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Communications of the ACM

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An edited collection of advanced computing news from Communications of the ACM, ACM TechNews, other ACM resources, and news sites around the Web.


The Snowden Legacy: What's Changed, Really?
From ACM News

The Snowden Legacy: What's Changed, Really?

Digital privacy has come a long way since June 2013. In the five years since documents provided by Edward Snowden became the basis for a series of revelations that...

Spectre, Meltdown Researchers Unveil 7 More Speculative Execution Attacks
From ACM News

Spectre, Meltdown Researchers Unveil 7 More Speculative Execution Attacks

Systematic analysis reveals a range of new issues and a need for new mitigations.

Rough-and-Ready Quantum Memory May Link Disparate Quantum Systems
From ACM News

Rough-and-Ready Quantum Memory May Link Disparate Quantum Systems

I'm a simple person. To me, a computer consists of three parts: data that goes in and out, operations that modify the data, and storage that holds the data.

Intel CPUs Fall to New Hyperthreading Exploit That Pilfers Crypto Keys
From ACM News

Intel CPUs Fall to New Hyperthreading Exploit That Pilfers Crypto Keys

Side-channel leak in Skylake and Kaby Lake chips probably affects AMD CPUs, too.

NOAA Is About to Make Some Big Changes to Its Global Weather Model
From ACM News

NOAA Is About to Make Some Big Changes to Its Global Weather Model

The nation's weather and climate organization, NOAA, has appointed a new director of its Environmental Modeling Center.

Turbulence, the Oldest Unsolved Problem in Physics
From ACM News

Turbulence, the Oldest Unsolved Problem in Physics

Werner Heisenberg won the 1932 Nobel Prize for helping to found the field of quantum mechanics and developing foundational ideas like the Copenhagen interpretation...

Two Japanese Robots Are Now Happily Hopping on an Asteroid
From ACM News

Two Japanese Robots Are Now Happily Hopping on an Asteroid

More than 24 hours after they were released by the Hayabusa2 spacecraft to fly down to the surface of the asteroid Ryugu, the Japanese Space Agency has finally...

Top Drone: Reaper Scores Drone Kill in Air-to-Air Missile Test
From ACM News

Top Drone: Reaper Scores Drone Kill in Air-to-Air Missile Test

The US Air Force has revealed that an MQ-9 Reaper uncrewed aircraft successfully shot down a smaller drone with a heat-seeking air-to-air missile in a test last...

What’s in the Sweeping Copyright Bill Just Passed by the European Parliament
From ACM News

What’s in the Sweeping Copyright Bill Just Passed by the European Parliament

Legislation now goes to a three-way negotiation within the EU.

This Nifty Flying Robot Can Hover, Bank, and Turn as Deftly as a Fruit Fly
From ACM News

This Nifty Flying Robot Can Hover, Bank, and Turn as Deftly as a Fruit Fly

Flying insects like bees, dragonflies, and fruit flies can perform impressive aerodynamic feats, particularly when seeking to evade predators or the swatting motion...

Engineering Tour de Force Births Programmable Optical Quantum Computer
From ACM News

Engineering Tour de Force Births Programmable Optical Quantum Computer

There comes a moment in every physicist's life when they think the unthinkable: I wish I were an engineer. I suspect this thought crossed the minds of the 14-odd...

Researchers Find Way to Spy on Remote Screens, through the Webcam Mic
From ACM News

Researchers Find Way to Spy on Remote Screens, through the Webcam Mic

Ever wonder what the people on the other end of a Hangouts session are really looking at on their screens?

Trump Says He Will 'Address' Google's 'Suppressing' of Conservative News
From ACM Opinion

Trump Says He Will 'Address' Google's 'Suppressing' of Conservative News

On Tuesday morning, the 45th president of the United States woke up around 5:30am Eastern Time and decided to begin his Tuesday by berating the "Fake News Media...

This Military Tech Could Finally Help Self-Driving Cars Master Snow
From ACM News

This Military Tech Could Finally Help Self-Driving Cars Master Snow

The research conducted at the country's National Laboratories is usually highly classified and specifically aimed at solving national security problems. But sometimes...

Neural Network Implemented with Light Instead of Electrons
From ACM News

Neural Network Implemented with Light Instead of Electrons

Neural networks have a reputation for being computationally expensive. But only the training portion of things really stresses most computer hardware, since it...

Decade-Old Bluetooth Flaw Lets Hackers Steal Data Passing Between Devices
From ACM TechNews

Decade-Old Bluetooth Flaw Lets Hackers Steal Data Passing Between Devices

A study by the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology warns of a decade-old bug in the Bluetooth specification.

How They Did It (and Will Likely Try Again): GRU Hackers vs. US Elections
From ACM News

How They Did It (and Will Likely Try Again): GRU Hackers vs. US Elections

In a press briefing just two weeks ago, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced that the grand jury assembled by Special Counsel Robert Mueller had returned...

To Make Curiosity (Et Al.) More Curious, NASA and ESA Smarten Up AI in Space
From ACM News

To Make Curiosity (Et Al.) More Curious, NASA and ESA Smarten Up AI in Space

NASA's Opportunity Mars rover has done many great things in its decade-plus of service—but initially, it rolled 600 feet past one of the initiative's biggest discoveries...

The AI Revolution Has Spawned a New Chips Arms Race
From ACM News

The AI Revolution Has Spawned a New Chips Arms Race

For years, the semiconductor world seemed to have settled into a quiet balance: Intel vanquished virtually all of the RISC processors in the server world, save ...

Why a 40-Year-Old SCOTUS Ruling Against Software Patents Still Matters Today
From ACM News

Why a 40-Year-Old SCOTUS Ruling Against Software Patents Still Matters Today

Forty years ago this week, in the case of Parker v. Flook, the US Supreme Court came close to banning software patents.
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