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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.

October 2013


From ACM News

Last Command Sent to Planck Space Telescope

Last Command Sent to Planck Space Telescope

The Planck space telescope has been turned off after spending nearly 4.5 years soaking up the relic radiation from the Big Bang and studying the evolution of stars and galaxies throughout the history of the universe.


From ACM News

Court Rules Probable-Cause Warrant Required For Gps Trackers

Court Rules Probable-Cause Warrant Required For Gps Trackers

An appellate court has finally supplied an answer to an open question left dangling by the Supreme Court in 2012: Do law enforcement agencies need a probable-cause warrant to affix a GPS tracker to a target’s vehicle?


From ACM News

Brain Decoding: Reading Minds

Brain Decoding: Reading Minds

Jack Gallant perches on the edge of a swivel chair in his lab at the University of California, Berkeley, fixated on the screen of a computer that is trying to decode someone's thoughts.


From ACM News

'running Battle': How Google Hopes to Beat Countries Cracking Down on Internet Freedom

'running Battle': How Google Hopes to Beat Countries Cracking Down on Internet Freedom

Google hopes a little browser tool will help change the world.


From ACM Careers

Google: 'where Will Future Quantum Computer Scientists Come From? Our Best Guess: Minecraft'

Google: 'where Will Future Quantum Computer Scientists Come From? Our Best Guess: Minecraft'

Google is hoping to inspire children's interest in quantum computing by using one of their favourite digital pastimes: Minecraft.


From ACM TechNews

Nasa Says First Space Internet Test 'beyond Expectations'

Nasa Says First Space Internet Test 'beyond Expectations'

The first tests of a laser communication system by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration have been surprisingly error-free.


From ACM TechNews

IBM ­nveils Computer Fed By 'electronic Blood'

IBM ­nveils Computer Fed By 'electronic Blood'

IBM has released a prototype of a computer modeled after the human brain that uses liquid both to fuel and cool the system. 


From ACM TechNews

Cybersecurity Jobs: Young Adults Show Little Interest in the Field

Cybersecurity Jobs: Young Adults Show Little Interest in the Field

Few young adults are interested in cybersecurity careers, according to a new study.

 


From ACM TechNews

Forget Captcha, Try Inkblots

Forget Captcha, Try Inkblots

Generating panOptic Turing Tests to Tell Computers and Humans Apart (Gotcha) is a password mechanism based on a randomized puzzle-generation protocol. 


From ACM TechNews

Software ­ses Cyborg Swarm to Map ­nknown Environs

Software ­ses Cyborg Swarm to Map ­nknown Environs

New software could be used to map unknown environments based on the movement of a swarm of insect cyborgs. 


From ACM TechNews

Managing the Deluge of 'big Data' From Space

Managing the Deluge of 'big Data' From Space

Researchers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory are developing new strategies for managing large and complex data streams. 


From ACM News

Memo to Workers: The Boss Is Watching

Memo to Workers: The Boss Is Watching

Dennis Gray suspected that workers in his pest-control company were spending too much time on personal issues during the workday.


From ACM News

The ­mbilical Link of Man to Robot

The ­mbilical Link of Man to Robot

Atlas doesn't shrug. But he teeters, loses his grip, stutters, and staggers.


From ACM News

Wall Street Banks Learn How to Survive in Staged Cyber Attack

Wall Street Banks Learn How to Survive in Staged Cyber Attack

In a staged simulation called Quantum Dawn 2, bank executives in charge of operations, technology, and crisis planning were tasked with detecting how a massive cyber attack was unfolding in the markets—but each one only got to…


From ACM TechNews

­C Davis Joins Cybersecurity Research Alliance

­C Davis Joins Cybersecurity Research Alliance

A new research alliance that will focus on detecting, modeling, and responding to cyberattacks on networks in real time.


From ACM TechNews

Web-Based Map Allows ­sers to See Intricate Patterns in ­.s. Population

Web-Based Map Allows ­sers to See Intricate Patterns in ­.s. Population

A free, Web-based mapping site allows users to access detailed demographic data for any location in the United States. 


From ACM TechNews

Groovy Programming Language Sees Major Boost in Popularity

Groovy Programming Language Sees Major Boost in Popularity

Groovy has cracked the Tiobe Index top 20 list of the most popular programming languages. 


From ACM News

Moocs Evolve; Version 2.0 Aims to Retain More Students

Moocs Evolve; Version 2.0 Aims to Retain More Students

Given that student retention rates typically hover at just around 4-5% of those participating in free Web classes, some online courses have evolved to a sort of “MOOC 2.0” in an effort to retain more students.


From ACM Opinion

Here's Why the Feds Didn't Have More Skilled Programmers For Healthcare.gov

Here's Why the Feds Didn't Have More Skilled Programmers For Healthcare.gov

HealthCare.gov, the Web site at the center of President Obama's federal health insurance exchange, has been plagued with problems since it opened for business Oct. 1.


From ACM News

Killer Robots With Automatic Rifles Could Be on the Battlefield in 5 Years

Killer Robots With Automatic Rifles Could Be on the Battlefield in 5 Years

Robots armed with automatic weapons, anti-tank missiles and even grenade launchers are marching, er, rolling ever closer to the battlefield now that they’ve shown they can actually hit what they’re supposed to.


From ACM News

Credit Cards Under Pressure to Police Online Expression

Credit Cards Under Pressure to Police Online Expression

Earlier this month, major credit card processors including MasterCard, Visa, and America Express announced they would stop processing payments to websites that collect and publish mug shots online.


From ACM News

Huawei (yes, Huawei) Pushing For Global Security Standards

Huawei (yes, Huawei) Pushing For Global Security Standards

Remember that 1995 Alanis Morissette song, "Ironic?"


From ACM TechNews

Smarter Video Searching and Indexing

Smarter Video Searching and Indexing

A new framework that would enable Internet users to search for videos using images rather than text could lead to smarter searching and indexing. 


From ACM TechNews

World Record: Wireless Data Transmission at 100 Gbit/s

World Record: Wireless Data Transmission at 100 Gbit/s

German researchers have developed a method for wireless data transmission at a world-record pace of 100 Gbps. 


From ACM TechNews

Predicting the Future Could Improve Remote-Control of Space Robots

Predicting the Future Could Improve Remote-Control of Space Robots

A new system could make robotic space exploration faster and more efficient by predicting the robot's future movements. 


From ACM TechNews

New Technology Can Prevent Cellular Overload, Dropped Calls

New Technology Can Prevent Cellular Overload, Dropped Calls

A new method uses TV and radio channels to transmit cellular signals when cellular systems are pushed beyond capacity. 


From ACM TechNews

Chinese Scientists Achieve Internet Access Through Light Bulbs

Chinese Scientists Achieve Internet Access Through Light Bulbs

Researchers say they have developed a method for accessing the Internet using signals sent by light-bulbs (Li-Fi) instead of Wi-Fi.


From ACM TechNews

Got a Kickstarter Project? This Man Can Predict Within Four Hours If It Will Fail

Got a Kickstarter Project? This Man Can Predict Within Four Hours If It Will Fail

Researchers have developed a method of predicting whether a Kickstarter project will succeed within four hours of its launch, with 76-percent accuracy. 


From ACM TechNews

Call For Participation: 2014 Workshop on ACM History

Call For Participation: 2014 Workshop on ACM History

The ACM History Committee is sponsoring a two-day workshop on professional archival practices on May 21-22, 2014, in Minneapolis, MN.


From ACM News

Contractors See Weeks of Work on Health Site

Contractors See Weeks of Work on Health Site

Federal contractors have identified most of the main problems crippling President Obama's online health insurance marketplace, but the administration has been slow to issue orders for fixing those flaws, and some contractors…