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TR04-026 | 17th February 2004 00:00

Limitations of Quantum Advice and One-Way Communication


Authors: Scott Aaronson
Publication: 9th April 2004 21:17
Downloads: 3024


Although a quantum state requires exponentially many classical bits to describe, the laws of quantum mechanics impose severe restrictions on how that state can be accessed. This paper shows in three settings that quantum messages have only limited advantages over classical ones.
First, we show that BQP/qpoly is contained in PP/poly, where BQP/qpoly is the class of problems solvable in quantum polynomial time, given a polynomial-size "quantum advice state" that depends only on the input length. This resolves a question of Buhrman, and means that we should not hope for an unrelativized separation between quantum and classical advice. Underlying our complexity result is a general new lower bound on quantum one-way communication complexity, which applies to partial as well as total functions.
Second, we construct an oracle relative to which NP is not contained in BQP/qpoly. To do so, we use the polynomial method to give the first correct proof of a direct product theorem for quantum search. This theorem has many other applications; for example, it can be used to fix and even improve on a flawed result of Klauck about quantum time-space tradeoffs for sorting.
Third, we introduce a new trace distance method for proving lower bounds on quantum one-way communication complexity. Using this method, we obtain optimal quantum lower bounds for two problems of Ambainis, for which no nontrivial lower bounds were previously known even for classical randomized protocols.

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