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The term "superposition" is used to describe a feature of the quantum information unit called a "qubit" in the field of quantum computing. Unlike conventional bits, which may only be either 0 or 1, a qubit can simultaneously occupy two states, called "superpositions," that are equivalent to both 0 and 1. The ability to encode several states in a single qubit paves the way for parallel processing.

Combining the zero and one states linearly gives us the mathematical representation of a qubit in superposition. One possible representation of a qubit in superposition is:

α|0⟩ + β|1⟩

where and are complex integers that indicate the relative amplitude of the qubit in state 0 or state 1. A qubit will transition from one of its possible states, 0, to one of its possible states, 1, with a probability proportional to the square of the amplitude of the measurement performed on it.

Due to the nature of superposition in quantum computing, quantum algorithms can do some calculations exponentially faster than conventional computers.