Rhode Island University (URI) will have the honor of hosting Charles Robinson, the global leader of IBM’s Quantum Security Team, for a public conference as part of their quantum computing initiative. Robinson will share his journey from North Philadelphia to the field of quantum computing, along with the obstacles he faced and strategies to overcome them.

As the leader of IBM’s Quantum Security Team, Robinson’s role involves working on technologies that ensure data protection in a post-quantum world. Quantum computers possess extraordinary computing power, capable of completing complex calculations in seconds, which would take years on traditional computers. However, this advanced capacity poses a challenge as most current encryption schemes may become obsolete once large-scale quantum systems become operational.

To address this problem, IBM’s Quantum Security Team is developing new encryption algorithms that remain robust against quantum computing. Additionally, the team collaborates with governments and companies worldwide to help them prepare for the imminent quantum revolution. The goal is to protect sensitive information such as credit card numbers, bank account details, and medical records that are vulnerable to cyber threats.

Len Kahn, President of URI’s Physics Department, emphasizes the urgency of focusing on quantum security in the quantum computing revolution. He highlights the need to train individuals to work on critical problems and aims to achieve this through URI’s quantum computing initiative.

Robinson’s unconventional path to leadership in the quantum field and his efforts to promote quantum information science as an accessible career are key reasons why his conference at URI is significant. His experience, including serving as a member of the Navy’s medical corps and working with the defense and intelligence community, showcases his broad expertise.

Robinson has also extensively collaborated with Howard University’s IBM-HBCU Quantum Center, which aims to prepare talents from historically African-American universities for the quantum future.

Kahn emphasizes the importance of involving underrepresented communities in facing the challenges and opportunities of the quantum revolution. URI continues to benefit from Robinson’s experience and knowledge in achieving this goal.

The public conference is sponsored by the Office of the Provost, the Center for Academic Enhancement, and URI’s Physics Department.

– Quantum computing: Computer systems that utilize the behavior of matter on the smallest scale to perform accelerated calculations.
– Encryption: The process of encoding information to protect it from unauthorized access or manipulation.
– Quantum security: Development of technologies and encryption algorithms that remain secure in the presence of powerful quantum computers.
– Post-quantum world: Refers to the era in which large-scale quantum systems become operational and pose a significant threat to current encryption methods.

– University of Rhode Island
– IBM’s Quantum Security Team
– Howard University’s IBM-HBCU Quantum Center