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Communications of the ACM

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The blog archive provides access to past blog postings from Communications of the ACM and other sources by date.

November 2016


From insideHPC

GPU Accelerators in Today’s Data Center: Performance & Efficiency

GPU Accelerators in Today’s Data Center: Performance & Efficiency

tesla-p100NVIDIA is a leading provider of GPU accelerators that are used in many High Performance Computing environments. This research paper from Gabriel Consulting Group explains the need for this new generation of hardware in today's…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Learning about the World with Games

Learning about the World with Games

Can 'Deep mind' AI systems learn about the world by experiencing it?   Can this world be a game world?  We tried less automated approaches, where people providing the interactive world.  It is being taken further:    DeepMind…


From Computational Complexity

And the winner is... Harambe

Tomorow is the Election for Prez of the USA! This post is non-partisan but, in the interest of full disclosure, I state my politics: I will be voting for Hillary Clinton. I urge you to read the posts by Scott Aaronson: here and…


From Schneier on Security

Research into IoT Security Is Finally Legal

Research into IoT Security Is Finally Legal

For years, the DMCA has been used to stifle legitimate research into the security of embedded systems. Finally, the research exemption to the DMCA is in effect (for two years, but we can hope it'll be extended forever)....


From The Eponymous Pickle

Knowing Which Way You are Going

Knowing Which Way You are Going

An interesting update regarding heading in Google Maps.  " ... One of the basic features of the Google Maps app is the ability to open the app and find out which direction you're facing in a matter of seconds. To make orienting…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Why is Amazon Alexa Dominant Now?

Why is Amazon Alexa Dominant Now?

We sit here with a number of voice competitors that will soon be released, including the Google Home, which may have better AI.

Why Amazon Alexa is so dominant right now

In VentureBeat:

Voice interfaces are getting a lot of buzz…


From insideHPC

SLAC & Berkeley Researchers Prepare for Exascale

SLAC & Berkeley Researchers Prepare for Exascale

Data taken with the LCLS X-ray laser (pattern in background) provide unprecedented views of atomic structures and motions in complex molecules. (N. Sauter/Berkeley Lab)Researchers at the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory are playing key roles in two recently funded computing projects with the goal of developing cutting-edge scientific applications for future exascale…


From insideHPC

“Atos Quantum” Program Launches in Europe

“Atos Quantum” Program Launches in Europe

The Atos Quantium program was reviewed and launched in the presence of world-renowned quantum physicists and mathematicians:
Alain Aspect, professor at the Institut d'Optique Graduate School and Ecole Polytechnique, Université Paris-Saclay;
David DiVincenzo, Alexander von Humboldt Professor, Director of the Institute for Quantum Information at RWTH Aachen University, Director of the Institute for Theoretical Nanoelectronics at the Juelich Research Center;
Artur Ekert, Professor of Quantum Physics at the Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford; Lee Kong Chian, Centennial Professor and Director, Centre of Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore;
Daniel Estève, Research Director, CEA Saclay, head of Quantronics;
Serge Haroche, Professor emeritus at the Collège de France, Nobel laureate in Physics;
Cédric Villani, Professor at University of Lyon Claude Bernard, Head of the Henri Poincaré Institute CNRS/UPMC, Fields Medal laureate.Today Atos in Europe announced “Atos Quantum,” an ambitious program to develop quantum computing solutions that offer unprecedented computing power, while enhancing cyber security products to face these new technologies. "Today…


From The Noisy Channel

Language Identification

Language Identification

Queries are the primary way that searchers communicate with search engines. But it’s difficult to get started with query understanding…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Thinking Deeper About Programming Contests

Thinking Deeper About Programming Contests

I have this set of mixed feelings about student programming contests. On one level they just feel very artificial and inauthentic. You have a tight time schedule, some problems that are as much about the algorithm and they are…


From insideHPC

Software Defined Networking to Speed Data for Cori Supercomputer

Software Defined Networking to Speed Data for Cori Supercomputer

Cori Phase 1. Photo courtesy of Glenn LockwoodNERSC is working with Cray to explore new ways to more efficiently move data in and out of Cori, a powerful supercomputer being constructed in California. "We need to take advantage of a network guru’s design for moving data …


From insideHPC

Precision Medicine is Next Frontier in HPC at SC16

Precision Medicine is Next Frontier in HPC at SC16

medicineA panel of some of the world’s leading experts will come together to discuss this next frontier of healthcare at SC16, the premier international conference showcasing HPC on Nov. 14 in Salt Lake City. “Truly transformative discoveries…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Big Data vs Human AI

Big Data vs Human AI

Quite a distance between them.   Its not remarkable intelligence yet.

From big data to human-level artificial intelligence
What explains the gap between what machines do well and what people do well? And what needs to happen before…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Smart Shirts for First Responders

Smart Shirts for First Responders

U.S. backs research into smart shirts for emergency responders  by Donal Power

The U.S. government is funding an Internet of Things (IoT) project that is developing sensor-based smart shirts for first responders.

Fed Tech Magazine…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Using Twitch to Predict the Future

Using Twitch to Predict the Future

Can Twitch teach us the future?    New to Twitch but unclear it can do this consistently.  Any data contains elements of the future within it.   What if you observed any kind of activity, not just gaming, what does that teach…


From Schneier on Security

Friday Squid Blogging: Whale Hunts Squid

Friday Squid Blogging: Whale Hunts Squid

A sperm whale has been sighted in Monterey Bay, hunting squid. As usual, you can also use this squid post to talk about the security stories in the news that I haven't covered....


From Schneier on Security

Hacking in the Movies

Hacking in the Movies

New Atlas has a great three-part feature on the history of hacking as portrayed in films, including video clips. The 1980s. The 1990s. The 2000s....


From insideHPC

XSEDE Conference Morphs into PEARC17

XSEDE Conference Morphs into PEARC17

pearc17The Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE) annual conference is transforming into an independent entity designed to unite the high-performance computing and advanced digital research community. The new …


From insideHPC

ISC 2016 Workshop Papers Available as Free Download

ISC 2016 Workshop Papers Available as Free Download

workshopsWorkshop Papers from ISC 2016 are now available as a free download. "The 21 workshops were held on June 26, 2016 at the Frankfurt Marriott Hotel with over 600 registered attendees, about 170 presentations, and over a dozen panel…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Robot has a Tail

Robot has a Tail

In IEEE Spectrum:  Robot uses actuator tail for transport.


From insideHPC

LCS to Unveil Immersive-cooled Servers at SC16

LCS to Unveil Immersive-cooled Servers at SC16

liquidcoolToday LiquidCool Solutions (LCS) announced plans to unveil two new liquid submerged servers at SC16 in Salt Lake City. Based on a clamshell design, the SCS Submerged Cloud Server is a 2U 4-node server designed for Cloud-computing…


From insideHPC

SGI Powers Cancer Research at AbbVie Stemcentrx

SGI Powers Cancer Research at AbbVie Stemcentrx

pub12"Our new SGI UV 300 capabilities will help us achieve major milestones sooner than predicted,” said Albert Park, senior director, Bioinformatics, AbbVie Stemcentrx. “The new SGI system is able to process larger quantities of …


From insideHPC

Kx Breaks STAC Benchmark Record with Dell EMC DSSD D5

Kx Breaks STAC Benchmark Record with Dell EMC DSSD D5

img_0903_w_600'Trading firms in the STAC Benchmark Council designed the STAC-M3 suite to represent a range of performance challenges that are common in financial time-series analysis," said Peter Lankford, Director of STAC. "As data volumes…


From insideHPC

Transportation Guide to SC16 in Salt Lake City

Transportation Guide to SC16 in Salt Lake City

citycenter3-02Are you coming to SC16 in Salt Lake City? As far as transportation goes, SLC has gone through remarkable changes since we last visited at SC12. As you’ll learn in the Print ‘n Fly Guide to SC16 in Salt Lake City, a new light …


From The Eponymous Pickle

IOT as an Integration of Things

IOT as an Integration of Things

Nicely done article.  Clear it is an integration of things.  But the how and details need to be closely considered.   In Readwrite: 

" ... When comparing this market maturity against the wide range of tools and products available…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Medicine and Chatbots

Medicine and Chatbots

Been using email with my doctors for some time.    Even the point of sharing data and its interpretation, at least at a high level.  Seems they still run nervous on the provision of recorded 'advice' and I wonder how that will…


From The Noisy Channel

Overcoming Information Asymmetry

Overcoming Information Asymmetry

A couple of years ago, I wrote a post entitled “Information Asymmetry in the Workplace” that discussed compensation in the Alliance…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Why Marketers Fail in Product Innovation

Why Marketers Fail in Product Innovation

In Knowledge@Wharton:

Why Marketers Often Miss the Mark in Product Innovations

Why do most new products fail? According to Clayton Christensen, the author of Competing Against Luck: The Story of Innovation and Customer Choice,

In…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Columbia University Course on Analytics Change

Columbia University Course on Analytics Change

Next week I will be giving Course in Columbia University's School of Professional Studies entitled:   Applied Analytics PS5700 Analytics and Leading Change.    Any comments on what you might like to see emphasized in such a course…


From Computational Complexity

Do We Still Need Great Minds?

An anonymous comment on a recent post on alternate histories.


As far as science is concerned I don't believe that the great minds are needed anymore. They only speed things up that would later have been developed by an industry…