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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.


Apple to Ditch Intel Chips in Macs as It Consolidates Its Power
From ACM News

Apple to Ditch Intel Chips in Macs as It Consolidates Its Power

The move, announced in the live-streamed start to the company's conference for developers, marks the end of a 15-year partnership.

A Multibillion-Dollar Opportunity: Virus-Proofing the New Office
From ACM News

A Multibillion-Dollar Opportunity: Virus-Proofing the New Office

Tech, catering and design companies are rushing to sell employers on fever scanners, box lunches, and office floor-planning apps for social distancing. But it's...

Big Tech Zeros In on the Virus-Testing Market
From ACM News

Big Tech Zeros In on the Virus-Testing Market

As businesses grapple with how to safely reopen the workplace, some companies are rushing out new work force health-vetting and tracking tools.

Britain Didn’t Want Silicon Valley’s Help on a Tracing App. Now It Does.
From ACM News

Britain Didn’t Want Silicon Valley’s Help on a Tracing App. Now It Does.

Months after other countries, Britain will now use technology provided by Apple and Google to build a contact-tracing app.

China is Collecting DNA From Tens of Millions of Boys and Men, Using U.S. Equipment
From ACM News

China is Collecting DNA From Tens of Millions of Boys and Men, Using U.S. Equipment

Even children are pressed into giving blood samples to build a sweeping genetic database that will add to Beijing's growing surveillance capabilities.

Riding Out Quarantine With a Chatbot Friend: ‘I Feel Very Connected’
From ACM News

Riding Out Quarantine With a Chatbot Friend: ‘I Feel Very Connected’

The digital companions may sound like science fiction. But when social isolation became the norm, they helped deal with the loneliness, some users say.

Signal Downloads Are Way Up Since the Protests Began
From ACM News

Signal Downloads Are Way Up Since the Protests Began

Organizers and demonstrators say they feel safer communicating with end-to-end encryption.

Farewell to Gummy Bear Jars: Tech Offices Get a Virus Safety Makeover
From ACM News

Farewell to Gummy Bear Jars: Tech Offices Get a Virus Safety Makeover

Companies like Salesforce created workplaces with all the comforts of home, but now they may feel more like hospitals.

For a Day, Scientists Pause Science to Confront Racism
From ACM News

For a Day, Scientists Pause Science to Confront Racism

Scholars said they would not hold classes or lectures on Wednesday, and leading journals and scientific associations said they would not announce most breakthroughs...

Amazon Pauses Police Use of Its Facial Recognition Software
From ACM News

Amazon Pauses Police Use of Its Facial Recognition Software

The company said it hoped the moratorium "might give Congress enough time to put in place appropriate rules" for the technology.

With an Internet of Animals, Scientists Aim to Track, Save Wildlife
From ACM TechNews

With an Internet of Animals, Scientists Aim to Track, Save Wildlife

Sensors and other equipment aboard the International Space Station will be used to monitor wildlife, revolutionizing animal tracking.

A U.S. Secret Weapon in A.I.: Chinese Talent
From ACM News

A U.S. Secret Weapon in A.I.: Chinese Talent

New research shows scientists educated in China help American firms and schools dominate the cutting-edge field. Now industry leaders worry that worsening political...

Don’t Kid Yourself: Online Lectures Are Here to Stay
From ACM News

Don’t Kid Yourself: Online Lectures Are Here to Stay

The economic forces are too powerful for virtual instruction to go away after the pandemic. The important question is who will benefit financially, a Cornell economist...

Publishers Sue Internet Archive Over Free E-Books
From ACM News

Publishers Sue Internet Archive Over Free E-Books

Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Hachette,  and Wiley accused the nonprofit of piracy for making over 1 million books free online.

To Disinfect Police Car in a Pandemic, Software Cranks Up the Heat
From ACM TechNews

To Disinfect Police Car in a Pandemic, Software Cranks Up the Heat

Police departments in several U.S. cities are using updated software from Ford Motor that the automaker claims can kill the coronavirus.

How Automated Background Checks Freeze Out Renters
From ACM News

How Automated Background Checks Freeze Out Renters

Algorithms that scan everything from terror watch lists to eviction records spit out flawed tenant screening reports. And almost nobody is watching.

China’s Virus Apps May Outlast the Outbreak, Stirring Privacy Fears
From ACM News

China’s Virus Apps May Outlast the Outbreak, Stirring Privacy Fears

With the disease there mostly under control, officials are looking for new uses for the government software that's now on many phones.

A City Locks Down to Fight Coronavirus, but Robots Come and Go
From ACM News

A City Locks Down to Fight Coronavirus, but Robots Come and Go

Like many other places, a community 50 miles outside London went into quarantine. A fleet of delivery robots has been helping with the groceries.

App Shows Promise in Tracking New Coronavirus Cases, Study Finds
From ACM News

App Shows Promise in Tracking New Coronavirus Cases, Study Finds

The app, which allows people to record their symptoms, was remarkably effective in predicting infections. The most reliable indicators, researchers found, were...

This Was Supposed to Be the Year Driverless Cars Went Mainstream
From ACM TechNews

This Was Supposed to Be the Year Driverless Cars Went Mainstream

The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted technology companies' plans to bring autonomous vehicles into the mainstream this year.
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