Winter'17 Quantum Day @ Portland

A Day Trip to Quantum computing and Cryptography

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  • <2019-12-121 Sat> Almost three years later, I have the pictures from this event ready for your entertainment. Check it out!
  • <2017-01-14 Sat> Slides of the talks available for download.
  • <2017-01-12 Thu> The event will run as scheduled! Let the science talks warm you up in extreme weather. Plenty of food provided!


  • When: Friday January 13, 2017
  • Where: Willamette Falls, University Place Hotel and Conference Center at downtown Portland, OR. Directions below.
  • What: Curious about what the new paradigm of quantum computing has to offer? How will it change the way computers work and how it will affect cryptography that we rely on for providing cybersecurity? This one-day public lectures will be your treat. World-leading experts will share their views and insights with you. This event is open to the general audience. You do not need to register, and just come by and enjoy!


Time Title Speaker
8:30 - 9:15 Welcome and light breakfast  
9:15 - 9:30 Opening Remarks  
9:30 - 10:20 Quantum algorithms and applications to Cryptography [Abstract] [Slides: PPT 7.3MB] Gorjan Alagic
QMATH @ U of Copenhagen
10:25 - 10:45 Coffee Break  
10:45 - 11:35 Quantum Cryptography
[Abstract] [Slides: PDF 4.5MB, LINKtoPPT]
Christian Schaffner
ILLC @ U of Amsterdam & CWI
11:40 - 12:00 Free discussion  
12:00 - 13:15 Lunch
(Enjoy the fabulous food carts on Fourth Avenue)
13:15 - 14:05 Non-local Games
[Abstract] [Slides: PDF]
Zhengfeng Ji
QCIS @ U of Technology Sydney
14:10 - 15:00 General Randomness Amplification with Non-signaling Security
[Abstract] [Slides: PPT 1.6MB]
Kai-Min Chung
IIS @ Academia Sinica
15:00 - 15:30 Free discussion, closing remarks and farewell  

How to get here?

  • Address: 310 SW Lincoln Street Portland, OR 97201. Google maps
    Parking available onsite as well as abundant street parking.

  • Public transportation: find info. on Trimet. Close to Bus Station at SW Lincoln & 1st (Stop ID: 3398), Lincoln St/SW 3rd Ave MAX Station (Orange line), and Portland Stree car station at SW Harrison Street.

Talk information

  1. Quantum algorithms and cryptography by Gorjan Alagic.
    Abstract: In the 1980s, physicists speculated that it might be possible to engineer computational devices whose inner workings are based on the laws of quantum mechanics. In the early 90s, scientists realized that such “quantum computers” would perform a fundamentally new and different kind of computation. For instance, quantum computers could quickly solve some algorithmic problems which are effectively impossible for current “classical” computers (e.g., phones, laptops, supercomputers.) These problems are not purely of academic interest: they include factoring, which forms the basis of most public-key cryptography in use today. In this talk, I will discuss the fundamental concepts behind quantum computation, and sketch some of the basics of the underlying theory. I will then discuss some quantum algorithms and their applications, with a particular focus on consequences for cryptography.

  2. Quantum cryptography by Christian Schaffner.
    Abstract: Cryptography provides methods for secure communication and information processing. The most well-known application is Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) which was invented in 1984 by Bennett and Brassard. QKD allows two players Alice and Bob to securely communicate over an insecure line which is overheard by an eavesdropper Eve. However, quantum cryptography offers a wide range of other applications that go beyond the task of key distribution. For instance, the goal of “position-based cryptography” is to use a player’s physical location as cryptographic credential. The combination of relativistic constraints (assuring that information cannot travel faster than the speed of light) and quantum mechanical effects (such as the impossibility to perfectly copy a quantum state) enables entirely new cryptographic applications like sending a message in such a way that it can only be read at a particular geographic position. In this talk, I will give a brief overview of these two applications.

  3. Non-local games by Zhengfeng Ji.
    Abstract: Nonlocal games are important methods to reveal the nonlocal nature of entangled systems. The rigidity of nonlocal games provides a purely classical probe to quantum systems and has found applications in the study of quantum multi-prover interactive proof systems and device-independent quantum cryptography such as quantum key distribution. Previously, rigid nonlocal games utilize entangled states such as the EPR state or the GHZ state. In this talk, we attempt to define rigid nonlocal games for quantum error-correcting codes, which are strongly entangled subspaces. We will discuss the techniques for analyzing the rigidity properties of the games and introduce their applications in the study of quantum multi-prover interactive proofs.

  4. General Randomness Amplification with Non-signaling Security by Kai-Min Chung.
    Abstract: Highly unpredictable events appear to be abundant in life. However, when modeled rigorously, their existence in nature is far from evident. In fact, the world can be deterministic yet at the same time the predictions of quantum mechanics are consistent with observations. Assuming that randomness does exist but only in a weak form, could highly random events be certifiably demonstrated?
    In this talk, we resolve this question positively by constructing the first no-signaling secure device-independent randomness amplification protocol that works for arbitrary weak sources with sufficient entorpy. Our result implies that the laws of physics either do not allow randomness or allow it in an almost perfect quality. The assumptions under which we derive our conclusion are minimal and in particular do not rely on any structural or independence conditions assumed in previous works. If in addition quantum mechanics is assumed to be complete, our result implies that an unbounded amount of almost perfect randomness can be experimentally produced from a single source of weak randomness.
    Joint work with Yaoyun Shi and Xiaodi Wu.


Check out some fun stuff

“Quantum Computing 101” Video

Michele Mosca “A Quantum Leap in Online Security”