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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.


Fact or Fiction: Encryption Prevents Digital Eavesdropping
From ACM News

Fact or Fiction: Encryption Prevents Digital Eavesdropping

Since the dawn of the Web and ubiquitous free e-mail services over the past two decades, the need to secure personal information online has been evident but often...

Manage Your Smart Home with a Single Gesture
From ACM News

Manage Your Smart Home with a Single Gesture

Our homes will get a lot smarter in the coming years, allowing us to use a smartphone to manage an integrated system of appliances and other electronics from any...

How Social Media Is Changing Disaster Response
From ACM News

How Social Media Is Changing Disaster Response

When Hurricane Katrina ravaged the U.S. Gulf Coast in 2005, Facebook was the new kid on the block. There was no Twitter for news updates, and the iPhone was not...

When Will Smartglasses and Other Wearable Computers Hit the Mainstream?
From ACM Opinion

When Will Smartglasses and Other Wearable Computers Hit the Mainstream?

Google has stoked our collective imagination via relentless promotion of its Google Glass wearable computer in recent months.

In the Fog of Battle Acoustic Sensors Pinpoint Gunfire By Measuring Air Movement
From ACM News

In the Fog of Battle Acoustic Sensors Pinpoint Gunfire By Measuring Air Movement

Sensors originally designed to alert pilots of single-engine planes to the location of nearby aircraft are instead finding a military role locating unseen battle...

The Reading Brain in the Digital Age: The Science of Paper Versus Screens
From ACM News

The Reading Brain in the Digital Age: The Science of Paper Versus Screens

In a viral YouTube video from October 2011 a one-year-old girl sweeps her fingers across an iPad's touchscreen, shuffling groups of icons.

Why Are Micro Movies So Popular These Days?
From ACM TechNews

Why Are Micro Movies So Popular These Days?

Online micro videos are enjoying a surge in popularity, despite a lack of advanced technology. 

Is High-Tech Security at Public Events Counterproductive?
From ACM Opinion

Is High-Tech Security at Public Events Counterproductive?

Which is more intrusive: security screening and metal detectors every few blocks, or a drone flying high above it taking video of every little thing you do?

Crash Course: Training the Brain of a Driverless Car
From ACM News

Crash Course: Training the Brain of a Driverless Car

Early attempts at driverless cars have had little difficulty gathering the loads of data required to operate autonomously.

Cool It: Is the Internet Too Hot for Data Centers to Handle?
From ACM TechNews

Cool It: Is the Internet Too Hot for Data Centers to Handle?

 Internet traffic volume doubles every three years, yet this increase in usage has not been matched by a similar increase in network energy efficiency. 

Fashion Statement: Designer Creates Line of Drone-Proof Garments to Protect Privacy
From ACM News

Fashion Statement: Designer Creates Line of Drone-Proof Garments to Protect Privacy

As the U.S. government draws up plans to use surveillance drones in domestic airspace, opposition to what many consider an unwarranted and significant invasionprivacy...

Small Gadgets That Make You Healthier
From ACM News

Small Gadgets That Make You Healthier

At any moment, someone in the U.S. most likely is having an asthma attack.

When Will the Internet Reach Its Limit (and How Do We Stop It from Happening)?
From ACM Opinion

When Will the Internet Reach Its Limit (and How Do We Stop It from Happening)?

The number of smartphones, tablets and other network-connected gadgets will outnumber humans by the end of the year.

Chipmaker Races to Save Stephen Hawking's Speech as His Condition Deteriorates
From ACM Opinion

Chipmaker Races to Save Stephen Hawking's Speech as His Condition Deteriorates

Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking has long relied on technology to help him connect with the outside world despite the degenerative motor neuron disease he has...

Content Is King: Can Researchers Design an Information-Centric Internet?
From ACM TechNews

Content Is King: Can Researchers Design an Information-Centric Internet?

The Internet needs to be transformed from a network that emphasizes where data is located to one that focuses on the nature of the data itself, according to former...

Online Social Science: Can the Web Graduate from Digital Petri Dish to Virtual Laboratory?
From ACM Opinion

Online Social Science: Can the Web Graduate from Digital Petri Dish to Virtual Laboratory?

In many ways the Internet is the ultimate virtual laboratory.

Auto-Immune: 'symbiotes' Could Be Deployed to Thwart Cyber Attacks
From ACM News

Auto-Immune: 'symbiotes' Could Be Deployed to Thwart Cyber Attacks

Anti-hacker defenses have long focused mainly on protecting personal computers and servers in homes and offices.

Bluebrain: Noah Hutton's 10-Year Documentary About the Mission to Reverse Engineer the Human Brain
From ACM Opinion

Bluebrain: Noah Hutton's 10-Year Documentary About the Mission to Reverse Engineer the Human Brain

"Nothing quite like it exists yet, but we have begun building it," Henry Markram wrote in the June 2012 issue of Scientific American. He was referring to a "fantastic...

Gps-Free Tech Can Track Miners' and Soldiers' Boots ­nderground
From ACM News

Gps-Free Tech Can Track Miners' and Soldiers' Boots ­nderground

A mining crew is trapped deep underground after a cave-in. Firefighters run into a smoke-spewing high-rise to battle a violent blaze. A team of soldiers breaches...

Virtues of the Virtual Autopsy
From ACM News

Virtues of the Virtual Autopsy

Once a common medical procedure, the standard autopsy is passing out of use.
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