Several software announcements have been made in the past few days. These include Google’s release of version 0.10.0 of Cirq, Cambridge Quantum Computing’s (CQC) release of version 0.8 of their tket software development kit, and Amazon AWS’ announcement that they are joining the steering council for Xanadu’s Pennylane open source project for variational quantum computing and quantum machine learning.

The most interesting new feature to us in Google’s Cirq version 0.10.0 is the new support for the IonQ’s ion trap processor. Other improvements include tools for Floquet Calibration which can be used to reduce gate errors and several various additional changes in the Cirq core. Release notes for Google’s new version of Cirq describing all the new features are available on GitHub here. For more information about Cirq and to download and install the new version, you can visit the Cirq page on pypi.org here.

We reported last month that CQC had decided to open source their tket software platform with the release of version 0.7. This month, they have decided to extend this direction by open-sourcing all the extensions to tket. These extensions provide integrations with other software tools and are now available for all major quantum hardware and software platforms including IBM Qiskit, Google Cirq, Rigetti PyQuil, ProjectQ, AQT, Honeywell, AWS Braket, Microsoft QSharp, PyZX, Qulacs, and IonQ. Additional information is available in a news release on the CQC website here.

Both AWS and Xanadu feel that there would be a lot to be gained by bringing together concepts and ideas from quantum computing and machine learning. They also see parallels between the early days of machine learning and the current situation in quantum computing. For example, many machine learning algorithms are based upon the iterative adjustments of weights in a neural network, while many quantum NISQ algorithms, such as variational quantum algorithms are based upon iteratively adjusting parameters in a quantum circuit. Pennylane is an open source project so the goal of the company working together will be to help advance the usage of quantum computing for machine learning applications. The announcement that AWS has joined the steering committee for Xanadu’s Pennylane can be found here.

March 6, 2021