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

March 2017


From The Eponymous Pickle

Stickers vs SnapChat

Stickers vs SnapChat

Can Apple’s new iMessage ad convince you that stickers are as cool as Snapchat?   There is a heavy history of the use of stickers, especially in Japan.   Difficult prediction to make.  Heavily advertised now in the US college…


From Daniel Lemire's Blog

Does software performance still matter?

Does software performance still matter?

This morning, a reader asked me about the real-world relevance of software performance: I’m quite interested in your work on improving algorithm performance using techniques related to computer architecture. However, I thinkContinue…


From Schneier on Security

Friedman Comments on Yardley

Friedman Comments on Yardley

This is William Friedman's highly annotated copy of Herbert Yardley's book, The American Black Chamber....


From The Eponymous Pickle

Apple and Augmented Reality

Apple and Augmented Reality

In CW: Some thoughts and speculations about how Apple might implement augmented reality.   Outside the obvious game spaces.  Apparently in evidence by their recent hires in the VR space and investments in parallel.   by Jonny…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

WHISPER: A New Persistent Memory Benchmark Suite

WHISPER: A New Persistent Memory Benchmark Suite

The following is a special contribution to this blog by CCC Vice Chair Mark D. Hill of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. While he is coauthor of the paper discussed, he blogs anyway, because a benchmark suite can be valuable…


From insideHPC

Intel’s Diane Bryant on How AI Will Change Lives

Intel’s Diane Bryant on How AI Will Change Lives

"Artificial Intelligence will deliver the next wave of societal transformation on parallel with the industrial, technical and internet revolutions that preceded it. As our AI-fueled future evolves, we have a tremendous opportunity…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Samsung Unveils Bixby as Assistant

Samsung Unveils Bixby as Assistant


Another new virtual advisor emerges, competing it seems for now just for the S8 phone and competing with Siri.  and Google Assistant.  Can we also expect this on TVs and addressing the Smart Home and other appliances?   Is likely…


From insideHPC

Mellanox Doubles Silicon Photonics Ethernet Transceiver Speeds to 200Gb/s

Mellanox Doubles Silicon Photonics Ethernet Transceiver Speeds to 200Gb/s

Today Mellanox introduced a new line of 200Gb/s silicon photonics and VCSEL-based transceivers in the same QSFP28 package as today’s 100Gb/s products. These new transceivers double the bandwidth for hyperscale Web 2.0 and cloud…


From insideHPC

PRACE 2 Adds Piz Daint Supercomputer

PRACE 2 Adds Piz Daint Supercomputer

Earlier this month, the European PRACE initiative went into Phase 2, with Switzerland becoming a new Hosting Member. As a Hosting Member, Switzerland is now making its Piz Daint supercomputer at CSCS available for cutting-edge…


From insideHPC

Apply Now for the PEARC17 Student Program

Apply Now for the PEARC17 Student Program

PEARC17 provides students with a range of opportunities in the Technical Program and in targeted student activities. For all student attendees, PEARC17 will include a one-day intensive collaborative modeling and analysis challenge…


From insideHPC

Radio Free HPC Looks at Recent Report Calling for Aggressive Action to Compete with China in Supercomputing

Radio Free HPC Looks at Recent Report Calling for Aggressive Action to Compete with China in Supercomputing

In this podcast, Radio Free HPC looks at a recent report that the USA needs to take aggresive action to keep up with China in High Performance Computing. Produced by the NSA-DOE Technical Meeting on High Performance Computing…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Alexa Delivers Medical Advice via WebMD

Alexa Delivers Medical Advice via WebMD

An example where an advisory system is essentially just replacing a long existing web service.  With the convenience of voice interaction. With no additional conversational interaction as yet implied.    A deeper connection to…


From Schneier on Security

Security Vulnerabilities in Mobile MAC Randomization

Security Vulnerabilities in Mobile MAC Randomization

Interesting research: "A Study of MAC Address Randomization in Mobile Devices When it Fails": Abstract: Media Access Control (MAC) address randomization is a privacy technique whereby mobile devices rotate through random hardware…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Interpreting Machine Learning

Interpreting Machine Learning

By their nature the results from deep learning and neural methods can be non transparent. Via O'Reilly.

Ideas on interpreting machine learning
Mix-and-match approaches for visualizing data and interpreting machine learning models…


From Computational Complexity

If you want to help your bad students DO NOT give an easy exam



1) When I was a grad student TAing Formal Lang Theory we had a final ready to give out but noticed that one problem was too hard. So we changed it. But we made it too easy. Whoops. My thought at the time was this will help the…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Google Tango Location is Testing at Lowes

Google Tango Location is Testing at Lowes

Been a long time tester of retail location intelligence solutions.  Now news that Lowes is starting to test Google Tango location intelligence using augmented reality on phones.    Have also mentioned the interior space model…


From The Noisy Channel

I recognize that my participation in the gig economy is hardly representative of most people’s…

I recognize that my participation in the gig economy is hardly representative of most people’s…

I recognize that my participation in the gig economy is hardly representative of most people’s experience. Indeed, I wrote a post about “The Hook-Up Economy” (https://medium.com/@dtunkelang/the-hook-up-economy-ba340c0fdf2c#.h2xk22wt8…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Will we be Dinosaurs in Three Years?

Will we be Dinosaurs in Three Years?

Reminds me of things said at the end of the last AI up tick ... Wildly exaggerated.   Most of us will use it rather than develop it. Mark Cuban via  Via O'Reilly.


From insideHPC

Intel Rolls Out First Optane SSD with 3D XPoint Technology

Intel Rolls Out First Optane SSD with 3D XPoint Technology

"Delivering an industry-leading combination of low latency, ultra endurance, high QoS, and high throughput, the Intel Optane SSD DC P4800X Series is the most responsive data center SSD. Built with the revolutionary new 3D XPoint…


From insideHPC

Video Preview of the SC17 Student Cluster Competition

Video Preview of the SC17 Student Cluster Competition

"SC17 is excited to hold another nail-biting Student Cluster Competition, or SCC, now in its eleventh year, as an opportunity to showcase student expertise in a friendly yet spirited competition. Held as part of SC17’s Students…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Gadget Earth Video

Gadget Earth Video

A video view of the personalities and capabilities of drones and other semi autonomous gadgets out of the recent CES conference.   From the Verge.     Impressive.

" ... Wandering the halls of CES 2017 recently with video director…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Smartphones Revolutionizing Medicine

Smartphones Revolutionizing Medicine

In the CACM:  New details on gow smrtphone devices are changing medicine and health data.


From The Eponymous Pickle

Will AI Transform Retail Marketing

Will AI Transform Retail Marketing



Will AI transform retail marketing?   by Tom Ryan In Retailwire:

A survey from Sailthru finds more retailers using artificial intelligence (AI) to support marketing purposes.

The survey of more than 200 retail marketers showed

Still…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Alexa and Roomba in the Smart Home

Alexa and Roomba in the Smart Home

We worked with the Roomba concept.  Though I liked the idea, never found it useful enough to add to our smart home .... Will it be more useful enough when voice controlled?

With Alexa integration and mapping, iRobot aims to make…


From insideHPC

Intel MKL and Intel TBB Working Together for Performance

Intel MKL and Intel TBB Working Together for Performance

When used in a TBB environment, Intel has demonstrated a many-fold performance improvement over the same parallelized code using Intel MKL in an OpenMP environment. Intel TBB-enabled Intel MKL is ideal when there is heavy threading…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Cars Learning

Cars Learning

 More broadly, what kinds of things can cars learn to make them better and cheaper?   Gets to better understanding the consumer needs and related processes.   Have been there.

Machine Learning and Data Are Fueling a New Kind
Here…


From insideHPC

RWTH Aachen University Deploys NEC LX Supercomputer

RWTH Aachen University Deploys NEC LX Supercomputer

Today NEC Corporation announced the deployment of an LX supercomputer at RWTH Aachen University in Germany. Featuring offering high performance computing services for engineering and scientific research. "We selected the NEC …


From insideHPC

HPE Supercomputer to Power Chemical Research at BASF

HPE Supercomputer to Power Chemical Research at BASF

Today Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced plans to deploy one of the world’s largest supercomputers for industrial chemical research at BASF's Ludwigshafen headquarters. Based on the latest generation of HPE Apollo 6000 systems…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Amazon Outfit Compare

Amazon Outfit Compare

We worked on a number of related virtual comparison ideas over the years.    Aimed at things like eyeware and cosmetics.  None were completely successful.   Can Amazon crack this by funneling their large customer base through…


From Gödel's Lost Letter and P=NP

Leprechauns are Multiplying

Littlewood’s Law and Big Data “Leprechaun-proofing” data source Neil L. is a leprechaun. He has visited Dick on the eve of St. Patrick’s Day many times. Up until this night I had never seen him. Today Neil’s message is more important…

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