#### Quantum Computing

# The IBM Quantum Challenge Fall 2020 results are in

December 16, 2020 | Written by: Yuri Kobayashi

Categorized: Quantum Computing

Share this post:

*What does programming for the not-so-distant quantum future look like?*

From November 9 to 30, more than **3,300 **people from **85** countries applied for the 2,000 seats of the IBM Quantum Challenge to find out.

As our cloud-accessible quantum systems continue to advance in scale and capability with better processors of larger number of qubits, understanding how to implement complex data structures become crucial to us in order to harness the potential of our future quantum systems.

During the three-week challenge, participants learned how to implement complex quantum data structures using **qRAM** and design a quantum game solver using **Grover’s algorithm**. The combination of qRAM and Grover’s algorithm has many practical applications in solving real-life problems on our future quantum systems in areas of quantum machine learning and complex decision making problems.

Participants were presented with a new set of exercises each Monday during the challenge, which became progressively more difficult each week. Of the 2,000 participants, **1,091 **were able to solve at least one of the first week’s exercises,** 576 **were able to solve at least one of the second week’s exercises, and** 227 **were able to successfully solve all of the exercises, including the final, **most-challenging** exercise!

Read an example solution, written by the author of the final exercise, IBM Quantum’s Atsushi Matsuo, here

### Meet the top 10 scorers of the Quantum Challenge

Our winner, who was not only one of the 227 who completed all of the exercises, but also achieved the lowest quantum cost in solving the final exercise is University of Tokyo undergraduate student, **Hironari Nagayoshi**. He achieved the lowest quantum cost by applying a strategy based on exploiting the unique traits of the problem’s constraints. You can find his solution, here. (link directly to Hironari’s solution notebook) which includes commentary on his approach and strategy. Very impressive. Congratulations Hironari!

We were amazed by the ingenuity and creativity of the scorers who came up with brilliant solutions to the final exercise. As one of our participants described in his tweet, one of the best things from the IBM Quantum Challenge is the special opportunity to see how beautifully others think. Please check out the beautiful solutions from our top scorers **here**.

### Top ten scorers of the IBM Quantum Challenge Fall 2020

## Ranking |
## Name |
## Score |

1 | Hironari Nagayoshi | 4,004 |

2 | Adam Szady | 4,819 |

3 | Pulkit Sinha | 5,124 |

4 | Witold Jarnicki | 6,065 |

5 | Lukas Burgholzer | 6,552 |

6 | Jan Tulowiecki | 6,574 |

7 | Guillermo Alonso | 7,799 |

8 | Stefan Hillmich | 8,188 |

9 | Joel Sunil | 8,864 |

10 | Chris Chen | 9,127 |

Scores were determined by measuring the circuit implementation cost to solve the final exercise. Cost is defined as: Cost = S + 10C, where S is the number of single-qubit gates and C is the number of CNOT (CX) gates. Any given quantum circuit can be decomposed into single-qubit gates and two-qubit gates. With the current Noisy Intermediate-Scale Quantum (NISQ) devices, CNOT error rates are generally ten times higher than a single qubit gate. Therefore, we weigh CNOT gates ten times more than a single-qubit gate for evaluating the circuit implementation cost.

### From beginner to expert in three weeks

Perhaps the most rewarding experience organizing an event like the IBM Quantum Challenge is to see how much people can learn something new and grow in such a short time. Many people started out as beginners coming into this challenge, yet emerged achieving great levels of experience and skill from tackling the problem sets and learning from their peers.

Our survey results indicate that on the scale of 1-10, most people started out as beginners in quantum computing and Qiskit – identifying themselves between 1 and 3. But after the challenge, identified their level as a 5 or 6.

## IBM Quantum

### Quantum starts here

**Yuri Kobayashi**

Quantum Developer Community, Asia Pacific, IBM Systems

### We’ve moved! The IBM Research blog has a new home

In an effort better integrate the IBM Research blog with the IBM Research web experience, we have migrated to a new landing page: https://research.ibm.com/blog

### Pushing the boundaries of human-AI interaction at IUI 2021

At the 2021 virtual edition of the ACM International Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces (IUI), researchers at IBM will present five full papers, two workshop papers, and two demos.

### From HPC Consortium’s success to National Strategic Computing Reserve

Founded in March 2020 just as the pandemic’s wave was starting to wash over the world, the Consortium has brought together 43 members with supercomputing resources. Private and public enterprises, academia, government and technology companies, many of whom are typically rivals. “It is simply unprecedented,” said Dario Gil, Senior Vice President and Director of IBM Research, one of the founding organizations. “The outcomes we’ve achieved, the lessons we’ve learned, and the next steps we have to pursue are all the result of the collective efforts of these Consortium’s community.” The next step? Creating the National Strategic Computing Reserve to help the world be better prepared for future global emergencies.