Wednesday, May 23, 2007

So true

PhD comics rips out another classic.

Coffee tastes better in Italy

One of the best things about living in Europe is that it's easy to travel between countries.
On the weekend I dipped down to Italy for the day to check out Bolzano, a town in Süd Tirol. Bolzano is just over the border with Austria and culturally it is quite similar to Innsbruck. Fortunately, the Italian influence is just strong enough to demand a high standard in coffee!

Here are some pics from Bolzano:

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Where's mick?

Following the example of Dave I thought I'd start posting my travel plans for all the world to see.

For the next week or so I'll be heading to the UK. I will be traveling to Bristol for an interview and will be there till the weekend. After that I'll be in London where I will catch up with a whole bunch of people and maybe sneak in a little research on the side.

On Thursday I'm giving a talk to the quantum information theory group at the University of Bristol. If any of you are interested the title and the abstract can be found below:

Title: To what extent can one quantum system simulate another?


Quantum computers are an example of a large class of quantum-control systems that are capable of simulating the Hamiltonian dynamics of any finite-dimensional system. It turns out that many such systems have the same computational power as a quantum computer, at least when one assumes perfect control operations. For some simulation problems this is a blessing, as in when you want to simulate the dynamics of a k-local Hamiltonian, and for others this is a curse, for instance when you want to find spectral information of a k-local Hamiltonian. In this talk I will discuss some of the key challenges ahead in the field of quantum simulation, in particular I will focus on the problem of identifying systems that are universal for quantum computation (and simulation) and on the effects of noise on certain quantum simulation protocols.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Thursday, May 03, 2007

What got me into politics

Yes minister:

Season 1, Episode 1, first half:


 Season 1, Episode 1, second half:


Err, Season 1, Episode 1, third half...

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Well, I tried

I don't know how many regular readers noticed me mucking around with the template of this blog yesterday. I was attempting to switch over to one of the New Blogger templates. Unfortunately, I seem to be encountering real conflict issues between the Haloscan commenting system which I am using and the style editors in the new template. I have no idea why, but it seems when I install Haloscan comments the new Haloscan code puts itself all through the layout widgets. In particular, it screws up the header a lot.

I wish I could ditch Haloscan and keep my old comments somehow...

Update: Bloody hell, I actually managed to fix it. Basically I just hacked the New Blogger template directly and ignored anything that Haloscan said. It all seems to work now...

Oh, and this website kinda helped though it wasn't completely what I wanted it was enough to give me an idea about what to hack.