Format

This class is a guided, interactive adventure into computing with the fundamental laws of quantum physics. This is the first, and possibly only, time it is being taught, so everything including the format is highly experimental and subject to change at any time. The latest version of the format will be documented on this page.

The class follows a narrative in an alternate history where Alan Turing and Richard Feynman meet during World War II and must invent quantum computers to defeat Nazi Germany.

The class is flipped, which means that you will read the currently released chapter, before coming to class every week, with the exception of the first class. The chapter further advances the story above and reveals all the technical material you need for that week.

During the 10 weekly one-hour class sessions, you will mainly work together in groups initially, and then finally as a whole class, to do the assignments, which are a few problems meant to probe your understanding of that week’s lecture material. There is no grade other than “Pass” and “Not yet passed” for each assignment, so you can try as many times as it takes to understand the answer.

When everyone passes each in-class assignment, you will all unlock the lecture notes for the following week.

This will be printed out and given to you on paper in-class only. It won’t be posted online, and there is no other way to get it short of hacking my laptop or kidnapping my illustrator.

By the end of week 10, as a final project, or boss at the end of the level, you will be writing a simple program which will run on an actual D-Wave One machine (you’ll learn what this is and why it’s interesting around week 6!), and interpret the results.

You will only pass this class if you make it to the very end.

I know, I know, that sounds like a lot of work for just one credit, and you probably just wanted to graduate and get an easy A. Sorry kid, them’s the breaks.

I intend for this class to be doable in exactly 3 hours per week, and I will adjust the course difficulty as we go along, like every good gamemaster.