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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.

August 2011


From Wild WebMink

? The Social Media Chorale

? The Social Media Chorale

Chatting with Jill earlier, I ended up watching this TED talk by composer Eric Whitacre: Which led me to his Virtual Choir project, which I found exceptionally beautiful and moving: and to this year’s Virtual Choir 2.0, which…


From The Eponymous Pickle

More on Crowd Sourcing Difficult Tasks

More on Crowd Sourcing Difficult Tasks

Another post about MobileWorks.  A favorite topic that we attempted to utilize with the capabilities of the time, but without great success.   " ... Enabling software to punt its toughest tasks to humans should result in smarter…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Interesting Links 29 August 2011

Interesting Links 29 August 2011

Hurricane Irene was the big news on the east coast of the US and parts of the Caribbean last week. Oh and there was a surprising east coast earthquake last week as well. Quite some week. But I still managed to collect some links…


From Wild WebMink

UK Public Holiday Monday

UK Public Holiday Monday

Just in case you’re not aware, the UK has its end-of-the-summer public holiday tomorrow so none of your UK contacts will be at work (unless they’re hiding out in the office to avoid something…)


From Putting People First

Kids today need a licence to tinker

Kids today need a licence to tinker

Forget the dysfunctional approach of the national curriculum, we need to open young minds to the creative possibilities of computing, writes John Naughton in today’s The Observer. “Instead of laying the dead hand of key stages…


From Putting People First

What marketing executives should know about user experience

What marketing executives should know about user experience

A strong experience strategy, derived from qualitative user research and experience workshops, can bring a collected vision to your organization and not only identify the true value of your products but help you transform the…


From Putting People First

A long-wave theory on today

A long-wave theory on today

Historian Elin Whitney-Smith looks at previous periods of disruption to understand what companies (and people) are going through today. “According to Elin Whitney-Smith, executives facing technological and economic change have…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Timed Automata and Scheduling Resources

Timed Automata and Scheduling Resources

A largely technical article in the CACM that reminded me of the complexity of scheduling and resourcing activities in real time.  " ... The problems of time-dependent behavior in general, and dynamic resource allocation in…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Your Smartphone is Listening in

Your Smartphone is Listening in

A post on Apps that can listen in and determine what you are watching on TV.  We will start to see more of this sensor-based application that can understand your context in new ways.  I have discovered that I am frequently using…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Google Sets to Shut Down

Google Sets to Shut Down

The curiously interesting 'Google Sets' feature will be shut down on September 5.  We experimented with this when it was first released.  It provided a form of pattern recognition on sets of search items.  It was insufficiently…


From Michael Nielsen

Visiting Europe

Visiting Europe

I’ll be in Europe for the next couple of weeks, giving talks about open science. I’m interested in adding more events to my schedule, so if you’re interested in having me speak, or would like to arrange for me to attend some…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Riot Psych

Riot Psych

Fascinating overview with links on some late research on crowd psychology.  Do people lose their individulaity in a crowd as is popularly found in film and literature?  Apparently not  ...


From The Eponymous Pickle

Viability of QR Codes

Viability of QR Codes

Good thoughts in Mashable about the viability of QR Codes.  I think that ultimately they will be a transitional technology,  like all bar codes, but there is considerable life left in the idea.


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

SSTD 2011 Vision & Challenge Track Winners Announced

SSTD 2011 Vision & Challenge Track Winners Announced

The following is a special contribution to this blog from Shashi Shekhar and Mohamed Mokbel, faculty in the Department of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Minnesota. The pair organized the 12th International…


From The Eponymous Pickle

The Market and Hurricane Preparedness

The Market and Hurricane Preparedness

M J Perry writes about how companies like Wal-Mart and Home Depot can deliver predictable disaster materials through the magic of the modern supply chain.  The market can drive some major results if government will allow it…


From The Eponymous Pickle

IDEO Apps

IDEO Apps

We used IDEO consulting for several components of the innovation centers. Napkin Laps Turns IDEO's Innovation Process Into Web Apps For All

... An off-the-shelf crowdsourcing platform will let companies create "challenges" to…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Testing the Kroger PAL System

Testing the Kroger PAL System

In aisle checkout with Kroger PAL.  We tested extensively the concept of shoppers using devices like this in the retail innovation center.   Providing new kinds of devices in the store is expensive for the retailer.  I think…


From Schneier on Security

Friday Squid Blogging: Squid Fishing in Ulleungdo, Korea

Friday Squid Blogging: Squid Fishing in Ulleungdo, Korea

The industry is in decline:

A generation ago, most of the island's 10,000 residents worked in the squid industry, either as sellers like Kim or as farmer-fishermen who toiled in the fields each winter and went to sea duringUlleungdo…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

Forecasting Hurricane Irene

Forecasting Hurricane Irene

Despite some slight weakening over the last few hours, Hurricane Irene is being called the “storm of a lifetime” — on its current path, it will affect over 65 million people in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern U.S. over the…


From Schneier on Security

Preventing the Theft of Wire Cutters

Preventing the Theft of Wire Cutters

This is a picture of a pair of wire cutters secured to a table with a wire.

Someone isn't thinking this through....


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

CISE Names Deputy Assistant Director

CISE Names Deputy Assistant Director

The NSF’s CISE Directorate today announced


From Wild WebMink

? The Entrepreneur

? The Entrepreneur

Following on from my Road To (Software) Freedom posting, I’ve written today about why I think the need for contributor agreements is a matter of choice and not necessity for a software business today. It’s over on ComputerWorldUK…


From Schneier on Security

The Problem with Using the Cold War Metaphor to Describe Cyberspace Risks

The Problem with Using the Cold War Metaphor to Describe Cyberspace Risks

Nice essay on the problems with talking about cyberspace risks using "Cold War" metaphors:

The problem with threat inflation and misapplied history is that there are extremely serious risks, but also manageable responses, from…


From The Eponymous Pickle

On High Performance Analytics

On High Performance Analytics

SAS Voice on high performance analytics.  " ... The promise of high-performance analytics, as I understand it, is this: Regardless of how you store your data or how much of it there is, complex analytical procedures can still…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Encouraging Entrepreneurial Spirit

Encouraging Entrepreneurial Spirit

Hubspot as a case study in getting people excited about their jobs. " ...  Everyone talks about wanting entrepreneurial employees. At HubSpot, a marketing software company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Brian Halligan and…


From Wild WebMink

? Classifications

? Classifications

Court Ruling Opens The Door To Rejecting Many Software Patents As Being Mere ‘Mental Processes’ The incremental adjustment of software patent law in the USA continues. As the global corporate conflict intensifies, we’ll see more…


From The Eponymous Pickle

On Cognitive Computing

On Cognitive Computing

Still skeptical about how close this is, but have recently seen some hints of it approaching: In the CACM: Cognitive Computing:  Unite neuroscience, supercomputing, and nanotechnology to discover, demonstrate, and deliver the…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Technology Frustration

Technology Frustration

We all experience multi-device frustrations.  Everything is somewhat different, does not work exactly as we expect, work together with other devices, and over time changes its behavior.  How do we deal with it?


From Schneier on Security

Terrorism in the U.S. Since 9/11

Terrorism in the U.S. Since 9/11

John Mueller and his students analyze the 33 cases of attempted terrorism in the U.S. since 9/11. So few of them are actually real, and so many of them were created or otherwise facilitated by law enforcement.


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

2011 NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing

2011 NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing

Calling all digital divas, web chix & coder girls!

It’s time to start thinking about the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing. This is a great program which I have been proud to promote  though this blog for several years…