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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 2020


From ACM TechNews

Opening the Black Box of Neural Networks

Opening the Black Box of Neural Networks

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory researchers used deep learning neural networks to model water molecule interactions.


From ACM News

The Future of Hotel Design

The Future of Hotel Design

Mobile guest rooms, enhanced contactless room controls, robotic servers, and pop-up dining areas are a few of the ideas hotel designers are considering for the post-Covid travel world.


From ACM News

U.S. Accuses Google of Illegally Protecting Monopoly

U.S. Accuses Google of Illegally Protecting Monopoly

A victory for the government could remake one of America's most recognizable companies and the internet economy that it has helped define.


From ACM News

Microsoft Teams With Elon Musk’s SpaceX to Push Cloud Battle With Amazon Into Orbit

Microsoft Teams With Elon Musk’s SpaceX to Push Cloud Battle With Amazon Into Orbit

The space-cloud initiative is targeting military and commercial customers and comes after Amazon announced its own space effort,


From ACM TechNews

Visa, JPMorgan Already Preparing for Potential Quantum Cyberattacks

Visa, JPMorgan Already Preparing for Potential Quantum Cyberattacks

Researchers at Visa Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. are developing new processes to try to thwart eventual quantum computing cyberattacks.


From ACM TechNews

Imaging the Secret Lives of Immune Cells in the Eye

Imaging the Secret Lives of Immune Cells in the Eye

University of Rochester researchers have developed a technique for imaging and tracking the interactions of microscopic immune cells in a human eye without using dyes.


From ACM News

U.S. Files Antitrust Lawsuit Against Google

U.S. Files Antitrust Lawsuit Against Google

The Justice Department filed its long-awaited lawsuit against Google.


From ACM News

Virtual Reality Meets the Office

Virtual Reality Meets the Office

"Virtual meeting spaces greatly expand the possibilities for online communication—and, at their best, create an environment that parallels or exceeds real world interaction."


From ACM News

When We Can Hug Again, Will We Remember How It Works?

When We Can Hug Again, Will We Remember How It Works?

How to navigate when you should and shouldn't hug someone — and how not to hold on too long.


From ACM News

Split-Second 'Phantom' Images Can Fool Tesla's Autopilot

Split-Second 'Phantom' Images Can Fool Tesla's Autopilot

Researchers found they could stop a Tesla by flashing a few frames of a stop sign for less than half a second on an Internet-connected billboard.


From ACM News

How Does Google's Monopoly Hurt You? Try These Searches

How Does Google's Monopoly Hurt You? Try These Searches

Right under our noses, the Internet's most-used website has been getting worse.


From ACM TechNews

The Contest to Protect Almost Everything on the Internet

The Contest to Protect Almost Everything on the Internet

Hundreds of the world's leading cryptographers are competing to develop encryption standards to protect online data against classical and quantum-computing cyberattacks.


From ACM TechNews

Bringing Power Tool From Math Into Quantum Computing

Bringing Power Tool From Math Into Quantum Computing

Scientists at Japan's Tokyo University of Science designed a novel quantum circuit that calculates the fast Fourier transform faster and more efficiently than previously possible.


From ACM TechNews

Robot Dolphin Could Replace Captive Animals at Theme Parks One Day

Robot Dolphin Could Replace Captive Animals at Theme Parks One Day

A U.S. engineering company has designed a robot dolphin in the hope that such animatronic machines eventually could substitute for captive animals at theme parks.


From ACM TechNews

Buenos Aires Using Facial Recognition System That Tracks Child Suspects, Rights Group Says

Buenos Aires Using Facial Recognition System That Tracks Child Suspects, Rights Group Says

Human Rights Watch says Buenos Aires is using a facial recognition system connected to a database that includes child suspects and is publishing warrants for their arrest.


From ACM TechNews

Undocumented Backdoor That Covertly Takes Snapshots Found in Kids' Smartwatch

Undocumented Backdoor That Covertly Takes Snapshots Found in Kids' Smartwatch

Researchers at Norwegian security company Mnemonic found an undocumented backdoor in the X4 smartwatch marketed by children's watch vendor Xplora.


From ACM TechNews

Voter Check-in System to Blame for Slow-Moving Lines in Georgia

Voter Check-in System to Blame for Slow-Moving Lines in Georgia

Check-in computers unable to accommodate record turnouts were mainly to blame for slow-moving lines at early voting locations this week in Georgia.


From ACM News

Internet Freedom Has Taken a Hit During the Covid-19 Pandemic

Internet Freedom Has Taken a Hit During the Covid-19 Pandemic

From surveillance to arrests, governments are using the novel coronavirus as cover for a crackdown on digital liberty.


From ACM TechNews

U.S. Moves to Protect Technologies Considered Critical to National Security

U.S. Moves to Protect Technologies Considered Critical to National Security

The U.S. National Security Council on Thursday issued guidelines to protect technologies crucial to national security.


From ACM TechNews

FBI/DHS: Government Systems Face Threat From Zerologon Exploits

FBI/DHS: Government Systems Face Threat From Zerologon Exploits

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation and Department of Homeland Security have detected attackers exploiting a Windows vulnerability against state and local governments.


From ACM TechNews

In Singapore, Facial Recognition Getting Woven Into Everyday Life

In Singapore, Facial Recognition Getting Woven Into Everyday Life

Singaporeans will be able to access government and other services through a facial recognition feature in its SingPass national identity program.


From ACM TechNews

Computer Model Simulation Explains Star Distributions in Galaxy Discs

Computer Model Simulation Explains Star Distributions in Galaxy Discs

Researchers used a new computer model to show the impact of gas clouds on the exponential fade in galaxy discs in an effort to explain star distributions.


From ACM TechNews

Japan Supercomputer Shows Humidity Affects Aerosol Spread of Coronavirus

Japan Supercomputer Shows Humidity Affects Aerosol Spread of Coronavirus

Humidity can have a major impact on the dispersion of virus particles, according to a study by researchers at Kobe University in Japan and research giant Riken.


From ACM News

CA Says General Motors Can Test Fully Driverless Cars on Its Roads

CA Says General Motors Can Test Fully Driverless Cars on Its Roads

"Before the end of the year, we'll be sending cars out onto the streets of SF—without gasoline and without anyone at the wheel," Cruise CEO Dan Ammann wrote in a company blog.


From ACM News

Twitter Changes Course After Republicans Claim ‘Election Interference’

Twitter Changes Course After Republicans Claim ‘Election Interference’

It had blocked an unsubstantiated New York Post article about the Bidens, but said late Thursday that it would allow similar content to be shared.


From ACM News

'Machines Set Loose to Slaughter': the Dangerous Rise of Military AI

'Machines Set Loose to Slaughter': the Dangerous Rise of Military AI

Autonomous machines capable of deadly force are increasingly prevalent in modern warfare, despite numerous ethical concerns. Is there anything we can do to halt the advance of the killer robots?


From ACM News

2.1 Million of the Oldest Internet Posts Are Now Online for Anyone to Read

2.1 Million of the Oldest Internet Posts Are Now Online for Anyone to Read

Jozef Jarosciak just put millions of early Usenet posts on a browsable archive for the first time.


From ACM News

How Old is Your Brain?

How Old is Your Brain?

Machine learning can help assess the physical age of one’s brain.


From ACM TechNews

Can Businesses Keep Up With Cyber Threats?

Can Businesses Keep Up With Cyber Threats?

Market research firm Gartner forecasts cybersecurity spending by companies and governments will grow 9% annually from 2021 to 2024.


From ACM TechNews

Squeezing Light Inside Memory Devices Could Help Improve Performance

Squeezing Light Inside Memory Devices Could Help Improve Performance

Researchers led by the U.K.'s University of Cambridge have developed a technique for "squeezing" visible light in order to probe nanoscale memory devices,.