October 26th, 2011, Prof. Yao attended the 13th Computing in the 21st Century Conference (21CCC), jointly hosted by Microsoft Research Asia and Tsinghua University and gave a talk entitled “Quantum Computing: A Great Science in the Making”.
The scientific world has seen much excitement over the development of quantum computing in recent years. In his talk, Prof. Yao takes a look at quantum computing, and makes the case that we are witnessing a great science in the making. He defines great science as one that has the impact and uplifts the human spirit. It often happens when scientific theories interact and scientific disciplines interact, especially when there merging a strategic new technology becomes available. Prof. Yao also introduces the development of quantum labs in the USA, Singapore and Tsinghua’s efforts by Center for Quantum Information in this regards.
In the Q&A session, Prof. Yao together with Prof. Joseph Halpern, Professor & Chair of Computer Science Department, Cornell University and Dr. Hsiao-Wuen Hon, Managing Director, Microsoft Research Asia took questions from students. He asked students to “just be smart” on research and encouraged them to explore their potentials.
Prof. Yao also joined the Microsoft Research Asia Fellowship Award Ceremony at which Mr. Xiaohui Bei, IIIS graduate student was awarded the fellowship. The Microsoft Research Asia Fellowship Program founded in 1999, has attracted 102 PhD candidates from universities in the Asia-Pacific region this year, and 29 PhD students receive the honors.
The year 2011 marks both the 100th anniversary of Tsinghua University and the 20th anniversary of Microsoft Research. With the theme of “Back to Basic-Fundamental Research Fuels Innovation”, 21CCC provides a forum for leading worldwide experts to share recent achievements in computing science research with Chinese students and scholars. Distinguished speakers include Turing award winners, Professor Edmund M. Clarke, Professor Andrew Chi-Chih Yao, Professor Emmanuel Candes, and Professor Joseph Halpern.