The Financial Times reports two “scientific milestones” will be announced in the “next few weeks” by Microsoft and Google, but my Google Home says not so fast.

Will Microsoft and Google be making major quantum-related announcements soon? According to the Financial Times, Microsoft and Google are prepared for big leaps in quantum computing:

Two scientific milestones are expected to be announced in the coming weeks by two of the world’s biggest technology companies that will highlight the rapid advances now being made in the field.

I have to say, I’m suspicious. Did west coast editor Richard Waters stumble onto a scoop? Is he cooperating with Microsoft and Google to be first in line for the announcement? Why would you write something like that in an article about quantum computing unless you had some information in your back pocket? Perhaps he already knows what these two milestones are and has agreed not to talk about them yet?

The rest of the article is solid, and I recommend reading it. That tidbit just stuck out among the quotes from the usual suspects and the excellent graphics. A seemingly innocent statement that could betray some inside knowledge.

A Strange Coincidence

So, my antennae were already up when I started to discuss this article with my office mates. I told them the Financial Times claimed Microsoft or Google will make a major announcement about quantum computing in the next few weeks. At that moment my Google Home blurted out “Or neither.” We all laughed, but paranoia got the best of us. and we unplugged the Google Home for the rest of our conversation.

What do you think? Are Microsoft and Google are on the verge of announcing significant “scientific milestones”? Does the Financial Times have the straight poop? Am I a loon? Let me know in the comments, because it’s driving me just a little bit crazy.

Listen, I have to take a short break from the quantum commentary to address the rumors, e-mails, Facebook messages, tweets, and InMail (and that one snap chat someone sent; you know who you are). You all know by now I’m fascinated with quantum computing, because I never shut up about it.  I figure it’s time to do something about that. Which is why I’m taking a couple weeks off to launch my own entry into the quantum computing fray.

I think we’ll soon see a quantum computer demonstrate quantum supremacy in a way that we can all take to the bank. However, physicists and engineers in labs around the world are still struggling to overcome the hardware challenges. Quantum software applications might as well be an endangered species. Richard Feynman, the physicist credited with the idea for a quantum computer, once quipped, “By golly, it’s a wonderful problem, because it doesn’t look so easy.”

Last week I shared with you that mathematician Gil Kalai doesn’t believe quantum computing is possible. He says the math just isn’t there to ever achieve reliable, practical error correction.  Not that Dr. Kalai is alone in this belief, but there sure are a lot of major players that seem to think we’re on the verge of one of the biggest shifts in computing in the last 100 years.