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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.


Human-like Cyborg Eye Could Power Itself Using Sunlight
From ACM TechNews

Human-like Cyborg Eye Could Power Itself Using Sunlight

A new spherical visual sensor mimics the structure of the human eye.

Pocket-Sized Device Tests Blood Samples for Genetic Conditions
From ACM TechNews

Pocket-Sized Device Tests Blood Samples for Genetic Conditions

A new smartphone-powered DNA detector can identify DNA in blood, urine, and other samples, on the spot.

AI Can Search Satellite Data to Find Plastic Floating in the Sea
From ACM TechNews

AI Can Search Satellite Data to Find Plastic Floating in the Sea

Researchers have developed an artificial intelligence system that can identify sea plastic in satellite imagery.

AI Can Distinguish Between Bots, Humans Based on Twitter Activity
From ACM TechNews

AI Can Distinguish Between Bots, Humans Based on Twitter Activity

Researchers trained an artificial intelligence system to detect Twitter bots based on differences in the patterns of Tweeting activity of real and fake accounts...

DeepMind AI Can Understand the Unusual Atomic Structure of Glass
From ACM TechNews

DeepMind AI Can Understand the Unusual Atomic Structure of Glass

DeepMind researchers used machine learning to simulate how atomic particles in a piece of glass respond to different temperatures and pressures.

World's Most Essential Open-Source Code to Be Stored in Arctic Vault
From ACM TechNews

World's Most Essential Open-Source Code to Be Stored in Arctic Vault

GitHub this month plans to add another 100 million folders to its existing cache of the equivalent of 10,000 folders of source code files in Coal Mine 3, a disused...

Small Robots Could Help Look After Salmon Without Stressing Them Out
From ACM TechNews

Small Robots Could Help Look After Salmon Without Stressing Them Out

Salmon seem to prefer small robots to larger ones, a discovery that could help guide how fish farms are automated.

U.S. Military Facial Recognition System Could Work From 1 Kilometer Away
From ACM TechNews

U.S. Military Facial Recognition System Could Work From 1 Kilometer Away

The U.S. Special Operations Command  is developing a portable facial recognition system that can identify individuals from 1 kilometer (0.6 miles) off. 

Cyborg Grasshoppers Engineered to Sniff Out Explosives
From ACM TechNews

Cyborg Grasshoppers Engineered to Sniff Out Explosives

Washington University researchers converted grasshoppers into bomb-sniffing tools by implanting electrodes in the insects' antenna lobes to tap into the capabilities...

China is Using Mass Surveillance Tech to Fight Coronavirus Spread
From ACM TechNews

China is Using Mass Surveillance Tech to Fight Coronavirus Spread

The Chinese government is working with technology companies to monitor citizens and track confirmed cases of people infected with the coronavirus.

Deepfake Software Translates Videos from One Language to Another
From ACM TechNews

Deepfake Software Translates Videos from One Language to Another

New software automatically translates a video of a person speaking in one language into another language, while matching their lip movements to the new words.

SIM Swapping, Poor Web Security Put Millions at Risk
From ACM TechNews

SIM Swapping, Poor Web Security Put Millions at Risk

Researchers at Princeton University have found that two-factor authentication is easily hackable and could put millions of people at risk.

A Robot Equipped with Real Feathers Flies Like a Bird
From ACM TechNews

A Robot Equipped with Real Feathers Flies Like a Bird

Stanford University researchers affixed actual pigeon feathers to a robot to allow it to fly like a bird.

A Lazy Fix 20 Years Ago Means the Y2K Bug Is Taking Down Computers Now
From ACM TechNews

A Lazy Fix 20 Years Ago Means the Y2K Bug Is Taking Down Computers Now

A glitch connected to the Y2K bug addressed two decades ago is crashing payment systems and computers, due to a poor fix.

A Computer Made From DNA Can Compute the Square Root of 900
From ACM News

A Computer Made From DNA Can Compute the Square Root of 900

A computer made from strands of DNA in a test tube can calculate the square root of numbers up to 900.

3D-Printed Bunny Contains DNA Instructions to Make Copy of Itself
From ACM TechNews

3D-Printed Bunny Contains DNA Instructions to Make Copy of Itself

Researchers three-dimensionally-printed a polyester rabbit that contains DNA in which instructions for making copies of itself are stored.

Turn Any Object Into a Robot Using This Program and a 3D Printer
From ACM TechNews

Turn Any Object Into a Robot Using This Program and a 3D Printer

Researchers created a program to render household items into hand-activated robots using a three-dimensional (3D) printer. 

Swarms of Golf Ball-Sized Robots Could Detect Leaks in the Sewers
From ACM TechNews

Swarms of Golf Ball-Sized Robots Could Detect Leaks in the Sewers

Researchers have developed golf ball-sized robots designed to collect data as they float through pipes.

This Piece of Music Could Stop Your Amazon Alexa
From ACM TechNews

This Piece of Music Could Stop Your Amazon Alexa

Carnegie Mellon University researchers developed a technique to inhibit the Amazon Alexa voice assistant's ability to respond to commands by playing an audio clip...

Robot Arm Lets You Remotely Lend Friends Helping Hand with Repairs
From ACM TechNews

Robot Arm Lets You Remotely Lend Friends Helping Hand with Repairs

Researchers at the University of Bristol in the U.K. have developed a handheld robot for remote assistance with repairs.
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