Pragmatic Quantum Machine Learning with Peter Wittek

800 800 The TWIML AI Podcast (formerly This Week in Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence)

Today we’re joined by Peter Wittek, Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto working on quantum-enhanced machine learning and the application of high-performance learning algorithms in quantum physics.

Peter and I caught up back in November to discuss a presentation he gave at re:Invent, “Pragmatic Quantum Machine Learning Today.” In our conversation, we start with a bit of background including the current state of quantum computing, a look ahead to what the next 20 years of quantum computing might hold, and how current quantum computers are flawed. We then dive into our discussion on quantum machine learning, and Peter’s new course on the topic, which debuted in February. I’ll link to that in the show notes. Finally, we briefly discuss the work of Ewin Tang, a PhD student from the University of Washington, who’s undergrad thesis “A quantum-inspired classical algorithm for recommendation systems,” made quite a stir last summer. As a special treat for those interested, I’m also sharing my interview with Ewin as a bonus episode alongside this one. I’d love to hear your thoughts on how you think quantum computing will impact machine learning in the next 20 years! Send me a tweet or leave a comment on the show notes page.

Join me at Pegaworld!

We’d like to join Pegasystems, who is sponsoring today’s episode, in inviting you to meet meat the MGM Grand in Las Vegas June 2nd-5th at PegaWorld, the company’s annual digital transformation conference.

Pegasystems puts AI at the center of its customer engagement software so that it optimizes every customer touchpoint on every channel in real time. That way each interaction is relevant and timely to each individual customer, no matter if it’s a sales call, a digital marketing campaign or a customer service chat either online or in-store, and the system always learning in real-time to make the next interaction better.

Pegas customers are the real stars at PegaWorld. There you’ll hear great stories of AI applied to the customer experience at real Pega customers. The event is a great way to learn from a who’s who of the Fortune 500, and of course, I’ll be there and speaking as well.

To register, visit and use the promo code TWIML19 when you sign up for $200 off. Again that’s TWIML19. It’s as easy at that. Hope to see you there!

Giveaway UpdateS!

Dev Summit attendees received an awesome gift box from Google that included some fun toys that will appeal to the hackers and builders in our audience, including the new Coral Edge TPU device and the SparkFun Edge development board powered by TensorFlow. If you’re a geek like me and get excited about toys like these, I’m excited to tell you that we’ve got our hands on a few of these for you, our dedicated listeners. To enter to win one, just visit and let us know what you would do with this kit if you got your hands on it.

Ending Soon!

The O’Reilly Artificial Intelligence Conference is returning to New York in April and we have one FREE conference pass for a lucky listener! Visit for more details.

About Peter

Mentioned in the Interview

“More On That Later” by Lee Rosevere licensed under CC By 4.0

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