BBC and UCL to explore quantum computing
The BBC is to use quantum computing to help it retrieve over a century’s worth of global news and popular culture from its archive.
The UK public broadcaster is part of a consortium which also includes Honeywell-owned quantum computing firm Quantinuum, the Royal Academy of Engineering and University College London.
The consortium’s mission is to realise the relevance of quantum natural language processing in enterprise, and it will carry out a long-term exploration of quantum mechanics and linguistics.
The project is being led by Quantinuum’s chief scientist processor Bob Coecke; head of AI professor Stephen Clark and professor Mehrnoosh Sardzadeh of UCL computer science.
With one of the world’s largest broadcast archives, the BBC hopes to use QNLP for content discovery and archive retrieval.
According to Quantinuum, effective NLP can help this process and presents the potential to efficiently search for archived material.
The broadcaster – which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year – has archives containing over 15 million items including audio, film and text documents, as well as toys, games, merchandise, artifacts and historic equipment.
Ilyas Khan, CEO of Quantinuum, said: “Developing quantum computing so that the broadest and most diverse populations can benefit, means looking across the timing spectrum at applications that can be made productive in the short, medium and long term.”
He added, “we anticipate that true language processing will become important with fault tolerant quantum processors and our work with the BBC and UCL is a significant step towards being prepared to take advantage of quantum computers when they become available at scale.”
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