Rigetti Computing last week reported upgrading its Forest developer environment for quantum computing. Forest provides developers with access to Rigetti’s cloud-based quantum simulator the quantum virtual machine (QVM) as well as access to its quantum hardware systems. According to the company the latest version has improved tools for debugging and optimizing quantum programs.
Founded in 2013 and based Berkeley, Calif., Rigetti bills itself as “a full-stack quantum computing company.” It drew attention in December with claims of being the first to solve an unsupervised machine learning problem on a gate model quantum computer.
“We did this by connecting one of our recent superconducting quantum processors, a 19-qubit system, to our software platform, Forest. In the ten weeks since then, researchers have already used Forest to train neural networks, program benchmarking games, and simulate nuclear physics,” wrote Rigetti software developer Will Zeng in a blog announcing the Forest 1.3 upgrade.
Key improvements in version 1.3, reported Zeng, include:
- Access to the compiler through a dedicated API that allows users to experiment with compiling programs to different hardware architectures.
- Test programs on the improved QVM that more accurately mimics actual quantum hardware, accelerating development time. “We’ve released preconfigured noise models based on the behavior of our QPU,” wrote Zeng.
- Post-testing it is now easier to port programs to the QPU which now supports the .run pyQuil command.
- Readout fidelity has been improved with a toolset that compensates for readout errors in the QPU; Rigetti says this “can dramatically improve” the performance of programs.
“In any given quantum program, researchers make multiple calls to our API. In these circumstances, network latency can become an issue and slow down overall execution time. In Forest 1.3 we provide a 2x speedup in cloud job execution on our QPUs. This makes running hybrid classical/quantum algorithms with many API calls much faster. We’ve also made a new two-qubit gate instruction available on our 19Q-Acorn quantum processor: CPHASE(theta). This introduces our first parameterized two-qubit gate, offering more powerful and flexible entanglement between qubits,” according to Rigetti.