The scientific method was perfected in the crucible of natural science, and physics in particular. And an old professor of mine once told me that a good theoretical physicist is intrinsically a lazy person. And so these heuristics of ignoring superfluous detail, simplifying the problem to its barest essentials, maybe even making a caricature out of it, solving that simpler problem. If you can’t solve that simpler problem, solve an even simpler problem. This actually works in physics. Because the universe is intrinsically a lazy place.
From vast data centers to mobile phones, the power of computers continues to transform our lives. But there are some problems across artificial intelligence, in the design of new materials, pharmaceuticals, and clean energy devices that they will simply never solve. So even if we turned our entire planet into a giant supercomputer we wouldn’t be able to solve these and many other important problems. The good news is that if we could build a computing device based on fundamental quantum principles, we could.