23-29 Elul, 5778                                                          Sept. 3-9, 2018 -- THE JEWISH OBSERVER, LOS ANGELES --  610th Web Ed.




Rick Aaranson

As the Rosh Hashanah approaches, it is a natural time to reflect on the prior year and to contemplate the path forward.  Rick Aranson recently took time off to engage in  reflection.  Taking stock of personal and professional goals, interests, and priorities, and after careful deliberation, discussions with family, friends, colleagues, and JF&CS’ leadership, Aranson came to the difficult decision that it is the right time for him to step aside and resign as JF&CS’ CEO.

In late 2003, Aranson came to JF&CS’ Careers Department as a job seeker for help in search for employment.  Fortunately the timing was right, as JF&CS had an internal opening as its first Chief Operating Officer to oversee agency programs. Aranson and his wife and children moved to Atlanta from Pittsburgh, and he began his time with the Agency in January 2004.  He served as COO until 2015 at which time he was appointed as the agency’s CEO.  As CEO Rick led with a focus on impact, collaboration, adaptability, service excellence, and long-term sustainability.

Aranson is deeply proud of what the agency has accomplished as an organization during his tenure at JF&CS, including selection for the Community Foundations’ Managing for Excellence Award, more than doubling and diversifying the operating budget, growing fee for service, grant, donor, and endowment assets, capital projects that resulted in state-of-the-art clinical, disabilities and dental facilities, developing and enhancing new programs in each service area for deeper impact, receipt of the Sue Weiland Award from the Atlanta Women’s Foundation, and forging collaborative partnerships in the Jewish and broader community.

More than any of those things, however, Aranson's proudest moments are those involving the people JF&CS serves.  Stories of impact are the fuel that empowered him and his staff at JF&CS.

Faye Dresner, current Chief Program Officer, will assume the role of interim CEO while the Board of Directors identifies new leadership.

JF&CS said , "on behalf of our colleague and friend Rick Aranson, CEO of Jewish Family & Career Services of Atlanta it is our bittersweet task to share the announcement below.



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Los Angeles


REHOVOT, ISRAEL -- The quantum computers of the future will be able to perform computations that cannot be done on today’s computers. These may likely include the ability to crack the encryption that is currently used for secure electronic transactions, as well as the means to efficiently solve unwieldy problems in which the number of possible solutions increases exponentially. Research in the quantum optics lab of Professor Barak Dayan at the Weizmann Institute of Science may be bringing such computers one step closer by providing the “quantum gates” required for communication within and between such quantum computers.

In contrast with today’s electronic bits that can only exist in one of two states – zero or one – quantum bits known as qubits can also be in states that correspond to both zero and one at the same time. This is called quantum superposition, and it gives qubits an edge over standard bits since a computer made of them could perform numerous computations in parallel.

There is just one catch: the quantum superposition state can exist only as long as it is not observed or measured in any way by the outside world; otherwise, all the possible states collapse into a single state. This leads to contradicting requirements: for the qubits to exist in several states at once they need to be well isolated, yet at the same time they need to interact and communicate with many other qubits. That is why, although several labs and companies around the world have already demonstrated small-scale quantum computers with a few dozen qubits, the challenge of scaling up to the desired millions of qubits remains a major scientific and technological hurdle.

One promising solution is using isolated modules with small, manageable numbers of qubits, which can communicate between them when needed with optical links. The information stored in a “material” qubit (e.g., a single atom or ion) would then be transferred to a “flying” qubit – a photon (single particle of light). This photon can be sent through optical fibers to a distant material qubit and transfer its information without letting the environment sense the nature of that information. The challenge in creating such a system is that single photons carry extremely small amounts of energy, and the minuscule systems comprising material qubits generally do not interact strongly with such weak light.   

Professor Dayan’s quantum optics lab is one of the few groups in the world that is focused entirely on attacking this challenge. The team’s experimental setup has single atoms coupled to unique micron-scale silica resonators on chips. Photons are sent directly to these through special optical fibers. In previous experiments, Professor Dayan and his group demonstrated the ability of their system to function as a single-photon activated switch, and also a way to “pluck” a single photon from a flash of light. In the present study, reported in Nature Physics, Professor Dayan and his team succeeded – for the first time – in creating a logic gate in which a photon and an atom automatically exchange the information they carry.

“The photon carries one qubit, and the atom is a second qubit,” says Professor Dayan. “Each time the photon and the atom meet they exchange the qubits between them automatically and simultaneously, and the photon then continues on its way with the new bit of information. In quantum mechanics, in which information cannot be copied or erased, this swapping of information is in fact the basic unit of reading and writing – the ‘native’ gate of quantum communication.”

This type of logic gate – a SWAP gate – can be used to exchange qubits both within and between quantum computers. As this gate needs no external control fields or management system, it can enable the construction of the quantum equivalent of very large-scale integration (VLSI) networks. “The SWAP gate we demonstrated is applicable to photonic communication between all types of matter-based qubits – not only atoms,” says Professor Dayan. “We therefore believe that it will become an essential building block in the next generation of quantum computing systems.”

Professor Barak Dayan’s research is supported by the Crown Photonics Center and the Edmond de Rothschild Foundations.