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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 2014


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Interesting Links 26 May 2014

Interesting Links 26 May 2014

There are still a couple of weeks of school for me and my students. Well the seniors are done with their finals on Friday but underclassmen  have some time after that. I should be thinking about summer vacation but I find myself…


From CERIAS Blog

Patching is Not Security

Patching is Not Security

I have long argued that the ability to patch something is not a security “feature” — whatever caused the need to patch is a failure. The only proper path to better security is to build the item so it doesn’t need patching — so…


From CERIAS Blog

Patching is Not Security

Patching is Not Security

I have long argued that the ability to patch something is not a security “feature” — whatever caused the need to patch is a failure. The only proper path to better security is to build the item so it doesn’t need patching — so…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift

In Gizmodo, continued raving for Oculus Rift.   Here a hands on look.  Still I don't think that most people would be comfortable with the 'strap a screen to your head', extreme 'no hands', 'artificial context' environments.  …


From The Eponymous Pickle

Brand Focused CPG Ads

Brand Focused CPG Ads

In EMarketer, continued brand focusing of ads:Study: $4.2B CPG digital ad market focuses on brandingConsumer packaged goods and consumer products companies in the U.S. will spend roughly $4.2 billion on digital media this year…


From Apophenia

Matt Wolf’s “Teenage”

Matt Wolf’s “Teenage”

Close your eyes and imagine what it was like to be a teenager in the 1920s. Perhaps you are out late dancing swing to jazz or dressed up as a flapper. Most likely, you don’t visualize yourself stuck at home unable to see your…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Thinking Swarms

Thinking  Swarms

A good overview, non technical article on Swarms.  We did some thinking about using robot swarms for repetitive tasks.  You can build cheap robot swarms,  making them think like swarms that have have useful goals is harder.  Preparatory…


From Putting People First

Left to our own devices

Left to our own devices

Our well-being centers on the meaningfulness of our relationships: our intimate ties, our associations with a larger circle of people, and our sense of interconnectivity with a collective tribe. Technology has become deeply embedded…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Eric Siegel: Predictive Analytics

Eric Siegel: Predictive Analytics

Predictive Analytics speaker and consultant Eric Siegel gave the Keynote at today's UC Analytics Summit: Real-World Impact from Business Analytics.   Very nicely done, non technical overview of the topic of predictive analytics…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Detecting Spurious Correlations

Detecting Spurious Correlations

Detailed piece by Vincent Granville.  Useful for reference and application. Tutorial: How to detect spurious correlations, and how to find the real onesSpecifically designed in the context of big data in our research lab, the…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Wearable Device Supports Text Reading

Wearable Device Supports Text Reading

(Abstract, full article requires purchase)FingerReader: a wearable device to support text reading on the goVisually impaired people report numerous difficulties with accessing printed text using existing technology, including…


From The Eponymous Pickle

On Practical Machine Learning Problems

On Practical Machine Learning Problems

Short piece that addresses typical techniques.  But it is not all about technique, it is how the technique is connected to the data from the domain of the problem, and ultimately connected to a real world decision." ... In this…


From Daniel Lemire's Blog

You shouldn’t use a spreadsheet for important work (I mean it)

You shouldn’t use a spreadsheet for important work (I mean it)

I envy economists. Unlike computer scientists, they seem to be able to publish best-seller books with innovative research. One such book is Piketty’s Capital. The book is reminiscent of Marx’s capital in its scope. If you haven’t…


From Computer Science Teachers Association

Moving From "CS for a Few" to "CS for All" to "CS For Each"

Moving From "CS for a Few" to "CS for All" to "CS For Each"

When I first joined CSTA almost a decade ago, computer science education was absent from most school districts. Rigorous computer science courses were often tucked away in the classrooms of exclusive private schools and affluent…


From Gödel's Lost Letter and P=NP

STOC 1500

What STOC might have been like in old times src Mikolaj Kopernik was a student of the professor mathematum Domenico Novara in 1500. They traveled from Bologna to Rome where Novara gave lectures on mathematics. We imagine that…


From Gödel's Lost Letter and P=NP

STOC 1500

What STOC might have been like in old times src Mikolaj Kopernik was a student of the professor mathematum Domenico Novara in 1500. They traveled from Bologna to Rome where Novara gave lectures on mathematics. We imagine that…


From Schneier on Security

Friday Squid Blogging: Squid Ink Cocktail

Friday Squid Blogging: Squid Ink Cocktail

Del Campo, a restaurant in Washington DC, has a Bloody Mary made with squid ink. 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

Alan Watts on the Harms of Surveillance

Alan Watts on the Harms of Surveillance

Biologist Alan Watts makes some good points: Mammals don’t respond well to surveillance. We consider it a threat. It makes us paranoid, and aggressive and vengeful. [...] "Natural selection favors the paranoid," Watts said. Those…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Teradata's Data Lab

Teradata's Data Lab

It is very useful to have a lab to experiment with your data.  Here is Teradata's approach. " ... Promote Exploration & ExperimentationA Teradata Data Lab lets you explore and examine new ideas by combining new data with existing…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Intelligence Matters from O'Reilly

Intelligence Matters from O'Reilly

In OReilly:   A new blog that appears to be of interest: " ... Today we’re kicking off Intelligence Matters (IM), a new series exploring current issues in artificial intelligence, including the connection between artificial intelligence…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Proposed Thermal Imaging Wearable AR Headset

Proposed Thermal Imaging Wearable AR Headset

New from Metaio. A video describe the future possibilities.  Another level of sensor data will be possible.   In the press release: " ... With “Thermal Touch”, a wearable headset user could turn any surface into a touch-screen…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Real Time Business Intelligence

Real Time Business Intelligence

An important consideration is often what the size of the time step needs to be.  I often have to ask, What does your 'real-time' look like?    In TDWI.    " ... "Real time" of course, means different things depending on users…


From Computational Complexity

Theory Jobs 2014

In the fall we list theory jobs, in the spring we see who got them. Similar to last year, I created a fully editable Google Spreadsheet to crowd source who is going where. Same rules as last year: I set up separate sheets for…


From The Eponymous Pickle

On Domain Names

On Domain Names

In [email protected]:  Interesting how this will change the results.  Interesting overview is provided here.  Has been a long time since I have looked at domain name generated issues. Consider the ultimately ontology of some"…


From Schneier on Security

Disclosing vs Hoarding Vulnerabilities

Disclosing vs Hoarding Vulnerabilities

There's a debate going on about whether the U.S. government -- specifically, the NSA and United States Cyber Comman -- should stockpile Internet vulnerabilities or disclose and fix them. It's a complicated problem, and one that…


From The Eponymous Pickle

IBM Acquires Cognea, Is AI New as Assistance?

IBM Acquires Cognea, Is AI New as Assistance?

This evening listened in on a #Cognitivecomputing presentation given in NYC.  See it recorded here. A good broad overview of work done by ETH Zurich and IBM to deliver Watson as a service.  See more about their purchase of assistance…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Looking at Agile

Looking at Agile

In CACM:  A critical look at Agile.  I have taken a look at Scrum for development, but not used it in a real application.  And a warning about hype.  Bertrand Meyer in a new book.  " .... an attempt to sort out the jewels from…


From Schneier on Security

The NSA is Not Made of Magic

The NSA is Not Made of Magic

I am regularly asked what is the most surprising thing about the Snowden NSA documents. It's this: the NSA is not made of magic. Its tools are no different from what we have in our world, it's just better-funded. X-KEYSCORE is…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

DARPA Highlights Innovative Approaches to Information Technology Superiority at their 2014 Demo Day

DARPA Highlights Innovative Approaches to Information Technology Superiority at their 2014 Demo Day

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Information Innovation Office (I2O) hosted Demo Day 2014 to highlight DARPA’s ongoing contributions to preserving and expanding Information Technology superiority on May 21…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Building a QuBit for a Quantum Computer

Building a QuBit for a Quantum Computer

In Quanta magazine.  A relatively non technical article about building a quantum bit, the Qubit, the foundation for the quantum computer.    Nicely described. " ... Willet is attempting to harness that state to build a “topological…