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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.

July 2013


From The Eponymous Pickle

3D Interactive Playground

3D Interactive Playground

Had not heard much from Disney of late in the digital world.  But now an interesting play. Reminiscent of other simulation world ideas, which are usually difficult to pull off.  Now can it be used to accurately mimic real spaces…


From Putting People First

SAP reaching out through user experience and design thinking

SAP reaching out through user experience and design thinking

Recent SAP application forays include everything from a My Runway fashion shopping application to wellness applications that involve wearable sensors to Big Data analytic applications for the National Basketball Association (NBA)…


From Schneier on Security

Marc Rotenberg on the NSA Supreme Court Suit

Marc Rotenberg on the NSA Supreme Court Suit

Marc Rotenberg of EPIC explains why he is suing the NSA in the Supreme Court.

And USA Today has a back and forth on the topic.


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

CS Educator Interview: Mike Zamansky

CS Educator Interview: Mike Zamansky

Mike Zamansky (wearing the white shirt in the center of the picture) has created a very impressive computer science program at one of New York’s top entrance exam high schools - Stuyvesant High School. Coming from someone (me)…


From U.S. Public Policy Committee of the ACM

Congress to Consider Copyright This Week

Congress to Consider Copyright This Week

Two U.S. House of Representatives committees will consider copyright issues at three hearings this week.   Markup of H.R. 1123: The Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act House Judiciary Committee Wednesday, July…


From Schneier on Security

Prosecuting Snowden

Prosecuting Snowden

I generally don't like stories about Snowden as a person, because they distract from the real story of the NSA surveillance programs, but this article on the costs and benefits of the US government prosecuting Edward Snowden…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Datification of Business

Datification of Business

Datification is a new term for me, but a natural next step.  In our own enterprise we drove the use of data for a long time.   Many other companies are now discovering the value of this.  And much more expertise will be needed…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Stouffer Mobile Marketing

Stouffer Mobile Marketing

In iMediaConnect:  An example of how a company links past behavior to promotion.   Apparently a big success:   " .... How do you reach customers right at the point of purchase? This case study shows how one food brand ... revolutionized…


From U.S. Public Policy Committee of the ACM

Hill Tech Happenings, Week of July 22

Hill Tech Happenings, Week of July 22

July 23 Hearing: The Asia and the Pacific Subcommittee of the House Foreign Affairs Committee will hold a hearing on cybersecurity and Asia. 2 p.m., 2172 Rayburn Building July 24 The Senate Finance Committee will hold a hearing…


From The Female Perspective of Computer Science

When You Picture an Engineer, You Probably Don't Picture Me

When You Picture an Engineer, You Probably Don't Picture Me

Debbie Sterling has experienced life as someone who doesn't fit in.  In her inspiring TEDx talk, she shares her story of how she discovered engineering, and makes a bold claim: "I don't fit in, but I believe that our little girls…


From Apophenia

Choosing the “Right” Maternity Leave Plan

Choosing the “Right” Maternity Leave Plan

As I prepare to go on parental leave, I’ve been forced to contend with countless well-intended people telling me how to “do it right” (or tsk tsking me as though I’m already “doing it wrong”). I’m a lot better at keeping my Bad…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Boost Creativity not Just Sales

Boost Creativity not Just Sales

In Fastcompany:  Do interesting things.  An early goal of our innovation centers.  Make a space that will boost innovaton for workers.  Connect it with lots of outside resources.  Bring in speakers and innovations and let workers…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Data Points Mean Something

Data Points Mean Something

They do.  Book of interest brought to my attention: Data Points: Visualization That Means Something by Nathan Yau"Whether it's statistical charts, geographic maps, or the snappy graphical statistics you see on your favorite news…


From Schneier on Security

Violence as a Source of Trust in Criminal Societies

Violence as a Source of Trust in Criminal Societies

This is interesting:

If I know that you have committed a violent act, and you know that I have committed a violent act, we each have information on each other that we might threaten to use if relations go sour (Schelling notes…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Interesting Links 22 July 2013

Interesting Links 22 July 2013

The big thing for me last week was the annual CSTA conference. A great professional development experience as always. Almost 300 computer science educators were there. And they announced the dates and location for next year’s…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Stat Methods

Stat Methods

See Robert Kabacoff's web site: Statmethods.  And his associated blog.   These cover statistical methods delivered in R.  Devoted to learning R quickly and providing examples for its use for real statistical and visualization…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Data Preparation Mistakes

Data Preparation Mistakes

From Catlin Garrett via Vincent Granville.  Good thoughts worth reviewing.  Boils down to really understanding the source of your data elements, and how they were generated. Examine the elements, if there are too many to examine…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Retail Facial Recognition

Retail Facial Recognition

Another example of using facial recognition for retail experience. Here apparently to detect VIPs. Had talked to people developing casino applications to detect people banned from the premises, where it was suggested that the…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Unique Silicon Valley

Unique Silicon Valley

I used to give informal tours of Silicon Valley starting at Stanford, and often got the question: Why here?   I had a different perspective because I was usually a visitor as well.   But I was a student of industrial university…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Location Analytics from Placed

Location Analytics from Placed

Location Analytics example from Placed.  Dated but interesting with broad statistics: " ..... In the largest showrooming study to date, Placed identified Best Buy and Target as high-risk retailers for Amazon customers to view…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Reliability of Big Data Predictions

Reliability of Big Data Predictions

In Knowledge Core:  Intriguing piece.  Philosophically oriented. A question we have asked of all analytics for many decades.  With the usual cautions and prescriptions.  But I ask:  Has this changed because you have more or more…


From The Eponymous Pickle

User Interface for R

User Interface for R

In the midst of looking at some User Interfaces for the R statistical and visualization system.  The RStudio system was brought to my attention by several people and sources. If anyone has other suggestions for examination, please…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Randy Pausch Design Lessons

Randy Pausch Design Lessons

Collaborative design lesson from Randy Pausch of Carnegie Mellon  Particularly interested in the nature of collaborative design:  " ... This week will mark the fifth anniverary of Randy Pausch’s death. Randy was a passionate…


From The Eponymous Pickle

The Windows Monopoly

The Windows Monopoly

Economist MJ Perry on the diminishing monopoly of Microsoft Windows and its interaction with the market.  I remember when IBM was criticized for its monopoly of computing.


From The Eponymous Pickle

Beginners Guide to R

Beginners Guide to R

Have not looked at this yet, but seems to be a good starter piece.  More people are asking me about R these days.  Short, simple, non technical.  " ... R is hot. Whether measured by more than 4,400 add-on packages, the 18,000…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Time to Retire the Password

Time to Retire the Password

Hard to not get agreement on this, soon please:" ... A group of Silicon Valley tech companies is lobbying the industry to do away with one of the most ubiquitous expressions of networked life: the computer password. According…


From Computer Science Teachers Association

Computer Science Finally Part of Critical Federal Bill

Computer Science Finally Part of Critical Federal Bill

The House has officially passed HR 5, the Student Success Act, by a vote of 221-207. The bill would reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) and includes some provisions helpful to computer science education…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Essentials of Business Analytics

Essentials of Business Analytics

Brought to my attention, a forthcoming book by a number of long time colleagues.   This group, and a number of their colleagues at the University of Cincinanti, have authored many of the best-selling textbooks on practical quantitative…


From U.S. Public Policy Committee of the ACM

Presidential Commission on Election Administration Continues Listening Tour

Presidential Commission on Election Administration Continues Listening Tour

The Presidential Commission on Election Administration, established by Executive Order earlier this year, has held two official meetings and been present at other meetings of election officials. While the first meeting, held…


From Schneier on Security

Friday Squid Blogging: Paul Burke Giant Squid Sculpture

Friday Squid Blogging: Paul Burke Giant Squid Sculpture

The wood sculpture is part of an art exhibit at the VanDusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver.