Cool stuff we learned this week… (6.26.19)

July 26, 2019

We’re StudioLabs. So of course, we love to spend most of our time knee-deep in code, working with the latest technologies to deliver awesome digital experiences for our clients. But we’re only human. And when we poke our heads up from designing native mobile apps and custom software, we find so much that’s cool in the world, we just gotta share.

Here are a few things that inspired us this week:

Pushing The Quantum Limits

Want to build a better quantum computer? Well, you should check out the work of physicist Katie McCormick. Her team was able to make a single beryllium ion oscillate with any number of quanta up to 100; the previous record was 17. Practically speaking, this research demonstrates a way to better control that weird quantum state known as a “superposition,” in which a single ion holds two distinct energy states.

Currently, computers use bits, basic logic units with a value of ‘1’ or ‘0’, to perform all their functions. Quantum computers, however, use quantum bits, or qubits, which can simultaneously hold the value of ‘1’ and ‘0.’ The ability to control this superposition means that quantum computers can be millions of times more powerful than any modern computer.

That leaves one burning question we just have to ask our future selves: How do we program a quantum computer? We’re sure our future selves will know… But today, we want to give a shout out to Dr. McCormick and her team! The ability to better control ions could usher in advances for better quantum computers. How cool is that? Discover more here.

Tiny Robots

These little guys are crazy cool. Instead of a battery, these devices generate electricity from an electric charge accumulated from vibrations, known as piezoelectricity. Some day, tiny robots like these may be used to help treat injuries or work together to sense environmental changes. So, join us in thanking Dr. Azadeh Ansari and her team for inspiring us with this amazing research. Discover more here.

Pushing Solar Output

Not going to lie to you… we’re kind of geeking out about this. Power output from solar cells has long been limited by the fact that a photon can only knock loose one electron, no matter how much energy is packed into that photon. Researchers from MIT found a way to get high-energy photons to knock loose additional electrons to increase solar cell efficiency by, well, potentially a lot!

The team notes that it may be a while before this new technique makes it into commercial products. But they are already experimenting with the possibility of coupling this technology with recently reported advances using perovskite in solar cells. Unlike silicon’s narrow sensitivity, perovskites are able to generate power from a broad spectrum of light. When these technologies mature, we hope they’ll fill the promise of making clean energy cheaper. Discover more here.

Now back to work…

Thanks for taking a moment out of your day to share amazing stories of people thinking and doing amazing things.

But now it’s time for us to get back to the business of building state of the art custom software and mobile apps. Looking for a custom software and web development company for your project? Give us a shout!