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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.

May 2014


From ACM TechNews

Origami Unfolds a New World of Shape-Shifting Electronics

Origami Unfolds a New World of Shape-Shifting Electronics

The art of origami is transforming electrical engineering and electronics design, as scientists draw on concepts that could enable new shape-shifting electronics. 


From ACM News

Tcp/ip Turns 40

Tcp/ip Turns 40

Pioneers gather in Palo Alto to commemorate a foundational Internet technology.


From ACM News

Skinny Wormholes Could Send Messages Through Time

Skinny Wormholes Could Send Messages Through Time

Like some bizarre form of optical fibre, a long, thin wormhole might let you send messages through time using pulses of light.


From ACM News

'smart Pills' with Chips, Cameras, and Robotic Parts Raise Legal, Ethical Questions

'smart Pills' with Chips, Cameras, and Robotic Parts Raise Legal, Ethical Questions

Each morning around 6, Mary Ellen Snodgrass swallows a computer chip.


From ACM Opinion

Meet the People Behind the Wayback Machine, One of Our Favorite Things About the Internet

Meet the People Behind the Wayback Machine, One of Our Favorite Things About the Internet

Brewster Kahle is quick to point out that we are not standing inside a former Scientology church.


From ACM TechNews

Screening For Autism: There's an App For That

Screening For Autism: There's an App For That

New software tracks and records infants' activity during videotaped autism screening tests. 


From ACM TechNews

Software Teaches Hybrids When (and When Not) to Go Electric

Software Teaches Hybrids When (and When Not) to Go Electric

Chalmers University of Technology Ph.D. Viktor Larsson's doctoral dissertation describes software that would help hybrid vehicles optimize battery usage. 


From ACM TechNews

Mit Figures Out How to Give the Moon Broadband--Using Lasers

Mit Figures Out How to Give the Moon Broadband--Using Lasers

Researchers have developed a system that can give a satellite orbiting the moon faster Internet access than many U.S. homes get. 


From ACM News

Making Babies

Making Babies

Forty years ago, there was exactly one way for humans to reproduce.


From ACM News

The 10 Algorithms That Dominate Our World

The 10 Algorithms That Dominate Our World

Some algorithms shape and control our world more than others — and these 10 are the most significant.


From ACM News

Swarm and Fuzzy

Swarm and Fuzzy

When the first human colonists land on Mars several decades from now, their habitat will already be waiting.


From ACM News

Microbes Defy Rules of Dna Code

Microbes Defy Rules of Dna Code

The instructions encoded into DNA are thought to follow a universal set of rules across all domains of life. But researchers report today in Science1 that organisms routinely break these rules.


From ACM News

B-52 Bomber Gets Its First New Communications System Since the 1960s

B-52 Bomber Gets Its First New Communications System Since the 1960s

The B-52 bomber, one of the great stalwarts of America's military arsenal, is getting its first major communications system upgrade since the Kennedy administration.


From ACM News

The Trouble With IBM

The Trouble With IBM

In the summer of 2012, five American technology companies bid on a project for a demanding new client: the CIA.


From ACM TechNews

Tracking Lost Luggage Part of At&t's Vision of the Future

Tracking Lost Luggage Part of At&t's Vision of the Future

AT&T has demonstrated its User-Defined Network Cloud and other innovative technologies that could soon be available. 


From ACM TechNews

Despite Data Thefts, the Password Endures

Despite Data Thefts, the Password Endures

Efforts to replace passwords with better protections face an uphill battle.


From ACM TechNews

Campaigns Emerge to Attract More Women to Careers in It

Campaigns Emerge to Attract More Women to Careers in It

Nonprofit associations, academic organizations, and major corporations are launching efforts to attract more women to the information technology field. 


From ACM TechNews

Employers Want Java Skills More Than Anything Else

Employers Want Java Skills More Than Anything Else

Java/J2EE was the most in-demand software development skill for employers searching Dice.com in the first quarter of 2014, according to the company. 


From ACM TechNews

Europe Wants a Supercomputer Made From Smartphones

Europe Wants a Supercomputer Made From Smartphones

A European public-private consortium aims to make exaflop supercomputers based on the central-processing units used in smartphones and tablet computers.


From ACM TechNews

Robots Transform Into Furniture at Epfl

Robots Transform Into Furniture at Epfl

Roombots are small robotic modules that can change their shape to create reconfigurable furniture. 


From ACM TechNews

Artificial Brains Learn to Adapt

Artificial Brains Learn to Adapt

Researchers are studying a new type of spiking neural network that more closely mimics the behavioral learning processes of mammalian brains. 


From ACM Opinion

How the ­.s. Could Escalate Its Name-and-Shame Campaign Against China's Espionage

How the ­.s. Could Escalate Its Name-and-Shame Campaign Against China's Espionage

Earlier this week the U.S. Department of Justice indicted five Chinese military officers for industrial espionage, accusing them of leading attacks on the computers of U.S. companies including U.S. Steel and Westinghouse to gather…


From ACM News

'killer Robots': Are They Really Inevitable?

'killer Robots': Are They Really Inevitable?

The robot tank is moving rapidly through the scrub on its caterpillar tracks.


From ACM News

Twenty Questions For Donald Knuth

Twenty Questions For Donald Knuth

To celebrate the publication of the eBooks of The Art of Computer Programming, (TAOCP), we asked several computer scientists, contemporaries, colleagues, and well-wishers to pose one question each to author Donald E. Knuth. Here…


From ACM News

In Memoriam: Clarence “skip” Ellis 1943-2014

In Memoriam: Clarence “skip” Ellis 1943-2014

Clarence "Skip" Ellis, the first African-American man to earn a Ph.D. in computer science, died May 17 at age 71.


From ACM News

Electric Grid, You Have Software ­pdates Available

Electric Grid, You Have Software ­pdates Available

The electric grid was designed as a one-way highway, with power cascading out from big power plants to cities and towns at the end of the line.


From ACM Opinion

Secrets, Lies and Snowden's Email: Why I Was Forced to Shut Down Lavabit

Secrets, Lies and Snowden's Email: Why I Was Forced to Shut Down Lavabit

My legal saga started last summer with a knock at the door, behind which stood two federal agents ready to to serve me with a court order requiring the installation of surveillance equipment on my company's network.


From ACM TechNews

Nasa Announces Global Award Winners of the 2014 International Space Apps Challenge

Nasa Announces Global Award Winners of the 2014 International Space Apps Challenge

Judges have selected five winners in the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration's 2014 International Space Apps Challenge.


From ACM TechNews

Engineering Graduate ­ses Big Data to Seek Insights to Bicycle Travel Flow

Engineering Graduate ­ses Big Data to Seek Insights to Bicycle Travel Flow

A recent big data project was designed to get a better understanding of bicycle usage and its relationship to automobile and bus traffic. 


From ACM TechNews

My Duolingo Learning App Can Reshape Education

My Duolingo Learning App Can Reshape Education

Carnegie Mellon University professor Luis von Ahn says he believes his Duolingo venture is determining what next-generation education will look like.