O(1) NP solving using the MQSC

I’ve invented a computer that solves NP problems in constant time. I call it the Mass Quantum Suicide Computer, or the MQSC for short.

You know Schrödingers Cat? The one in the box that is both alive and dead until you observe it? There’s a similar thought experiment in which you place yourself in the box and observe what happens. This is called “Quantum Suicide”. According to some interpretations, you will only ever observe yourself surviving, because in all other universes, your consciousness isn’t around to observe yourself being dead. This leads to another concept called “Quantum Immortality”, which basically means that for any lethal situation, if there’s any chance at all of you surviving it, you will only ever experience the universes in which you do. Of course, all your friends and family will still see you die in the vast majority of universes.

Unless you take them with you. Which I call “Mass Quantum Suicide”. Basically, you put the entire human race in the box, and you will all either die together or survive together.

So here’s my computer:

1) Ask the computer any question.
2) The computer has a one in chance of just saying “try again”. If it does, go back to 1.
3) The computer spits out a random reply.
4) Assume this reply is the correct answer, and leave the computer alone until it’s verified that it actually was the correct answer.
5) The computer then spends as long time as it needs verifying that the reply is correct.
6) If the random reply turns out to be incorrect, destroy the universe. This can be done by, for example, setting of a true vacuum chain reaction.

In all universes where humans are still around, the computer will always either say “try again”, or spit out the correct answer immediately. Nobody will be around to observe the universes where it guesses wrong.

This computer works great for NP problems which are quick to verify that you have the correct answer for, as you don’t have to leave the computer alone for very long in between asking it a question.


I thought this was an original idea, but it’s been done before:

Ah well. :D

posted 12 years ago