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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.


With Google as Alphabet, a Bid to Dream Big Beyond Search
From ACM Opinion

With Google as Alphabet, a Bid to Dream Big Beyond Search

Shortly after its founding, Google posted a document on its site called "Ten things we know to be true," an effort to distill its unusual corporate culture into...

For Mobile Messaging, GIFs Prove to Be Worth at Least a Thousand Words
From ACM News

For Mobile Messaging, GIFs Prove to Be Worth at Least a Thousand Words

Lucy Dikeou, a 21-year-old senior at Stanford University, has long used English and the pictorial images known as emoji to text on her iPhone.

For Sympathetic Ear, More Chinese Turn to Smartphone Program
From ACM News

For Sympathetic Ear, More Chinese Turn to Smartphone Program

She is known as Xiaoice, and millions of young Chinese pick up their smartphones every day to exchange messages with her, drawn to her knowing sense of humor and...

Screen Addiction Is Taking a Toll on Children
From ACM News

Screen Addiction Is Taking a Toll on Children

Excessive use of computer games among young people in China appears to be taking an alarming turn and may have particular relevance for American parents whose children...

When a Company Is Put ­p For Sale, in Many Cases, Your Personal Data Is, Too
From ACM News

When a Company Is Put ­p For Sale, in Many Cases, Your Personal Data Is, Too

The privacy policy for Hulu, a video-streaming service with about nine million subscribers, opens with a declaration that the company "respects your privacy."

Behind the Downfall at Blackberry
From ACM Opinion

Behind the Downfall at Blackberry

Ever since Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis stepped down as co-chairmen and co-chief executives of BlackBerry, neither has spoken much in public about the once-dominant...

With Boxing Match, Video Piracy Battle Enters Latest Round: Mobile Apps
From ACM News

With Boxing Match, Video Piracy Battle Enters Latest Round: Mobile Apps

The method used by thousands of people to watch unauthorized broadcasts of Saturday night's big boxing match might have been new, but to longtime media executives...

Joseph Lechleider, a Father of the Dsl Internet Technology, Dies at 82
From ACM News

Joseph Lechleider, a Father of the Dsl Internet Technology, Dies at 82

In the late 1980s, Joseph W. Lechleider came up with a clever solution to a puzzling technical problem, making it possible to bring high-speed Internet service...

Statcast Arrives, Offering Way to Quantify Nearly Every Move in Game
From ACM News

Statcast Arrives, Offering Way to Quantify Nearly Every Move in Game

Which outfielders take the most efficient routes to a fly ball? Which pitcher's curveball has the highest spin rate? Which batter has the fastest speed to first...

On Time-Lapse Rocket Ride to Trade Center's Top, Glimpse of Doomed Tower
From ACM News

On Time-Lapse Rocket Ride to Trade Center's Top, Glimpse of Doomed Tower

An imposingly realistic vision of the old 1 World Trade Center, the ultimately doomed north tower, will begin appearing next month in a most unlikely place: the...

Technology That Prods You to Take Action, Not Just Collect Data
From ACM News

Technology That Prods You to Take Action, Not Just Collect Data

The bookshelves in Natasha Dow Schüll’s office at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are punctuated here and there with kitchen timers: a windup orange plastic...

The Hackathon Fast Track, From Campus to Silicon Valley
From ACM Careers

The Hackathon Fast Track, From Campus to Silicon Valley

Shariq Hashme squints at his laptop screen as he scrolls through hundreds of lines of computer code.

Shrill? To N.c.a.a. Tournament Referees, It's Symphonic
From ACM News

Shrill? To N.c.a.a. Tournament Referees, It's Symphonic

Susan Mueller, a flutist and the chairwoman of the Nevada-Las Vegas music department, examined the referee's whistle in her hand.

To Bring Virtual Reality to Market, Furious Efforts to Solve Nausea
From ACM News

To Bring Virtual Reality to Market, Furious Efforts to Solve Nausea

Few technologies have generated more attention than virtual reality, which promises to immerse people in 3-D games and video.

Hoping Google's Lab Is a Rainmaker
From ACM Careers

Hoping Google's Lab Is a Rainmaker

Google's research arm, Google X, is called the company's Moonshot Factory. One reason the company picked the word "Moonshot" was to remind people to tackle big...

Charles H. Townes, Who Paved Way For the Laser in Daily Life, Dies at 99
From ACM Careers

Charles H. Townes, Who Paved Way For the Laser in Daily Life, Dies at 99

Charles H. Townes, a visionary physicist whose research led to the development of the laser, making it possible to play CDs, scan prices at the supermarket, measure...

To Lure Young, Movie Theaters Shake, Smell and Spritz
From ACM News

To Lure Young, Movie Theaters Shake, Smell and Spritz

Having tried 3-D films, earsplitting sound systems and even alcohol sales in pursuit of younger moviegoers, some theater chains are now installing undulating seats...

Gregarious and Direct: China's Web Doorkeeper
From ACM Careers

Gregarious and Direct: China's Web Doorkeeper

When a major Chinese-American Internet conference convenes in Washington on Tuesday, a middle-aged Communist Party propaganda chief will be seated amid a room full...

Sculptor Offers Another Clue in 24-Year-Old Mystery at C.i.a.
From ACM News

Sculptor Offers Another Clue in 24-Year-Old Mystery at C.i.a.

The artist who created the enigmatic Kryptos, a puzzle-in-a-sculpture that has driven code breakers to distraction since it was installed 24 years ago in a courtyard...

A Super-Simple Way to ­nderstand the Net Neutrality Debate
From ACM News

A Super-Simple Way to ­nderstand the Net Neutrality Debate

It's one of the most important policy disputes that will determine the future of the Internet, and now President Obama has formally weighed in in favor of so-called ...
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