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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.

Research Leads to a Golden Discovery for Wearable Technology
From ACM TechNews

Research Leads to a Golden Discovery for Wearable Technology

Missouri S&T researchers have developed a way to "grow" thin layers of gold on single crystal wafers of silicon and use them as substrates on which to grow other...

Point-and-Click Method Makes Robot Grasping Control Less Tedious
From ACM TechNews

Point-and-Click Method Makes Robot Grasping Control Less Tedious

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology are working to make the process of a robot autonomously grasping an object easier.

WPI Researcher Wants to Transform Your Commute
From ACM TechNews

WPI Researcher Wants to Transform Your Commute

Worcester Polytechnic Institute professor Yanhua Li has proposed an alternative urban transit system that uses a hub-and-spoke configuration with shared shuttles...

A Professor Built an AI Teaching Assistant for His Courses--and It Could Shape the Future of Education
From ACM TechNews

A Professor Built an AI Teaching Assistant for His Courses--and It Could Shape the Future of Education

Georgia Institute of Technology professor Ashok Goel has created an artificially intelligent teaching assistant.

How Aristotle Created the Computer
From ACM TechNews

How Aristotle Created the Computer

Modern computers would not exist without the influence of Aristotelean principles.

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.

Molecular Motor-Powered Biocomputers
From ACM TechNews

Molecular Motor-Powered Biocomputers

European researchers recently launched a research project that aims to develop a biocomputer based on highly efficient molecular motors that will use a fraction...

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...

How Pedestrians Will Defeat Autonomous Vehicles
From ACM News

How Pedestrians Will Defeat Autonomous Vehicles

A recently published paper in the Journal of Planning Education and Research explores how interactions between humans and self-driving cars could change the rules...

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.
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