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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.


Body of Knowledge
From ACM TechNews

Body of Knowledge

Some medical schools are turning to virtual reality to enable students to learn from cadaver dissection.

The Lines of Code That Changed Everything
From ACM News

The Lines of Code That Changed Everything

Apollo 11, the JPEG, the first pop-up ad, and 33 other bits of software that have transformed our world.

Who's Behind That Beard?
From ACM TechNews

Who's Behind That Beard?

Kurt Luther, working with a team at Virginia Polytechnic and State Institute, has launched Civil War Photo Sleuth, a Web platform that applies facial recognition...

Meet Mappy, a Software System That Automatically Maps Old-School Nintendo Games
From ACM TechNews

Meet Mappy, a Software System That Automatically Maps Old-School Nintendo Games

Mappy is a new software system that can autonomously generate maps of a video game's levels.

Digital Genies
From ACM TechNews

Digital Genies

University of California, Berkeley professor Stuart Russell emphasizes the need to ensure artificial intelligence understands fundamental human values. 

We Don't Need Humans on Mars
From ACM Opinion

We Don't Need Humans on Mars

The two mobile robots Spirit and Opportunity were launched from Earth in 2003 and arrived on opposite sides of Mars in 2004. A suite of cameras, instruments, and...

Should Cops Be Allowed to Take Control of Self-Driving Cars?
From ACM News

Should Cops Be Allowed to Take Control of Self-Driving Cars?

A few lines in a seemingly routine RAND Corp. report on the future of technology and law enforcement last week raised a provocative question: Should police have...

Human Weakness in Cybersecurity
From ACM News

Human Weakness in Cybersecurity

The Joint Chiefs of Staff unclassified email system is now back online, after having been down for more than two weeks, following a breach that some officials have...

What a Comet Looks Like … From 9 Meters Away!
From ACM News

What a Comet Looks Like … From 9 Meters Away!

The European Space Agency has just released some fantastic close-up images taken by the Philae lander of the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

The Social Security Number's Insecurities
From ACM Opinion

The Social Security Number's Insecurities

In both the Anthem insurance hack and the two Office of Personnel Management hacks this year, attackers gained access to Social Security numbers, affecting 80 million...

So Sayeth Google
From ACM Opinion

So Sayeth Google

Search for "vaccines." At least within our filter bubble, the top item in Google's "In the news" section earlier this week was an anti-vax column about the "feds'...

Nasa Has Its Sights Set on Europa
From ACM News

Nasa Has Its Sights Set on Europa

Yesterday, NASA announced its Fiscal Year 2016 budget request.

Dumbing It Down in the Cockpit
From ACM Opinion

Dumbing It Down in the Cockpit

Long gone are the leather jackets, goggles, and silk scarves flung over the shoulders of aviators who wrestled with flight controls, furiously scanned instruments...

Build Something
From ACM TechNews

Build Something

Research has found that giving students a sense of the usefulness of their studies to the greater world can help improve learning. For the computer sciences one...

Study: Swedish Boys Are Learning English From World of Warcraft
From ACM News

Study: Swedish Boys Are Learning English From World of Warcraft

Swedish children, especially boys, may be learning more English during a late-night Minecraft session than from struggling through hours of homework.

The Internet's Vulnerable Backbone
From ACM TechNews

The Internet's Vulnerable Backbone

A criminal redirected the online activities of bitcoin mining groups and stole at least $83,000 worth in bitcoins over four months, according to a new report, which...

How Not to Build a Brain
From ACM Opinion

How Not to Build a Brain

Building a brain sounds like a worthy goal, one that makes it seem as though the future is within reach.

The Quadriplegic Who Moved His Hand
From ACM News

The Quadriplegic Who Moved His Hand

Ian Burkhart was 19 and fearless and horsing around in the surf with friends on vacation in North Carolina’s Outer Banks when he mistimed a dive and a wave drove...

Why Did the Justice Department Indict Five Chinese Military Officers?
From ACM Opinion

Why Did the Justice Department Indict Five Chinese Military Officers?

At first glance, the Justice Department's 31-count indictment of five Chinese military officers for hacking into the computers of six American corporations, in...

The Fuzzy Math Behind the Search For Mh370
From ACM Opinion

The Fuzzy Math Behind the Search For Mh370

Five weeks into the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, more than $30 million has been spent scouring great swatches of the southern Indian Ocean.
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