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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.

July 2019


From ACM TechNews

Microsoft Quantum Algorithm Boosts Medical Imaging

Microsoft Quantum Algorithm Boosts Medical Imaging

Microsoft and Case Western Reserve University researchers have enhanced the speed and quality of medical imaging with an algorithm designed to work on a future quantum computer.


From ACM TechNews

Artificial Skin Can Sense 1,000 Times Faster Than Human Nerves

Artificial Skin Can Sense 1,000 Times Faster Than Human Nerves

Researchers at the National University of Singapore have developed artificial skin containing physical sensors that can detect pressure, bending, and temperature.


From ACM TechNews

Forces Behind Growing Political Polarization in Congress Revealed in New Model

Forces Behind Growing Political Polarization in Congress Revealed in New Model

Researchers analyzed roll call votes taken in the U.S. Congress to develop a model able to accurately predict changes in polarization in 28 of the 30 U.S. Congresses elected in the past 60 years.


From ACM News

Personal Firewalls

Personal Firewalls

Researchers find a way to make many implanted medical devices virtually hack-proof.


From ACM TechNews

Twitter 'Fingerprint' Helps Decode How Individuals Respond to Crises

Twitter 'Fingerprint' Helps Decode How Individuals Respond to Crises

Purdue ­niversity researchers have developed an algorithm that analyzes tweets to better understand how users respond to crises.


From ACM TechNews

Software Vulnerable in New Election Systems

Software Vulnerable in New Election Systems

The majority of the approximately 10,000 election jurisdictions nationwide use Windows 7 or an older operating system to create ballots, program voting machines, tally votes, and report ballot counts.


From ACM TechNews

The Speediest Quantum Operation Yet

The Speediest Quantum Operation Yet

Researchers in Australia built the first two-qubit gate between atomic qubits in silicon.


From ACM TechNews

­­­U.K. AI Gender Diversity is in 'Crisis' as Number of Female Scientists Drops

­­­U.K. AI Gender Diversity is in 'Crisis' as Number of Female Scientists Drops

A report from innovation foundation Nesta found the ­­U.K.'s artificial intelligence (AI) sector is suffering from a "serious gender diversity crisis," as only 14% of researchers in the field are women.


From ACM TechNews

Vibration-Powered Robots Are the Size of the World's Smallest Ant

Vibration-Powered Robots Are the Size of the World's Smallest Ant

Researchers have developed tiny three-dimensionally (3D)-printed robots that move by harnessing vibrations.


From ACM TechNews

The AI Technique that Could Imbue Machines with the Ability to Reason

The AI Technique that Could Imbue Machines with the Ability to Reason

Yann LeCun suggested during a recent ACM webinar that unsupervised learning could help deep learning algorithms provide computers with human-like reasoning skills.


From ACM TechNews

Drones Could Herd Rhinos From Poaching Hotspots

Drones Could Herd Rhinos From Poaching Hotspots

Researchers in the ­.K. found that drones and siren sounds were most effective in getting endangered southern white rhinos to leave poaching hotspots in national parks and reserves in South Africa.


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Build Transistor-Like Gate for Quantum Information Processing - with Qudits

Researchers Build Transistor-Like Gate for Quantum Information Processing - with Qudits

Purdue ­niversity researchers used qudits to develop what could be a quantum version of a transistor, known as a gate.


From ACM TechNews

Facial Recognition Tech Is Growing Stronger, Thanks to Your Face

Facial Recognition Tech Is Growing Stronger, Thanks to Your Face

Many databases of facial images are compiled by companies and researchers without the knowledge or consent of the owners of those faces.


From ACM TechNews

Automated System Generates Robotic Parts for Novel Tasks

Automated System Generates Robotic Parts for Novel Tasks

Researchers have developed an automated system that can design and print in three dimensions complex robotic parts optimized to a large number of specifications.


From ACM TechNews

Schools Wrestle With Privacy of Digital Data Collected on Students

Schools Wrestle With Privacy of Digital Data Collected on Students

Experts are concerned that digital data stored on vendor servers could later harm students who make mistakes on social media, or with widely used classroom apps.


From ACM TechNews

Idaho Teacher ­ses Computer Video Games to Teach Science

Idaho Teacher ­ses Computer Video Games to Teach Science

Ninth graders in Lewiston, ID, are being taught about earth science through the use of interdisciplinary video games developed by Polymorphic Games, an evolutionary video game studio at the University of Idaho.


From ACM TechNews

Robots Have a Hard Time Grasping "Adversarial Objects"

Robots Have a Hard Time Grasping "Adversarial Objects"

Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have extended the concept of adversarial images to robot grasping, using physical objects designed to be tricky for conventional robot grippers to pick up.


From ACM News

A New Way to Recognize Objects

A New Way to Recognize Objects

Radar opens up possibilities for human-computer interaction.


From ACM News

Wall Street Finds Blockchain Hard to Tame After Early Euphoria

Wall Street Finds Blockchain Hard to Tame After Early Euphoria

A review of 33 projects involving large companies and interviews with more than a dozen executives show that blockchain technology has yet to deliver on its promise.


From ACM News

The Fantastic Seven

The Fantastic Seven

Technion awarded honorary doctorates to seven distinguished men and women, including past ACM president Stuart I. Feldman.


From ACM TechNews

Recognizing Kidney Injury Due to Burns Is Improved by AI

Recognizing Kidney Injury Due to Burns Is Improved by AI

A new artificial intelligence/machine learning model can predict burn-related acute kidney injury quicker and more accurately than ever.


From ACM TechNews

Spurred by Amazon, Supermarkets Try Swapping Cashiers for Cameras

Spurred by Amazon, Supermarkets Try Swapping Cashiers for Cameras

Supermarket chains in Europe are testing cashierless stores with cameras that monitor items shoppers pick, with transactions recorded as they exit.


From ACM TechNews

A Zoom Flaw Gives Hackers Easy Access to Your Webcam

A Zoom Flaw Gives Hackers Easy Access to Your Webcam

Hackers can exploit vulnerabilities in the Zoom videoconferencing desktop app to commandeer a user's Webcam, a security researcher warns.


From ACM News

Contention Over H-1B Visas is Hot Again

Contention Over H-1B Visas is Hot Again

Should the U.S. admit more, or fewer, foreign technology workers?


From ACM News

Apollo 11 Had a Hidden Hero: Software

Apollo 11 Had a Hidden Hero: Software

The moon landing was one of the most important moments in the history of computing, laying the foundations of much of our digital world.


From ACM News

Craigslist's Craig Newmark: 'Outrage is Profitable. Most Online Outrage is Faked for Profit'

Craigslist's Craig Newmark: 'Outrage is Profitable. Most Online Outrage is Faked for Profit'

The founder of the online classifieds site is a survivor of the era of Internet optimism. He rejects the idea his website helped cause journalism's financial crisis.


From ACM TechNews

NASA Chooses MS­ Researchers' Computer for Trial on Moon

NASA Chooses MS­ Researchers' Computer for Trial on Moon

A radiation-hardened computer designed by Montana State University researchers was chosen by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration to be tested on the Moon.


From ACM TechNews

Baseball's Robot ­mpires Are Here. You Might Not Notice the Difference.

Baseball's Robot ­mpires Are Here. You Might Not Notice the Difference.

The Atlantic League was the first U.S. professional baseball league to use a "robot" umpire, at its recent All-Star Game.


From ACM TechNews

AI Can Edit Photos with Zero Experience

AI Can Edit Photos with Zero Experience

Researchers are using deep internal learning, in which a machine learning algorithm ascertains the internal structure of a single image from scratch, to edit photos without previous training.


From ACM TechNews

Hackers Breach Greece's Top-Level Domain Registrar

Hackers Breach Greece's Top-Level Domain Registrar

Researchers said Greece's top-level domain registrar has suffered a hacker breach, and identified the state-sponsored "Sea Turtle" hacker group as the perpetrator.