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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.

April 2017


From ACM Careers

Why Is Russia So Good at Encouraging Women Into Tech?

Why Is Russia So Good at Encouraging Women Into Tech?

Irina Khoroshko, from Zelenograd near Moscow, had learned her times tables by the age of five.


From ACM TechNews

Chatbots Have Entered the ­ncanny Valley

Chatbots Have Entered the ­ncanny Valley

The tendency for people to be repelled by increasingly humanoid and human-like robots may extend to chatbots and digital assistants as well.


From ACM TechNews

A Better ­Understanding of Brain Health at Our (bionic) Fingertips

A Better ­Understanding of Brain Health at Our (bionic) Fingertips

The European Union-funded NANOBIOTOUCH and NEBIAS projects examined how touch stimuli and neural processing interact cs more intuitive.


From ACM TechNews

Not Stuck on Silicon

Not Stuck on Silicon

Researchers have developed a new technique they say could reduce the overall cost of wafer technology.


From ACM TechNews

Rechargeable 'spin Battery' Promising For Spintronics and Quantum Computing

Rechargeable 'spin Battery' Promising For Spintronics and Quantum Computing

Researchers at Purdue University have produced a rechargeable "spin battery" from topological insulators.


From ACM TechNews

This Artificial Intelligence Turns Horses Into Zebras--and Winter Into Summer

This Artificial Intelligence Turns Horses Into Zebras--and Winter Into Summer

A new model enables users to transform images in a "cycle consistent" way, so any changes to the original image are expected to remain fully reversible.


From ACM TechNews

Teaching a Driverless Car to Turn Left

Teaching a Driverless Car to Turn Left

Getting driverless cars to make safe left turns at intersections is a key challenge for engineers, as they involve both psychology and technology.


From ACM News

Dna's Secret Weapon Against Knots and Tangles

Dna's Secret Weapon Against Knots and Tangles

Leonid Mirny swivels in his office chair and grabs the power cord for his laptop.


From ACM News

On Venus, Tectonics Without the Plates

On Venus, Tectonics Without the Plates

As we've explored the Solar System, some items we're familiar with from Earth's geology have kept appearing in new places.


From ACM TechNews

Twin Research Reveals Which Facial Features Are Most Controlled By Genetics

Twin Research Reveals Which Facial Features Are Most Controlled By Genetics

Researchers at King's College London in the U.K. reviewed three-dimensional facial simulations of about 1,000 female twins, and found the shapes of specific facial features were highly shaped by genetics.


From ACM TechNews

­t Researcher Creates Robotic Cheetah

­t Researcher Creates Robotic Cheetah

Researchers are developing a scaled-down robotic version of a cheetah that uses only about 15% more energy than the real animal.


From ACM TechNews

Pinning Down Abuse on Google Maps

Pinning Down Abuse on Google Maps

A collaboration between researchers at the University of California, San Diego and Google has enabled the Internet company to reduce the number of fraudulent businesses in Google Maps by 70%.


From ACM TechNews

Our Ability to Keep 'em Guessing Peaks Around Age 25

Our Ability to Keep 'em Guessing Peaks Around Age 25

People's ability to behave randomly reaches its zenith at age 25, and then gradually erodes before experiencing a swift decline at age 60.


From ACM TechNews

What Netflix Can Teach ­S About Treating Cancer

What Netflix Can Teach ­S About Treating Cancer

Johns Hopkins University professor Elana Fertig details her research to enhance precision medicine in cancer, using the techniques developed for finding patterns in Netflix movie ratings.


From ACM News

Nasa's Mars Rover Opportunity Leaves 'tribulation' 

Nasa's Mars Rover Opportunity Leaves 'tribulation' 

NASA's senior Mars rover, Opportunity, is departing "Cape Tribulation," a crater-rim segment it has explored since late 2014, southbound for its next destination, "Perseverance Valley."


From ACM News

Harry Huskey, Pioneering Computer Scientist, Is Dead at 101

Harry Huskey, Pioneering Computer Scientist, Is Dead at 101

Huskey was a pioneering computer scientist who worked on early computing systems, and later helped universities around the world establish computer centers and computer science programs.


From ACM Careers

50 Years Ago, a Computer Pioneer Got a New York Subway Race Rolling

50 Years Ago, a Computer Pioneer Got a New York Subway Race Rolling

Fifty years ago, Peter Samson, one of the inventors of Spacewar, considered the world's first video game, began another craze underground.


From ACM News

'space Fabric' Links Fashion and Engineering

'space Fabric' Links Fashion and Engineering

Raul Polit Casillas grew up around fabrics. His mother is a fashion designer in Spain, and, at a young age, he was intrigued by how materials are used for design.


From ACM Careers

Find Out If a Robot Will Take Your Job 

Find Out If a Robot Will Take Your Job 

At a community college in upstate New York, 12 cafeteria workers recently learned that they will lose their jobs—and be replaced by self-serve machines.


From ACM TechNews

Pattern Discovery Over Pattern Recognition: A New Way For Computers to See

Pattern Discovery Over Pattern Recognition: A New Way For Computers to See

Researchers are designing machine-learning systems to enable supercomputers to identify large-scale atmospheric structures in climate data.


From ACM TechNews

Motor Neurons Adjust to Control Tasks

Motor Neurons Adjust to Control Tasks

Researchers have found that motor cortical neurons optimally adjust how they encode movements in a task-specific manner.


From ACM TechNews

Cyber Threat Info Sharing Made Easier

Cyber Threat Info Sharing Made Easier

The next iteration of the Structured Threat Information eXchange machine-to-machine cyberthreat information-sharing language is nearing completion.


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Harness Heat to Power Computers

Researchers Harness Heat to Power Computers

Researchers say they have developed a nano-thermal-mechanical device that could help computers use heat as an alternative energy source.


From ACM News

From Coal to Code

From Coal to Code

Coal miners find new lives as programmers.


From ACM News

Could the ­S Take Out North Korea's Missiles Before Launch?

Could the ­S Take Out North Korea's Missiles Before Launch?

A failed missile launch in North Korea Sunday has brought renewed attention to reports that the United States is trying to degrade North Korea's missile capabilities via hacking.


From ACM Opinion

Introducing 'operator 4.0,' A tech-Augmented Human worker

Introducing 'operator 4.0,' A tech-Augmented Human worker

The Fourth Industrial Revolution has arrived.


From ACM TechNews

Can a Supercomputing Algorithm Kill Gerrymandering?

Can a Supercomputing Algorithm Kill Gerrymandering?

A new supercomputing algorithm can determine whether state legislative districts have been unfairly drawn, with the potential of reshaping U.S. electoral politics.


From ACM TechNews

Deep Learning Tells Giraffes From Gazelles in the Serengeti

Deep Learning Tells Giraffes From Gazelles in the Serengeti

Researchers used a database of 3.2 million photos to train a deep-learning system to distinguish between 48 animal species.


From ACM TechNews

Internet Atlas Maps the Physical Internet to Enhance Security

Internet Atlas Maps the Physical Internet to Enhance Security

Researchers say they have developed the first-ever detailed worldwide map of the Internet.


From ACM TechNews

Scientists Develop a Novel Algorithm Inspired By Bee Colonies to Help Dismantling Criminal Social Networks

Scientists Develop a Novel Algorithm Inspired By Bee Colonies to Help Dismantling Criminal Social Networks

Researchers have developed an algorithm designed to counter both physical and virtual threats to social networks.