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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.


Machine Ethics: The Robot's Dilemma
From ACM News

Machine Ethics: The Robot's Dilemma

In his 1942 short story 'Runaround', science-fiction writer Isaac Asimov introduced the Three Laws of Robotics—engineering safeguards and built-in ethical principles...

Ancient American Genome Rekindles Legal Row
From ACM News

Ancient American Genome Rekindles Legal Row

The genome of a famous 8,500-year-old North American skeleton, known as Kennewick Man, shows that he is closely related to Native American tribes that have for...

U.s. 'export Rules' Threaten Research
From ACM Careers

U.s. 'export Rules' Threaten Research

The U.S. government is considering policy changes that could dramatically affect how researchers handle equipment and information that have national-security implications...

The Pentagon's Gamble on Brain Implants, Bionic Limbs and Combat Exoskeletons
From ACM News

The Pentagon's Gamble on Brain Implants, Bionic Limbs and Combat Exoskeletons

When Geoffrey Ling talks about the future of technology, his ideas go flying around the room like a whirlwind.

Image Software Spots Links in Tattoo Ink
From ACM News

Image Software Spots Links in Tattoo Ink

In an unusual twist on biometrics research, US computer scientists have joined with law-enforcement officials to find new ways to automatically detect tattoos on...

Crispr, the Disruptor
From ACM Careers

Crispr, the Disruptor

Three years ago, Bruce Conklin came across a method that made him change the course of his lab.

Military Technology: Laser Weapons Get Real
From ACM News

Military Technology: Laser Weapons Get Real

Silently, the drone aircraft glides above the arid terrain of New Mexico—until it suddenly pivots out of control and plummets to the ground.

­.s. Science Academies Take On Human-Genome Editing
From ACM News

­.s. Science Academies Take On Human-Genome Editing

The U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) will launch a major initiative to develop guidelines for editing human genomes...

The Trouble with Reference Rot
From ACM News

The Trouble with Reference Rot

The scholarly literature is meant to be a permanent record of science.

Nih Reiterates Ban on Editing Human Embryo Dna
From ACM Careers

Nih Reiterates Ban on Editing Human Embryo Dna

The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has reaffirmed its ban on research that involves gene editing of human embryos. In a statement released on 29 April,...

Ethics of Embryo Editing Paper Divides Scientists
From ACM News

Ethics of Embryo Editing Paper Divides Scientists

In the wake of the first ever report that scientists have edited the genomes of human embryos, experts cannot agree on whether the work was ethical. They also disagree...

Rule Rewrite Aims to Clean Up Scientific Software
From ACM News

Rule Rewrite Aims to Clean Up Scientific Software

The finding seemed counterintuitive: warming in North America was driving plant species to lower elevations—not towards higher, cooler climes, as ecologists had...

Extreme Cryptography Paves Way to Personalized Medicine
From ACM News

Extreme Cryptography Paves Way to Personalized Medicine

The dream for tomorrow's medicine is to understand the links between DNA and disease—and to tailor therapies accordingly.

Dna Mutation Clock Proves Tough to Set
From ACM News

Dna Mutation Clock Proves Tough to Set

Mathematicians keep refining π even though they know it to more than 12 trillion digits; physicists beat themselves up because they cannot pin down the gravitational...

Mistrust and Meddling ­nsettles ­.s. Science Agency
From ACM Careers

Mistrust and Meddling ­nsettles ­.s. Science Agency

The U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) has had a tough couple of years.

Mediators Call For Change to Science of Human Brain Project
From ACM News

Mediators Call For Change to Science of Human Brain Project

Mediators appointed to analyse the rifts within Europe’s ambitious €1-billion (US$1.1 billion) Human Brain Project (HBP) have called for far-reaching changes both...

Physics in Finance: Trading at the Speed of Light
From ACM News

Physics in Finance: Trading at the Speed of Light

Financial traders are in a race to make transactions ever faster.

Autonomous Vehicles: No Drivers Required
From ACM News

Autonomous Vehicles: No Drivers Required

This summer, people will cruise through the streets of Greenwich, U.K., in electric shuttles with no one's hands on the steering wheel—or any steering wheel at...

Attempts to Predict Terrorist Attacks Hit Limits
From ACM News

Attempts to Predict Terrorist Attacks Hit Limits

From France to Nigeria, the world is reeling from a wave of deadly terrorist attacks.

­S Regulators Move on Thought-Controlled Prosthetics
From ACM News

­S Regulators Move on Thought-Controlled Prosthetics

For the first time since accidents severed the neural connection between their brains and limbs, a small number of patients are reaching out and feeling the world...
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