[E-Lang] Quantum computing and capabilities

Mark S. Miller markm@caplet.com
Fri, 02 Feb 2001 11:25:12 -0800

At 11:15 AM Friday 2/2/01, Ralph Hartley wrote:
>Mark S. Miller wrote:
>>At 11:49 AM Thursday 2/1/01, Marc Stiegler wrote:
>>>Though quantum computers can attack the encryption algorithms required for
>>>all current forms of secure distributed programming (not just capability
>>Ok, here's one for the Ripley's Believe it or Not of Capability Security.
>>As Vernor Vinge so vividly pointed out in A Fire Upon the Deep, there is one form of cryptography that remains strong in the face of arbitrarily huge increases in compute power -- one time pads.  In his novel, one time pads were the only reliable form of encryption, and were the main reason for engaging to interstellar travel -- to courier them.
>But quantum cryptography is strictly stronger than one time pads, because it does not require a trusted courier.

I agree.  When I wrote my message, I was thinking only of the speedup from 
quantum computation, and completely forgot about quantum cryptography, or 
indeed the possibility of other physics-based tricks to allow stronger 
security than classical computation would allow.  What quantum may taketh, 
perhaps quantum may giveth back.