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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.

September 2013


From Putting People First

Book: People-Centered Innovation

Book: People-Centered Innovation

People-Centered Innovation: Becoming a Practitioner in Innovative Research by Pedro Oliveira Biblio Publishing, 2013 194 pages [Amazon] Written with a general audience in mind, People-Centered Innovation focuses on innovation…


From My Biased Coin

Yelp Reviews News

Yelp Reviews News

Giorgos Zervas is in the news again (with Michael Luca of Harvard Business School), this time for his work on filtered/fake Yelp reviews.  See also this piece in the Wall Street Journal blog.  High-level issue:  filtered reviews…


From Gödel's Lost Letter and P=NP

A Dictionary For Reading Proofs

What those phrases really mean Eduardo Tengan is a mathematician at the Institute for Mathematical Sciences and Computation in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He has written a delightful set of notes titled, “An Invitation to Local Fields…


From Schneier on Security

Friday Squid Blogging: A Squid that Fishes

Friday Squid Blogging: A Squid that Fishes

The Grimalditeuthis bonplandi is the only known squid to use its tenticles to fish:

Its tentacles are thin and fragile, and almost always break off when it's captured. For ages, people thought it lacked tentacles altogetherNow…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Tesco Plans for 3D Printing in Supermarkets

Tesco Plans for 3D Printing in Supermarkets

Tesco as a center for 3D printing, to compete with office services stores, as opposed to printing some of their own products?  But certainly also small parts to add to products, which may be designed to be more repairable than…


From Schneier on Security

Another Schneier Interview

Another Schneier Interview

I was interviewed for Technology Review on the NSA and the Snowden documents.


From My Biased Coin

Dina Katabi, MacArthur Genius

Dina Katabi, MacArthur Genius

It's always nice to see a computer scientist be on the list for an award that spans over multiple disciplinary areas.   This year, we get to congratulate Dina Katabi for earning a MacArthur Fellowship.  Dina's work focuses in…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Putting Your Data in the Vault

Putting Your Data in the Vault

I am not in particular endorsing this company,  EVault,  but was struck by their posing the question of how companies should store and protect their  'Big Data'.  Is the Cloud enough?  We may only discover its value later after…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Technology Hype Busting in Advertising

Technology Hype Busting in Advertising

In Adage:  In the Advertising Age meeting, a number of sessions on how various advertising technologies link to hype cycles.  Hype or not?   Including some that have often been mentioned here.


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

2013 Blog Reader Survey

2013 Blog Reader Survey

It’s been a while since I tried to collect any data about who reads my blog and why. When someone pointed out to me that Skydrive has the ability to create web surveys I saw that as a chance to kill two birds with one stone –…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

Digital Societies and Social Technologies Summer Institute Helps to Bridge Common Interests Among Different Research Communities

Digital Societies and Social Technologies Summer Institute Helps to Bridge Common Interests Among Different Research Communities

The following entry is a special contribution to this blog from John L. King, the W.W. Bishop Professor in the School of Information at the University of Michigan.  John was a council member of the Computing Community Consortium…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Sales and Marketing Misalignment

Sales and Marketing Misalignment

In E-Commerce Times:    Something I have seen first hand , the solutions shown are simplistic, but also powerful.    " ... For CRM data to be useful, it needs context. Through real-world experience, sales knows what a qualified…


From Schneier on Security

3D-Printed Robot to Break Android PINs

3D-Printed Robot to Break Android PINs

Neat project. The reason it works is that the Android system doesn't start putting in very long delays between PIN attempts after a whole bunch of unsuccessful attempts. The iPhone does.


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Hammers and Nails and Writing Complicated Code

Hammers and Nails and Writing Complicated Code

The ability of students to find complex solutions to simple problems is a constant source of amusement and amazement. I’m probably neither the first or last teacher to make that observation.

One of the great things about programming…


From Putting People First

An ethnography of interaction design practice (PhD dissertation)

An ethnography of interaction design practice (PhD dissertation)

Delivering Design: Performance and Materiality in Professional Interaction Design is the title of the PhD dissertation Sarah Goodman defended last year to obtain the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Information Management and…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Mapping Tutorials for Knowledge Capture

Mapping Tutorials for Knowledge Capture

From Biggerplate, a set of tutorials on mind mapping.  Also related, from the IHMC site: Concept Maps, their theory and how to create them.   Examining for use in a knowledge capture problem.


From The Eponymous Pickle

Review: Modeling Techniques in Predictive Analytics

Review: Modeling Techniques in Predictive Analytics

Review: Modeling Techniques in Predictive Analytics: Business Problems and Solutions with R  by Thomas W. Miller This book does an excellent job of defining prediction, which I have rarely found done well  in a text.  The first…


From Computational Complexity

Dealing with Death

Mary Jean Harrold, a professor of software engineering at Georgia Tech, passed away last week. Mary Jean was 67 and still quite active before the cancer struck. Computer science is still a relatively young field and most of…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Link Rot and Permanent Hyperlinks

Link Rot and Permanent Hyperlinks

We juggled with link rot since the earliest days of the Internet.  As we were trying to build from existing Internet content.  You can point to anything, but that thing can go away without warning.   There is a significant part…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Big Data Training from IBM and Universities

Big Data Training from IBM and Universities

Educational Collaboration:  " ... IBM is hoping to help create the next generation of "big data" specialists through a series of partnerships with universities around the world, as well as influence the curriculum.Nine new agreements…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Round Up of Student Technology Competitions 2013

Round Up of Student Technology Competitions 2013

I’ve written about a number of technology competitions and award programs for students in the last month or so. I thought that a single post on them might be useful. So here we go.

The NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computinghigh…


From The Eponymous Pickle

After the Design of Everyday Things

After the Design of Everyday Things

We interacted with designer Don Norman a few times, author of the ground breaking Design of Everyday Things.   This new interview in GigaOM relates well what he is up to.  Including a stealth startup about design in cooking.…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Baby Name Voyager Visualization Again

Baby Name Voyager Visualization Again

Some time ago, for a problem we were working on for visualizing initiative data, we looked at the work of Martin Wattenberg.  Probably most famous is his Baby Name Voyager.  This takes social security data of the choice of baby…


From [email protected]

Trip Report on Dagstuhl Seminar on Live Coding

Trip Report on Dagstuhl Seminar on Live Coding

Live coding is programming performance with generates music for an audience, often in a collaborative setting.  It's a jam session on laptops with rich research implications.


From Schneier on Security

Paradoxes of Big Data

Paradoxes of Big Data

Interesting paper: "Three Paradoxes of Big Data," by Neil M. Richards and Jonathan H. King, Stanford Law Review Online, 2013.

Abstract: Big data is all the rage. Its proponents tout the use of sophisticated analytics to mine…


From The Eponymous Pickle

On the Small Data in Big Data

On the Small Data in Big Data

In Computing Now:  Video.  Small Data in Big DataAyse Bener, Ryerson University.   From data to knowledge, and leveraging the knowledge to decision. " ...  As data gets big and complex, there is a need for multiscale approaches…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Moose Mobility for CPG Sales Solutions

Moose Mobility for CPG Sales Solutions

Spoke today with MooseMobility.  An acronym forMobile Out-of-Stock Ordering Sales Electronic Application.   " ... Enabling Solutions for your Mobile Sales Force ... Moose Mobility develops ‘End-to-End’ mobile solutions for use…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Khan Academy and Bank of America

Khan Academy and Bank of America

Saw a commercial for this service the other day. Financial training from the Kahn Academy sponsored by the Bank of America.  A partnership.    A nice idea.  If you have not seen or tried it, the Kahn Academy is an online repository…


From Putting People First

Mobile mastery

Mobile mastery

Lauren Pope of Nokia writes that there are three things to think about if you want your devices and your brain to sing in unison: mindfulness, attention and metacognition. The video is cute and well-done, but doesn’t match the…


From Putting People First

Simon Roberts (EPIC chair) reflects on Big Data, business and ethnography

Simon Roberts (EPIC chair) reflects on Big Data, business and ethnography

Simon Roberts, the highly engaging, smart and easily approachable chair of the EPIC conference last week, was so absorbed with all the logistics that he didn’t find the concentration to speak his mind during the conference. Now…