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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 Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

So you want to teach computer science?

So you want to teach computer science?

A number of years ago after being laid off from a job developing software I went into teaching. I taught a year in a pair of elementary schools and then spent 8 years teaching high school computer science. It was awesome. One…


From Putting People First

Mark Vanderbeeken: The English language innovation bias

Mark Vanderbeeken: The English language innovation bias

Experientia partner Mark Vanderbeeken wrote an article on the dominance of the English language in the discourse of innovation and the bias that this creates. This dominance of English language in the discourse of innovation…


From My Biased Coin

Mihai Memorial Blog

Mihai Memorial Blog

I received the following note from Mikkel Thorup and Alexandr Andoni.I believe it's appropriate to share:Dear friends of Mihai,We made a blog in Mihai's memory. Celebrating Mihai's energy andspirit, please cheer him with a glass…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Intrinsic Motivation

Intrinsic Motivation

The ThreeJoy site points us to Dan Pink's " ... RSA Animate video from his bestseller Drive is a terrific way into the potential for intrinsic motivation in engineering education transformation ... " .  Had missed this  but worth…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Top IT Trends from Gartner

Top IT Trends from Gartner

Top 2012 IT trends from Gartner.  " ... Gartner kicked off its Infrastructure & Operations Management Summit here today with a "top 10" list of the most significant emerging trends that will impact data centers and information…


From The Noisy Channel

Scale, Structure, and Semantics

Scale, Structure, and Semantics

This morning I had the pleasure to present a keynote address at the Semantic Technology & Business Conference (SemTechBiz). I’ve had a long and warm relationship with the semantic technology community — especially with Marco…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Three Dimensional Brands

Three Dimensional Brands

In AdAge:   This is not about new kinds of reality, but about linking pictures of brands to the real thing. Apple does it well with their stores.   Varies by the kind of product.   And this has seen the outbreak of 'show rooming'…


From Computer Science Teachers Association

Feedback on Feedback

Feedback on Feedback

I'm looking for feedback on feedback. Giving feedback to students, that is. I'm being pulled in three directions on this topic and would like to hear from fellow CS teachers on what you are all doing in your classrooms.

As…


From Wild WebMink

Nesting Time

Nesting Time

Are Nest Labs through to open ground at last? After its brush with an especially unpleasant patent troll, the tide seems to be changing for the makers of the Nest Learning Thermostat who have been able to get both Apple and Amazon…


From Putting People First

The future of data visualisation

The future of data visualisation

Drew Skau, a visualization architect of Visual.ly, explores what will change in data visualisation in the future: - Data visualization will become ubiquitous - The variety of commonly used chart types will increase - Everyone…


From Putting People First

Does your phone know how happy you are?

Does your phone know how happy you are?

Kit Eaton explores the coming of age of the emotion-recognition industry. “Because the smartphones we all carry contain sophisticated computing power, cloud computing connections and, increasingly, a front-facing webcam, it’s…


From Putting People First

Computational user experiences at Microsoft Research

Computational user experiences at Microsoft Research

“The Computational User Experiences (CUE) group [at Microsoft Research] creates technologies that augment our personal and professional digital lives to enhance individual and collaborative pursuits. We apply expertise in machine…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Addressing the Complexity of the Supply Chain

Addressing the Complexity of the Supply Chain

Good overview about how 3M is addressing the complexity of its supply chain.  The solutions used are common examinations that a large enterprise has to make.  Analytical methods to address these complexities have been used to…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

My Air, My Health: Developing a Personal Pollution Sensor

My Air, My Health: Developing a Personal Pollution Sensor

The U.S Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) — notably its Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)


From Computational Complexity

Mihai P?tra?cu (1982-2012)

Mihai P?tra?cu passed away Tuesday after a bout with brain cancer. Even though he hadn't reached his 30th birthday, he had already produced a number of major achievements in the algorithmic community. The theoretical computer…


From Schneier on Security

Homeland Security as Security Theater Metaphor

Homeland Security as Security Theater Metaphor

Look at the last sentence in this article on hotel cleanliness:

"I relate this to homeland security. We are not any safer, but many people believe that we are," he said.
It's interesting to see the waste-of-money meme used…


From Putting People First

Forget B-School, D-School is hot

Forget B-School, D-School is hot

The Wall Street Journal published the umpteenth article on design thinking education. What I keep on missing in these pieces is some reflection on what understanding people actually means: ethnographic and anthropological observation…


From Putting People First

An open letter to the User Experience Community

An open letter to the User Experience Community

In an open letter to the User Experience Community, Rich Gunther, President of what used to be called Usability Professionals Association (UPA), announces that UPA is no longer. As explained yesterday at the UPA 2012 conference…


From My Biased Coin

Sad Passing: Mihai Patrascu

Sad Passing:  Mihai Patrascu

Mikkel Thorup just sent me the following to post regarding Mihai Patrascu. ---------------Mihai Patrascu, aged 29, passed away on Tuesday June 5, 2012, after a1.5 year battle with brain cancer. Mihai's carreer was short butexplosive…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Achieving the Perfect Map

Achieving the Perfect Map

In the Lat Log Blog;  Excellent piece on elements of a perfect map.  Maps are simplifications of very complex and data rich concepts. The drive continues to think about how to make them even better.  Beyond that, Google looks…


From U.S. Public Policy Committee of the ACM

USACM Comments on House Cybersecurity Information Sharing Bill

USACM Comments on House Cybersecurity Information Sharing Bill

In late April the House considered and passed several pieces of cybersecurity legislation. At the time USACM released a statement with general recommendations for cybersecurity bills. Of the bills that passed the House, H.R.…


From Computer Science Teacher - Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

Finalists for the Microsoft Partners in Learning 2012 US Forum

Finalists for the Microsoft Partners in Learning 2012 US Forum

Today the US Partners in Learning team announced the Finalists for the Microsoft Partners in Learning 2012 US Forum. There are a lot of great projects in that list and I do urge you to not only look though them but share them…


From My Biased Coin

Verification in the Cloud [Guest Post by Justin Thaler]

Verification in the Cloud [Guest Post by Justin Thaler]

[Justin talks about his upcoming work, to be presented at HotCould.] For the past few years, Michael and I, along with our awesome collaborators, have worked towards developing practical protocols for verifying outsourced computations…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Business Intelligence in the Cloud

Business Intelligence in the Cloud

Pretty obvious that Cloud concepts will be important for data delivery to Business Intelligence.   A quick take here.  Expect the trend to continue as more social and sensor data starts to arrive to be leveraged for use.


From The Eponymous Pickle

Crowdsourcing Strategy

Crowdsourcing Strategy

Mckinsey on the crowd sourcing of strategy. Can the crowd have strategic wisdom?  And, which crowd should be involved?  The latter is often a key issue in crowd sourcing.  What is the incentive of the people you involve?


From Schneier on Security

Ghostery

Ghostery

Ghostery is a Firefox plug-in that tracks who is tracking your browsing habits in cyberspace. Here's a TED talk by Gary Kovacs, the CEO of Mozilla Corp., on it.

I use AdBlock Plus, and dump my cookies whenever I close Firefox…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

NSF-Led Merit Review Global Summit Results in Six Principles

NSF-Led Merit Review Global Summit Results in Six Principles

Back in January, the National Science Board (NSB)


From The Eponymous Pickle

Social Networks in the Enterprise

Social Networks in the Enterprise

Information Week article on how the enterprise can best use social networks.  I was involved with the examination of social networks to get things done.  Part of the argument was that new hires were coming in with the expectation…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Pringles Completes Sales to Kelloggs

Pringles Completes Sales to Kelloggs

I don't usually include enterprise activity that is not technical here, but I was involved in the Pringles, Folgers and other Food business for a while so this final move outside of the food business is of interest.  Concerned…


From Putting People First

The Curious Case of Internet Privacy

The Curious Case of Internet Privacy

Free services in exchange for personal information. That’s the “privacy bargain” we all strike on the Web. Cory Doctorow argues it could be the worst deal ever. “Far from destroying business, letting users control disclosure…