A new idea about how the brain might use quantum mechanics to multiply its power far beyond any digital computer is challenging the dominant paradigm of neuroscience. Article by Jennifer Ouelette in Quanta Magazine

Back in the 1940s, Alan Turing proved that all computing machines can solve the same set of problems, so the idea that our brains are like digital computers puts us in that class. But quantum computers can solve problems that Turing machines cannot, and there are certain kinds of problems that in theory are solvable in a Turing machine but in practice take more time than the age of the universe—but in a quantum computer the time for solution becomes manageable.

So I’m attracted to the idea that the brain is a quantum computer, and I see potential for quantum biology to transform the world of neuroscience. There are intriguing hints at a fundamental role for consciousness in the formulation of quantum mechanics advocated by two of its founders, Bohr and Schrodinger. There is not yet a quantum theory of consciousness, but I dream of a Triborough Bridge between quantum mechanics, mysticism, and neuroscience.

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