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"Intent and outcome are rarely coincident"
Michael buried his face in his hands. The investigator's words had affected him greatly. He shut his eyes, trying to buy himself some reprieve in the darkness.
"Fortunately for you, Mr Lee, there exists no law yet prohibiting the action you have taken."
His emphasis on "yet" was not lost on Michael, and the conclusion that he would most likely escape any legal liability gave him little comfort.
As he opened his eyes, what sat across him was not the image of an accusatory interrogator but rather a man filled with genuine concern.
"Though I doubt that would lighten your thoughts much. You are free to go, but you might want to call someone to pick you up. It appears the whole nation have gathered outside my small office. "
Pity emanated from the investigator, and it pushed Michael further into the abyss of  grief.
"Time to go Mr. Lee"
The cacophony of questions hit him like a truck as he exited the small entrance of the Ministry. He struggled to walk whilst covering his face with his briefcase.
"Boss! This way!"
A familiar voice pierced through the confusion, an arm grabbed him tightly and led him out of the crowd of journalists, zealots and opportunists.
After what seemed like a mile, he was roughly shoved into a vehicle. The noise from the crowd was muffled as the car door closed, but he could still make out what some of them are saying.
" Why was the procedure authorized? What will you say to the victim's family?
The accusations echoed in his mind, the grief which subsided threatened to come again in waves.
Oh Ryan...What have I done?
The car slowly trudged off from the crowd, its engine drowned out the voices of the mob as it sped away. He looked out into the street  purposefully, occupying himself with the scenes on the street. He would not let the tidal wave of grief wash over him.
His driver took a look at Michael through the rear-view mirror.
" Boss, I don't think you're wrong. Your colleague, he was going to die anyway right?"
He wasn't just a colleague.
The driver's attempt at consoling him had interrupted his temporary detachment from reality.
"Just drive me to the lab Ravi."
The laboratory was a flurry of activity when Michael stepped in. Streams of assistants were pouring in and out, with everyone hauling a piece of his painstaking research . As walked through the chaos, he realized that the body had already been moved.
The body.
Michael shuddered at the thought that in an instant, he had reduced the entirety of his partner to "the body". Only a chalk outline and some blood spittle on the floor indicated that someone was once lying there. Across the room, quantum computers with their accompanying massive decoherence inhibitors were being dismantled and shuffled out. Only the android in the far corner of the room remained untouched, covered under a sheet of white cloth.
"Lee! You are not supposed to be here."
Patrick, a colleague, shouted across the lab to him.
Michael scanned across the room. His life's work was being taken apart right in front of him and he could do nothing. No, he wanted to do nothing. It was, after all, his fault. He should bear the responsibility. A brain-computer interface lay discarded recklessly on the ground. Michael picked it up carefully, but its fragile web of neural electrodes broke into shards of glass his hands.
Patrick approached him gingerly.
" We tried. The experiment was a failure. Go home, Lee. There's nothing more to do here."
A rising tide of anger surged through Michael. He never felt so useless before. He clenched his fists in fury and cursed silently.
Was the past eight years for nothing?
They had both suffered, Ryan and him, bit by bit a part of Ryan was slowly lost to the neurodegenerative disease, and Michael could do nothing but watch. It was as if a thief had broke into their lives, stealing their happiness bit by bit. But his research had given him hope.
Or so I thought.
It wasn't just his hope, the whole Ministry hedged their bet on his research, and to their defense, it had proven to be surprisingly promising. Quantum computers were more alike to the human mind than any other existing artificial neural network. Where digital computers could record and playback memories, quantum computer could generate a consciousness within those memories.
In theory, one could transmit one's consciousness through a brain-computer interface to a quantum computer, which should preserve the integrity the brain's architecture.
In theory... Should...
In the end, it was an exercise in futility. Ryan's heart gave out before anything could be transmitted. Electrodes were even directly implanted into his brain to reduce signal loss.
But to what effect? It didn't even matter...
Now the whole project was kaput, the Ministry shamed beyond recognition and Ryan lost forever. He looked at his hands and couldn't tell if the blood on it was his or Ryan's.  As he threw the remnants of the brain-computer interface against the wall, a thought flashed across his mind.
Ah.Ah.Ah.
What?
It didn't feel like a thought. It felt more like an emotion... Was that laughter I heard? Great, I'm going crazy now.
Michael looked around the laboratory, expecting everyone to be staring at him. But they weren't. They were staring at the android.
Ah.Ah.Ah.
The laughter was clearer this time. Some of the assistants dropped what they were holding and ran out of the lab, others remained petrified. All eyes were on the droid.
Could it be?
Michael's mind ran through all the possibilities. His thoughts were racing, considering every reason for the droid's outburst.
A glitch? Residual memories?
He wouldn't dare consider the outcome he so wished to be true.
Then the android spoke.
"The brain lasts for six minutes after the heart stops."

About the Author: 
I recently graduated from Ngee Ann Polytechnic's School of Film and Media Studies. I'm currently aspiring to be a writer.

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Quantum Theories

G is for ... Gluon

These elementary particles hold together the quarks that lie at the heart of matter.

O is for ... Objective reality

Niels Bohr, one of the founding fathers of quantum physics, said there is no such thing as objective reality. All we can talk about, he said, is the results of measurements we make.

P is for ... Planck's Constant

This is one of the universal constants of nature, and relates the energy of a single quantum of radiation to its frequency. It is central to quantum theory and appears in many important formulae, including the Schrödinger Equation.

T is for ... Tunnelling

This happens when quantum objects “borrow” energy in order to bypass an obstacle such as a gap in an electrical circuit. It is possible thanks to the uncertainty principle, and enables quantum particles to do things other particles can’t.

S is for ... Schrödinger Equation

This is the central equation of quantum theory, and describes how any quantum system will behave, and how its observable qualities are likely to manifest in an experiment.

C is for ... Cryptography

People have been hiding information in messages for millennia, but the quantum world provides a whole new way to do it.

A is for ... Act of observation

Some people believe this changes everything in the quantum world, even bringing things into existence.

S is for ... Schrödinger’s Cat

A hypothetical experiment in which a cat kept in a closed box can be alive and dead at the same time – as long as nobody lifts the lid to take a look.

H is for ... Hidden Variables

One school of thought says that the strangeness of quantum theory can be put down to a lack of information; if we could find the “hidden variables” the mysteries would all go away.

H is for ... Hawking Radiation

In 1975, Stephen Hawking showed that the principles of quantum mechanics would mean that a black hole emits a slow stream of particles and would eventually evaporate.

U is for ... Uncertainty Principle

One of the most famous ideas in science, this declares that it is impossible to know all the physical attributes of a quantum particle or system simultaneously.

R is for ... Reality

Since the predictions of quantum theory have been right in every experiment ever done, many researchers think it is the best guide we have to the nature of reality. Unfortunately, that still leaves room for plenty of ideas about what reality really is!

I is for ... Information

Many researchers working in quantum theory believe that information is the most fundamental building block of reality.

A is for ... Alice and Bob

In quantum experiments, these are the names traditionally given to the people transmitting and receiving information. In quantum cryptography, an eavesdropper called Eve tries to intercept the information.

L is for ... Large Hadron Collider (LHC)

At CERN in Geneva, Switzerland, this machine is smashing apart particles in order to discover their constituent parts and the quantum laws that govern their behaviour.

P is for ... Probability

Quantum mechanics is a probabilistic theory: it does not give definite answers, but only the probability that an experiment will come up with a particular answer. This was the source of Einstein’s objection that God “does not play dice” with the universe.

Q is for ... Qubit

One quantum bit of information is known as a qubit (pronounced Q-bit). The ability of quantum particles to exist in many different states at once means a single quantum object can represent multiple qubits at once, opening up the possibility of extremely fast information processing.

J is for ... Josephson Junction

This is a narrow constriction in a ring of superconductor. Current can only move around the ring because of quantum laws; the apparatus provides a neat way to investigate the properties of quantum mechanics.

W is for ... Wave-particle duality

It is possible to describe an atom, an electron, or a photon as either a wave or a particle. In reality, they are both: a wave and a particle.

L is for ... Light

We used to believe light was a wave, then we discovered it had the properties of a particle that we call a photon. Now we know it, like all elementary quantum objects, is both a wave and a particle!

D is for ... Decoherence

Unless it is carefully isolated, a quantum system will “leak” information into its surroundings. This can destroy delicate states such as superposition and entanglement.

Z is for ... Zero-point energy

Even at absolute zero, the lowest temperature possible, nothing has zero energy. In these conditions, particles and fields are in their lowest energy state, with an energy proportional to Planck’s constant.

T is for ... Teleportation

Quantum tricks allow a particle to be transported from one location to another without passing through the intervening space – or that’s how it appears. The reality is that the process is more like faxing, where the information held by one particle is written onto a distant particle.

X is for ... X-ray

In 1923 Arthur Compton shone X-rays onto a block of graphite and found that they bounced off with their energy reduced exactly as would be expected if they were composed of particles colliding with electrons in the graphite. This was the first indication of radiation’s particle-like nature.

E is for ... Entanglement

When two quantum objects interact, the information they contain becomes shared. This can result in a kind of link between them, where an action performed on one will affect the outcome of an action performed on the other. This “entanglement” applies even if the two particles are half a universe apart.

W is for ... Wavefunction

The mathematics of quantum theory associates each quantum object with a wavefunction that appears in the Schrödinger equation and gives the probability of finding it in any given state.

F is for ... Free Will

Ideas at the heart of quantum theory, to do with randomness and the character of the molecules that make up the physical matter of our brains, lead some researchers to suggest humans can’t have free will.

D is for ... Dice

Albert Einstein decided quantum theory couldn’t be right because its reliance on probability means everything is a result of chance. “God doesn’t play dice with the world,” he said.

Q is for ... Quantum biology

A new and growing field that explores whether many biological processes depend on uniquely quantum processes to work. Under particular scrutiny at the moment are photosynthesis, smell and the navigation of migratory birds.

Y is for ... Young's Double Slit Experiment

In 1801, Thomas Young proved light was a wave, and overthrew Newton’s idea that light was a “corpuscle”.

R is for ... Randomness

Unpredictability lies at the heart of quantum mechanics. It bothered Einstein, but it also bothers the Dalai Lama.

I is for ... Interferometer

Some of the strangest characteristics of quantum theory can be demonstrated by firing a photon into an interferometer: the device’s output is a pattern that can only be explained by the photon passing simultaneously through two widely-separated slits.

K is for ... Kaon

These are particles that carry a quantum property called strangeness. Some fundamental particles have the property known as charm!

M is for ... Multiverse

Our most successful theories of cosmology suggest that our universe is one of many universes that bubble off from one another. It’s not clear whether it will ever be possible to detect these other universes.

U is for ... Universe

To many researchers, the universe behaves like a gigantic quantum computer that is busy processing all the information it contains.

V is for ... Virtual particles

Quantum theory’s uncertainty principle says that since not even empty space can have zero energy, the universe is fizzing with particle-antiparticle pairs that pop in and out of existence. These “virtual” particles are the source of Hawking radiation.

C is for ... Computing

The rules of the quantum world mean that we can process information much faster than is possible using the computers we use now.

M is for ... Many Worlds Theory

Some researchers think the best way to explain the strange characteristics of the quantum world is to allow that each quantum event creates a new universe.

B is for ... Bose-Einstein Condensate (BEC)

At extremely low temperatures, quantum rules mean that atoms can come together and behave as if they are one giant super-atom.

A is for ... Atom

This is the basic building block of matter that creates the world of chemical elements – although it is made up of more fundamental particles.

G is for ... Gravity

Our best theory of gravity no longer belongs to Isaac Newton. It’s Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity. There’s just one problem: it is incompatible with quantum theory. The effort to tie the two together provides the greatest challenge to physics in the 21st century.

R is for ... Radioactivity

The atoms of a radioactive substance break apart, emitting particles. It is impossible to predict when the next particle will be emitted as it happens at random. All we can do is give the probability that any particular atom will have decayed by a given time.

S is for ... Superposition

Quantum objects can exist in two or more states at once: an electron in superposition, for example, can simultaneously move clockwise and anticlockwise around a ring-shaped conductor.

N is for ... Nonlocality

When two quantum particles are entangled, it can also be said they are “nonlocal”: their physical proximity does not affect the way their quantum states are linked.

B is for ... Bell's Theorem

In 1964, John Bell came up with a way of testing whether quantum theory was a true reflection of reality. In 1982, the results came in – and the world has never been the same since!