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Communications of the ACM

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The news archive provides access to past news stories from Communications of the ACM and other sources by date.

February 2020


From ACM News

New California Law Creates Complications for Connected Cars

New California Law Creates Complications for Connected Cars

The California Consumer Privacy Act is one of the most stringent and sweeping privacy laws in the country, but may create complications for carmakers and dealerships.


From ACM TechNews

New Yorkers Face Training Gap for Tech Jobs, but Study Finds Hope

New Yorkers Face Training Gap for Tech Jobs, but Study Finds Hope

A study by the nonprofit research group Center for an Urban Future offers hope for New York City employees who lack the training to qualify for upcoming technology jobs. 


From ACM TechNews

U.S. Military Facial Recognition System Could Work From 1 Kilometer Away

U.S. Military Facial Recognition System Could Work From 1 Kilometer Away

The U.S. Special Operations Command  is developing a portable facial recognition system that can identify individuals from 1 kilometer (0.6 miles) off. 


From ACM TechNews

Automated System Can Rewrite Outdated Sentences in Wikipedia Articles

Automated System Can Rewrite Outdated Sentences in Wikipedia Articles

A new system can automatically update factual inconsistencies in Wikipedia articles.


From ACM News

Futurists Get 15 Minutes Every 4 Years

Futurists Get 15 Minutes Every 4 Years

Zoltan Istvan is the latest futurist to run for U.S. president.


From ACM News

Should All Children Learn to Code by the End of High School?

Should All Children Learn to Code by the End of High School?

Supporters say coding know-how is good for students in an increasingly digital world. Opponents say public schools shouldn't serve as job-training sites for tech companies.


From ACM News

Pentagon Adopts New Ethical Principles for Using AI in War

Pentagon Adopts New Ethical Principles for Using AI in War

The new principles follow recommendations made last year by the Defense Innovation Board, a group led by former Google CEO Eric Schmidt.


From ACM News

Katherine Johnson Dies at 101; Mathematician Broke Barriers at NASA

Katherine Johnson Dies at 101; Mathematician Broke Barriers at NASA

She was one of a group of black women mathematicians at NASA and its predecessor who were celebrated in the 2016 movie "Hidden Figures."


From ACM TechNews

Mapping Coronavirus: South Koreans Turn to Online Tracking as Cases Surge

Mapping Coronavirus: South Koreans Turn to Online Tracking as Cases Surge

Private software developers have launched websites and apps to help people in South Korea track cases of coronavirus and avoid places where infected people have been. 


From ACM TechNews

AI Algorithm Better Predicts Corn Yield

AI Algorithm Better Predicts Corn Yield

An interdisciplinary research team developed a convolutional neural network that generates crop yield predictions, incorporating information from topographic variables.


From ACM TechNews

Coding for Uncertainty Increases Security

Coding for Uncertainty Increases Security

Computer scientists have designed an algorithm to combat poaching in wildlife preserves.


From ACM TechNews

Study Finds Quarter of Climate Change Tweets From Bots

Study Finds Quarter of Climate Change Tweets From Bots

Brown University researchers found 25% of 6.5-million Twitter posts about climate change were likely produced by bots, giving the impression of widespread climate change denial.


From ACM TechNews

A Growing Presence on the Farm: Robots

A Growing Presence on the Farm: Robots

Agronomists are using new autonomous robots to help them breed better crops. 


From ACM TechNews

Chip Brings Ultra-Low-Power Wi-Fi to IoT Devices

Chip Brings Ultra-Low-Power Wi-Fi to IoT Devices

A new ultra-low-power Wi-Fi radio enables Internet of Things devices to communicate with existing Wi-Fi networks using 5,000 times less power.


From ACM News

Angry Nerd: Don't Fall for the Quantum Con

Angry Nerd: Don't Fall for the Quantum Con

Quantum cryptography is clever and impressive, but companies calling it "unbreakable" and "unhackable" turns me into Shrödinger's sourpuss.


From ACM News

The Computer Pioneer Who Built Modern China

The Computer Pioneer Who Built Modern China

Isolated from the rest of the world, one woman pushed computing from a geeky obsession into a transformative industry.


From ACM News

Powerful antibiotic discovered using machine learning for first time

Powerful antibiotic discovered using machine learning for first time

Team says halicin kills some of the world's most dangerous strains.


From ACM News

EU’s Agenda to Regulate AI Does Little to Rein in Facial Recognition

EU’s Agenda to Regulate AI Does Little to Rein in Facial Recognition

Europe is backpedaling on facial recognition.


From ACM TechNews

Cryptographic 'Tag of Everything' Could Protect Supply Chain

Cryptographic 'Tag of Everything' Could Protect Supply Chain

A new cryptographic identity tag can be attached to virtually any product in order to verify its authenticity.


From ACM TechNews

Activate 'Bracelet of Silence' and Alexa Can't Eavesdrop

Activate 'Bracelet of Silence' and Alexa Can't Eavesdrop

A prototype wearable device blocks microphones in the vicinity from eavesdropping on conversations.


From ACM TechNews

Tyson Takes Computer Vision to the Chicken Plant

Tyson Takes Computer Vision to the Chicken Plant

Tyson Foods will use computer vision to track chicken moving through its plants as part of a plan to invest more in automation and artificial intelligence in order to cut costs and reduce waste.


From ACM TechNews

Cyborg Grasshoppers Engineered to Sniff Out Explosives

Cyborg Grasshoppers Engineered to Sniff Out Explosives

Washington University researchers converted grasshoppers into bomb-sniffing tools by implanting electrodes in the insects' antenna lobes to tap into the capabilities of their olfactory receptor neurons.


From ACM TechNews

In Nevada, Last-Minute Scramble to Make Voting Tech Work

In Nevada, Last-Minute Scramble to Make Voting Tech Work

Nevada's Democratic Party hopes to avoid the fiasco seen in Iowa when it holds its caucuses Saturday with an in-house electronic voting system that it had to assemble quickly.


From ACM News

New Mexico Sues Google Over Children’s Privacy Violations

New Mexico Sues Google Over Children’s Privacy Violations

The lawsuit says that Google, the top tech brand in public schools, used its educational products to spy on students.


From ACM News

The Computer Scientist Responsible for Cut, Copy, and Paste, Has Passed Away

The Computer Scientist Responsible for Cut, Copy, and Paste, Has Passed Away

Larry Tesler's contributions to making computers and mobile devices easier to use were the highlight of a long career influencing modern computing.


From ACM TechNews

China is Using Mass Surveillance Tech to Fight Coronavirus Spread

China is Using Mass Surveillance Tech to Fight Coronavirus Spread

The Chinese government is working with technology companies to monitor citizens and track confirmed cases of people infected with the coronavirus.


From ACM TechNews

High Performers Show the Way Toward AI Adoption

High Performers Show the Way Toward AI Adoption

A McKinsey Global Institute survey offers lessons from high-performing companies on artificial intelligence (AI) adoption, of whom about 3% are realizing outsize business results.


From ACM TechNews

Google Redraws the Borders on Maps Depending on Who's Looking

Google Redraws the Borders on Maps Depending on Who's Looking

Google and other online mapmakers revise borders depending on who is viewing them, in deference to diplomats, policymakers, and their own executives, according to sources familiar with the situation.


From ACM TechNews

Ransomware Attacks Grow, Crippling Cities, Businesses

Ransomware Attacks Grow, Crippling Cities, Businesses

In recent years, ransomware attacks have crippled computer networks and extorted money to restore access to users.


From ACM News

This Could be Microsoft's Most Important Product in 2020. If It Works...

This Could be Microsoft's Most Important Product in 2020. If It Works...

ElectionGuard isn't designed to make voting machines safe from hackers. It's meant to make hacking them pointless.

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