First functional quantum processor created, lasted slightly longer than your last Xbox 360

UK researchers said they were getting close earlier this year, but in one brilliant fraction of a second a gaggle of Yalies beat those limeys to the punch, with a team led by Robert Schoelkopf, a professor of Applied Physics at Yale, creating what's being hailed as the first quantum processor to actually perform calculations. It's composed of aluminum atoms grouped together to form two quantum bits, communicating over an unimaginatively named named quantum bus that enables one to change the (wait for it) quantum state of the other. This first qubit shifter was able to maintain state for 1,000 times longer than any previous qubit ever produced -- but since its predecessors could only manage a nanosecond's worth of cognition we're still only talking a microsecond here. In other words: there's still a long way to go before you'll be slotting one of these into your gaming rig.