"Minecraft," the Lego-style, build-your-own-game game, has been the canvas for some awesome projects. (For just one example: a gigantic scientific graphing calculator.) Now Google's Quantum AI Lab is taking it in an even weirder direction: quantum physics.
The team created a modified version of the game, called qCraft, that lets players explore the fundamentals of the field by playing in a world based on quantum principles. From a post on Google+ announcing the game:
We talked to our friends at MinecraftEdu and Caltech’s Institute for Quantum Information and Matter and came up with a fun idea: a Minecraft modpack called qCraft. It lets players experiment with quantum behaviors inside Minecraft’s world, with new blocks that exhibit quantum entanglement, superposition, and observer dependency.
Is it a true simulacrum of a blocky quantum universe? Ha, no. But considering just how strange the field is, that probably wouldn't make for a fun game. Instead, it's just a way of teaching the basics, and Google admits as much:
Of course, qCraft isn’t a perfect scientific simulation, but it’s a fun way for players to experience a few parts of quantum mechanics outside of thought experiments or dense textbook examples.
You can download the game here.