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Currently the tag excerpt for currently says:

For questions about existing real-life computers that run on a quantum architecture. This is for questions about the machines themselves, not just any computing that could take place on one. DO NOT use this tag for questions about simulation or emulation of quantum computers, or cloud-based quantum computing services like the IBM Q Experience.

However, around 50% of times I find that this tag is heavily misused by new users. Some even use this tag for questions purely based on quantum algorithms. I recently had to re-tag ~50 questions where this tag was misused. I'm wondering whether we should blacklist it altogether or perhaps rename it to something more descriptive. Ideas? Suggestions?

One of our community managers (@Shog9) mentioned that even if we decide to retain the tag, it is possible to enable a warning for that particular tag. Should we go for that option instead?

Update: Following @glS's suggestion I retagged the questions having with , and made and synonyms of . I feel that's a better option than activating a tag-warning, as many users tend to ignore tag-warnings. Also, @DaftWullie's point is very valid. Let me know if you have any objections.

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    $\begingroup$ what about renaming to something like quantum-hardware, or just hardware, or physical-device, or physical-implementation, or experimental-implementation, or similar? $\endgroup$ – glS Dec 17 '18 at 0:02
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    $\begingroup$ @glS Yes, I think that's a good idea! We can go with physical-implementation and physical-realization, as synonymous tags, to replace the quantum-computer tag. Even Wikipedia seems to use the term "physical-realizations" for this purpose. Users can still ask a question like "Has any quantum algorithm been successfully executed on Google's Bristlecone processor?" with that tag, as it is a question about whether any quantum algorithm has been successfully run on an existing physical implementation of a quantum computer. $\endgroup$ – Sanchayan Dutta Dec 17 '18 at 16:30
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I think you should be guided by the community usage of the tag. Sure, most people don't go and look at how it's been precisely defined, but it conveys some sort of meaning to people who read it. If the definition doesn't match up to how it's being used, change the definition. Clearly there's a desire for a tag that conveys that meaning. Then find a more descriptive tag that better encapsulates the idea of the original decision.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the feedback. I do agree with "Clearly there's a desire for a tag that conveys that meaning". In that case, would enabling a tag warning for quantum-computer be a good idea (then the users would get a warning every time they try to use it --- so that might encourage them to go and actually read the tag description)? $\endgroup$ – Sanchayan Dutta Dec 14 '18 at 8:11
  • $\begingroup$ I would argue that the need for a tag-warning in that context simply suggests that the tag is not appropriately defined or the tag is too ambiguous. If we're supposed to be community led, let the community lead. The way that I'd use a tag-warning is, were there to be a substantial change in a definition, to temporarily flag that there's been a change so that experienced users who are used to the old definition don't get caught out. $\endgroup$ – DaftWullie Dec 14 '18 at 8:18
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    $\begingroup$ @DaftWullie 'Community usage' of the tag is split between those questions that have used it for its original purpose and those that have just used it in the same way they'd use a 'quantum computing' tag. If you allow it to be used as a 'quantum computing' tag, then all questions on the site could be tagged as such and there's no point in having that tag in the first place, which is the problem we're having. If you've got any ideas for a better wording, please do let us know $\endgroup$ – Mithrandir24601 Dec 14 '18 at 8:55

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