IBM opens its quantum computer to the public

If you can wrap your head around qubits, you can try it yourself.

Want to use a real, honest-to-goodness quantum computer yourself? Now's your chance. IBM has introduced a cloud-based platform, the Quantum Experience, that lets anyone try a 5-qubit quantum computer for themselves. You can run algorithms and experiments, try simulations and tutorials or even work with the individual qubits. This isn't a truly universal machine, but it'll show you at least some of what non-binary computing can do.

The company is quick to admit that it doesn't expect huge queues. Its service is mainly for researchers and scientists that want to discover new uses for quantum computing or otherwise move the industry forward. If you're comfortable with the concept, though, it won't hurt to give the Quantum Experience a try -- you could learn something about the likely future of computer technology.