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An edited collection of advanced computing news from Communications of the ACM, ACM TechNews, other ACM resources, and news sites around the Web.


Researchers Test First 'Smart Spaces' Using Light to Send Data
From ACM TechNews

Researchers Test First 'Smart Spaces' Using Light to Send Data

Dartmouth College professor Xia Zhou and colleagues are experimenting with "smart spaces" featuring ceiling-mounted light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and light sensors...

Scientists Build a Better Eye on Our World
From ACM TechNews

Scientists Build a Better Eye on Our World

The University of Illinois at Chicago's Electronic Visualization Laboratory will work to develop a video camera that can capture images in 360 degrees. 

Magic Tricks Created Using Artificial Intelligence for the First Time
From ACM TechNews

Magic Tricks Created Using Artificial Intelligence for the First Time

Artificial intelligence researchers have taught a computer to create magic tricks. 

Gift From Ballmer Will Expand Computer Science Faculty at Harvard
From ACM News

Gift From Ballmer Will Expand Computer Science Faculty at Harvard

Former Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer will make a financial contribution to Harvard that will enable the school to expand its computer science faculty...

81% of Tor Users Can be De-Anonymised by Analysing Router Information, Research Indicates
From ACM News

81% of Tor Users Can be De-Anonymised by Analysing Router Information, Research Indicates

More than 81% of Tor clients can be ‘de-anonymized’ by exploiting Netflow technology.

Window Washing Skills Beyond a Robot's Reach
From ACM News

Window Washing Skills Beyond a Robot's Reach

As a pair of window washers clung to a scaffold dangling outside the 68th floor of 1 World Trade Center on Wednesday, the captivating drama left some below wondering...

Three Touchdowns for Rosetta's Lander
From ACM News

Three Touchdowns for Rosetta's Lander

After achieving touchdown on a comet for the first time in history, scientists and engineers are busy analysing this new world and the nature of the landing.

Google's Larry Page: The Most Ambitious CEO in the Universe
From ACM Careers

Google's Larry Page: The Most Ambitious CEO in the Universe

As Google's core business continues to thrive, Larry Page is making huge bets on new technology—ingestible nanoparticles, balloons that beam down broadband—that...

How Alibaba Is Using Bra Sizes to Predict Online Shopping Habits
From ACM News

How Alibaba Is Using Bra Sizes to Predict Online Shopping Habits

Earlier this summer, a group of data crunchers looking at underwear sales at Alibaba came across a curious trend: women who bought larger bra sizes also tended ...

Big-Data Project Gives Birds-Eye View of the G20
From ACM TechNews

Big-Data Project Gives Birds-Eye View of the G20

A researcher is mapping the G20 Leaders' Summit in Brisbane, Australia, in real time on Twitter and Instagram to determine how the event affects participants. 

Technology's Latest Quest: Tracking Mental Health
From ACM TechNews

Technology's Latest Quest: Tracking Mental Health

Several teams are working on new ways of determining what elements of behavior or mannerisms could be tracked to monitor a person's mental health. 

Robot That Moves Like an Inchworm Could Go Places Other Robots Can't
From ACM TechNews

Robot That Moves Like an Inchworm Could Go Places Other Robots Can't

Researchers have developed a soft, worm-like robot that moves similarly to inchworms. 

'Flight Simulator' for Surgeons: Project Joins Computer Science With Medicine
From ACM TechNews

'Flight Simulator' for Surgeons: Project Joins Computer Science With Medicine

University of Wisconsin-Madison investigators are developing a simulator to help medical students virtually practice surgical procedures. 

Twitter Firehose Reveals How Weather Affects Mood
From ACM TechNews

Twitter Firehose Reveals How Weather Affects Mood

Stanford University researchers have mined geotagged tweets for indications of mood and searched for correlations with the weather. 

Google Boosts Turing Award Computing Prize to $1 Million
From ACM News

Google Boosts Turing Award Computing Prize to $1 Million

There's no Nobel prize for computer science, but after a grant from Google, the top award in the field now just as lucrative.

Joint Effort Nabs Next Wave of US Supercomputers
From ACM News

Joint Effort Nabs Next Wave of US Supercomputers

Once locked in an arms race with each other for the fastest supercomputers, US national laboratories are now banding together to buy their next-generation machines...

Human Thoughts Used to Switch on Genes
From ACM News

Human Thoughts Used to Switch on Genes

Could a futuristic society of humans with the power to control their own biological functions ever become reality? 

Rosetta: Concerns for Comet Lander After Uneven Landing
From ACM News

Rosetta: Concerns for Comet Lander After Uneven Landing

The lander bounced twice, initially about 1km back out into space, before settling in the shadow of a cliff, 1km from its intended target site.

Weapons Directed by Robots, Not Humans, Raise Ethical Questions
From ACM News

Weapons Directed by Robots, Not Humans, Raise Ethical Questions

On a bright fall day last year off the coast of Southern California, an Air Force B-1 bomber launched an experimental missile that may herald the future of warfare...

Sandia Releases Interface to Help Standardize Supercomputer Power and Energy Systems
From ACM TechNews

Sandia Releases Interface to Help Standardize Supercomputer Power and Energy Systems

The High Performance Computing-Power API specification standardizes measurement of power- and energy-relevant features for high-performance computing systems. 
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