I received my BA in physics from Williams College in 2017, magna cum laude. While at Williams, I conducted research with Charlie Doret and Bill Wootters, before completing a senior research thesis with Frederick Strauch. In 2016 I was awarded the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, largely for my work on entanglement with Prof. Wootters. In 2017 I received highest honors for my thesis, entitled "A Practical Quantum Schur Transform," and also received Williams' single nomination for the LeRoy Apker Award. I am currently conducting research with Shelby Kimmel of Middlebury College, on methods for calibrating quantum gate sets.
When I'm not busy with physics, I enjoy hiking, rock climbing, singing, and spending time with my family and friends. I'm also a fan of good food.
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Research interests, with papers, talks, and posters
I am interested in developing efficient quantum algorithms for problems that are untractable in classical computation. I also study methods for calibrating universal gate sets for quantum computers, an essential task in developing practical quantum computing.
- William M. Kirby and Frederick W. Strauch, A Practical Quantum Algorithm for the Schur Transform, arXiv:1709.07119 (2017).
- William M. Kirby, The Quantum Schur Transform, Williams College Spring Physics Thesis Talks, 5/15/2017.
- William M. Kirby, Building Quantum Algorithms, Williams College Physics Fall Thesis Talks, 12/12/2016.
- William M. Kirby and Frederick W. Strauch, Efficient Quantum Compiling, 2016 APS New England Fall Meeting (poster).
I have studied schemes for quantifying entanglement in systems of two and three qubits, building from the measure known as "tangle," and working to develop bounds and approximation methods.
- William M. Kirby, A Tight Bound on Tangle for Two and Three Qubits, manuscript (2016).
- William M. Kirby and William K. Wootters, Quantum Entanglement: Enigma and Resource, Weekend for Williams Lecture, 10/3/2015.
- William M. Kirby and William K. Wootters, A Tight Bound on Entanglement for Two Qubits, 2015 Williams College Summer Science Poster Session (poster).
Philosophy of Physics
I am interested in the philosophical quandaries that lie at the heart of quantum mechanics, especially the "measurement problem" and attempts to resolve it.