added: 06.18.2013, by Mike Spinney
A disclaimer to start this post off: any topic that begins with the word “quantum” is well beyond my intellectual grasp. I’m utterly fascinated by science, and keenly aware of my limitations in such areas. Heck, I struggle with mathematics once it strays beyond addition and subtraction. Long division might as well be quantum division as far as I’m concerned.
But I heard a story on the radio recently that caught my attention when it told of Chinese researchers who had successfully bounced a photon beam off of a satellite and collected all the photons when they returned to earth. The test was the latest in the realm of quantum teleportation which had proposed by scientists working for the Niels Bohr Institute and recently tested independently in a laboratory environment by other scientists.
I won’t try to explain any of the above. My simplistic mind hears “teleportation” and immediately thinks “beam me up, Scotty.” And while that might not be all that far off, apparently it’ll be a few years yet before we’re able to transmit William Shatner’s atoms to another planet.
But, we may not be that far from a time when we’re able to use the science of quantum teleportation to send secure messages across great distances. As I understood the radio report, information can be encoded into atoms, teleported to a recipient, and re-assembled.
(If the above description is wrong, I refer you to paragraph one.)
That’s kind of exciting, I think. Science fiction becoming science fact before my very eyes. But the concept of sending an encoded message that can only be decoded by its recipient sounds somewhat familiar to me. That’s the HoGo message! Granted, we’re not using anything quantum to get the job done, but the concept is the same: send a valuable document to someone in a format that only they can read.
Better yet, we do it without cesium gas, or taking anything to the 12th power.