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

December 2010


From ACM TechNews

Wireless at the Speed of Plasma

Wireless at the Speed of Plasma

A new type of antenna could dramatically change high-speed wireless communications, miniature radar, and energy weapons. The antenna consists of thousands of diodes on a silicon chip that each produce electrons that reflect…


From ACM TechNews

Internet Community Incensed at 'government Only' Internet Governance Review

The U.N. Commission on Science and Technology for Development is creating a Working Group on Improvements to the Internet Governance Forum. The move has raised objections, because the group will reportedly have only government…


From ACM News

U.s. Tries to Build Case For Conspiracy By Wikileaks

Federal prosecutors, seeking to build a case against the WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange for his role in a huge dissemination of classified government documents, are looking for evidence of any collusion in his early contacts…


From ACM News

Google Goes to the Cloud For New Idea in Pc System

In the personal-computer industry, where things change fast, one fact has been a constant for years: There are two major, mainstream operating systems for consumers.


From ACM News

10 Ways a Digital Big Brother Can Be Good For You

10 Ways a Digital Big Brother Can Be Good For You

The opening passage from George Orwell's "1984" depicts a guy hustling up a stairwell that's plastered with giant posters of a man's face staring at him.


From ACM News

Appeals Court Holds Email Privacy Protected By Fourth Amendment

In a landmark decision issued today in the criminal appeal of U.S. v. Warshak, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the government must have a search warrant before it can secretly seize and search emails stored…


From ACM TechNews

Ibm Xeon-Based Supercomputer to Hit Three Petaflops

Ibm Xeon-Based Supercomputer to Hit Three Petaflops

IBM plans to build an Intel Xeon-based supercomputer that will reach a peak speed of three petaflops and use a hot water-cooling system, which will result in 40 percent less power consumption than an air-cooled machine. 


From ACM TechNews

China Surpasses Japan in R&d as Powers Shift

China is expected to to spend $153.7 billion on research & development in 2011 and become the world's second biggest R&D spender, overtaking Japan and trailing only the United States, according to a Battelle Memorial Institute…


From ACM TechNews

At Siggraph Asia, the Sky Is the Limit

At Siggraph Asia, the Sky Is the Limit

A focal point of SIGGRAPH Asia 2010 is the Computer Animation Festival, which features the best in computer animation and visual effects. The festival screens several computer animation and visual-effects movies, as well as…


From ACM TechNews

Senator Proposes Cybersecurity Standards

U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) has introduced legislation that requires top government officials to determine whether it would be cost effective to mandate that Internet service providers and others develop and enforce cybersecurity…


From ACM TechNews

UCLA Receives $5.5m For Work on High-Speed, High-Capacity Memory

UCLA Receives $5.5m For Work on High-Speed, High-Capacity Memory

UCLA researchers recently received a $5.5 million U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency grant to continue developing technology that could lead to low-power computers that need almost no start-up time when activated. …


From ACM TechNews

Cryptographers Chosen to Duke It Out in Final Fight

The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology has selected five Secure Hash Algorithm (SHA-3) entrants as finalists for its competition to find a replacement for the gold-standard security algorithm. 


From ACM TechNews

What Social Networks Reveal About Interaction

What Social Networks Reveal About Interaction

Social network systems can reveal insights into how groups of people can efficiently analyze, filter, and use information to harness the wisdom of the crowd, according to researchers at the Palo Alto Research Center.


From ACM News

WikiLeaks Reveals Everybody's Christmas List: The World Wants Drones

WikiLeaks Reveals Everybody's Christmas List: The World Wants Drones

Black Friday has passed, but the holidays are upon us and shopping days are increasingly few. Having a hard time finding the perfect gift for that tiny emirate hoping to psych out Iran or the large NATO ally looking to fight…


From ACM TechNews

Physical Protection For the Internet

Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich researchers say that physical attacks on critical Internet infrastructures, such as servers and data hubs, could be just as important a problem to maintaining network functions as…


From ACM News

Life Goes Online After Death with 'memory Boxes'

Life Goes Online After Death with 'memory Boxes'

The death of a close, elderly relative can often mean a sombre weekend or two going through old things, sorting through photographs, donating old clothes to charity.


From ACM News

I.b.m. Supercomputer 'watson' to Challenge 'jeopardy' Stars

An I.B.M. supercomputer system named after the company’s founder, Thomas J. Watson Sr., is almost ready for a televised test: a bout of questioning on the quiz show "Jeopardy."


From ACM News

Cryptographers Chosen to Duke It Out in Final Fight

A competition to find a replacement for one of the gold-standard computer security algorithms used in almost all secure, online transactions just heated up.


From ACM News

Robot Arm Improves Performance of Brain-Controlled Device

The performance of a brain-machine interface designed to help paralyzed subjects move objects with their thoughts is improved with the addition of a robotic arm providing sensory feedback, a new study from the University of Chicago…


From ACM TechNews

Maths Research to Improve Internet Reliability

Maths Research to Improve Internet Reliability

The Internet Traffic-Matrix Synthesis project will help make Internet services more reliable and efficient by synthesizing Internet traffic matrices and enabling researchers to test the designs of communication networks, according…


From ACM News

The Shadow War

The Shadow War

Someone is killing Iran’s nuclear scientists. But a computer worm may be the scarier threat.


From ACM News

Rivals Say Google Plays Favorites

Rivals Say Google Plays Favorites

Search giant displays its own health, shopping, local content ahead of links to competing sites.


From ACM News

Multitouch Pioneer Jeff Han Starts to Think Small (devices)

Multitouch Pioneer Jeff Han Starts to Think Small (devices)

For years now, Jeff Han has been working on large-screen multitouch displays. Han and his company, Perceptive Pixel, are best known for creating the giant touch wall that John King and others at CNN use to break down the elections…


From ACM News

Single Quantum Dot Nanowire Photodetectors

Single Quantum Dot Nanowire Photodetectors

Moving a step closer toward quantum computing, a research team in the Netherlands recently fabricated a photodetector based on a single nanowire, in which the active element is a single quantum dot.


From ACM News

NASA Probe Sees Solar Wind Decline

NASA Probe Sees Solar Wind Decline

The 33-year odyssey of NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has reached a distant point at the edge of our solar system where there is no outward motion of solar wind.


From ACM News

Panel Set to Study Safety of Electronic Patient Data

Panel Set to Study Safety of Electronic Patient Data

Almost two years ago, President Obama pledged $19 billion in stimulus incentives to help convert the nation’s doctors and hospitals to using a paperless system of electronic health records intended to improve the quality of…


From ACM News

Microsoft Shares Cloud Technology with Top Australian Research Organizations

Microsoft Corp. announced partnerships with three of Australia's top research organizations as part of its Global Cloud Research Engagement Initiative. The partners will receive access to advanced client plus cloud computing…


From ACM News

A Lego Reconstruction of the World's Earliest Computer

A Lego Reconstruction of the World's Earliest Computer

Before the birth of Christ the Greeks built a mechanical computer. Now an Apple engineer has made a functional Lego replica.


From ACM TechNews

NSF Extends Program to Draw African Americans to Careers in Robotics, Computer Science

The U.S. National Science Foundation is extending its support of the Advancing Robotics Technology for Societal Impact Alliance, a program designed to encourage African Americans to pursue careers in robotics and computer science…


From ACM TechNews

Ucsf Team Develops 'logic Gates' to Program Bacteria as Computers

Ucsf Team Develops 'logic Gates' to Program Bacteria as Computers

University of California, San Francisco researchers have genetically engineered E. coli bacteria with a specific molecular circuitry that will enable scientists to program the cells to communicate and perform computations.