The Voltage in the Dell

A mysterious current led me to the perfect multipurpose monitor

3 min read

I just can’t squeeze two screens into my living-room home office, sharing it as I do with two small boys, their train sets and games, and a tank full of aquatic frogs. So last year I sought out one display that would do everything. My seemingly simple search turned into an engineering detective story that would ultimately involve three companies, four monitors, a helpful executive, and a tutorial on the nature of electric current.

It wasn’t much of a quest at first: I quickly settled on a US $999 27â''inch Dell 2707WFP with decent resolution, which I could plug my digital cable box directly into. Then I noticed horizontal pink bands that moved slowly through the television picture. The problem stumped customer service at both Dell and Time Warner Cable. Still, Dell swapped the monitor three times. Time Warner changed my set-top box and then my cables. Nothing worked. It was time for Google.

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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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