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subjectComputer Systems
authorNew Scientist

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


U.S. Voting Data from Millions of People is Being Traded on the Dark Web
From ACM TechNews

U.S. Voting Data from Millions of People is Being Traded on the Dark Web

Researchers have found that data on millions of U.S. voters is being illegally traded on parts of the Internet not searchable using normal means.

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. 

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.

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.

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.

Fast Swimming Fish Robot Could Perform Underwater Surveillance
From ACM TechNews

Fast Swimming Fish Robot Could Perform Underwater Surveillance

University of Virginia researchers have built a fish-inspired robot that can swim as fast as actual fish, and faster than similar robots.

AIs That Deblur Faces Could Make People on CCTV Easier to Identify
From ACM TechNews

AIs That Deblur Faces Could Make People on CCTV Easier to Identify

A new artificial intelligence system can automatically deblur photographs of people's faces.

Robot Pilot That Can Grab the Controls Gets Its License
From ACM TechNews

Robot Pilot That Can Grab the Controls Gets Its License

The ROBOpilot Unmanned Aircraft Conversion System passed the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Practical Test for piloting light aircraft and completed...

Smartphone App Can Detect Tiny Amounts of Norovirus in Water
From ACM TechNews

Smartphone App Can Detect Tiny Amounts of Norovirus in Water

A new smartphone app can detect extremely small amounts of norovirus (the most common cause of gastroenteritis) in water, when used with a microscope attachment...

Drones Could Herd Rhinos From Poaching Hotspots
From ACM TechNews

Drones Could Herd Rhinos From Poaching Hotspots

Researchers in the ­.K. found that drones and siren sounds were most effective in getting endangered southern white rhinos to leave poaching hotspots in national...

Creating an AI can be 5x Worse for the Planet than a Car
From ACM TechNews

Creating an AI can be 5x Worse for the Planet than a Car

The training of a single artificial intelligence program can require as much as 284 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, or about five times the lifetime emissions...

Robots Conduct Daily Health Inspections of Schoolchildren in China
From ACM TechNews

Robots Conduct Daily Health Inspections of Schoolchildren in China

More than 2,000 preschools in China are using a robot to check the health status of students each day before they enter the classroom.  

Robotic Tube for Surgery Autonomously Navigates Inside a Beating Heart
From ACM TechNews

Robotic Tube for Surgery Autonomously Navigates Inside a Beating Heart

Harvard Medical School researchers have developed a robotic catheter that can autonomously navigate inside a beating heart.

AI That Spots Inequality Could Monitor Living Conditions in Cities
From ACM TechNews

AI That Spots Inequality Could Monitor Living Conditions in Cities

Researchers have trained an artificial intelligence to detect inequalities in four U.K. cities using a combination of government statistics and images from Google...

3D Facial Analysis Could Help Identify Children with Rare Conditions
From ACM TechNews

3D Facial Analysis Could Help Identify Children with Rare Conditions

A new tool can identify subtle but important differences in facial geometry, allowing medical professionals to more quickly diagnose rare medical conditions in...

Robot Discovers Lying About a Betrayal Helps Rebuild Trust
From ACM TechNews

Robot Discovers Lying About a Betrayal Helps Rebuild Trust

Researchers have shown that it is relatively easy for robots to regain the trust of humans after lying to them.

Driverless Car Learns to Perform High-Speed Turns Without Crashing
From ACM TechNews

Driverless Car Learns to Perform High-Speed Turns Without Crashing

Researchers at Stanford University have created a system that allowed an autonomous car to learn to make high-speed turns without spinning out.
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