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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.


New Smartwatch Application for Accurate Signature Verification Developed
From ACM TechNews

New Smartwatch Application for Accurate Signature Verification Developed

Researchers say they have developed a system that uses smartwatch devices and software to verify handwritten signatures and detect even the most skilled forgeries...

Brainwaves Could Act as Your Password--but Not if You're Drunk
From ACM TechNews

Brainwaves Could Act as Your Password--but Not if You're Drunk

Rochester Institute of Technology have found that although brainwave readings can accurately authenticate someone's identity about 94% of the time, there could...

Will Blockchain-Based Election Systems Make E-Voting Possible?
From ACM TechNews

Will Blockchain-Based Election Systems Make E-Voting Possible?

Determining whether blockchain technology can accurately count votes and ensure the integrity of an electronic voting system was the purpose of a competition among...

New Fingerprinting Techniques Identify Users Across Different Browsers on the Same PC
From ACM TechNews

New Fingerprinting Techniques Identify Users Across Different Browsers on the Same PC

A U.S.-based multi-university research effort has yielded distinct fingerprinting methods to track users when they use different browsers installed on the same...

Using Mathematics to Hunt for Computer Errors
From ACM TechNews

Using Mathematics to Hunt for Computer Errors

The Austrian Science Fund FWF is funding the development of methods to apply mathematical analysis to enhancing software and hardware security.

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...

Who's Winning the Cyber War? The Squirrels, of Course
From ACM News

Who's Winning the Cyber War? The Squirrels, of Course


Teaching Computers to Recognize Sick Guts: Machine-Learning and the Microbiome
From ACM TechNews

Teaching Computers to Recognize Sick Guts: Machine-Learning and the Microbiome

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have harnessed machine-learning techniques to classify proteins found in healthy and unhealthy gut microbiomes...

11 Predictions for the Future of Programming
From ACM TechNews

11 Predictions for the Future of Programming

Among the expected trends for computer programming in 2017 and beyond is the cloud overtaking Moore's Law, which will require coders to find algorithms that can...

Hackers Trigger Yet Another Power Outage in Ukraine
From ACM News

Hackers Trigger Yet Another Power Outage in Ukraine


Army of 350,000 Star Wars Bots Found Lurking on Twitter
From ACM TechNews

Army of 350,000 Star Wars Bots Found Lurking on Twitter

Researchers at University College London in the U.K. discovered a Twitter botnet that could be comprised of more than 350,000 accounts.

N.S.A. Gets More Latitude to Share Intercepted Communications
From ACM News

N.S.A. Gets More Latitude to Share Intercepted Communications

In its final days, the Obama administration has expanded the power of the National Security Agency to share globally intercepted personal communications with the...

Poker Play Begins in 'Brains vs. AI: Upping the Ante'
From ACM News

Poker Play Begins in 'Brains vs. AI: Upping the Ante'

Play began Jan. 11 for "Brains Vs. Artificial Intelligence: Upping the Ante," a competition at Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh that pits a Carnegie Mellon University...

DARPA Wants to Create Secure Data-Sharing Tech
From ACM TechNews

DARPA Wants to Create Secure Data-Sharing Tech

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is launching the Secure Handhelds on Assured Resilient networks at the tactical Edge project.

Searching Deep and Dark: Building a Google for the Less Visible Parts of the Web
From ACM TechNews

Searching Deep and Dark: Building a Google for the Less Visible Parts of the Web

Apache Tika could help with the effort to teach computers to recognize, index, and search all the different types of material that is available online.

UTSA Study Shows How Phishing Scams Thrive on Overconfidence
From ACM TechNews

UTSA Study Shows How Phishing Scams Thrive on Overconfidence

University of Texas at San Antonio researchers have examined overconfidence in detecting phishing emails, based on the theory that most people believe they are...

Data Could Be the Next Tech Hot Button for Regulators
From ACM News

Data Could Be the Next Tech Hot Button for Regulators

Wealth and influence in the technology business have always been about gaining the upper hand in software or the machines that software ran on.

Ultrasound Tracking Could Be Used to Deanonymize Tor Users
From ACM TechNews

Ultrasound Tracking Could Be Used to Deanonymize Tor Users

Ultrasounds emitted by ads or JavaScript code hidden on a page accessed through the Tor Browser can deanonymize Tor users by making nearby phones or computers send...

Attackers Can Make It Impossible to Dial 911
From ACM TechNews

Attackers Can Make It Impossible to Dial 911

A new cyberattack strategy can block access to 911 emergency services by exploiting vulnerabilities in the system.

Back to Self-Driving School: The Simulator Teaching Vehicle AIs Road Sense
From ACM TechNews

Back to Self-Driving School: The Simulator Teaching Vehicle AIs Road Sense

Researchers have developed a simulator employing convolutional neural networks and deep learning to enhance how vehicle artificial intelligence systems manage environmental...
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