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

July 2011


From ACM News

Scientists Unveil Tools for Rewriting the Code of Life

Scientists Unveil Tools for Rewriting the Code of Life

MIT and Harvard researchers have developed technologies that could be used to rewrite the genetic code of a living cell, allowing them to make large-scale edits to the cell’s genome. Such technology could enable scientists…


From ACM News

Codebook Shows an Encryption Form Dates Back to Telegraphs

Codebook Shows an Encryption Form Dates Back to Telegraphs

If not for a computer scientist’s hobby of collecting old telegraph codebooks, a crucial chapter in modern cryptography might have been lost to history.


From ACM TechNews

University of Utah Computer Science Camp Teaches Kids About Technology

This summer the University of Utah is hosting 350 students in elementary, middle, and high school for one- and two-week computer science camps. 


From ACM TechNews

Wolfram Research Introduces New Programmable Document Type

Wolfram Research says it has developed the Computable Document Format (CDF), a new document format that allows the person who creates a document to embed code, thus enabling the data to be manipulated in real time when the user…


From ACM TechNews

Ibm Speeds Storage With Flash: 10b Files in 43 Minutes

IBM researchers have created a data storage system that can scan 10 billion files in 43 minutes, using flash memory to store the metadata, which the storage system uses to locate requested information. 


From ACM News

Black Hat Pwnie Award Winner Will Be a Criminal

Law enforcement may be interested to see if anyone actually shows up to this year to accept the annual Pwnie Award for Epic Ownage at Black Hat, since all the nominees face possible criminal charges.


From ACM News

The Importance Of Analyzing Social Intelligence

The Importance Of Analyzing Social Intelligence

Huge amounts of data emanating from Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites, which is known collectively as “social intelligence, ” is being gathered, managed, and analyzed. The insights it creates into markets and…


From ACM News

Hint of Higgs, but Little More

Hint of Higgs, but Little More

When its experiments started in earnest earlier this year, many scientists hoped that the world's most powerful collider would turn up new particles, additional dimensions, and perhaps even a small black hole or two. But beyond…


From ACM News

Decoding Your Email Personality

Imagine, if you will, a young Mark Zuckerberg circa 2003, tapping out mail messages from his Harvard dorm room. It's a safe bet he never would have guessed that eight years later a multibillion-dollar lawsuit might hinge on…


From ACM News

Why Bitcoin Is Not As Anonymous As Most ­sers Think

People who use Bitcoin to ensure their purchases remain anonymous may want to reconsider their reliance on the online peer-to-peer currency, say researchers who have investigated the network of Bitcoin transactions.


From ACM TechNews

Computer Program Could 'revolutionize the World's Healthcare'

Computer Program Could 'revolutionize the World's Healthcare'

The University of Manchester and a group of more than 25 academic institutions and industrial partners are collaborating on IT Future of Medicine, a 10-year project to create computational models of individuals that could develop…


From ACM TechNews

Computers Understand Hand-Waving Descriptions

A new gesture-based interface developed by the Hasso Plattner Institute's Christian Holz and Microsoft Research's Andy Wilson does not require users to memorize a specific set of movements. 


From ACM TechNews

Caltech Researchers Create the First Artificial Neural Network Out of Dna

Caltech Researchers Create the First Artificial Neural Network Out of Dna

Caltech researchers have developed an artificial neural network out of DNA, creating a circuit of interacting molecules that can recall memories based on incomplete information. 


From ACM TechNews

Prof Says Tech Entering the Age of the Algorithm

Prof Says Tech Entering the Age of the Algorithm

University of Texas at Dallas professor Andras Farago thinks that as algorithms become more important to software development, educational and career opportunities will follow. 


From ACM TechNews

Advocates Lament Computer Science Gap in Standards Push

Computing in the Core, an advocacy group whose members include ACM, Google, Microsoft, the Computer Science Teachers Association, and the National Science Teachers Association, issued a press release criticizing the National…


From ACM News

Thousands of Security Cameras Capture New Yorkers Every Move Around City

Thousands of Security Cameras Capture New Yorkers Every Move Around City

At first glance, the guy in the white polo shirt and khaki pants looks like anybody else walking down Broadway.


From ACM News

Social Media History Becomes a New Job Hurdle

Social Media History Becomes a New Job Hurdle

Companies have long used criminal background checks, credit reports and even searches on Google and LinkedIn to probe the previous lives of prospective employees. Now, some companies are requiring job candidates to also pass…


From ACM News

Living in the Digital Ecosystem

Living in the Digital Ecosystem

LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman talks data mash-ups, entrepreneurship, and how his site keeps people honest.


From ACM News

How to Stay Safe Online While Traveling

 Taking a trip with always-on digital devices can be like traveling with your safe—and forgetting to lock it.


From ACM TechNews

DARPA Seeks to Learn From Social For Warfare

DARPA Seeks to Learn From Social For Warfare

The U.S. Department of Defense's Defense Advanced Projects Research Agency has launched the Social Media in Strategic Communication program, which aims to develop new ways to use social media sites to help it utilize technology…


From ACM TechNews

Robots Use Kinect to Understand Our World

Robots Use Kinect to Understand Our World

Cornell University researchers are teaching robots to understand the context of their surroundings so that they can pick out individual objects in a room. 


From ACM TechNews

Discovery May Overcome Obstacle For Quantum Computing: Ubc, California Researchers

Discovery May Overcome Obstacle For Quantum Computing: Ubc, California Researchers

Researchers at the University of British Columbia (UBC) and the University of California, Santa Barbara say they have made a major advance in predicting and eliminating environmental decoherence, a phenomenon that has been one…


From ACM TechNews

Ibm's Watson Breaks New Ground in Artificial Intelligence

Ibm's Watson Breaks New Ground in Artificial Intelligence

One of the major challenges that the computer science industry has been facing is the development of a machine that can answer unmodified human questions. 


From ACM TechNews

Fewer Verbs and Nouns in Financial Reporting Could Predict Stock Market Bubble, Study Shows

Fewer Verbs and Nouns in Financial Reporting Could Predict Stock Market Bubble, Study Shows

University College Dublin researchers say the stock market can be predicted by the way financial commentators describe market activity. 


From ACM News

Nasa's Next Mars Rover to Land at Gale Crater

Nasa's Next Mars Rover to Land at Gale Crater

NASA's next Mars rover will land at the foot of a layered mountain inside the planet's Gale crater. The car-sized Mars Science Laboratory, or Curiosity, is scheduled to launch late this year and land in August 2012. The target…


From ACM News

Smartphones Get Smarter About Payments

Smartphones Get Smarter About Payments

Paying for the morning commute will soon be accomplished by the wave of a smartphone. State and local governments are joining Internet, credit card, and wireless companies to let consumers pay for everything from groceries…


From ACM News

Study: Less Than 50% of Smartphone Users Make Calls

What's the point of a smartphone? If you answered "To make calls," then congratulations: You're in the minority. A new survey from social communications company CloudTalk has found that making calls is only the fourth most…


From ACM News

Welcome to the Age of the Splinternet

Openness is the Internet's great strength—and weakness. With powerful forces carving it up, is its golden age coming to an end?


From ACM News

Little-Known Firms Tracking Data Used in Credit Scores

Atlanta entrepreneur Mike Mondelli has access to more than a billion records detailing consumers’ personal finances—and there is little they can do about it.


From ACM News

Recruiters Outnumber Job-Seekers at Hacker Fair

Recruiters Outnumber Job-Seekers at Hacker Fair

Tom Sherlock demonstrated his wearable computer. Steven Neff, hemmed in by a scrum of recruiters from Google, Rackspace and Pulse News, showed off his art-filled news Web site, Politicallyillustrated.com. Jen Costillo impressed…