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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.

February 2017


From Schneier on Security

IoT Attack Against a University Network

IoT Attack Against a University Network

Verizon's Data Brief Digest 2017 describes an attack against an unnamed university by attackers who hacked a variety of IoT devices and had them spam network targets and slow them down: Analysis of the university firewall identified…


From Computer Science Teacher – Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

You’re Teaching the Wrong Programming Language

You’re Teaching the Wrong Programming Language

No, really you are. If someone hasn’t told you this yet it’s probably because too few people know what programming language you are teaching. Of course someone probably thinks you are teaching the right language. After all you…


From Daniel Lemire's Blog

Thoughts on my new laptop (Dell XPS 13 with Windows 10)

Thoughts on my new laptop (Dell XPS 13 with Windows 10)

I love computers. Unlike many people, who stick to one brand and one operating system, I like to use many different systems. I own several game consoles, several types of tablets and so forth. My primary laptop for many years…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Enabling Voice Control in Simple IoT

Enabling Voice Control in Simple IoT

From MIT News  in CACM

" ... In anticipation of the age of voice-controlled electronics, MIT researchers have built a low-power chip specialized for automatic speech recognition. Whereas a cellphone running speech-recognition

In…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

CCC White Paper- Safety, Security, and Privacy Threats Posed by Accelerating Trends in the Internet of Things

CCC White Paper- Safety, Security, and Privacy Threats Posed by Accelerating Trends in the Internet of Things

CCC Executive Council Member Ben Zorn from Microsoft Research contributed to this post.  The Internet of Things (IoT) is already transforming industries, cities, and homes. The economic value of this transformation across all…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Addressing the Flaws of Innovation

Addressing the Flaws of Innovation

Thoughtful piece in the Cisco blog,  on how do we define and address the flaws in innovation.   Have attended many, many brainstorming sessions.  It was never hard to get ideas,  but usually problematic to really refine these…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Whats Next for Home Assistants?

Whats Next for Home Assistants?

Good thoughts, especially linking to email and phone calls. I would add also better ways to support ongoing learning and tracking of conversations.   Also the ability to differentiate and personalize conversations between different…


From insideHPC

Exxon Mobil Joins NCSA Private Sector Program

Exxon Mobil Joins NCSA Private Sector Program

The National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) announced today that Exxon Mobil has signed on as the center's newest Private Sector Partner. "We're looking forward to building a strong, productive relationship with…


From insideHPC

Call for Panels: SC17 in Denver

Call for Panels: SC17 in Denver

SC17 has issued its Call for Panel Sessions. The conference takes place Nov. 12-17 in Denver. "As in past years, panels at SC17 will be some of the most heavily attended events of the Conference. Panels will bring together the…


From Schneier on Security

Duqu Malware Techniques Used by Cybercriminals

Duqu Malware Techniques Used by Cybercriminals

Duqu 2.0 is a really impressive piece of malware, related to Stuxnet and probably written by the NSA. One of its security features is that it stays resident in its host's memory without ever writing persistent files to the system's…


From insideHPC

Deep Learning & HPC: New Challenges for Large Scale Computing

Deep Learning & HPC: New Challenges for Large Scale Computing

"In recent years, major breakthroughs were achieved in different fields using deep learning. From image segmentation, speech recognition or self-driving cars, deep learning is everywhere. Performance of image classification, …


From insideHPC

ISC 2017 Distinguished Talks to Focus on Data Analytics in Manufacturing & Science

ISC 2017 Distinguished Talks to Focus on Data Analytics in Manufacturing & Science

Today ISC 2017 announced that it's Distinguished Talk series will focus on Data Analytics in manufacturing and scientific applications. One of the Distinguished Talks will be given by Dr. Sabine Jeschke from the Cybernetics Lab…


From The Noisy Channel

Query Rewriting: An Overview

Query Rewriting: An Overview

Thus far, we’ve focused on query understanding at the character and token level. It’s time move up the stack, on to entities and the query…


From insideHPC

Six Steps Towards Better Performance on Intel Xeon Phi

Six Steps Towards Better Performance on Intel Xeon Phi

"As with all new technology, developers will have to create processes in order to modernize applications to take advantage of any new feature. Rather than randomly trying to improve the performance of an application, it is wise…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Data Strategy and Value

Data Strategy and Value

Includes a mapping method I had not specifically heard of.   Gets back to measures for valuing your data when applied to specific strategic needs.

Why you need a data strategy, and what happens if you don’t have one
How to map …


From Computational Complexity

Liberatus Wins at Poker

Tuomas Sandholm (center) and Ph.D. student Noam Brown (via CMU)
Congratulations to Liberatus the new poker champ. Liberatus, an AI program, beat several top-ranked players in heads-up (two player) no-limit Texas hold 'em.


From The Eponymous Pickle

The Origami Revolution

The Origami Revolution

An informative video on PBS today regarding the use of Origami as a design methodology, how research on origami based models is progressing and a number of good examples.  Very well done.   We explored this for some packaging…


From insideHPC

IBM Machine Learning Platform Comes to the Private Cloud

IBM Machine Learning Platform Comes to the Private Cloud

"Machine Learning and deep learning represent new frontiers in analytics. These technologies will be foundational to automating insight at the scale of the world’s critical systems and cloud services,” said Rob Thomas, General…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

Summit on Advances in Programming Languages 2017 Opportunity for Junior Researchers

Summit on Advances in Programming Languages 2017 Opportunity for Junior Researchers

Rastislav Bodik (University of Washington) and Shriram Krishnamurthi (Brown University) have announced an exciting, new opportunity for junior researchers – either young faculty or older graduate students – to apply to attend…


From The Eponymous Pickle

TensorFlow 1.0 Announced

TensorFlow 1.0 Announced

Google announces what appears to be a considerable upgrade of TensorFlow.

Announcing TensorFlow 1.0  by Amy McDonald Sandjideh, Technical Program Manager, TensorFlow

In just its first year, TensorFlow has helped researchers, engineers…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Pew Internet Research Looks at Algorithms

Pew Internet Research Looks at Algorithms

I like their broad definition of algorithms.  Sometimes the implication is falsely given that algorithms are some magical and very complex thing.    But they are simply the way that some processes can be driven by rules.  How…


From Apophenia

When Good Intentions Backfire

When Good Intentions Backfire

… And Why We Need a Hacker Mindset I am surrounded by people who are driven by good intentions. Educators who want to inform students, who passionately believe that people can be empowered through knowledge. Activists who have…


From insideHPC

Defining AI, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning

Defining AI, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning

"In this guide, we take a high-level view of AI and deep learning in terms of how it’s being used and what technological advances have made it possible. We also explain the difference between AI, machine learning and deep learning…


From insideHPC

Podcast: Democratizing Education for the Next Wave of AI

Podcast: Democratizing Education for the Next Wave of AI

"Coursera has named Intel as one of its first corporate content partners. Together, Coursera and Intel will develop and distribute courses to democratize access to artificial intelligence and machine learning. In this interview…


From ACM on Huffington Post

The Science of AI and the Art of Social Responsibility

The Science of AI and the Art of Social Responsibility

By Guru Banavar, IBM’s Chief Science Officer for Cognitive Computing I am a computer scientist and engineer, inspired by


From insideHPC

OpenFog Consortium Publishes Reference Architecture

OpenFog Consortium Publishes Reference Architecture

The OpenFog Consortium was founded over one year ago to accelerate adoption of fog computing through an open, interoperable architecture. The newly published OpenFog Reference Architecture is a high-level framework that will …


From insideHPC

Video: Computing of the Future

Video: Computing of the Future

Jeffrey Welser from IBM Research Almaden presented this talk at the Stanford HPC Conference. "Whether exploring new technical capabilities, collaborating on ethical practices or applying Watson technology to cancer research, …


From The Eponymous Pickle

Humans Trusting Algorithms

Humans Trusting Algorithms

Key thoughts, also gets back to the question of how we explain the use of algorithms.   Most methods today are more akin to magic.  I like that this is being positioned as an operational question first, as opposed to AI.  See…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Remarkable Delivery Robot

Remarkable Delivery Robot

Bio inspired robotics  ....     With claim to work in many environments.  In IEEE Spectrum:

Agility Robotics Introduces Cassie, a Dynamic and Talented Robot Delivery Ostrich

" ... Would you open the door for this thing?  (See video…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Facial Recognition for Market Research

Facial Recognition for Market Research

Not a new thing, has been worked for decades.  Talked to related work at MIT to leverage these ideas.  But we are getting much better at it now.   Much written about it here.   In ChainstoreAge: 

Is Facial Recognition in Retail…

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