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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.

November 2020


From ACM News

The Few, the Tired, the Open Source Coders

The Few, the Tired, the Open Source Coders

The open source movement runs on the heroic efforts of not enough people doing too much work. They need help.


From ACM News

Gladys West: the Hidden Figure Who Helped Invent GPS

Gladys West: the Hidden Figure Who Helped Invent GPS

Growing up on a farm in Virginia during segregation, West knew education would be her means of escape. But she didn't know her quiet work on a naval base would change lives around the world.


From ACM News

Modelling Clouds and Climate

Modelling Clouds and Climate

Machine learning algorithms are showing promise at helping better simulate the effect of clouds, making climate models more accurate.


From ACM TechNews

Cloud Computing Is Grabbing More of Your IT Spending

Cloud Computing Is Grabbing More of Your IT Spending

Cloud-based corporate information technology spending should expand in the coming years, as businesses transition more applications and services, says Gartner.


From ACM TechNews

Software Stalks Malware in the Wild

Software Stalks Malware in the Wild

A new tool can pinpoint online malware source code repositories with 89% accuracy.


From ACM TechNews

Worries of Widespread 'Tech Addiction' May Be Overblown, Says Study

Worries of Widespread 'Tech Addiction' May Be Overblown, Says Study

Researchers found a weak relationship between early technology use and later technology use, indicating fears of widespread, long-lasting tech addiction may be overblown.


From ACM News

Need a Hypothesis? This A.I. Has One

Need a Hypothesis? This A.I. Has One

Slowly, machine-learning systems are beginning to generate ideas, not just test them.


From ACM News

Simple Eye Exam With Powerful Artificial Intelligence Could Lead to Early Parkinson’s Disease Diagnosis

Simple Eye Exam With Powerful Artificial Intelligence Could Lead to Early Parkinson’s Disease Diagnosis

The researchers deployed a type of artificial intelligence called support vector machine (SVM) learning, which has been around since 1989.


From ACM TechNews

The Future of Kitchen Design Is Hands-Free, Smartphone-Activated

The Future of Kitchen Design Is Hands-Free, Smartphone-Activated

Appliance designers and manufacturers increasingly rely on technological advances to modernize the kitchen.


From ACM TechNews

Upgraded Radar Can Enable Self-Driving Cars to See Clearly, No Matter the Weather

Upgraded Radar Can Enable Self-Driving Cars to See Clearly, No Matter the Weather

Designers and appliance makers increasingly rely on a host of technological innovations to update the traditional tasks of cooking, storing and cleaning up.


From ACM News

IBM Apologizes For Firing Computer Pioneer For Being Transgender...52 Years Later

IBM Apologizes For Firing Computer Pioneer For Being Transgender...52 Years Later

You've likely never heard of 82-year-old computer scientist Lynn Conway, but her discoveries power your smartphones and computers.


From ACM News

U.S. Senate Passes Bill to Secure Internet-Connected Devices Against Cyber Vulnerabilities

U.S. Senate Passes Bill to Secure Internet-Connected Devices Against Cyber Vulnerabilities

The U.S. Senate this week unanimously passed the bipartisan Internet of Things Cybersecurity Improvement Act to strengthen the cybersecurity of Internet-connected devices.


From ACM TechNews

3D Bioprinted Heart Could Train Tomorrow's Surgeons

3D Bioprinted Heart Could Train Tomorrow's Surgeons

Carnegie Mellon University researchers have fabricated the first full-size three-dimensionally (3D) bioprinted human heart model from magnetic resonance imaging data, using what it calls the Freeform Reversible Embedding of Suspended…


From ACM TechNews

Autonomous Robot Cars to Deliver Medicine Around London

Autonomous Robot Cars to Deliver Medicine Around London

A fleet of autonomous, electrically-powered robot vehicles has started delivering medicine to care homes in London's Borough of Hounslow as part of a public trial.


From ACM TechNews

Chinese-U.S. Team Receives 2020 Gordon Bell Prize

Chinese-U.S. Team Receives 2020 Gordon Bell Prize

The Association for Computing Machinery named a U.S.-Chinese team of nine researchers as recipients of the 2020 ACM Gordon Bell Prize for Deep Potential Molecular Dynamics (DPMD), a machine learning-based protocol that can simulate…


From ACM News

An Angel on the Shoulder of Your Teenage Driver

An Angel on the Shoulder of Your Teenage Driver

Many automakers now offer driving monitors as optional or standard components that warn parents if their teenagers are not driving well.


From ACM News

Meet The Army’s Future Family Of Robot Tanks: RCV

Meet The Army’s Future Family Of Robot Tanks: RCV

The U.S. Army has outlined draft objectives for a range of Robotic Combat Vehicles.


From ACM News

Magnetic Spray Transforms Objects Into Insect-Scale Robots for Biomedical Applications

Magnetic Spray Transforms Objects Into Insect-Scale Robots for Biomedical Applications

Driven by a magnetic field, the coated objects can crawl, walk, or roll on different surfaces.


From ACM News

When AI Sees a Man, It Thinks 'Official.' A Woman? 'Smile'

When AI Sees a Man, It Thinks 'Official.' A Woman? 'Smile'

New research renews concerns about bias in image recognition services offered by Google, Microsoft, and Amazon. 


From ACM TechNews

AI Research Finds 'Compute Divide' Concentrates Power, Accelerates Inequality in Era of Deep Learning

AI Research Finds 'Compute Divide' Concentrates Power, Accelerates Inequality in Era of Deep Learning

An unequal distribution of compute power in academia is exacerbating inequality in deep learning, say researchers at Virginia Tech and Western University.


From ACM TechNews

Disaster Apps Share Personal Data in Violation of Their Privacy Policies

Disaster Apps Share Personal Data in Violation of Their Privacy Policies

Popular disaster applications are violating their privacy policies by continuing to track users' whereabouts, or providing personal information to third parties.


From ACM TechNews

Schools Struggling to Stay Open Get Hit by Ransomware Attacks

Schools Struggling to Stay Open Get Hit by Ransomware Attacks

Schools struggling to stay open during the Covid-19 pandemic are being targeted by ransomware, as hackers threaten to post sensitive student information online.


From ACM TechNews

Building a Better Traffic Forecasting Model

Building a Better Traffic Forecasting Model

Scientists are using artificial intelligence to forecast large-scale traffic patterns with greater accuracy.


From ACM News

The Role of LARPing in Computer Science Education

The Role of LARPing in Computer Science Education

´╗┐Live-action roleplaying (LARPing) could make computer science education more engaging and effective.


From ACM News

The FBI Buying 140 Robots to Handle Paper Records

The FBI Buying 140 Robots to Handle Paper Records

The robots will glide along an overhead track, drop down at the right place, and retrieve whatever file or record is needed.


From ACM News

Apple to Pay $113 Million to Settle State Investigation into iPhone 'Batterygate'

Apple to Pay $113 Million to Settle State Investigation into iPhone 'Batterygate'

Investigators from 34 states and the District of Columbia, including Democratic and Republican attorneys general, joined the settlement.


From ACM TechNews

'Extremely Aggressive' Internet Censorship Spreads in the World's Democracies

'Extremely Aggressive' Internet Censorship Spreads in the World's Democracies

University of Michigan researchers used an automated censorship tracking system to demonstrate that online censorship is proliferating in even the freest countries.


From ACM TechNews

'Most Secure' U.S. Election Not Without Problems

'Most Secure' U.S. Election Not Without Problems

Although federal officials declared the 2020 presidential election the "most secure in American history," there were still technical problems.


From ACM TechNews

Meat Giant Tyson Girds for Virus Surge, Tracking Covid-19 with Algorithms

Meat Giant Tyson Girds for Virus Surge, Tracking Covid-19 with Algorithms

Tyson Foods CEO Dean Banks said the U.S. meatpacking company is using infection-tracking algorithms and employee testing to protect workers from a Covid-19 surge.


From ACM TechNews

Stretchable Sensor Gives Robots, VR a Human Touch

Stretchable Sensor Gives Robots, VR a Human Touch

Cornell University researchers have developed a fiber-optic sensor that can be use in a stretchable skin to sense deformations like pressure, bending, and strain.

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