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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.

June 2012


From The Eponymous Pickle

Postal Strategy

Postal Strategy

It has been obvious that the US Postal Service needs to adapt to change.  Wharton discusses this in some detail.   They have changed considerably, introducing many new services, but with only marginal improvement.    Yet the…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Degrees of Separation

Degrees of Separation

In CACM:  Reexamining the popular meme of tight connectivity of our social network.  The small world.    In 2000 we visited the Santa Fe Institute for a workshop on the use of such connectivity to understand the flow of marketing…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

NIST

NIST

“How is the general population of researchers and institutions to meet [the needs of] ‘Big Data’?” That was the question posed last week by Ian Foster, director of the Computation Institute at Argonne National Laboratory, before…


From Computational Complexity

The Ketchup Problem

MIT scientists are working on a bottle of ketchup where you CAN get out every last drop.  See here for details and some nice videos of the new bottle in action. This will be used on other products (like Mayonnaise) and will save…


From Schneier on Security

Apple Patents Data-Poisoning

Apple Patents Data-Poisoning

It's not a new idea, but Apple Computer has received a patent on "Techniques to pollute electronic profiling":

Abstract: Techniques to pollute electronic profiling are provided. A cloned identity is created for a principal.…


From Wild WebMink

A Database Ripe For Abuse

A Database Ripe For Abuse

The draft Communications Data Bill is of great concern, not primarily because it lacks controls over who can access private data – these will be added – but because it creates a privacy-destroying surveillance resource which…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Greening the Supply Chain

Greening the Supply Chain

A Wharton special report on practices for sustainability and greening the supply chain.  Best practices and future trends.


From The Female Perspective of Computer Science

How Important is Gameplay for Educational Games, Anyway?

How Important is Gameplay for Educational Games, Anyway?

Gameplay


From Wild WebMink

Help test Ubuntu for Android

Help test Ubuntu for Android

Want to get hands-on with Ubuntu for Android?


From Daniel Lemire's Blog

Do not waste time with STL vectors

Do not waste time with STL vectors

I spend a lot of time with the C++ Standard Template Library. It is available on diverse platforms, it is fast and it is (relatively) easy to learn. It has been perhaps to conservative at times: we only recently got a standard…


From Gödel's Lost Letter and P=NP

Can You Hear the Shape of a Quantum Computer?

Debate round 3: Computation cannot hide the physics Mark Kac was a great mathematician, and worked mainly in probability theory. Kac is famous for the Erdős-Kac theorem, which is often called “the fundamental theorem of probabilistic…


From Putting People First

Nathan Shedroff on the past and future of experience design

Nathan Shedroff on the past and future of experience design

Nathan Shedroff (bio), the pioneer in Experience Design, Interaction Design and Information Design, and the chair of the MBA in Design Strategy at California College of the Arts (CCA) in San Francisco, CA, is looking back on…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Mobility in Healthcare IT

Mobility in Healthcare IT

In ComputerWorld:   Will health care organizations need what is akin to a Chief Mobility Officer?  Mobility is a  key to efficient healthcare. Linking together wherever the patient may be with wherever the multiple kinds of professional…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Thinking About Next School Year

Thinking About Next School Year

As the rolling schedule of school year openings and closings continues it looks like school is just about done everywhere in the US this week. Today is the last day with students at the school my wife teaches at. It seems like…


From Schneier on Security

Switzerland National Defense

Switzerland National Defense

Interesting blog post about this book about Switzerland's national defense.

To make a long story short, McPhee describes two things: how Switzerland requires military service from every able-bodied male Swiss citizen -- a model…


From Putting People First

Spaniards turn to barter, alternative banks to alleviate economic pain

Spaniards turn to barter, alternative banks to alleviate economic pain

Spanish institutions are in no shape to help struggling Spaniards, so they’re turning to alternative banks and ways of exchanging goods to get by, reports Andr


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

A nice article on The New York Times‘s Bits Blog yesterday, about Carnegie Mellon University computer scientist Luis von Ahn and his Duolingo experiment: Language does not come naturally to machines. Unlike humans, computers…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Future Thinking

Future Thinking

In Wired: Future thinking relies on out memory of the past.  And our memories of the past are not as reliable as we think. They are easily altered and deceived.   Research into this whole seemingly unreliable memory system takes…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

Bill Wulf resigns from the University of Virginia in protest

Bill Wulf resigns from the University of Virginia in protest

Eminent computer scientist Bill Wulf, who has been a leader by example for so many years in so many ways, has resigned from the University of Virginia to protest the recent conduct of the UVa Board of Visitors in removing President…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma

Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma

The work of Robert Axelrod and William Poundstone fascinated us in graduate school as we tried to apply AI techniques to decision strategies.   I see that The Edge has a good piece that elaborates a conversation between them…


From Schneier on Security

Attack Against Point-of-Sale Terminal

Attack Against Point-of-Sale Terminal

Clever attack:

When you pay a restaurant bill at your table using a point-of-sale machine, are you sure it's legit? In the past three months, Toronto and Peel police have discovered many that aren't. In what is the latest financial…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Chemistry of Enthusiasm

Chemistry of Enthusiasm

Bain Insights: Which makes considerable sense. " ... The revenues and stocks of companies with highly engaged workers outperform those of companies with low engagement levels. Yet too many companies still seek to foster engagement…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Safeway Supports Shopping Research

Safeway Supports Shopping Research

In Progressive Grocer: Safeway joins with Duke-Ipsos on shopping research.  More on that effort.  There has been relatively little I have found on this shopping effort since its start.  Can someone from Duke or Ipsos contact…


From Schneier on Security

The Failure of Anti-Virus Companies to Catch Military Malware

The Failure of Anti-Virus Companies to Catch Military Malware

Mikko Hyponnen of F-Secure attempts to explain why anti-virus companies didn't catch Stuxnet, DuQu, and Flame:

When we went digging through our archive for related samples of malware, we were surprised to find that we already…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Video Mining

Video Mining

Analyzing raw video from cameras. Videomining, a company we talked to as a potential solution for analyzing retail video lab stores that examined shopping contexts.   " ... VideoMining Corporation is the leading provider of in…


From Wild WebMink

See you at OSCON?

See you at OSCON?

I’ve news. My talk – about why OSI is more relevant than ever – has been accepted for OSCON


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Studio K

Studio K

The other day the Kodu team announced Studio K. What is Studio K you ask?  In my opinion it


From The Eponymous Pickle

On Universal Remotes

On Universal Remotes

I see in Engadget the military is looking for universal remotes for drone fleets.  I was thinking about the general idea of how to make a remote universal the other night, as I used one remote on an upstairs device, and another…


From My Biased Coin

Simons Institute Call

Simons Institute Call

Alistair Sinclair asked me to post the call at http://simons.berkeley.edu/cfp_summer2012.html for the Call for Proposals for Simons Institute programs.  The deadline is mid-July.Worth noting --  two semester-long programs for…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Shelf Publishing on the Kindle

Shelf Publishing on the Kindle

Brought to my attention.  Worth examining as an alternative to blogging with the ability to directly monetize the interaction.