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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.


3-D Mapping in Real Time, Without the Drift
From ACM TechNews

3-D Mapping in Real Time, Without the Drift

A new mapping algorithm that creates real-time, detailed three-dimensional maps of indoor and outdoor environments. 

Drug Agents ­se Vast Phone Trove, Eclipsing N.s.a.'s
From ACM News

Drug Agents ­se Vast Phone Trove, Eclipsing N.s.a.'s

For at least six years, law enforcement officials working on a counternarcotics program have had routine access, using subpoenas, to an enormous AT&T database that...

How 'cell Tower Dumps' Caught the High Country Bandit—and Why It Matters
From ACM News

How 'cell Tower Dumps' Caught the High Country Bandit—and Why It Matters

On February 18, 2010, the FBI field office in Denver issued a "wanted" notice for two men known as "the High Country Bandits"—a rather grandiose name for a pair...

Strands Project Develops Robot Security Guards
From ACM TechNews

Strands Project Develops Robot Security Guards

The European Union's Seventh Framework Program is funding the Strands project, which is developing software for robot brains that can be used as security guards...

­.s. Appetite For Internet ­ser Data Not ­nique
From ACM TechNews

­.s. Appetite For Internet ­ser Data Not ­nique

Despite recent concerns about information collection by the United States, law enforcement agencies in Europe and other nations appear to gather equal or greater...

Inside the Response to the New York Times Attack
From ACM News

Inside the Response to the New York Times Attack

Late Tuesday morning, one of the engineers in CloudFlare's San Francisco office saw a message on Twitter saying that the New York Times Web site was down. Minutes...

Scientist Creates Solution For Looming Broadband Shortage
From ACM TechNews

Scientist Creates Solution For Looming Broadband Shortage

A new method to solve the approaching broadcast spectrum deficit examines how cell networks could optimize spectrum use. 

'zero Knowledge' May Answer Computer Security Question
From ACM TechNews

'zero Knowledge' May Answer Computer Security Question

A new protocol for the creation of a "zero-knowledge proof" involves answering questions that depend on having a secret bit of knowledge. 

How Syrian Hackers Found the New York Times's Australian Weak Spot
From ACM News

How Syrian Hackers Found the New York Times's Australian Weak Spot

A hacking attack launched by the Syrian Electronic Army may have targeted the New York Timesand other U.S. media companies, but the weak link was Melbourne IT (...

New Tool Enhances the Search For Genetic Mutations
From ACM TechNews

New Tool Enhances the Search For Genetic Mutations

New software uses statistical probabilities to help identify mutations and more accurately pinpoint their source and their possible significance for health. 

Here's How One Hacker Is Waging War on the Syrian Government
From ACM Careers

Here's How One Hacker Is Waging War on the Syrian Government

As President Obama weighed U.S. air strikes in Syria this week, a lone American hacker was waging his own attack on the Syrian government.

How Scholars Hack the World of Academic Publishing Now
From ACM News

How Scholars Hack the World of Academic Publishing Now

If you want to understand the modern academy, it wouldn't hurt to start at "impact factor."

The New York Times Web Site Was Taken Down By Dns Hijacking. Here's What That Means.
From ACM News

The New York Times Web Site Was Taken Down By Dns Hijacking. Here's What That Means.

Just weeks after The Washington Post had our own run-in with the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA), the New York Times is down, and the SEA is claiming responsibility...

Hacked Feature Phone Can Block Other People's Calls
From ACM TechNews

Hacked Feature Phone Can Block Other People's Calls

A few changes to a standard phone can block calls and text messages intended for nearby users of the same GSM cellular network.

Computer Science Teacher Certification 'deeply Flawed,' Report Says
From ACM TechNews

Computer Science Teacher Certification 'deeply Flawed,' Report Says

State systems for certifying computer science teachers are fundamentally flawed, according to a report from the Computer Science Teachers Association. 

How Surveillance Changes Behavior: A Restaurant Workers Case Study
From ACM News

How Surveillance Changes Behavior: A Restaurant Workers Case Study

Surveillance is certainly much in the news lately. Most notably, of course, there is the continuing outcry over the National Security Agency’s call-tracking program...

NASA's Plan to Put a Landsail Rover on Venus
From ACM News

NASA's Plan to Put a Landsail Rover on Venus

Venus is like a reclusive celebrity that gets the public's attention every couple of years, though in the planet's case it's more like every century.

Wearable Robots Are No Longer Science Fiction
From ACM News

Wearable Robots Are No Longer Science Fiction

Exoskeletons will address military, medical, commercial applications.

Why Video Games May Be Good For You
From ACM News

Why Video Games May Be Good For You

Games have long been accused of making players violent, but evidence has been building over the years that they can have positive effects.

How a Look at Your Gmail Reveals the Power of Metadata
From ACM News

How a Look at Your Gmail Reveals the Power of Metadata

Sometimes you have to give up a little privacy in order to find out how much—or how little—privacy you really have.
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