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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.


Mapping Potholes by Phone
From ACM TechNews

Mapping Potholes by Phone

A new app for mapping potholes and road quality takes advantage of the accelerometers in smartphones.

Safety Helmet for Firefighters
From ACM TechNews

Safety Helmet for Firefighters

Researchers have developed a firefighter's helmet equipped with haptic actuators, a control box with a radio module, and other devices to provide real-time information...

MIT's 'Smart Surface' Could Improve Your Wi-Fi Signal Tenfold
From ACM TechNews

MIT's 'Smart Surface' Could Improve Your Wi-Fi Signal Tenfold

Researchers have designed a prototype "smart surface" that can concentrate wireless radio signals to maximize reception. 

Self-Learning Heat­ing Control System
From ACM TechNews

Self-Learning Heat­ing Control System

Researchers have developed a smart heating control system that can assess a building's behavior and provide greater comfort and lower energy costs.

Pinterest Bans Misinformation About Voting, Census
From ACM TechNews

Pinterest Bans Misinformation About Voting, Census

The Pinterest platform has banned the posting of misleading information related to voting or the census.

The Secret History of Facial Recognition
From ACM News

The Secret History of Facial Recognition

Sixty years ago, a sharecropper's son invented a technology to identify faces. Then the record of his role all but vanished.

If A Novel Was Good, Would You Care If It Was Created by Artificial Intelligence?
From ACM News

If A Novel Was Good, Would You Care If It Was Created by Artificial Intelligence?

The first computer-generated screenplays are promised within five years. Fiction can't be far behind.

Illinois Law Gives Candidates Rights to Understand How Employers Use Algorithms to Rate Job Interviewees
From ACM TechNews

Illinois Law Gives Candidates Rights to Understand How Employers Use Algorithms to Rate Job Interviewees

A new law in Illinois aims to give job candidates a better understanding of how companies use artificial intelligence to screen video interviews.

Seeking Tech Talent, Companies Kickstart Apprenticeship Programs
From ACM TechNews

Seeking Tech Talent, Companies Kickstart Apprenticeship Programs

Companies are launching apprenticeship programs to recruit nontraditional staff for entry-level positions in the midst of a technology talent shortage.

Virtual Assistants Provide Disappointing Advice When Asked for First Aid, Emergency Information: Study
From ACM TechNews

Virtual Assistants Provide Disappointing Advice When Asked for First Aid, Emergency Information: Study

Researchers have found the major virtual assistants do not live up to their potential in terms of providing users with reliable, relevant information on medical...

Digital Twins Give Urban Planners Virtual Edge
From ACM TechNews

Digital Twins Give Urban Planners Virtual Edge

Digital twins give urban planners, policymakers, resource managers, asset owners, and citizens more dynamic tools and information about their smart cities.

DC Water Taps AI for Sewer Line Assessments
From ACM TechNews

DC Water Taps AI for Sewer Line Assessments

A new algorithm helps Washington, D.C., sewer pipe technicians obtain a more-accurate picture of what is happening in the network of pipes running beneath the city...

Intel and Softbank Beware: Open Source Coming for Chips
From ACM News

Intel and Softbank Beware: Open Source Coming for Chips

Opening up part of the chipmaking process could jostle the industry.

Ginni Rometty to Step Down as C.E.O. of IBM
From ACM News

Ginni Rometty to Step Down as C.E.O. of IBM

Arvind Krishna, who has led the company's cloud computing business, was named the new chief executive.

Critical Flaw Demonstrated in Common Digital Security Algorithm
From ACM TechNews

Critical Flaw Demonstrated in Common Digital Security Algorithm

Researchers have demonstrated a security flaw in the widely used SHA-1 security algorithm that would allow bad actors to fake files and the information within them...

CT Scans, 3D Printing Give Voice to Mummified Priest
From ACM TechNews

CT Scans, 3D Printing Give Voice to Mummified Priest

Researchers in the U.K. used computed tomography scanning and a three-dimensionally-printed larynx to reproduce the sound from the vocal tract of a 3,000-year-old...

IBM's Debating AI Just Got a Lot Closer to Being a Useful Tool
From ACM TechNews

IBM's Debating AI Just Got a Lot Closer to Being a Useful Tool

IBM upgraded the neural networks of its Project Debater system to improve the quality of evidence the argument-mining system uncovers.

Soft, Sensitive, and Smart
From ACM News

Soft, Sensitive, and Smart

The future of robotic skin.

Deepfake Software Translates Videos from One Language to Another
From ACM TechNews

Deepfake Software Translates Videos from One Language to Another

New software automatically translates a video of a person speaking in one language into another language, while matching their lip movements to the new words.

Man Diagnosed with Wuhan Coronavirus Is Being Treated Largely by a Robot
From ACM TechNews

Man Diagnosed with Wuhan Coronavirus Is Being Treated Largely by a Robot

The first person diagnosed with the Wuhan coronavirus in the U.S. is being treated with the help of a robot at Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett, WA...
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