How the U.S. Uses Technology to Mine More Data More Quickly
By JAMES RISEN and ERIC LICHTBLAU
A revolution in software technology has transformed the National Security Agency by proving automated and instantaneous analysis of volumes of digital information.
|step-down||(noun) A reduction in amount or size.|
|Usage:||Having just declared bankruptcy, Lester admitted that his grand plans for renovating his kitchen needed a drastic step-down.|
Definition of instantaneous
Origin:mid 17th century: from medieval Latin instantaneus, from Latin instant- 'being at hand' (from the verb instare), on the pattern of ecclesiastical Latin momentaneus
step change(′step ′chānj) (electronics) The change of a variable from one value to another in a single process, taking a negligible amount of time.
An abrupt change or step, especially in method, information, or knowledge: "War was going to take a quantum leap; it would never be the same" (Garry Wills).
Computers set for quantum leap as devices tap into speed of light
|A new photonic chip that works on light rather than electricity has been built by an international research team, paving the way for the production of ultra-fast quantum computers with capabilities far beyond today’s devices.||一个国际研究团队已经研制成功一种利用光（而不是电）工作的新的光子芯片，从而为制造 性能远超过当前设备的超快量子计算机铺平了道路。|
|Future quantum computers will, for example, be able to pull important information out of the biggest databases almost instantaneously. As the amount of electronic data stored worldwide grows exponentially, the technology will make it easier for people to search with precision for they want.||例如，未来的量子计算机几乎在瞬间就能从最大的数据库中找出重要信息。随着全球存储的 电子数据呈指数级增长，该技术将让人们更轻易地精确搜寻自己想要的信息。|
|An early application will be to investigate and design complex molecules, such as new drugs and other materials, that cannot be simulated with ordinary computers. More general consumer applications should follow.||这种计算机将首先运用于研究和设计用普通电脑无法模拟的复杂分子，比如新药和其它材 料。随后就应该能运用于更普通的消费产品上。|
|Jeremy O’Brien, director of the UK’s Centre for Quantum Photonics, who led the project, said many people in the field had believed a functional quantum computer would not be a reality for at least 25 years.||领导该项目的英国量子光子学中心(Centre for Quantum Photonics)主任杰里米•奥布莱恩(Jeremy O’Brien)表示，该领域的许多人此前认为，至少在25年内不会出现实用性的量子计算机。|
|“However, we can say with real confidence that, using our new technique, a quantum computer could, within five years, be performing calculations that are outside the capabilities of conventional computers,” he told the British Science Festival, as he presented the research.||“然而，现在我们可以满怀信心地表示，通过运用我们的新技术，5年内量子计算机就可以 进行超出传统电脑能力范围的运算，”奥布莱恩在英国科学节(British Science Festival)上展示其研究成果时表示：|
|The breakthrough, published on Friday in the journal Science, means data can be processed according to the counterintuitive rules of quantum physics that allow individual subatomic particles to be in several places at the same time.||上周五发表在《科学》(Science)杂志上的这个重大突破意味着，可以根据量子物 理的反直觉规则处理数据。量子物理的反直觉规则指的是单个亚原子粒子可以同时出现在多个地方。|
|This property will enable quantum computers to process information in quantities and at speeds far beyond conventional supercomputers. But formidable technical barriers must be overcome before quantum computing becomes practical.||这种性能将使得量子计算机处理信息的数量和速度远超过传统的超级电脑。但是在量子计算 变得实际可行之前，必须克服巨大的技术障碍。|
|The team, from Bristol University in the UK, Tohuku University in Japan, Weizmann Institute in Israel and Twente University in the Netherlands, say they have overcome an important barrier, by making a quantum chip that can work at ordinary temperatures and pressures, rather than the extreme conditions required by other approaches.||来自英国布里斯特尔大学(Bristol University)、日本东北大学(Tohuku University)、以色列魏兹曼研究所(Weizmann Institute)和荷兰屯特大学(Twente University)的研究团队表示，他们已经制造出能够在普通温度和压力下（而不是其它方法要求的极端条件）工作的量子芯片，从而解决了一个重大障 碍。译者/君悦|