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

November 2017


From ACM News

How Traveling Back In Time Could Really, Physically Be Possible

How Traveling Back In Time Could Really, Physically Be Possible

It's one of the greatest tropes in movies, literature, and television shows: the idea that we could travel back in time to alter the past.


From ACM News

NASA Links Port-City Sea Levels to Regional Ice Melt

NASA Links Port-City Sea Levels to Regional Ice Melt

A new NASA tool links changes in sea level in 293 global port cities to specific regions of melting land ice, such as southern Greenland and the Antarctic Peninsula. It is intended to help coastal planners prepare for rising …


From ACM TechNews

Virginia Becomes First State to Require Computer Science Instruction

Virginia Becomes First State to Require Computer Science Instruction

Virginia has completed a series of computer science standards designed to configure the curriculum and what instructors are expected to teach at each grade level.


From ACM TechNews

Cultivating STEM Success

Cultivating STEM Success

Harvard University's Pooja Chandrashekar founded the ProjectCSGIRLS coding competition, now the largest such competition for middle-school girls in the U.S.


From ACM TechNews

Voice Impersonators Can Fool Speaker Recognition Systems

Voice Impersonators Can Fool Speaker Recognition Systems

Researchers have found skillful voice impersonators are able to fool state-of-the-art speaker recognition systems, posing a significant security risk.


From ACM TechNews

New Way to Write Magnetic Info Could Pave the Way for Hardware Neural Networks

New Way to Write Magnetic Info Could Pave the Way for Hardware Neural Networks

A new method for writing magnetic information in any pattern uses a very small magnetic probe known as a magnetic force microscope.


From ACM TechNews

Armed With Tough Computer Chips, Scientists Are Ready to Return to the Hell of Venus

Armed With Tough Computer Chips, Scientists Are Ready to Return to the Hell of Venus

Robot missions to Venus could become routine within the next decade by sending exploratory probes with highly durable computer chips that can handle the planet's extreme environment.


From ACM News

Recurring Martian Streaks: Flowing Sand, Not Water?

Recurring Martian Streaks: Flowing Sand, Not Water?

Dark features on Mars previously considered evidence for subsurface flowing of water are interpreted by new research as granular flows, where grains of sand and dust slip downhill to make dark streaks, rather than the ground …


From ACM News

2017 AAAS Fellows Recognized for Advancing Science

2017 AAAS Fellows Recognized for Advancing Science

The 2017 AAAS Fellows will be honored at the 2018 AAAS Annual Meeting in Austin, TX, Feb. 15-19, 2018.


From ACM News

How Disinformation and Distortions on Social Media Affected Elections Worldwide

How Disinformation and Distortions on Social Media Affected Elections Worldwide

Internet freedom is on the decline for the seventh consecutive year as governments around the world take to distorting information on social media in order to influence elections, a new report says.


From ACM TechNews

This Inquisitive AI Will Kick Your Butt at Battleship

This Inquisitive AI Will Kick Your Butt at Battleship

Researchers have developed an artificial intelligence that can skillfully play a Battleship-like game by determining how to ask questions as efficiently as possible.


From ACM TechNews

UCLA Engineers Use Deep Learning to Reconstruct Holograms and Improve Optical Microscopy

UCLA Engineers Use Deep Learning to Reconstruct Holograms and Improve Optical Microscopy

Researchers have developed two new uses for machine learning--reconstructing a hologram to form a microscopic image of an object, and improving optical microscopy.


From ACM TechNews

Breakthrough Could Launch Organic Electronics Beyond Cellphone Screens

Breakthrough Could Launch Organic Electronics Beyond Cellphone Screens

An international team of researchers could advance the use of organic electronics by facilitating a breakthrough in organic semiconductors.


From ACM News

Non-von Neumann Computers Providing Brain-like Functionality

Non-von Neumann Computers Providing Brain-like Functionality

By 2020, the reign of the von Neumann architecture will begin fading away after 75 years of dominance.


From ACM Careers

As Silicon Valley Gets 'Crazy,' Midwest Beckons Tech Investors

As Silicon Valley Gets 'Crazy,' Midwest Beckons Tech Investors

They seem an odd couple. J. D. Vance, author of "Hillbilly Elegy," his best-selling memoir of growing up in the postindustrial Midwest and his journey of escape. And Steve Case, the billionaire co-founder of America Online.


From ACM News

Exoplanet Hunters Rethink Search for Alien Life

Exoplanet Hunters Rethink Search for Alien Life

Steve Desch can see the future of exoplanet research, and it's not pretty.


From ACM TechNews

Multiplayer Video Games: Researchers Discover Link Between Skill and Intelligence

Multiplayer Video Games: Researchers Discover Link Between Skill and Intelligence

Researchers have found a connection between young people's ability to perform well at two popular video games, and high levels of intelligence.


From ACM TechNews

New Software Can Pinpoint Hate Groups' Radicalization Sites

New Software Can Pinpoint Hate Groups' Radicalization Sites

New software searches mainstream websites and the Dark Web to identify sites that contain terrorist ideologies that encourage people to cause harm.


From ACM TechNews

WPI Research Detects When Online Reviews and News Are a Paid-for Pack of Lies

WPI Research Detects When Online Reviews and News Are a Paid-for Pack of Lies

New algorithms are designed to combat crowdturfing, in which masses of online workers are paid to post phony reviews, circulate malicious tweets, and spread fake news.


From ACM TechNews

Can Computers Be Creative?

Can Computers Be Creative?

Pennsylvania State University researchers are training computers to produce original design ideas, in order to determine whetyer they are technically feasible.


From ACM TechNews

First-of-Its-Kind Bioengineered Robotic Hand to Sense Touch

First-of-Its-Kind Bioengineered Robotic Hand to Sense Touch

Researchers are developing a bioengineered robotic hand that will grow and adapt to its environment, with its own peripheral nervous system linking to sensors and actuators.


From ACM TechNews

Martonosi Sketches a Path for a New Type of Computing

Martonosi Sketches a Path for a New Type of Computing

Princeton University professor Margaret Martonosi says quantum computing has reached an inflection point.


From ACM News

Blockchain Gets a Wall Street Win: 'We Know the Thing Works Now' 

Blockchain Gets a Wall Street Win: 'We Know the Thing Works Now' 

The prospect of blockchain technology remaking financial services just moved a step closer to reality after banks including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. completed a successful six-month test in the $2.8 trillion…


From ACM News

Tim Berners-Lee on the Future of the Web: 'The System is Failing'

Tim Berners-Lee on the Future of the Web: 'The System is Failing'

The inventor of the World Wide Web remains an optimist but sees a 'nasty wind' blowing amid concerns over advertising, net neutrality and fake news.


From ACM News

Did technology kill the truth?

Did technology kill the truth?

The software algorithms that decide our news feed are programmed to prioritize user attention over truth to optimize for engagement, which means optimizing for outrage, anger and awe.


From ACM News

Five Technologies That Will Rock Your World

Five Technologies That Will Rock Your World

After the Russian hacking of the 2016 election, many people worry that technology has gone too far.


From ACM News

Listening for Gravitational Waves Using Pulsars

Listening for Gravitational Waves Using Pulsars

One of the most spectacular achievements in physics so far this century has been the observation of gravitational waves, ripples in space-time that result from masses accelerating in space.


From ACM TechNews

Stanford Algorithm Can Diagnose Pneumonia Better Than Radiologists

Stanford Algorithm Can Diagnose Pneumonia Better Than Radiologists

A new deep-learning algorithm that evaluates chest x-rays for signs of disease and can outperform radiologists at diagnosing pneumonia.


From ACM TechNews

Robots Can Help Us Better Understand How Infants Learn

Robots Can Help Us Better Understand How Infants Learn

Johan Kwisthout of Radboud University in the Netherlands' discusses efforts to use robots to replicate the brains infants in order to better understand their learning process.


From ACM TechNews

Supercomputing Speeds Up Deep Learning Training

Supercomputing Speeds Up Deep Learning Training

A team led by Texas Advanced Computing Center researchers has published the results of an effort to use supercomputers to train a deep neural network for rapid image recognition.

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