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subjectComputer Systems
authorMIT News Office

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


Think Fast, Robot
From ACM News

Think Fast, Robot

One of the reasons we don't yet have self-driving cars and mini-helicopters delivering online purchases is that autonomous vehicles tend not to perform well under...

New 'switch' Could Power Quantum Computing
From ACM News

New 'switch' Could Power Quantum Computing

Using a laser to place individual rubidium atoms near the surface of a lattice of light, scientists at MIT and Harvard University have developed a new method for...

The Complexonaut
From ACM Opinion

The Complexonaut

When he was in elementary school, Scott Aaronson, like many mathematically precocious kids of his generation, dreamed of making his own video games.

Smarter Caching
From ACM News

Smarter Caching

Computer chips keep getting faster because transistors keep getting smaller.

From ACM News

Herding Robots

Writing a program to control a single autonomous robot navigating an uncertain environment with an erratic communication link is hard enough; write one for multiple...

Artificial-Intelligence Research Revives Its Old Ambitions
From ACM News

Artificial-Intelligence Research Revives Its Old Ambitions

The birth of artificial-intelligence research as an autonomous discipline is generally thought to have been the monthlong Dartmouth Summer Research Project on Artificial...

Proving Quantum Computers Feasible
From ACM News

Proving Quantum Computers Feasible

Quantum computers are devices—still largely theoretical—that could perform certain types of computations much faster than classical computers; one way they might...

3 Questions: A Web For Everyone
From ACM Opinion

3 Questions: A Web For Everyone

During the opening ceremonies of this summer’s Olympic games in London, a musical performance culminated with a stage-set house rising into the rafters to reveal...

Tiny 3D Chips
From ACM News

Tiny 3D Chips

Microelectromechanical systems, or MEMS, are small devices with huge potential. Typically made of components less than 100 microns in size—the diameter of a human...

Microchips' Optical Future
From ACM News

Microchips' Optical Future

To keep energy consumption under control, future chips may need to move data using light instead of electricity—and the technical expertise to build them may reside...

Robots in Reality
From ACM News

Robots in Reality

Consider the following scenario: A scout surveys a high-rise building that's been crippled by an earthquake, trapping workers inside. After looking for a point...

Important Step Toward Computing with Light
From ACM News

Important Step Toward Computing with Light

There has been enormous progress in recent years toward the development of photonic chips—devices that use light beams instead of electrons to carry out their...

Printing Off the Paper
From ACM News

Printing Off the Paper

Imagine being able to "print" an entire house. Or a four-course dinner. Or a complete mechanical device such as a cuckoo clock, fully assembled and ready to run...

A New Planning Tool Helps Direct Traffic on Aircraft Carriers
From ACM News

A New Planning Tool Helps Direct Traffic on Aircraft Carriers

On the deck of an aircraft carrier, where up to 60 aircraft are crammed into 4.5 acres (1.8 hectares), real estate is at a premium. While aircraft directors wave...

Layer ­pon Layer
From ACM News

Layer ­pon Layer

Graphene, a form of pure carbon arranged in a lattice just one atom thick, has interested countless researchers with its unique strength and its electrical and...

Streamlined Rules For Robots
From ACM News

Streamlined Rules For Robots

With the explosion of the Internet and the commoditization of autonomous robots (such as the Roomba) and small sensors (such as the ones in most cell phones),...

Long Live the Qubit!
From ACM News

Long Live the Qubit!

A quantum computer is a device—still largely theoretical—that could perform some types of calculations much more rapidly than classical computers. While a bit...

Toward Faster Transistors
From ACM News

Toward Faster Transistors

In the 1980s and '90s, competition in the computer industry was all about "clock speed"—how many megahertz, and ultimately gigahertz, a chip could boast. But...

Kaashoek Wins Acm's Prize For Young Researchers
From ACM News

Kaashoek Wins Acm's Prize For Young Researchers

Frans Kaashoek, a professor in the MIT Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and associate director of the Computer Science and Artificial...

Retooling Algorithms
From ACM News

Retooling Algorithms

Charles Leiserson and his team are experts at designing parallel algorithms—including one for a chess-playing program that outperformed IBM’s Deep Blue.
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