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It's Been 20 Years Since This Man Declared Cyberspace Independence
From ACM Opinion

It's Been 20 Years Since This Man Declared Cyberspace Independence

When digital dystopians and critics of Internet libertarians need a rhetorical dart board, they often pull out a document written by John Perry Barlow, co-founder...

From Exile to Eminence: How the Alien Hunters Conquered Astronomy
From ACM Opinion

From Exile to Eminence: How the Alien Hunters Conquered Astronomy

When Jill Tarter first began to look for aliens, she drew looks askance from her friends and colleagues.

To Keep AI Safe—Use AI
From ACM Opinion

To Keep AI Safe—Use AI

Software is already pervasive in our society, but artificial intelligence software raises unique concerns even among the technological elite.

Snowden's Chronicler Reveals Her Own Life Under Surveillance
From ACM Opinion

Snowden's Chronicler Reveals Her Own Life Under Surveillance

Laura Poitras has a talent for disappearing. In her early documentaries like My Country, My Country and The Oath, her camera seems to float invisibly in rooms where...

The Embarrassing, Destructive Fight over Biotech's Big Breakthrough
From ACM Opinion

The Embarrassing, Destructive Fight over Biotech's Big Breakthrough

A defining moment in modern biology occurred on July 24, 1978, when biotechnology pioneer Robert Swanson, who had recently co-founded Genentech, brought two young...

AI Is Transforming Google Search. The Rest of the Web Is Next
From ACM Opinion

AI Is Transforming Google Search. The Rest of the Web Is Next

Yesterday, the 46-year-old Google veteran who oversees its search engine, Amit Singhal, announced his retirement. And in short order, Google revealed that Singhal's...

Crosstown Traffic: The Bedbug Genome
From ACM Opinion

Crosstown Traffic: The Bedbug Genome

In the great contest that is life, the common bedbug, Cimex lectularius, qualifies as a winner.

Why Safe Harbor 2.0 Will Lose Again
From ACM Opinion

Why Safe Harbor 2.0 Will Lose Again

Over the weekend, negotiators from the European Union's executive body, and the US Federal Trade Commission worked frantically to thrash out a deal to allow transatlantic...

When Will We Be Able to Vote Online?
From ACM Opinion

When Will We Be Able to Vote Online?

Sooner or later everything seems to go online. Newspapers. TV. Radio. Shopping. Banking. Dating.

The Step Needed to Make Virtual Reality More Real
From ACM Opinion

The Step Needed to Make Virtual Reality More Real

It's one thing to play the arcade game Whac-A-Mole by swinging around an oversized mallet; it's far easier to whack those moles virtually, controlling the mallet...

Proposed State Bans on Phone Encryption Make Zero Sense
From ACM Opinion

Proposed State Bans on Phone Encryption Make Zero Sense

American politics has long accepted the strange notion that just a pair of states—namely Iowa and New Hampshire—get an outsize vote in choosing America’s next president...

There May Be a Way to Allow Mass Surveillance and Preserve Our Privacy at the Same Time
From ACM Opinion

There May Be a Way to Allow Mass Surveillance and Preserve Our Privacy at the Same Time

If we've learned anything over the past few years, it's that governments will make all sorts of excuses to justify the surveillance of its citizens.

The Language Barrier Is About to Fall
From ACM Opinion

The Language Barrier Is About to Fall

It used to be the case when I traveled abroad that I would take a little pocket dictionary that provided translations for commonly used phrases and words.

Will Machines Eliminate Us?
From ACM Opinion

Will Machines Eliminate Us?

Yoshua Bengio leads one of the world's preëminent research groups developing a powerful AI technique known as deep learning.

Digital Intuition
From ACM Opinion

Digital Intuition

Napoleon had it and so did Charles Darwin. Tennis champion Roger Federer has it in spades. The dictionary defines intuition as knowledge obtained without conscious...

Is Blockchain the Most Important IT Invention of Our Age?
From ACM News

Is Blockchain the Most Important IT Invention of Our Age?

There are not many occasions when one can give an unqualified thumbs-up to something the government does, but this is one such occasion.

Go Players React to Computer Defeat
From ACM Opinion

Go Players React to Computer Defeat

For decades, the ancient game of Go has stood out as the one board game that computers couldn't crack.

If Killer Robots Arrive, the Terminator Will Be the Least of Our Problems
From ACM Opinion

If Killer Robots Arrive, the Terminator Will Be the Least of Our Problems

Autonomous weapons experts sounded the alarm last week at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, cautioning that unless governments act to limit these...

A New and Stunning Way to See the Whole Earth
From ACM Opinion

A New and Stunning Way to See the Whole Earth

The Japanese weather satellite Himawari-8 sits 22,000 miles from Earth in orbit. On August 5, 2015, it peered down at the half of Earth that it can see, a hemisphere...
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