We’ve been watching lots of Christmas presentations, performances and videos over the last few days. I’ve also been discussing the security implications of quantum computing with She Who Is Perfect In All Ways. These two things suddenly came together for me and I realized how Santa Claus gets around so fast.
Now, there have been those who dispute Santa’s existence because of the time, energy costs, and or air friction associated with visiting so many houses in a single night. But this problem disappears if Santa does his work the same way as a quantum computer. Rather than visiting each house one after another, Santa visits every house at the same time in a superposition of all possible visitation states. Effectively, then, Santa has the entire night for each house.
This also explains why it’s so important not to peek. In a quantum computer, looking at the intermediate results destroys the conherency that enables the system to work (the computer “decoheres”). For the same reason, seeing Santa would decohere his superposition (forcing him to be present in your house _and only your house). Obviously, this would make it far more difficult for him to make all of his (simultaneous) stops.
So, kids, if you want to help out Santa and all of the other good children, go to bed early and don’t peek!. Especially, don’t wake up Daddy to look to see if Santa’s been to your house yet. Remember, a watched tree never gets presents!