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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.

May 2012


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

Mobiledia is out this week with an interesting article about “Big Data”: Technology is improving Siri, powering driverless cars, improving cancer treatment and even being called Big Brother. But “big data” is what makes it possible…


From Schneier on Security

Backdoor Found in Chinese-Made Military Silicon Chips

Backdoor Found in Chinese-Made Military Silicon Chips

We all knew this was possible, but researchers have found the exploit in the wild:

Claims were made by the intelligence agencies around the world, from MI5, NSA and IARPA, that silicon chips could be infected. We developed breakthrough…


From Schneier on Security

Interview with a Safecracker

Interview with a Safecracker

The legal kind. It's interesting:

Q: How realistic are movies that show people breaking into vaults? A: Not very! In the movies it takes five minutes of razzle-dazzle; in real life it's usually at least a couple of hours of…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Interesting Links 29 May 2012

Interesting Links 29 May 2012

Links are a day late because of the Memorial Day holiday. A day of remembrance. I spent a little time with my father, a combat veteran of World War II which was great. Over all a good weekend with a lot done around the house,…


From Putting People First

The right to be forgotten

The right to be forgotten

Dr Paul Bernal, a lecturer in information technology, intellectual property and media law at the University of East Anglia (UK), provides clarification on what the Right to be Forgotten means and what the issues are. Read article…


From The Female Perspective of Computer Science

Lauren Ipsum: Bringing Computer Science to Everyone

Lauren Ipsum: Bringing Computer Science to Everyone

Have you ever heard of Userland? It's where you buy things with truly fair coins, deal in algorithms, and try to outwit logicians to gain access to the town of Symbol.  There's all this and more in Lauren Ipsum, "a story about…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Petabytes and PetaFlops

Petabytes and PetaFlops

In ComputerWorld:  Word of new examples really big data, and at the same time using really fast computers to examine that data at the NCSA. New challenges are emerging every day. " ... The Blue Waters project will create a 1…


From Putting People First

Experientia concept video for a sustainable trade fair centre

Experientia concept video for a sustainable trade fair centre

The Event project for Kortrijk Xpo, Belgium, developed concepts for how to make trade fairs and temporary events more sustainable. Experientia


From Putting People First

Video online of Experientia

Video online of Experientia

Experientia


From The Eponymous Pickle

Predictive Analytics and Medicaid Fraud

Predictive Analytics and Medicaid Fraud

A good example of using predictive analytics with medical data.   Here with billing data: " ... "The beauty of this system is that it recognizes patterns of billing behavior that don't fit in with the norm and then takes it a…


From Schneier on Security

My Last Post About Ethnic Profiling at Airports

My Last Post About Ethnic Profiling at Airports

Remember my rebuttal of Sam Harris's essay advocating the profiling of Muslims at airports? That wasn't the end of it. Harris and I conducted a back-and-forth e-mail discussion, the results of which are here. At 14,000+ words…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Turn any Wall into a Touchscreen

Turn any Wall into a Touchscreen

Gestural Surfaces. A look at the Ubi Interactive use of Microsoft Kinect for touchscreen construction. Are we ready for the broader applications of gestures in new ways? I think so. Here relatively low cost, and I see their…


From Wild WebMink

Contrasts in Amsterdam

Contrasts in Amsterdam

Reblogged from The Global Mink: Nesting, a photo by webmink on Flickr. I spent a half-day walking around the centre of Amsterdam following a speaking engagement. I can never decide how I feel about this city. It’s a place with…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Finance from Wolfram

Finance from Wolfram

And a finance platform from Wolfram Research.  Perhaps an unlikely connection but the possibilities are good.  I like the process-workflow connection;  " ... Algorithmic agility has come center stage in finance. Yet finance tools…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Simplicity Isn't Simple

Simplicity Isn't Simple

Isn't it?  An interview with Apple design chief.   " ... "Designing and developing anything of consequence is incredibly challenging," says Ive. "Our goal is to try to bring a calm and simplicity to what are incredibly complex…


From My Biased Coin

CS 124 -- Some Student Comments

CS 124 -- Some Student Comments

Overall, I feel I've had a very successful year, but I do have to admit:  my undergraduate class, CS 124, could have been better this spring.  I wasn't prepared for the class doubling in size from the previous year, and I had…


From Wild WebMink

Open Source Market Matures

Open Source Market Matures

My article for InfoWorld this week considers the annual Open Source Survey, unveiled at OSBC in San Francisco, and observes that the market is trending towards valuing the Freedom To Leave that I wrote about in 2006.


From The Eponymous Pickle

National Retail Data Monitor

National Retail Data Monitor

Colleague Mike Robinson of Laverdad Marketing  reminded me of an effort we were involved in: The National Retail Data Monitor.   Which is designed  to detect pharma sales patterns to provide early warning for epidemics and bio…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Text Analytics and the Value of the Unstructured

Text Analytics and the Value of the Unstructured

In Information Management:   Bottom line is that unstructured data is important.  Unstructured is also more than just text, images and video are becoming increasingly important.  "Organizations differ widely in their management…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Simple Charts Tell a Story

Simple Charts Tell a Story

In Flowingdata.. An illustration of my favorite precept, that simple is better. It is true that visualizaton can make very complex things appear simpler. But the part that you are observing at any one time should be very simple…


From Putting People First

The Smartphone Psychology Manifesto

The Smartphone Psychology Manifesto

In Perspectives on Psychological Science (May 2012 vol. 7), Geoffrey Miller publishes a “Smartphone Psychology Manifesto” with methodological suggestions for the use of smartphones in psychological research that could indeed…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Big Data and Health Care

Big Data and Health Care

An interesting example using the case of sleep apnea contributing to car accidents.


From The Eponymous Pickle

P&G Wins Effie

P&G Wins Effie

P&G tops the list of the ten most effective advertisers.  " ... IBM and Microsoft, tied with EA, come in at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. 


From The Eponymous Pickle

Intuit Using Big Data to Delight You

Intuit Using Big Data to Delight You

In GigaOM:  Some months back I gave a talk at Intuit on the leveraging of data resources.  This is not an outcome of that, but an intriguing direction that they are taking.    How do you construct 'data for delight'?  Of course…


From Schneier on Security

Friday Squid Blogging: Squid Ink from the Jurassic

Friday Squid Blogging: Squid Ink from the Jurassic

Seems that squid ink hasn't changed much in 160 million years. From this, researchers argue that the security mechanism of spraying ink into the water and escaping is also that old.

Simon and his colleagues used a combination…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Target Connects to ShopKick

Target Connects to ShopKick

In an interesting development Target has connected to the ShopKick rewards program.  I spent some time looking at ShopKick and was impressed by the approach. " ...  Target guests nationwide can earn points for shopping at Target…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

Data, Computing at Center of Presidential Advisors

Data, Computing at Center of Presidential Advisors

Data and computing were front and center at


From Geeking with Greg

The game Stick Portal

The game Stick Portal

I want to share more of the ideas I've been exploring. First, let me start with this, an early version of a game I'm calling Stick Portal. Click on the image to play:

It's entirely written in Coffescript using HTML5 canvas…


From Putting People First

SAP co-CEO on social networking and the future of business

SAP co-CEO on social networking and the future of business

Facebook


From Putting People First

For productivity apps, PCs still rule (for now)

For productivity apps, PCs still rule (for now)

Gartner research suggests that there is an inverse correlation between portable devices and PC usage, reports the Financial Times. “Is the PC era really over? The success portable computing devices including smartphones and PC…