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subjectComputer Applications
authorThe Atlantic

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


The Camera Behind the New Pluto Photos
From ACM News

The Camera Behind the New Pluto Photos

For decades after its discovery in 1930, Pluto looked like nothing more than a gray smudge in the abyss of space.

The Computers of Our Wildest Dreams
From ACM News

The Computers of Our Wildest Dreams

One of the first electronic, programmable computers in the world is remembered today mostly by its nickname: Colossus.

Beware the Listening Machines
From ACM Opinion

Beware the Listening Machines

One of my great pleasures in life is attending conferences on fields I'm intrigued by, but know nothing about.

When Google Self-Driving Cars Are in Accidents, Humans Are to Blame
From ACM TechNews

When Google Self-Driving Cars Are in Accidents, Humans Are to Blame

Google says in six years its self-driving cars have been involved in only 12 minor accidents, all of which were the fault of humans. 

The ­nderwater Internet
From ACM News

The ­nderwater Internet

In 1962, during a period of technological and political transition in the undersea-cable industry, the Keawaula cable station was built on Oahu’s west shore for...

How Stargazing Became a Numbers Game
From ACM News

How Stargazing Became a Numbers Game

People have long thought of astronomy as the science of looking to the stars, but discoveries in the cosmos increasingly come from a different kind of observational...

Hacking the Brain
From ACM Opinion

Hacking the Brain

The perfectibility of the human mind is a theme that has captured our imagination for centuries—the notion that, with the right tools, the right approach, the right...

Blueprint For a Better Human Body
From ACM News

Blueprint For a Better Human Body

When Elizabeth Wright smacks her right leg on a table, she says "ow."

Long-Range Iris Scanning Is Here
From ACM News

Long-Range Iris Scanning Is Here

An officer pulls someone over on the side of the highway.

The Internet Mapmakers Helping Nepal
From ACM News

The Internet Mapmakers Helping Nepal

The night after the earthquake hit Nepal, people feared to sleep in their homes, worrying about powerful aftershocks toppling the few buildings left standing.

The Wearable Device That Could ­nlock a New Human Sense
From ACM News

The Wearable Device That Could ­nlock a New Human Sense

In March, the neuroscientist David Eagleman stood on stage to give a TED talk on sensory substitution, the idea of replacing the duties of one sense by using another...

Teaching a Computer Not to Forget
From ACM News

Teaching a Computer Not to Forget

Imagine if every time you learned something new, you completely forgot how to do a thing you'd already learned.

­.s. Supreme Court: Gps Trackers Are a Form of Search and Seizure
From ACM News

­.s. Supreme Court: Gps Trackers Are a Form of Search and Seizure

If the government puts a GPS tracker on you, your car, or any of your personal effects, it counts as a search—and is therefore protected by the Fourth Amendment...

Robot vs. Robot
From ACM News

Robot vs. Robot

Beautiful mathematical patterns are hidden in the chaos of Jackson Pollock’s famous drip paintings.

Finding Out What the Past Smelled Like
From ACM Opinion

Finding Out What the Past Smelled Like

It was the smell that hit me first, a heady mixture of roasting meat, woodsmoke, and farmyard manure.

Watching the Universe in Real Time
From ACM Careers

Watching the Universe in Real Time

Even though the sky looks about the same every night to those of us here on Earth, cataclysmic things happen in outer space constantly.

The Attention Machine
From ACM News

The Attention Machine

Human attention isn't stable, ever, and it costs us: lives lost when drivers space out, billions of dollars wasted on inefficient work, and mental disorders that...

The App Economy Is Now 'bigger Than Hollywood'
From ACM Careers

The App Economy Is Now 'bigger Than Hollywood'

What is the major cultural force in America right now? It might just be apps and the web.

The Voice-Activated Video Game
From ACM Opinion

The Voice-Activated Video Game

When he was in grad school, the roboticist Daniel Wilson installed 150 binary sensors in his house.

A Visit to the Corporate-Industrial Robotics Competition For Teenagers
From ACM Careers

A Visit to the Corporate-Industrial Robotics Competition For Teenagers

Sometimes I think of school as an overlapping set of calendars.
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