideas and put them into simple words. I hope this work will make quantum computing more accessible to people of any background.”
Our sincere thanks goes to all the participants. It was difficult to pick a winner, as all of the entries were of high quality.
The IBM Q Awards
The first award, Teach Me Qiskit, was awarded in June to Alba Cervera Lierta, a Ph.D. student at the University of Barcelona and the Barcelona Supercomputing Center in Spain. Read her blog post here.
The second award, the IBM Qiskit Developer Challenge, was awarded in August to Alwin Zulehner (first place), and Sven Jandura and Eddie Schoute (tied for second place). Read Alwin’s blog post here, Sven’s here and Eddie’s here.
The third award, the IBM Q Best Paper Challenge, was awarded in October to Christophe Vuillot (first place), Clement Javerzac-Galy and his students at EPFL (second place), and runners-up Maria Schuld, Shantanu Debnath and Alejandro Pozas-Kerstjens. Read Maria’s blog post here.