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

April 2011


From ACM News

The Ph.D. Problem: Are We Giving Out Too Many Degrees?

In developed nations, the number of Ph.D.s given in the sciences each year has grown by almost 40% since 1998, reaching about 34,000 doctorates in 2008. This type of expansion sounds great in theory: interest in the sciences…


From ACM TechNews

App-Specific Processors to Fight Dark Silicon

App-Specific Processors to Fight Dark Silicon

University of California, San Diego researchers working on the GreenDroid project have developed software that scans the Android operating system and its most popular applications to create a processor design tailored to their…


From ACM TechNews

Rutgers Team Proposes Net Alternative

Rutgers Team Proposes Net Alternative

Rutgers University researchers recently launched MondoNet, a wireless network initiative designed to create a more open alternative to the Internet.


From ACM News

A Glimpse Inside Google's Beijing Headquarters

Google may appear to be under siege in China, but a sense of normalcy—Google style—pervades the company's headquarters here.


From ACM News

Google, a Giant in Mobile Search, Seeks New Ways to Make It Pay

Google, a Giant in Mobile Search, Seeks New Ways to Make It Pay

In early 2008, in the early days of the iPhone era, Google engineers began noticing something unusual in the search engine’s logs. Owners of these new phones were doing a huge number of Web searches.


From ACM News

Origami: Not Just for Paper Anymore

Origami: Not Just for Paper Anymore

While the primary job of DNA in cells is to carry genetic information from one generation to the next, some scientists also see the highly stable and programmable molecule as an ideal building material for nanoscale structures…


From ACM News

Voyager Set to Enter Interstellar Space

Voyager Set to Enter Interstellar Space

More than 30 years after they left Earth, NASA's twin Voyager probes are now at the edge of the solar system.


From ACM News

Court Hears Arguments In Data Mining Case

The U.S. Supreme Court appeared split on Tuesday as it considered a case testing state limits on data mining. At issue is whether states can bar the buying, selling and profiling of a doctor's prescription records without…


From ACM TechNews

Cloud Computing and Internet Use Suck Energy, Emit CO2, Says Greenpeace

Cloud Computing and Internet Use Suck Energy, Emit CO2, Says Greenpeace

If it were a country, the Internet would rank fifth in the world in electricity usage, according to a new report on cloud computing from Greenpeace.


From ACM TechNews

Caterpillars Inspire New Movements in Soft Robots

Caterpillars Inspire New Movements in Soft Robots

A strategy that caterpillars employ to escape predators could be used to improve the speed of soft-bodied search-and-rescue robots, say Tufts University researchers.


From ACM TechNews

UA Engineers Win Patent for Protein-Based Electronic Circuits

UA Engineers Win Patent for Protein-Based Electronic Circuits

University of Arizona researchers have patented a process for building microscopic wiring circuits made of copper insulated by proteins known as microtubules.


From ACM TechNews

Tools for Better Web Design

Tools for Better Web Design

Stanford University's Human Computer Interaction group creates tools to help Web designers take advantage of open source programs to improve and adapt designs more quickly.


From ACM Opinion

Jobs and Apple Execs on Tracking Down the Facts About iPhones and Location

Jobs and Apple Execs on Tracking Down the Facts About iPhones and Location

Although Apple was silent for several days after researchers raised issues about location information being stored on the iPhone, that wasn’t because it was ignoring the issue.


From ACM News

Mac vs. PC: The Stereotypes May Be True

Mac vs. PC: The Stereotypes May Be True

Remember those Apple ads that cast the Mac as a 20-something, self-satisfied hipster while the PC was portrayed by an older, square-looking guy in a brown suit?


From ACM News

China: 900 Million Mobile Users Asking Themselves "iPhone or Android"?

China: 900 Million Mobile Users Asking Themselves "iPhone or Android"?

In Apple's second quarter, iPhone sales in China surged nearly 250% year over year, making the country the iPhone's fastest growing market—a title it will retain for some time to come given soaring mobile phone adoption rates…


From ACM News

Learning Science Through Gaming

Learning Science Through Gaming

An MIT-produced interactive game, "Vanished," now being played by thousands online, offers a novel experiment in alternative science education.


From ACM News

Digging Deeper, Seeing Farther: Supercomputers Alter Science

Digging Deeper, Seeing Farther: Supercomputers Alter Science

Inside a darkened theater a viewer floats in a redwood forest displayed with Imax-like clarity on a cavernous overhead screen.


From ACM News

Mars's Frozen Ocean of Carbon Dioxide

Mars's Frozen Ocean of Carbon Dioxide

Mars is a dry, frigid, dusty, nearly airless place. A couple of billion years ago, though, it wasn't much different from Earth.


From ACM News

The Really Smart Phone

The Really Smart Phone

Researchers are harvesting a wealth of intimate detail from our cellphone data, uncovering the hidden patterns of our social lives, travels, risk of disease—even our political views.


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Create Functioning Synapse Using Carbon Nanotubes

Researchers Create Functioning Synapse Using Carbon Nanotubes

Using an interdisciplinary approach that combines circuit design with nanotechnology, University of Southern California researchers have built a circuit that acts like a neuron. 


From ACM TechNews

Quantum Computer Scientist's Aim

Quantum Computer Scientist's Aim

University of Arkansas physicist Jak Chakhalian is seeking a new miniature building block for quantum computers, using a new class of nanomaterials known as topological insulators.


From ACM TechNews

Chemical Computers Solve Shapely Puzzles

Chemical Computers Solve Shapely Puzzles

Chemical computers can solve certain problems in computational geometry, according to University of West England professor Andrew Adamatzky and colleagues.


From ACM News

Finding Experts: It's Who You Know

Finding Experts: It's Who You Know

While current expert-finding methods provided the best expert in six out of 10 searches, a new user-oriented method finds the best one nine times out of 10, according to the researchers.


From ACM News

Joichi Ito Named Director of MIT Media Lab

Joichi Ito Named Director of MIT Media Lab

MIT announced that Joichi (“Joi” — pronounced “Joey”) Ito has been selected as the next director of the MIT Media Lab.


From ACM News

Apple, Google Leagues Ahead in Developer Survey

Google lost some ground in its effort to catch Apple's lead in the effort to attract mobile developer interest, but other rivals aren't even close, survey data released today show.


From ACM News

Iran Target of New Cyber Attack

Iran has been targeted by a new computer worm named Stars, the director of Iran's Passive Defense Organization announces.


From ACM News

When There

Information overload is a headache for individuals and a huge challenge for businesses. Companies are swimming, if not drowning, in wave after wave of data—from increasingly sophisticated computer tracking of shipments, sales…


From ACM News

Indie Truckers: Keep Big Brother Out Of My Cab

Indie Truckers: Keep Big Brother Out Of My Cab

Terry Button is a fifth-generation farmer from upstate New York who also works as a long-distance trucker, hauling hay and produce up and down the East Coast.


From ACM TechNews

Cybersecurity System Mimics Human Immune Response

Cybersecurity System Mimics Human Immune Response

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Bruce McConnell recently released a white paper about a healthy ecosystem of computers  that can automatically recognize and react to threats.


From ACM TechNews

Designs With a Deeper Purpose

Designs With a Deeper Purpose

Microsoft software design specialist Bill Buxton wants developers to focus on innovations that can improve humans' quality of life.

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