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dateMore Than a Year Ago
subjectComputer Applications
authorNew Scientist
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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.


Touch Floors Could Be Next Step in Computer Interfaces
From ACM News

Touch Floors Could Be Next Step in Computer Interfaces

Imagine entering your living room and sliding your foot purposefully over a particular stretch of floor. Your hi-fi system springs to life, pumping out the sounds...

Look, No Hands: Cars That Drive Better Than You
From ACM News

Look, No Hands: Cars That Drive Better Than You

With his jeans, white trainers and stripy top, Bob is every inch the well-dressed 6-year-old. He's standing in the middle of a hotel car park and, scarily, I'm...

From ACM News

Cellphone Traces Reveal You're So Predictable

We may all like to consider ourselves free spirits. But a study of the traces left by 50,000 cellphone users over three months has conclusively proved otherwise...

­.s. Networks and Power Grid ­nder (mock) Cyber-Attack
From ACM News

­.s. Networks and Power Grid ­nder (mock) Cyber-Attack

Unknown hackers have taken out U.S. cellphone networks in an ongoing cyber-attack that will soon knock out parts of the nation's electricity grid – say the officials...

Smart Dust Could Give Early Warning of Space Storms
From ACM News

Smart Dust Could Give Early Warning of Space Storms

A SWARM of "smart dust" spacecraft, positioned at a sweet spot between the Earth and the sun, could alert us to the approach of dangerous space storms well before...

Unplugged: Goodbye Cables, Hello Energy Beams
From ACM News

Unplugged: Goodbye Cables, Hello Energy Beams

LET'S face it: power cables are unsightly dust-traps. PCs, TVs and music players are becoming slicker every year, but the nest of vipers in the corner of everyAn...

From ACM News

Touchscreen Merges the Real and Digital Worlds

For all the advances in table-top and tablet computing, some design professionals will always prefer the feel of pen on paper to stylus on glass. A new device could...

From ACM News

Microsoft's Body-Sensing, Button-Busting Controller

A LONG-lived videogaming skill could be on the way out this year as Microsoft hones an add-on to its Xbox 360 console aimed at making button-studded games controllers...

Paper Screens Could Provide Depth to Computer Display
From ACM TechNews

Paper Screens Could Provide Depth to Computer Display

Researchers have designed an inexpensive interface system that uses a ceiling-mounted projector and an infrared camera to detect the placement of objects on a horizontal...

Medibots: The World's Smallest Surgeons
From ACM News

Medibots: The World's Smallest Surgeons

A man lies comatose on an operating table. The enormous spider that hangs above him has plunged four appendages into his belly. The spider, made of white steel,...

Virtual Crashes and Clatters Get Real
From ACM News

Virtual Crashes and Clatters Get Real

The clatter of a dropped trash can and the crash of a cymbal – both easily recognisable sounds. That's why computer games or CGI movies that feature such noises...

Aid Agencies Turn to Open-Source Software
From ACM TechNews

Aid Agencies Turn to Open-Source Software

Wesleyan University and Trinity College students have developed Collabbit, software that acts as a virtual emergency response center. Collabbit serves as a central...

From ACM TechNews

Augmented Reality Gets Off to a Wobbly Start

Although the iPhone can superimpose navigation routes or reviews on top of real-time images, augmented reality (AR) still has a long way to go. The iPhone's application...

From ACM News

Quantum Computers Are Coming

WHATEVER happened to quantum computers? A few years ago, it seemed, it was just a case of a tweak here, a fiddle there, and some kind of number-crunching Godzilla...

From ACM TechNews

Get to Hospital to See the Future

Modern hospitals provide a glimpse into how people will interact with machines in the future, according to a new Gartner report on the future of human-computer...

'spiderbots' Talk Amongst Themselves Inside Active Volcano
From ACM TechNews

'spiderbots' Talk Amongst Themselves Inside Active Volcano

A group of "spiderbots" released inside Mount St. Helens in Washington is the first network of volcano sensors capable of automatically communicating with each...

From ACM TechNews

Robots to Get Their Own Operating System

Robots are limited by the fact that they are often designed and built in isolation for specific functions, and roboticists have started to consider what aspects...

Is the Future of Healthcare Online?
From ACM TechNews

Is the Future of Healthcare Online?

An international coalition of medical and technology companies called the Continua Health Alliance is encouraging the migration of healthcare to the Web, as remote...

Virtual Power Plants Could Tame Coming Grid Chaos
From ACM News

Virtual Power Plants Could Tame Coming Grid Chaos

Fears over energy security and climate change have led to record investment in renewable energy. But a major problem threatens to stall progress towards a more...

Robots Rolling Toward Farm Revolution
From ACM TechNews

Robots Rolling Toward Farm Revolution

Carnegie Mellon University roboticist Tony Stentz says that in the near future the farming industry may undergo a significant change as robotic farmhands become...
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