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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.


How to Hunt for a Black Hole with a Telescope the Size of Earth
From ACM News

How to Hunt for a Black Hole with a Telescope the Size of Earth

Here's how to catch a black hole. First, spend many years enlisting eight of the top radio observatories across four continents to join forces for an unprecedented...

Atomic Clocks Make Best Measurement Yet of Relativity of Time
From ACM News

Atomic Clocks Make Best Measurement Yet of Relativity of Time

Our most accurate clocks are probing a key tenet of Einstein's theory of relativity: the idea that time isn't absolute.

Mathematicians Create Warped Worlds in Virtual Reality
From ACM News

Mathematicians Create Warped Worlds in Virtual Reality

"It feels like the entire universe is within a sphere that is maybe within a couple metres' radius," says topologist Henry Segerman at Oklahoma State University...

The U.S. Military Wants Its Autonomous Machines to Explain Themselves
From ACM News

The U.S. Military Wants Its Autonomous Machines to Explain Themselves

Intelligence agents and military operatives may come to rely heavily on machine learning to parse huge quantities of data, and to control a growing arsenal of autonomous...

DARPA Wants to Cultivate the Ultimate Transistor of the Future
From ACM TechNews

DARPA Wants to Cultivate the Ultimate Transistor of the Future

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency this month will present the Dynamic Range-enhanced Electronics and Materials program, which aims to develop a...

Research Teaches Machines to Decipher the Dawn Chorus
From ACM TechNews

Research Teaches Machines to Decipher the Dawn Chorus

The U.K. Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council is supporting research on deciphering the timing and sequences of bird calls.

It Begins: Bots Are Learning to Chat in Their Own Language
From ACM TechNews

It Begins: Bots Are Learning to Chat in Their Own Language

OpenAI's Igor Mordatch is investigating new ways for machines to converse with each other.

Coders and Librarians Team Up to Save Scientific Data
From ACM TechNews

Coders and Librarians Team Up to Save Scientific Data

Software programmers, librarians, and others are archiving scientific data from government websites.

Origami-inspired Robot Can Hitch a Ride with a Rover
From ACM News

Origami-inspired Robot Can Hitch a Ride with a Rover

The next rovers to explore another planet might bring along a scout.

Inside the Hunt for Russia's Most Notorious Hacker
From ACM News

Inside the Hunt for Russia's Most Notorious Hacker

On the morning of December 30, the day after Barack Obama imposed sanctions on Russia for interfering in the 2016 US election, Tillmann Werner was sitting down...

Bringing Augmented Reality to Warehouses
From ACM TechNews

Bringing Augmented Reality to Warehouses

Researchers have created PickAR, a headset that uses AR technology to overlay picking information so warehouses can find and process orders with greater efficiency...

New Extension Improves Inflight Wi-Fi
From ACM TechNews

New Extension Improves Inflight Wi-Fi

A new Google Chrome browser extension dramatically upgrades Wi-Fi browsing speeds at an altitude of 30,000 feet.

Stanford Researchers Map Fear and Happiness in Historic London
From ACM TechNews

Stanford Researchers Map Fear and Happiness in Historic London

Researchers have mapped out how readers of 18th- and 19th-century British novels felt emotionally about London.

Does Mars Have Rings? Not Right Now, But Maybe One Day
From ACM News

Does Mars Have Rings? Not Right Now, But Maybe One Day

As children, we learned about our solar system's planets by certain characteristics—Jupiter is the largest, Saturn has rings, Mercury is closest to the sun. Mars...

It Begins: Bots Are Learning to Chat in Their Own Language
From ACM News

It Begins: Bots Are Learning to Chat in Their Own Language

Igor Mordatch is IS working to build machines that can carry on a conversation.

Wi-Fi on Rays of Light: 100 Times Faster, and Never Overloaded
From ACM TechNews

Wi-Fi on Rays of Light: 100 Times Faster, and Never Overloaded

Researchers have developed a Wi-Fi network based on directable infrared light rays.

Quantum Physics Offers Insights Into Music Expressivity
From ACM TechNews

Quantum Physics Offers Insights Into Music Expressivity

Researchers have pioneered a new approach to understanding the musical experience by analyzing the vibrato effect using the Filter Diagonalization Method in music...

Chemists Are First in Line for Quantum Computing's Benefits
From ACM News

Chemists Are First in Line for Quantum Computing's Benefits

This month IBM and Google both said they aim to commercialize quantum computers within the next few years (Google specified five), selling access to the exotic...

Experiments Show Titan Lakes May Fizz with Nitrogen
From ACM News

Experiments Show Titan Lakes May Fizz with Nitrogen

A recent NASA-funded study has shown how the hydrocarbon lakes and seas of Saturn's moon Titan might occasionally erupt with dramatic patches of bubbles.

Researchers Present Early Warning System for Mass Cyberattacks
From ACM TechNews

Researchers Present Early Warning System for Mass Cyberattacks

Researchers have developed an early warning system for massive distributed denial-of-service attacks.
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