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"Mother of All Quantum Networks" Unveiled in Vienna

EU-sponsored quantum-cryptography network unparalleled in size and complexity

3 min read

22 October 2008—Vienna has been the backdrop of some major milestones in the new science of quantum cryptography, and on 8 October, the city made its mark again. Scientists there have booted up the world’s largest, most complex quantum-information network, in which transmitted data is encoded as the quantum properties of photons, theoretically making the information impervious to eavesdropping.

Built at a cost of 11.4 million euros, the network spans approximately 200 kilometers, connecting six locations in Vienna and the neighboring town of St. Poelten, and has eight intermediary links that range between 6 and 82 km. The new network demonstrated a first for the technology—interoperability among several different quantum-cryptography schemes. The project, which took about six months longer to complete than planned, was so complex that some wags are calling the Viennese network ”the mother of all quantum networks.”

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar

You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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