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Google's Quantum AI Lab adds quantum physics to Minecraft

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There is seemingly no end to the number of things you can do in Minecraft — and the latest thing is experimenting with quantum physics. A new mod called qCraft, built by none other than Google's Quantum AI Lab Team, adds blocks that exhibit quantum entanglement, superposition, and observer-dependency properties. Some of the new blocks can be "activated" simply by looking at them, while others are prone to disappear at any moment.

"Where will future quantum computer scientists come from? Our best guess: Minecraft."

"We built the Quantum AI Lab to explore the potential of quantum computing, and figure out what questions we should be asking," says the the Lab Team in a post on Google+. "One question is clear," the post reads. "Where will future quantum computer scientists come from? Our best guess: Minecraft." Millions of kids aren't just digging caves in Minecraft, they say, but are building assembly lines, space shuttles, and even programmable computers. The mod is an effort to get these same kids thinking about physics in a playful new way.

"qCraft isn't a perfect scientific simulation, but it's a fun way for players to experience a few parts of quantum mechanics outside of thought experiments or dense textbook examples," says the Lab Team. "We don't even know the full potential of what you can make with qCraft, but we're excited to see what Minecraft's players can discover." This is far from the first time that dedicated Minecraft builders have tackled science — the double slit experiment was also recreated in the virtual world a couple of years ago