Successful quantum calculation uses single iodine molecule to smash computational speed record
The science is way over my head, and the Popular Science article is pretty heavy going, but basically: current computers have a latency of about 500 picoseconds. Using an iodine molecule to do the processing, it took tens of a femtoseconds to complete a complex Fourier transform.
I'm not very good with numbers, but I'm going to try and put pico and femto seconds into a form you can understand... here we go!
Current latency of a 2GHz processor: 0.000,000,000,5 seconds (i.e. one instruction is processed every 500 picoseconds)
Latency of a quantum iodide processor: 0.000,000,000,000,010 seconds (i.e. ten femtoseconds)
Extrapolating that, the iodide molecule used in the quantum computer is vibrating about 5,000 (?) times faster than the clock generator in a 2GHz processor. 10,000GHz... or ONE THOUSAND BILLION HERTZ!
[Please, correct me if my maths are wrong...]