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Oscar-Winning Software

The folks at the Foundry didn't need a pretty face to win an Academy Award

3 min read

Harry Potter is a poseur. His magic powers come ­courtesy of the Foundry, a London-based software house whose products enhance visual effects in films. When a superhero flies past a backdrop, this firm’s software probably trimmed away the wires holding him up.

The development work is done in a nondescript third-floor office in the center of the city. There, 37 ­staffers huddle cheek by jowl ­facing banks of ­computer ­monitors, an ­adjacent ­storage room with its two faded red couches offering the group their only respite from the flickering screens. The ­company has been just too busy to spruce things up. In the past year it opened a Los Angeles sales office, ­doubled its staff, and ramped up product development.

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An IBM Quantum Computer Will Soon Pass the 1,000-Qubit Mark

The Condor processor is just one quantum-computing advance slated for 2023

4 min read
This photo shows a woman working on a piece of apparatus that is suspended from the ceiling of the laboratory.

A researcher at IBM’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center examines some of the quantum hardware being constructed there.

Connie Zhou/IBM

IBM’s Condor, the world’s first universal quantum computer with more than 1,000 qubits, is set to debut in 2023. The year is also expected to see IBM launch Heron, the first of a new flock of modular quantum processors that the company says may help it produce quantum computers with more than 4,000 qubits by 2025.

This article is part of our special report Top Tech 2023.

While quantum computers can, in theory, quickly find answers to problems that classical computers would take eons to solve, today’s quantum hardware is still short on qubits, limiting its usefulness. Entanglement and other quantum states necessary for quantum computation are infamously fragile, being susceptible to heat and other disturbances, which makes scaling up the number of qubits a huge technical challenge.

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