Schrödinger’s cat and the worry of a quantum apocalypse ahead
Quantum computers may be able to crack encryption codes and create chaos if we fail to act in time
Let me try distracting you from war and disease with a joke. Schrödinger takes his cat to the vet for a check-up. The vet comes back 10 minutes later and says, ‘Well, I have good news and bad news…..’ If you snickered at this, you know a bit about the Schrödinger’s Cat paradox, and therefore perhaps a little bit about quantum physics. For those who did not, the paradox explains the seeming contradiction between what we see with our naked eye and what quantum theory tells us actually exists in its microscopic state. The ‘Copenhagen interpretation’ of quantum mechanics states that ‘a particle exists in all states at once until observed’. Schrödinger’s cat is in a box, and could be alive or dead. But till the box is opened, you would not be able to know. Thus, the vet’s quandary.