A research team at the University of Rochester in New York has demonstrated that computing by optical interference may be as efficient as proposed quantum computing schemes. The team reported the work in May at CLEO/QELS 2001 in Baltimore. To illustrate the power of an all-optical database search, the researchers interrogated Oracle, a 50-slot acousto-optic modulator of tellurium dioxide, with a spectral interferometer. Vibrat-ing the instrument using a transducer to alter one frequency, they directed through the modulator a portion of a laser pulse that had been split with a beamsplitter and reflected from a diffraction grating. The approach identified the altered frequency in a single search.