QuantumPath®'s Q Assets Compositor® family is growing: tools for enterprise quantum software development
It’s a classic saying: “with a good tool, you work well”. With QuantumPath®, one of our goals is to provide tools and platforms that make it possible to incorporate quantum computing as naturally as possible into the business, as a piece of engineering, equivalent to any of the many solutions that form part of a company’s IT system. So that industry itself can manage and build solutions that incorporate these new technologies into its production and value chain.
In order to achieve this, tools must offer users sound design principles that have as their top priority respect for their creativity, productivity, experience and control without losing important factors such as support and security.
The user is not a passive actor, and therefore the better the tools provided, the better the user will be able to do his or her job. Lack of the right tools for a function prolongs the learning curve and delays the ability to be productive on a specific element of the business.
This is why one of the objectives of the creators of QuantumPath® when facing the adoption of quantum computing, is to innovate, create and build tools that respond to the principles of quantum software engineering and with them create services that offer the user more options, so that they can focus on what really matters for the business: visualising, designing, exploring, experimenting and validating the creation of quantum solutions. Without having to lose focus on details that should not affect them (at least not so directly).
In other articles, publications, and videos we have talked about QuantumPath® technologies related to the design and construction of quantum solutions. Grouped under the Q Assets Compositor® brand  , the goal is to provide more and better tools that improve the user experience when approaching the design of quantum assets. With the release of Q Assets Compositor® for quantum circuits , and also for annealing (optimisation) algorithms , we laid a solid foundation that allows work on the design and construction of quantum assets to be done 70-80% faster than the equivalent development time in Python.
With these versions consolidated, the goal now is to continuously improve the tools, making them more robust and extending their functionalities to improve the user experience. As a result of this work, we present the new member of the Q Assets Compositor® family, Q xCompositor: a rich QuantumPath® client developed with Microsoft Excel , with the Q Assets Compositor® extensions for quantum circuit design.
Illustration 1. Q xCompositor: Excel for quantum circuit design integrated with QuantumPath®
Today, business IT inevitably relies on web applications to make customers agnostic to corporate technologies. But for certain types of specialised web-environment work, it may not be enough, even though its technology is continually improving every day. That’s why we’ve harnessed the ubiquitous power of desktop applications to augment the power and capabilities of QuantumPath® designers.
As an experienced software engineering company, we know that sometimes the wheel that works doesn’t have to be reinvented. That is why, before writing a rich client from scratch, we set ourselves the task of searching and reviewing among the tools known to all, including some of very massive use at all levels, but able to provide for the purpose at hand, a high potential for extensibility and customisation and that, by design, would help to improve the experience of working with our quantum assets.
Yes, the product that was chosen was Microsoft Excel. This product from the Microsoft Office family fully fits our vision of a complete, practical, and massive tool that enriches and enhances the user experience in the design of scalable quantum circuits.
The differentiating focus of this new tool is on the term “scalable”. Quantum computers are about to create a new “Moore’s law” in which the goal is to scale the qubits that can be managed: hundreds, thousands, millions. Therefore, in our opinion, it is necessary for developers to have design tools that, without relying on programming languages as the only option, open up the possibility of being able to work with larger and/or more complex circuits. To address this technological challenge of real-world circuit development, Microsoft Excel and the Q Assets Compositor® extensions fit like a glove.
Thanks to the versatility of Microsoft Excel, we were able to provide the circuit editor with all the operations of the Microsoft product to work with rows, columns, cells, formulas, macros, integration logic with data sources, intelligence… etc., to provide the circuit editor with an additional intelligence that will make users very productive. For example, scaling the qubits of an RNG circuit is a simple drag and drop process:
Illustration 2. Dragging and dropping cells: simplifying the creation of many-qubit circuits
In addition, with Q xCompositor we also envisage tackling, with practical solutions, other major challenges of business-ready circuit development: management of variables, data, etc., which we will address later in more specialised articles.
Q xCompositor adds new action panels to Excel, which will allow the user to have a richer experience than in the web version of Q Assets Compositor®. It will also have details such as customising the experience, among which we highlight the set of colours. Based on the periodic table as a tribute, a colour code will make it possible to clearly visualise the elements of the circuit when they are very massive. A utility that can help to visualise symmetries and even find errors.
Illustration 3. Q xCompositor and the zoom, a valuable tool
And of course, all this integrated with QuantumPath® services. The circuit can be edited from its asset in the web environment, work with it in a disconnected way and then synchronise it on demand. It is 100% adapted to the intermediate language QpIL, which makes it possible to work with it in any context of the product and keeping the logic of the life cycle intact.
To access these new functionalities, the product will provide guided actions that make the product very accessible to use. As the editor is currently only available for circuits based on quantum gates, access to the new Q xCompositor will be limited to quantum gate solutions and therefore to circuits that exploit quantum gates.
Context 1. Creating a circuit from scratch. If we want to create circuits from scratch with Q xCompositor, we must access the circuit catalogue through the solution. This will enable the use case “create circuit in Excel”. We will work with the circuit, and when we want to generate it in QuantumPath®, from the toolbar we will be able to start the link and fill in the necessary key elements.
Illustration 4. Start the “Create a circuit from scratch” use case with Q xCompositor.
Once this is done, we are ready to start working on the circuit using the toolbar:
Illustration 5. Q xCompositor Toolbar
As shown in Illustration 6, we must synchronize the new circuit, with its key metadata, with the QuantumPath® catalog:
Illustration 6. Synchronization of the new circuit with QuantumPath®
As can be seen in Illustration 7, if we access the QuantumPath® circuit manager, we can see that the circuit just created with the Q xCompositor has been successfully imported and can be opened with the Q Assets Compositor®.
Illustration 7 List of QuantumPath® circuits
Illustration 8 shows the circuit in the Q Assets Compositor® interface, treating it as another circuit within the QPath® ecsystem.
Illustration 8. The edited circuit, synchronised with QuantumPath®.
Context 2. Editing an existing circuit. In this case, we can refactor the already existing circuits, entering the circuit we want to edit and opening the Q xCompositor directly, as can be seen in illustration 9. The rest of the steps are those already commented in the previous context.
Illustration 9. Refactoring the circuit with Q xCompositor
The development of quantum computers leads to an increase in the number of qubits that can be used in quantum algorithms. The development of useful business-ready quantum algorithms requires the power of quantum computers to bring the quantum advantage to the business. Having tools that make it easy for developers to manage large numbers of qubits in a controlled and productive way is a necessity inherent in the evolution of quantum software.
Q xCompositor, taking advantage of the benefits of Microsoft Excel, opens up a new way of working in the design of gate circuits. With principles such as freedom and user control, flexibility and power of Office automation tools, massively familiar design, consistency and standards and its productivity ecosystem… we are convinced that Q xCompositor will further simplify the work of creating, researching and exploiting quantum assets with QuantumPath® services.
 Hevia, J.L. Peterssen, G. Murina, E. Martínez, A. Graphical interfaces for quantum development. Chapter 5 of the book: Quantum Software Engineering & QuantumPath®. aQuantum, 2022.
 Q Asset Compositor® 2.0: functionalities and scalability for developing industry-ready quantum circuits with QuantumPath®. January 2023, The QPath® Blog.
 Microsoft Office and Microsoft Excel are the property of Microsoft Corporation, to which Microsoft owns all copyrights.