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> This feels like it has the potential to be the ultimate kind of lock-in. If the way that the system and the hardware/software is exposed to the world is through cloud services, and the knowledge of how to build/operate/use quantum computers stays locked-in to only the privileged who can afford to have access to and utilize it...

Well, consider the opposite suggestion: right now, quantum computer access is fairly constrained. Making these systems available to anyone who has a credit card is a wider democratization of access to them, not a constraint.

After all, cryogenics and such isn't exactly free or easy to maintain - access is going to be somewhat controlled unless/until these things are to the point where you have one in your phone.

Yes, I agree with your point, I was kind of vacillating back and forth.

I think it's incredible that the inventors of this technology are pushing so hard to get it in the hands of people who can apply it. So in that regard, I completely agree, it is a better situation to have the technology available for a reasonable price and payment option.

I think part of my hang up of this is thinking about and remembering how much I was amazed by what we could do independently before the cloud vendors. It seems like we are in the part of the cycle that is encouraging centralization, but I don't know how or if we'll ever be able to exit this phase (or maybe we won't have to).

The scale and complexity of the offering of the cloud vendors, compared to what independent organizations can do, is truly mind blowing, and continues to get that way moreso every day. How does one even compete (or why would one want to) against these "utility" technology companies?

Totally agree that there's some loss of control when we allow cloud vendors to be the middlemen in all things; but honestly, this is probably one of the few cases where it's the perfect missing ingredient to be able to give access to what are fundamentally time-sharing systems to the widest number of people possible.

This is like dialing up to use the university PDP-11 in the 70s, basically. Big things are coming.

We were in a similar situation when computers were built with vacuum tubes. The anomaly was the transistor. Maybe there is a quantum equivalent, but we haven't found it yet.

The Quantristor?

Yeah but at the same time, how easy is today to build something with Raspberry PI or deploy software into thousands of IoT devices?

>cryogenics and such isn't exactly free or easy to maintain

Room-temperature superconductors and other technologies using strange edge conditions are theoretically possible, but quantum computers have only a few specialties.

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