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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 2018


From ACM News

Serious Quantum Computers Are Finally Here. What Are We Going to Do with Them?

Serious Quantum Computers Are Finally Here. What Are We Going to Do with Them?

Inside a small laboratory in lush countryside about 50 miles north of New York City, an elaborate tangle of tubes and electronics dangles from the ceiling. This mess of equipment is a computer.


From ACM TechNews

Noise Warfare

Noise Warfare

Researchers at Harvard University have developed noise-robust classifiers against the worst case of added additional data that disrupts or skews information an algorithm has already learned.


From ACM TechNews

Scientists Pave the Way for Resilient Robot Swarms

Scientists Pave the Way for Resilient Robot Swarms

Researchers at the University of Southampton in the U.K. say they are developing fault-tolerant robotic swarms using bio-inspired algorithms and machine learning.


From ACM TechNews

Supercomputers Aid Discovery of New, Inexpensive Material to Make LEDs With Excellent Color Quality

Supercomputers Aid Discovery of New, Inexpensive Material to Make LEDs With Excellent Color Quality

Researchers used data mining and computational tools to find a new phosphor material for white light-emitting diodes that yield better color quality than many commercial LEDs.


From ACM TechNews

Robo-Picker Grasps and Grabs

Robo-Picker Grasps and Grabs

A new "pick-and-place" robot features a standard industrial robotic arm equipped with a custom gripper and suction cup.


From ACM TechNews

F# for Scientists

F# for Scientists

Over the next five years, F# is expected to become a popular functional programming language for scientists working on the Windows platform.


From ACM News

Deep Learning for Biology

Deep Learning for Biology

Four years ago, scientists from Google showed up on neuroscientist Steve Finkbeiner's doorstep.


From ACM News

New Study Brings Antarctic Ice Loss Into Sharper Focus

New Study Brings Antarctic Ice Loss Into Sharper Focus

A NASA study based on an innovative technique for crunching torrents of satellite data provides the clearest picture yet of changes in Antarctic ice flow into the ocean.


From ACM News

Twitter Bars Tactics Used by 'Bots' to Spread False Stories

Twitter Bars Tactics Used by 'Bots' to Spread False Stories

Twitter Inc said on Wednesday it would no longer allow people to post identical messages from multiple accounts, cracking down on a tactic that Russian agents and others have allegedly used to make tweets or topics go viral.


From ACM TechNews

New Algorithm Can Pinpoint Mutations Favored by Natural Selection in Large Sections of the Human Genome

New Algorithm Can Pinpoint Mutations Favored by Natural Selection in Large Sections of the Human Genome

A new algorithm can identify mutations in the human genome favored by natural selection.


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Find Tweeting in Cities Lower Than Expected

Researchers Find Tweeting in Cities Lower Than Expected

Researchers at the University of Illinois Coordinated Science Lab say they have found that fewer people tweet per capita from larger cities than in smaller ones.


From ACM TechNews

Multidisciplinary Team Receives DARPA Award to Develop Novel Magnetic Materials

Multidisciplinary Team Receives DARPA Award to Develop Novel Magnetic Materials

Researchers have received a U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency award to develop novel magnetic materials by unlocking the power of skyrmions.


From ACM TechNews

Snake-Inspired Robot Uses Kirigami to Move

Snake-Inspired Robot Uses Kirigami to Move

Researchers have developed a soft robot without any rigid components that moves like a snake.


From ACM News

Programming a DNA Clock

Programming a DNA Clock

Nature is a master at constructing biological machines and circuits, including the ones that maintain the body's internal clock, copy genes or help cells move.


From ACM News

Inching Closer to a DNA-Based File System

Inching Closer to a DNA-Based File System

When it comes to data storage, efforts to get faster access grab most of the attention. But long-term archiving of data is equally important, and it generally requires a completely different set of properties.


From ACM News

Sessions Forms U.S. Cyber Task Force After Election Warnings

Sessions Forms U.S. Cyber Task Force After Election Warnings

The Justice Department will have until the end of June to report its findings.


From ACM News

The Car of the Future Will Sell Your Data

The Car of the Future Will Sell Your Data

Picture this: You're driving home from work, contemplating what to make for dinner, and as you idle at a red light near your neighborhood pizzeria, an ad offering $5 off a pepperoni pie pops up on your dashboard screen.


From ACM TechNews

Fake News 'Vaccine': Online Game May 'Inoculate' by Simulating Propaganda Tactics

Fake News 'Vaccine': Online Game May 'Inoculate' by Simulating Propaganda Tactics

A new online game is designed to provide "general immunity" against fake news and propaganda.


From ACM TechNews

Building a Passion for STEM Studies Among Women and Girls

Building a Passion for STEM Studies Among Women and Girls

Just 20% of Canada's post-secondary science, technology, engineering, and math students currently are female.


From ACM TechNews

Copycatch

Copycatch

Researchers in India have created a deep-learning algorithm to help people identify doctored images by focusing on specific areas of the human face.


From ACM TechNews

Physicists Create New Form of Light

Physicists Create New Form of Light

Researchers have demonstrated the successful interaction of photons, which could clear a path toward using light particles in quantum computing.


From ACM TechNews

Brain Scan and Artificial Intelligence Could Help Predict Whether OCD Will Improve With Treatment

Brain Scan and Artificial Intelligence Could Help Predict Whether OCD Will Improve With Treatment

Researchers have developed a way to use brain scans and machine learning to predict whether people with obsessive compulsive disorder will benefit from cognitive behavior therapy.


From ACM TechNews

Are Bots a Danger for Political Election Campaigns?

Are Bots a Danger for Political Election Campaigns?

Researchers in Germany have probed the extent to which autonomous social bots were used on Twitter during Japan's general elections in 2014.


From ACM News

After Florida School Shooting, Russian 'Bot' Army Pounced

After Florida School Shooting, Russian 'Bot' Army Pounced

One hour after news broke about the school shooting in Florida last week, Twitter accounts suspected of having links to Russia released hundreds of posts taking up the gun control debate.


From ACM News

Good News: A.I. Is Getting Cheaper. That’s Also Bad News.

Good News: A.I. Is Getting Cheaper. That’s Also Bad News.

A.I. experts and pundits have discussed the threats created by the technology for years, but this is among the first efforts to tackle the issue head-on.


From ACM News

The Geeks Who Put a Stop to Pennsylvania's Partisan Gerrymandering

The Geeks Who Put a Stop to Pennsylvania's Partisan Gerrymandering

The morning John Kennedy was set to testify last December, he woke up at 1:30 am, in an unfamiliar hotel room in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, adrenaline coursing through his veins. He'd never gone to court before for anything serious…


From ACM News

Lawmakers Worry about Rise of Fake Video Technology 

Lawmakers Worry about Rise of Fake Video Technology 

Lawmakers are concerned that advances in video manipulation technology could set off a new era of fake news. Now legislators say they want to start working on fixes to the problem before it's too late.


From ACM TechNews

All-Terrain Microbot Moves by Tumbling Over Complex Topography

All-Terrain Microbot Moves by Tumbling Over Complex Topography

Researchers have created a "microscale magnetic tumbling robot" propelled by a constantly spinning magnetic field in an end-over-end or sideways tumbling motion.


From ACM TechNews

New Hole-Punched Crystal Clears a Path for Quantum Light

New Hole-Punched Crystal Clears a Path for Quantum Light

Researchers from the University of Maryland's Joint Quantum Institute have created a photonic chip that generates and steers single photons.


From ACM TechNews

Research Team Uncovers Hidden Details in Picasso Blue Period Painting

Research Team Uncovers Hidden Details in Picasso Blue Period Painting

Researchers used multiple modes of light to reveal hidden details in a painting by Pablo Picasso during his Blue Period.