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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 2013


From The Female Perspective of Computer Science

Princesses, Dragons, and Assigning Numbers to Stories

Princesses, Dragons, and Assigning Numbers to Stories

I've been working on a prototype story for my thesis project ("Coherent Emergent Stories").  Although I have a couple of stories on the go (such as the one I made for my GRAND poster), the one I am working with now was loosely…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Smart Devices Making Us Dumber

Smart Devices Making Us Dumber

In CIOInsight:  Sounds much like the argument being made not so long ago about the use of calculators and before that,  slide rules.   Were we being dumbed down?    Today, though, the difference is that new smart technologies…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Brainwashed, the Overreach of Neuroscience

Brainwashed, the Overreach of Neuroscience

Just received, Brainwashed: The Seductive Appeal of Mindless Neuroscience  by  Sally Satel  and Scott O. Lilienfeld  I was interviewed for this book and read an early version.  Will read and remark on in full soon.   Their description…


From Gödel's Lost Letter and P=NP

Kenneth and Laurel Appel, In Memoriam

Mapping out the landscape of a proof composite of src1, src2 Kenneth and Laurel Appel, our friend Andrew Appel’s father and sister, passed away in the past two months. Appel senior partnered with Wolfgang Haken and some helpers…


From Schneier on Security

Nassim Nicholas Taleb on Risk Perception

Nassim Nicholas Taleb on Risk Perception

From his Facebook page:

An illustration of how the news are largely created, bloated and magnified by journalists. I have been in Lebanon for the past 24h, and there were shells falling on a suburb of Beirut. Yet the news did…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Advice for Returning CEOs

Advice for Returning CEOs

Knowledge @ Wharton provides a history and analysis of returning CEOs,  see my note on P&G's AG Lafley's return.    Asking if the 'Gamble' will pay off.  Instructive and interesting.


From Apophenia

Challenges for Health in a Networked Society

Challenges for Health in a Networked Society


From Wild WebMink

Resurgent CDB

Resurgent CDB

Reblogged from Meshed Insights & Knowledge: What does the Woolwich murder teach us about the need for the Communications Data Bill? Nothing at all; the security services seem to have known all about the suspect using existing…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Whats New on Lafely's List

Whats New on Lafely's List

In AdAge:  I liked the fact that his predecessor, Bob McDonald, seemed to be emphasizing the analytical in finding ways to improve business.  Yet soon found that there was little real support for new or sustained capabilities…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Analytics Summit this Friday

Analytics Summit this Friday

Last chance, this Friday .... contact numbers below ... I unfortunately will be out of town, but looks to be good." ... Analytics Summit 2013  will be held on May 31, 8:15AM-5:00PM at the University of Cincinnati. Analytics Summit…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Rise of Mobile Only

Rise of Mobile Only

In a look at potential C suite users for business intelligence applications we quickly discovered a large number of users that are now mobile only.   More than I expected.  The rise of the tablet has made this is an increasingly…


From Computational Complexity

Theory Jobs 2013

Time for the annual spring jobs posts. Like last year, I set up a Google Spreadsheet that everyone can edit so we can crowd source who is going where next year. A reminder of the rules I set up separate sheets for faculty, …


From Schneier on Security

The Politics of Security in a Democracy

The Politics of Security in a Democracy

Terrorism causes fear, and we overreact to that fear. Our brains aren't very good at probability and risk analysis. We tend to exaggerate spectacular, strange and rare events, and downplay ordinary, familiar and common ones. …


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

What’s In It For The Company?

What’s In It For The Company?

Last night there was some chatter on Twitter about news that The World’s First LEGO School Set to Open in Denmark! It’s an interesting idea with a goal to include “LEGO’s emphasis on fun and playful engagement.” The questionwhat…


From The Eponymous Pickle

An Age of Smart Machines

An Age of Smart Machines

In the Economist:  Can we, will the knowledge worker be replaced and when?   Kurt Vonnegut is invoked from his novel Piano Player.   We certainly believed this in the 1980s.  .  " ... Two things are clear. The first is that smart…


From Daniel Lemire's Blog

Crash course in modern economics

Crash course in modern economics

I sometimes find it difficult to understand the financial news. So I have written down some notes to help me understand commonly used terms: Austerity: When a government decides to target a deficit that is slightly less than…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Information Insertion at Point of Need

Information Insertion at Point of Need

From the BBC: What a good ridiculously simple idea, a sticker applied to Mercedes vehicles that contains a QR code, which directs first responders to rescue methods to extract people from a specific car model.  They have put


From The Eponymous Pickle

Designer Storytelling

Designer Storytelling

Artifacts and more in storytelling.    You would think that today the universality of information technology would always bring it to the forefront as a required artifact of the storytelling process.  Yet there is much more:…


From Putting People First

BBC on exploring and enhancing the TV user experience

BBC on exploring and enhancing the TV user experience

The BBC’s R&D department has been working on how to exploit the interactive functionality now available through connected televisions through a number of projects under themes such as companion screens, authentication, Internet…


From Putting People First

Social networks of mobile money in Kenya

Social networks of mobile money in Kenya

Social networks of mobile money in Kenya Sibel Kusimba, Harpieth Chaggar, Elizabeth Gross, & Gabriel Kunyu Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion University of California, Irvine With mobile money technologies…


From Putting People First

A selection from academia.edu

A selection from academia.edu

Academia.edu, the platform for academics to share research papers, contains quite a few documents from fields such as design research, experience design and interaction design. Below a selection of the last few months, sorted…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Interesting Links 27 May 2013

Interesting Links 27 May 2013

Memorial Day in the US today. Today we remember the men and women who have fallen in battle serving their county in the military. My Dad didn’t die in battle though he did serve in the Navy in WW II. He’s in my thoughts today…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Fragility and Convexity

Fragility and Convexity

Long on my reading list, this essay by Nassim Nicholas Taleb.   Some fascinating thoughts:   " ... The point we will be making here is that logically, neither trial and error nor "chance" and serendipity can be behind the gains…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Blogs and Posts

Blogs and Posts

The language log takes on the difference between blogs and posts.  To blog and all that.  Here I write a post about the subject.  All language is fluid, and in these times, with many new ways to exercise the language, it is more…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Language Killing Innovation?

Language Killing Innovation?

At first I bristled at this.  In Innovation excellence, but they make a point about being able to switch between visual and textual language that I have to agree with, at least broadly:  " ... Language is a wonderful tool, but…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Trends Driving Technology Innovation

Trends Driving Technology Innovation

In Innovation Excellence:  Trends driving technology innovation.  Nothing surprising here, but worth reviewing. All the things they mention have been done for some time, technology has made it easier and thus more broadly available…


From Putting People First

For consumers, an ‘Open Data’ society is a misnomer

For consumers, an ‘Open Data’ society is a misnomer

Despite all the hoopla about an “open data” society, many consumers are being kept in the dark, writes Natasha Singer in The New York Times. “A few companies are challenging the norm of corporate data hoarding by actually sharing…


From Putting People First

Book: Design For Care – Innovating Healthcare Experience

Book: Design For Care – Innovating Healthcare Experience

Design For Care – Innovating Healthcare Experience Peter Jones Rosenfeld Media, 2013 376 pages The world of healthcare is constantly evolving, ever increasing in complexity, costs, and stakeholders, and presenting huge challenges…


From My Biased Coin

An Unusual CS Student Blog

An Unusual CS Student Blog

As I'm up working/watching a Memorial Day weekend Arrested Development marathon (OK, I'm not working that hard), I found myself wandering over to Justine Bateman's blog.  Like many teens at that time period, I surely had a crush…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Glass Nests

Glass Nests

Saw this in Engadget.   My colleagues and I worked on the notion of the 'automated'  home in the innovation centers.  The idea has been around since at least 1990, depending how you define it. Think of it as a hierarchy in the…