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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.


Malware Lets a Drone Steal Data by Watching a Computer's Blinking LED
From ACM News

Malware Lets a Drone Steal Data by Watching a Computer's Blinking LED

A few hours after dark one evening earlier this month, a small quadcopter drone lifted off from the parking lot of Ben-Gurion University in Beersheba, Israel.

What News-Writing Bots Mean for the Future of Journalism
From ACM News

What News-Writing Bots Mean for the Future of Journalism

When Republican Steve King beat back Democratic challenger Kim Weaver in the race for Iowa's 4th congressional district seat in November, The Washington Post snapped...

A Chip Flaw Strips Away Hacking Protections for Millions of Devices
From ACM TechNews

A Chip Flaw Strips Away Hacking Protections for Millions of Devices

The VUSec team at the Free University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands has demonstrated an exploit that undercuts a basic safeguard used in all modern operating...

Physicists Teach AI to Identify Exotic States of Matter
From ACM News

Physicists Teach AI to Identify Exotic States of Matter

Put a tray of water in the freezer. For a while, it's liquid. And then—boom—the molecules stack into little hexagons, and you've got ice.

The AI Threat Isn't Skynet. It's the End of the Middle Class
From ACM Opinion

The AI Threat Isn't Skynet. It's the End of the Middle Class

In February 1975, a group of geneticists gathered in a tiny town on the central coast of California to decide if their work would bring about the end of the world...

For the Next Election, Don't Recount the Vote. Encrypt It
From ACM News

For the Next Election, Don't Recount the Vote. Encrypt It

Let's be honest: The 2016 election wasn’t a sterling display of American democracy.

Google's Go-Playing Machine Opens the Door to Robots that Learn
From ACM News

Google's Go-Playing Machine Opens the Door to Robots that Learn

Two robotic arms face two closed doors. Both reach forward and miss the door handles entirely.

Monero, the Drug Dealer's Cryptocurrency of Choice, Is on Fire
From ACM News

Monero, the Drug Dealer's Cryptocurrency of Choice, Is on Fire

For the cryptocurrency community, 2016 was a very good year.

What Better Way for the Marines to Prepare for Future Wars Than With Sci-Fi?
From ACM News

What Better Way for the Marines to Prepare for Future Wars Than With Sci-Fi?

Lance Cpl. Steven West steps into a remote enemy hideout clad in a 350-pound exoskeleton, sensors piercing the darkness and displaying digital info on his helmet...

Wearables Could Soon Know You're Sick Before You Do
From ACM TechNews

Wearables Could Soon Know You're Sick Before You Do

Consumer wearables, which track simple metrics such as step counts and heart rates, have the potential to provide actionable health data, according to Stanford...

Microsoft Thinks Machines Can Learn to Converse by Making Chat a Game
From ACM News

Microsoft Thinks Machines Can Learn to Converse by Making Chat a Game

Microsoft is buying a deep learning startup based in Montreal, a global hub for deep learning research.

Darpa's Off-Roaders Ditch Windows for a Digital World View
From ACM News

Darpa's Off-Roaders Ditch Windows for a Digital World View

Autonomous warriors may dominate the battlefield of tomorrow, but even those that still require human flesh will take on a robotic sheen. That shift could start...

2016: The Year That Deep Learning Took Over the Internet
From ACM News

2016: The Year That Deep Learning Took Over the Internet

On the west coast of Australia, Amanda Hodgson is launching drones out towards the Indian Ocean so that they can photograph the water from above.

The Year Encryption Won
From ACM News

The Year Encryption Won

Between the revelations of mega-hacks of Yahoo and others, Russia's meddling in the US electoral system, and the recent spike in ransomware, it's easy to look at...

Intel Bets It Can Turn Everyday Silicon into Quantum Computing's Wonder Material
From ACM News

Intel Bets It Can Turn Everyday Silicon into Quantum Computing's Wonder Material

Sometimes the solution to a problem is staring you in the face all along.

Google's Improbable Deal to Recreate the Real World in VR
From ACM News

Google's Improbable Deal to Recreate the Real World in VR

Let a thousand virtual worlds rain down from the clouds. Or rather, the cloud.

7,500 Faceless Coders Paid in Bitcoin Built a Hedge Fund's Brain
From ACM News

7,500 Faceless Coders Paid in Bitcoin Built a Hedge Fund's Brain

Richard Craib is a 29-year-old South African who runs a hedge fund in San Francisco. Or rather, he doesn't run it.

Hacker Lexicon: What Is Perfect Forward Secrecy?
From ACM News

Hacker Lexicon: What Is Perfect Forward Secrecy?

Encryption keeps your secrets, until it doesn't.

Europe Is Leading the Way in AI and Machine Learning (and Even Silicon Valley Wants In)
From ACM TechNews

Europe Is Leading the Way in AI and Machine Learning (and Even Silicon Valley Wants In)

Europe is either ahead of or on equal footing with the U.S. in terms of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other technologies.

Google's Hand-Fed AI Now Gives Answers, Not Just Search Results
From ACM News

Google's Hand-Fed AI Now Gives Answers, Not Just Search Results

Ask the Google search app "What is the fastest bird on Earth?," and it will tell you.
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