Assessing Performance of Quantum Computers (APQC) Workshop

CO landscape

The surge of growth in quantum computing since 2014 has generated tremendous interest in a fundamental question:  "How well does a given quantum computing processor perform?"  A new research field — quantum performance assessment — has emerged, bringing together aspects of quantum characterization (QCVV), quantum algorithms, quantum error correction, experimental qubit design, quantum computer science, and "quantum supremacy".

The Assessing Performance of Quantum Computers (APQC) workshop, held September 25-27, 2019 in Estes Park, Colorado, sought to jumpstart this new field.  The workshop brought together experts in all these fields, established the state of the art in quantum performance assessment, and guided its growth.

Topics and Technical Scope

APQC hosted talks, discussion, and debate on topics including (but not limited to):

  • QCVV techniques for characterizing errors in 1, 2, or more qubits.
  • Use of quantum algorithms or algorithm-like circuits to probe high-level performance.
  • Comparing the performance of quantum processors to their classical competition.
  • Development and use of well-motivated benchmarking suites.
  • Modeling and understanding obstacles to performance, including
    • quantum noise and errors
    • limits to programmability
    • latency, unreliability, and other hindrances.

The focus of APQC was on digital (gate- or circuit-model) quantum computing, but interesting connections to adiabatic, annealing, analog, or other models of quantum computing were welcomed.

Registration and Abstract Submission Information

More than 70 participants registered for and attended APQC 2019. The workshop is now over.

Location and Venue

APQC was held from September 25-27 at the Ridgeline Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado.  Estes Park is the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park, one of the most scenic locations in the United States, and the workshop dates coincided with the peak of fall color.

The nearest airport is Denver, Colorado (DEN), and Estes Park is roughly 90 minutes by car from DEN.  Here are some links to further information about what there is to do and see around Estes Park:


Here are some options for getting to the Ridgeline Hotel from the Denver Airport:

  • Rental Car
  • Estes Park Shuttle ($95 per person round trip)
  • Ride share, e.g. Uber or Lyft, (~$80 each way)

Hotel Reservation/ Booking Information:

Invited Speakers

Invited speakers included:

  • Sergio Boixo (Google)
  • Joe Emerson (Quantum Benchmark / U. Waterloo)
  • Steve Flammia (U. Sydney)
  • David McKay (IBM) 
  • Adriaan Rol (T.U. Delft)
  • Kevin Young (QPL@Sandia)
  • Yipeng Huang (Princeton)
  • Marko Cetina (UMD JQI)

Schedule & Agenda

APQC began at 9am on Wednesday, Sep. 25, and ended at 5pm on Friday, Sep. 27.  There were 9 invited talks and 16 contributed talks, as well as roundtable discussions and lunchtime presentations.  Working meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) were provided for registered participants.  

The agenda can still be viewed.