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Communications of the ACM

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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.


Scientists Program Cells to Remember and Respond to Series of Stimuli
From ACM News

Scientists Program Cells to Remember and Respond to Series of Stimuli

Synthetic biology allows researchers to program cells to perform novel functions such as fluorescing in response to a particular chemical or producing drugs in...

How to Stay Anonymous Online
From ACM News

How to Stay Anonymous Online

Anonymity networks protect people living under repressive regimes from surveillance of their Internet use. But the recent discovery of vulnerabilities in the most...

Robotic Consensus
From ACM News

Robotic Consensus

Planning algorithms for teams of robots fall into two categories: centralized algorithms, in which a single computer makes decisions for the whole team, and decentralized...

Untraceable Communication—Guaranteed
From ACM News

Untraceable Communication—Guaranteed

Anonymity networks, which sit on top of the public Internet, are designed to conceal people’s Web-browsing habits from prying eyes.

Giving Robots a More Nimble Grasp
From ACM News

Giving Robots a More Nimble Grasp

Most robots on a factory floor are fairly ham-handed: Equipped with large pincers or claws, they are designed to perform simple maneuvers, such as grabbing an object...

Object Recognition for Robots
From ACM News

Object Recognition for Robots

John Leonard's group in the MIT Department of Mechanical Engineering specializes in SLAM, or simultaneous localization and mapping, the technique whereby mobile...

Automatic Bug Repair
From ACM News

Automatic Bug Repair

At the Association for Computing Machinery's Programming Language Design and Implementation conference this month, MIT researchers presented a new system that repairs...

Researchers Unravel Secrets of Hidden Waves
From ACM News

Researchers Unravel Secrets of Hidden Waves

Detailed new field studies, laboratory experiments, and simulations of the largest known "internal waves" in the Earth's oceans—phenomena that play a key role in...

Better Sensors for Medical Imaging, Contraband Detection
From ACM News

Better Sensors for Medical Imaging, Contraband Detection

MIT researchers have developed a new, ultrasensitive magnetic-field detector that is 1,000 times more energy-efficient than its predecessors. It could lead to miniaturized...

Diagnosis By Keyboard
From ACM News

Diagnosis By Keyboard

Analyzing people's keystrokes as they type on a computer keyboard can reveal a great deal of information about the state of their motor function, according to a...

Thousands of Atoms Entangled with a Single Photon
From ACM News

Thousands of Atoms Entangled with a Single Photon

Physicists from MIT and the University of Belgrade have developed a new technique that can successfully entangle 3,000 atoms using only a single photon.

Magnetic Brain Stimulation
From ACM News

Magnetic Brain Stimulation

Researchers at MIT have developed a method to stimulate brain tissue using external magnetic fields and injected magnetic nanoparticles—a technique allowing direct...

Six Keys to Sports Analytics
From ACM Careers

Six Keys to Sports Analytics

The ninth annual MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference (SSAC) was the biggest meeting yet of sports-data experts: More than 3,100 people attended the event last...

Smarter Multicore Chips
From ACM News

Smarter Multicore Chips

Computer chips' clocks have stopped getting faster. To keep delivering performance improvements, chipmakers are instead giving chips more processing units, or cores...

Parallelizing Common Algorithms
From ACM News

Parallelizing Common Algorithms

Every undergraduate computer-science major takes a course on data structures, which describes different ways of organizing data in a computer’s memory.

Optimizing Optimization Algorithms
From ACM News

Optimizing Optimization Algorithms

Optimization algorithms, which try to find the minimum values of mathematical functions, are everywhere in engineering. Among other things, they're used to evaluate...

Vision System for Household Robots
From ACM News

Vision System for Household Robots

For household robots ever to be practical, they'll need to be able to recognize the objects they're supposed to manipulate.

Detecting Gases Wirelessly and Cheaply
From ACM News

Detecting Gases Wirelessly and Cheaply

MIT chemists have devised a new way to wirelessly detect hazardous gases and environmental pollutants, using a simple sensor that can be read by a smartphone.

Solid Nanoparticles Can Deform Like a Liquid
From ACM News

Solid Nanoparticles Can Deform Like a Liquid

A surprising phenomenon has been found in metal nanoparticles: They appear, from the outside, to be liquid droplets, wobbling and readily changing shape, while...

Where to Grab Space Debris
From ACM News

Where to Grab Space Debris

Objects in space tend to spin—and spin in a way that's totally different from the way they spin on earth.
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