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Communications of the ACM

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The blog archive provides access to past blog postings from Communications of the ACM and other sources by date.

March 2015


From The Eponymous Pickle

MOOC Hype Fading?

MOOC Hype Fading?

In the Chronicle of Higher Education.   Too early to tell, I believe.   Perhaps regressing to its hype curve.   Like many advanced technology ideas, it may be best currently seen as augmenting traditional education.


From insideHPC

Video: The Future of the Intel Mic Architecture

Video: The Future of the Intel Mic Architecture

In this video, Intel's James Reinders and Vadim Karpusenko from Colfax International discuss the future of parallel programming and Intel MIC architecture products.


From Schneier on Security

FREAK: Security Rollback Attack Against SSL

FREAK: Security Rollback Attack Against SSL

This week we learned about an attack called "FREAK" -- "Factoring Attack on RSA-EXPORT Keys" -- that can break the encryption of many websites. Basically, some sites' implementations of secure sockets layer technology, or SSL


From insideHPC

SC15 Seeking More Teams for the Student Cluster Competition

SC15 Seeking More Teams for the Student Cluster Competition

Sign up your team today! "The Student Cluster Competition is a high energy event featuring young supercomputing talent from around the world competing to build and operate powerful cluster computers. Created as an opportunity


From insideHPC

Job of the Week: Manager of HPC at KAUST

Job of the Week: Manager of HPC at KAUST

KAUST in Saudi Arabia is seeking a Manager of HPC in our Job of the Week.


From insideHPC

HPC User Forum Returns to Norfolk April 13-15

HPC User Forum Returns to Norfolk April 13-15

IDC has published the agenda for their next HPC User Forum. The event will take place April 13-15 in Norfolk, VA. "Don't miss the chance to hear top experts on these high-innovation, high-growth areas of the HPC market. You'll


From The Eponymous Pickle

Growing Influence of the CIO

Growing Influence of the CIO

CIO Mag:  But how will that influence be used?  " ... On the one hand, this change is driven by new problems, such as high visibility data breaches and regulatory demands for tightening data security. However, there is also growing


From Computer Science Teacher – Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Still More Hardware for Learning Software–But Why?

Still More Hardware for Learning Software–But Why?

I get email. And I get twitter followers. Often these new followers or email senders are promoting some new gadget for teaching. This week it was RobotIX and Hackball. Hackball is looking to get funded via Kickstarter so it’s


From The Eponymous Pickle

A New VR for Consumers

A New VR for Consumers

I just asked a question about the arrival of a new VR.   We explored Virtual Reality in a number of retail related spaces.  A piece in Radar OReilly explores its next wave, which seems to finally include the real consumer:" .


From The Eponymous Pickle

A Tableau Tutorial Blog

A Tableau Tutorial Blog

Always liked Tableau, brought it into the enterprise.  This colorful blog gets you started.    By Jenny (Xiao) Zhang, Technology Professional and Enthusiast.   Good idea, nicely done, I am following.   Thank you.


From Schneier on Security

The TSA's FAST Personality Screening Program Violates the Fourth Amendment

The TSA's FAST Personality Screening Program Violates the Fourth Amendment

New law journal article: "A Slow March Towards Thought Crime: How the Department of Homeland Security's FAST Program Violates the Fourth Amendment," by Christopher A. Rogers. From the abstract: FAST is currently designed for


From The Eponymous Pickle

Update on HoloLens

Update on HoloLens

More on the Hololens.   I can think of many applications, but yet to see one in the wild that really makes sense in context.  Its all about the details. Waiting for the possibilities.


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

Capitol Hill Presentation on “Deconstructing Precision Agriculture”

Capitol Hill Presentation on “Deconstructing Precision Agriculture”

Contributions to this post were made by Shashi Shekhar, Computing Community Consortium (CCC) Council member and Distinguished University Professor at the University of Minnesota.  Task Force on American Innovation along with


From The Eponymous Pickle

Challenge of Cognitive Assistants

Challenge of Cognitive Assistants

Via the Cognitive Systems Institute. Some excellent points are made in this slideshare.  Advisory systems are probably the most important approach to AI for typical business use. We addressed  this in much detail during the expert


From The Eponymous Pickle

An Innovation Canvas

An Innovation Canvas

Talk today given at the Cognitive Systems Institute:  Michael Wollowski “The Innovation Canvas: A tool to design products and business models” Rose-Hulman School  ....  Talk Slides.   


From insideHPC

Podcast: A Tour of the Universe & Selected Cosmic Mysteries

Podcast: A Tour of the Universe & Selected Cosmic Mysteries

In this podcast from the Swinburne University of Technology Astrophysics and Supercomputing series, Katherine Mack from the University of Melbourne presents: A Tour of the Universe and Selected Cosmic Mysteries.


From Computational Complexity

(1/2)! = sqrt(pi) and other conventions

 (This post is inspired by the book The cult of Pythagoras: Math and Myths which I recently read and reviewed. See here for my review.) STUDENT: The factorial function is only defined on the natural numbers. Is there some way


From The Eponymous Pickle

The Wave of Restructuring

The Wave of Restructuring

In Adage:   Seen much of this in recent weeks, received lots of offers to chat.   " ... Leaving P&G? Giant Advertiser's Restructuring Spawns an Ad Campaign Retirement Corp. of America Targets P&G 'Retirees' With Planning for 


From The Eponymous Pickle

Managing Mission Critical Knowledge

Managing Mission Critical Knowledge

There are all kinds of levels of knowledge.  Also, knowledge has direct value, and risk.  In the HBR:" ... When executives talk about “knowledge management” today, the conversation usually turns very quickly to the challengeTantalizing


From insideHPC

ClusterStor Solution for HPC and Big Data

ClusterStor Solution for HPC and Big Data

The ClusterStor SDA is built on Seagate’s successful ClusterStor family of high performance storage solutions for HPC and Big Data, providing unmatched file system performance, optimized productivity and the HPC industry’s highest


From Schneier on Security

Now Corporate Drones are Spying on Cell Phones

Now Corporate Drones are Spying on Cell Phones

The marketing firm Adnear is using drones to track cell phone users: The capture does not involve conversations or personally identifiable information, according to director of marketing and research Smriti Kataria. It uses signal


From Putting People First

Smartphones are addictive and should carry health warning, say academics

Smartphones are addictive and should carry health warning, say academics

University of Derby finds smartphone users in study spent average 3.6 hours a day on devices, often causing severe distraction from relationships and ‘real life’. Haroon Siddique reports in The Guardian: Smartphones are psychologically


From insideHPC

Video: Bill Kramer on How Blue Waters Advances Science

Video: Bill Kramer on How Blue Waters Advances Science

In this video, Bill Kramer from NCSA describes the ground-breaking science enabled by the Blue Waters supercomputer.


From Putting People First

Is it time to re-examine human-centered design?

Is it time to re-examine human-centered design?

Is it time to re-examine our anthropocentrism in design, asks ASU design professor Prasad Boradkar and to extend design’s locus of action towards biocentrism. “Clearly, the things we design with such diligent research and utmost


From insideHPC

NSF Grant to Expand Indiana University GlobalNOC in Asia-Pacific

NSF Grant to Expand Indiana University GlobalNOC in Asia-Pacific

Today the Indiana University Global Research Network Operations Center (GlobalNOC) today announced the award of a major new five-year, $4.8 million grant from the NSF.


From The Eponymous Pickle

IBM Acquires AlchemyAPI Text and Image Mining

IBM Acquires AlchemyAPI Text and Image Mining

Makes sense that IBM would add select capabilities to Watson that it does not have in house. Unstructured text and image mining are an excellent example.   In our own earlier examination of text analytics, did not look atAlchemyAPI


From The Eponymous Pickle

Homo Ludens: People are at Play

Homo Ludens: People are at Play

Why think about game dynamics?   It can be useful in the right context.  Any sufficiently advanced work is indistinguishable from play - @sebpaquet   See Wikipedia on Homo Ludens.    We are all at play, to some degree.   Via


From The Eponymous Pickle

Need for Human Touch in Retail

Need for Human Touch in Retail

In K@W:   We examined a number of touch based methods in retail engagement:When Does the ‘Human Touch’ Matter in Retail? While retailers will see failures and successes as they move from one channel to another, the bottom line


From insideHPC

Code Modernization – Why it is so Important

Code Modernization – Why it is so Important

For about 40 years, developers and users could count on an increase in CPU performance that would make applications run faster. However, with the slowdown in constant clock rate increases being replaced by additional core counts


From The Eponymous Pickle

GMA Out of Stock Report

GMA Out of Stock Report

Well done report, with lots of useful statistics and guidance." ... FMI/GMA Trading Partner Alliance report: Solving the out-of-stock problem ... Out-of-stocks remain at an 8% average rate among food retailers and manufacturers