Scott Aaronson
#17002 Overall Influence

Scott Aaronson

American scientist, working on the field of quantum computing

About

Why is this person notable and influential?

Aaronson is David J. Bruton Jr. Centennial Professor of Computer Science at the University of Texas at Austin, a position he has held since 2016. Before UT, he was a professor of computer science at MIT. Aaronson, a theoretical computer scientist who’s also one of the world’s leading experts in quantum computing, graduated from Cornell University with a degree in computer science (a minor in mathematics). He did his Ph.D. at the University of California at Berkeley.

Aaronson is known for his work on quantum computing, an important (and still unsolved) topic in computer science that seeks to model computers on quantum “bits” of information, known as q-bits. While performing fundamental work on quantum computing itself, Aaronson is also known for his “no-nonsense” admissions of the difficulties the field of quantum computing faces, as there is currently no working model of quantum computation scalable to handle real-world computing tasks. His much read article “The Limits of Quantum Computers,” appeared in Scientific American in 2008.

Aaronson has been hugely influential as a popularizer of difficult ideas in complexity theory and quantum computing. He is a favorite of the media, who frequently cite his opinions and work in popular accounts of difficult subjects. His book, Quantum Computing Since Democritus, appeared in 2013.

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Schools

What schools is this person affiliated with?
University of California, Berkeley
University of California, Berkeley

Public research university in Berkeley, California, United States

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States

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Cornell University
Cornell University

Private university in Ithaca

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University of Texas at Austin
University of Texas at Austin

Public research university in Austin, Texas, United States

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University of Waterloo
University of Waterloo

Public research university in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

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Influence Rankings by Discipline

How’s this person influential?
#158 World Rank #97 USA Rank
Computer Science