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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 2012


From BLOG@CACM

Data Mining Product Reviews

Data Mining Product Reviews

When it comes to big data, one of the greatest things we can do as computer scientists creating products is to distill all the information down to what is important. Of course, the challenge with these sorts of problems always…


From The Eponymous Pickle

Sports Analytics Blog

Sports Analytics Blog

Paul Hare's blog:  The Numbers Don't LieStatistical analysis of evidence in the world of sports.  Moneyball and beyond.


From Putting People First

Beyond reliability: An ethnographic study of Wikipedia sources

Beyond reliability: An ethnographic study of Wikipedia sources

Almost a year ago, Heather Ford was hired by Ushahidi to work as an ethnographic researcher on a project to understand how Wikipedians managed sources during breaking news events. Ushahidi cares a great deal about this kind of…


From Schneier on Security

Fake Irises Fool Scanners

Fake Irises Fool Scanners

We already know you can wear fake irises to fool a scanner into thinking you're not you, but this is the first fake iris you can use for impersonation: to fool a scanner into thinking you're someone else.


From The Eponymous Pickle

Social Technology and Snacks

Social Technology and Snacks

In NYT Technology:   Snack foods are a natural intersection place between social technology and people.   This article addresses work underway and how retailers and manufacturers are participating.    Also how consumer research…


From The Eponymous Pickle

No Plans for Analytics

No Plans for Analytics

CW article on how a survey shows most companies have no plans for big data analytics.  I will go further to say that most companies have coherent plans for any analytics at all, beyond the most trivial overview.  Lots of opportunities…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

In Letter, Bill Wulf Explains Why He Hasn’t “Un-Resigned”

In Letter, Bill Wulf Explains Why He Hasn’t “Un-Resigned”

Last month, we noted that eminent computer scientist Bill Wulf had taken the unprecedented step of resigning from the University of Virginia to protest the ousting of UVa president Teresa Sullivan by the university’s Board of…


From The Eponymous Pickle

American Don't Trust the Internet

American Don't Trust the Internet

Says a recent survey presented in Baseline.  But they clearly use the Internet a great deal, even for very important decisions, when they should go elsewhere for advice.


From The Eponymous Pickle

How to Introduce Big Technology Change

How to Introduce Big Technology Change

Very Good piece from HBR on the rapid introduction of big technology change in the large enterprise, including some consumer package goods examples.    We experienced this in particular during the rapid integration of Web technologies…


From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

A Workshop on Next-Generational Financial Cyberinfrastructure

A Workshop on Next-Generational Financial Cyberinfrastructure

The following is a special contribution to this blog by Louiqa Raschid, a professor in the School of Business, Institute for Advanced Computer Studies, Department of Computer Science, and Center for Bioinformatics and Computational…


From Computational Complexity

A natural function with very odd properties

Last time I posted some questions. Today I post the answer that I know.

  • Is there a subset of [0,1] that is uncountable and has measure 0?  YES- take the Cantor Set.  Many readers knew this.
  • Is there such a set that is natural…


    From Schneier on Security

    Hacking Tool Disguised as a Power Strip

    Hacking Tool Disguised as a Power Strip

    This is impressive:

    The device has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi adapters, a cellular connection, dual Ethernet ports, and hacking and remote access tools that let security professionals test the network and call home to be remotely controlled…


    From The Female Perspective of Computer Science

    Register now for the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing!

    Register now for the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing!

    I'm really excited to be attending this year's Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing in Baltimore, and I hope you'll consider going, too! Tomorrow is the last day for early bird prices, so register now!This year is a…


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    Building Private Social Networks

    Building Private Social Networks

    An idea we experimented with.   In particular as new hires come on board expecting to communicate broadly with a social network.   This makes some good points about what they should look like to be used and also be useful for…


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    Design Thinking and Storytelling

    Design Thinking and Storytelling

    A favorite topic of mine:  Elements of the design and its story place the design in a human context.


    From Schneier on Security

    Fear-Mongering at TED

    Fear-Mongering at TED

    This TED talk trots out the usual fear-mongering that technology leads to terrorism. The facts are basically correct, but there are no counterbalancing facts, and the conclusions all one-sided. I'm not impressed with the speaker's…


    From Computer Science Teacher – Thoughts and Information From Alfred Thompson

    Interesting Links 30 July 2012

    Interesting Links  30 July 2012

    Over on the left here is a picture of a group of young women who visited Microsoft in Cambridge MA recently as part of Boston University’s Artemis Project. This is one of several groups of young people that we have hosted this…


    From U.S. Public Policy Committee of the ACM

    Hill Tech Happenings, Week of July 30

    Hill Tech Happenings, Week of July 30

    The Senate will consider cybersecurity legislation this week. Several amendments will be introduced and debated on the floor. July 31 Hearing: The Oversight of Government Management, the Federal Workforce and the District of…


    From Daniel Lemire's Blog

    The Internet is a product of the post-industrial age

    The Internet is a product of the post-industrial age

    The Internet is on fire with this question: who invented the Internet? A couple of weeks ago, the president of the USA said: Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet…


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    Predictive Analytics in Police Work

    Predictive Analytics in Police Work

    An overview.  Saw an IBM presentation on this earlier this year.  All analytics can be used predictively, so the idea is not new.  Simple block crime occurrence charts have been used for a long time.  The ability to leverage…


    From Computational Complexity

    Six Questions about unnatrual and natural mathematical objects

    Today (Monday) I pose some questions. In my next post (Tuesday) I will post the answersthat I know (some I do not). Some questions are a matter of opinionin terms of what you consider natural. Is there a subset of [0,1] that…


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    Technological Adoption and Economies

    Technological Adoption and Economies

    How historical technology adoptions have changed global economies.  In HBS Working Knowledge.  This has been known for a king time.  Somewhat counter indicative at times.  Some very extraordinary advances in technology have not…


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    Searchable Map of the Internet

    Searchable Map of the Internet

    In FlowingData:  A very dense visualization of the Internet today.  A visually intriguing viz, but also an example of  many opportunities missed.  As the article suggests, some of the dimensions included do not apparently have…


    From The Computing Community Consortium Blog

    The Second Annual Robot Film Festival

    The Second Annual Robot Film Festival

    Earlier this month, another huge crowd of roboticists, artists, and filmakers converged on Manhattan for the second annual Robot Film Festival, a daylong celebration of robots on film. Founded by Heather Knight of Marilyn Monrobot…


    From Schneier on Security

    Detroit Bomb Threats

    Detroit Bomb Threats

    There have been a few hoax bomb threats in Detroit recently (Windsor tunnel, US-Canada bridge, Tiger Stadium). The good news is that police learned; during the third one, they didn't close down the threatened location.


    From Gödel's Lost Letter and P=NP

    Benford’s Law and Baseball

    What distributions follow the knock of opportunity? Ted Hill is a Professor Emeritus in the Mathematics Department at Georgia Tech, and has two other affiliations. He graduated from West Point in 1966 where he roomed with General…


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    Organs on a Chip

    Organs on a Chip

    We worked for some time with this kind of bio simulation capability that came from UCSD.  Their BioNome Research Center now appears to be defunct. (Can anyone provide some information on that?) The object was to understand as…


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    Creation Myth and Reality of Innovation

    Creation Myth and Reality of Innovation

    Fascinating piece on innovation from PARC.  Which remarks on Steve Job's famous visit to PARC labs for a demonstration of the 'windows' concept and mouse pointing and how it ended up in other places.  And how such  innovations…


    From BLOG@CACM

    Should Computer Scientists Change How They Publish?

    Should Computer Scientists Change How They Publish?

    One of the most popular panels at Snowbird was "Publication Models in Computing Research: Is a Change Needed? Are We Ready for a Change?"  


    From The Eponymous Pickle

    The Necessity of Algebra

    The Necessity of Algebra

    In the NYT.  Making the case for eroding quantitative literacy.   Even otherwise bright management is often mystified by simple math. So lets make that even more common?  To make us fall even further behind the Germans, Russians…

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