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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.

March 2016


From ACM TechNews

Envisioning Supercomputers of the Future

Envisioning Supercomputers of the Future

The Argo Project funded by the U.S. Department of Energy has enlisted 40 researchers to devise a new approach for extreme-scale system software. 


From ACM TechNews

Human Eyes Assist Drones, Teach Machines to See

Human Eyes Assist Drones, Teach Machines to See

Researchers have developed a new strategy combining crowdsourcing and machine learning for rapidly interpreting aerial images captured by camera drones. 


From ACM TechNews

Scientists on Verge of Developing Emotional Computer

Scientists on Verge of Developing Emotional Computer

Researchers plan to develop a computer agent imbued with both narrative and emotional intellect. 


From ACM TechNews

Stanford's Flying, Perching Scamp Robot Can Climb Straight ­p Walls

Stanford's Flying, Perching Scamp Robot Can Climb Straight ­p Walls

A robot developed at Stanford University is the first to combine flying, perching with passive attachment technology, and climbing. 


From ACM Opinion

From Reagan's Cyber Plan to Apple Vs. Fbi: 'everything Is ­p For Grabs'

From Reagan's Cyber Plan to Apple Vs. Fbi: 'everything Is ­p For Grabs'

The heated debate between the FBI and Apple over the encryption of the iPhone used by Syed Rizwan Farook, one of the two people who massacred 14 people in San Bernardino in December, took an unexpected turn Monday when the FBI…


From ACM News

The Data Lake Concept Is Maturing

The Data Lake Concept Is Maturing

Meeting the needs of the new era of big data analytics.


From ACM News

New Gravity Map Gives Best View Yet Inside Mars

New Gravity Map Gives Best View Yet Inside Mars

A new map of Mars' gravity made with three NASA spacecraft is the most detailed to date, providing a revealing glimpse into the hidden interior of the Red Planet.


From ACM News

Apple Gets Short-Term Win, But New Mysterious Fbi ­nlocking Method Looms

Apple Gets Short-Term Win, But New Mysterious Fbi ­nlocking Method Looms

Less than 24 hours before a highly anticipated Tuesday court session where prosecutors and Apple lawyers would have squared off here in federal court, government attorneys suddenly got a judge to vacate that hearing and stay 


From ACM News

DARPA Wants to Hack Your Brain

DARPA Wants to Hack Your Brain

The secretive U.S. military research division DARPA has announced plans to create a device that could accelerate learning in the human brain.


From ACM TechNews

Battery-Free Wearables of the Future Could Run Off Your Footsteps

Battery-Free Wearables of the Future Could Run Off Your Footsteps

Researchers at the University of Southampton have designed an insole to sit inside a person's shoe and harvest energy from their footsteps.


From ACM TechNews

The Meaning of Alphago, the AI Program That Beat a Go Champ

The Meaning of Alphago, the AI Program That Beat a Go Champ

The victory of Google DeepMind's AlphaGo algorithm over a champion Go player is seen as a resurgence for deep learning. 


From ACM TechNews

This Trading Card Game AI Watches and Learns From You

This Trading Card Game AI Watches and Learns From You

Cryptozoic Entertainment is working to reimagine how people play video games with computer-controlled opponents. 


From ACM News

Mobile-Phone Health Apps Deliver Data Bounty

Mobile-Phone Health Apps Deliver Data Bounty

Last summer, physician Yvonne Chan wondered how the wildfires raging through Washington state were affecting people with asthma—for whom smoke and heat can trigger breathing difficulties.


From ACM News

Andrew S. Grove 1936 – 2016

Andrew S. Grove 1936 – 2016

Intel former CEO and Chairman Andrew S. Grove passed away on Monday, March 21, at the age of 79.


From ACM News

Fbi May Not Need Apple to ­nlock San Bernardino Shooter's Iphone

Fbi May Not Need Apple to ­nlock San Bernardino Shooter's Iphone

The FBI may have found a way without Apple’s assistance to unlock the iPhone used by one of the shooters in the San Bernardino terrorist attack, Justice Department officials said Monday.


From ACM News

­tah's Online Caucus Gives Security Experts Heart Attacks

­tah's Online Caucus Gives Security Experts Heart Attacks

Security researchers pretty much uniformly agree that letting people vote online is a very bad idea, one that is fraught with risks and vulnerabilities that could have unknowable consequences for the future of democracy.


From ACM News

Long Before the Apple-Fbi Battle, Lavabit Sounded a Warning

Long Before the Apple-Fbi Battle, Lavabit Sounded a Warning

Three years ago, Ladar Levison, the founder of the now-defunct secure email service known as Lavabit, was in the same position Apple finds itself today: facing off against a formidable government foe with unlimited resources…


From ACM TechNews

Johns Hopkins Researchers Poke a Hole in Apple's Encryption

Johns Hopkins Researchers Poke a Hole in Apple's Encryption

A research team from Johns Hopkins University has successfully cracked Apple's iMessage encryption. Professor Matthew D. Green says this disproves the notion that strong commercial encryption is hack-proof for either hackers…


From ACM TechNews

Scientists Develop a 100 Times Faster Type of Memory Cell

Scientists Develop a 100 Times Faster Type of Memory Cell

A new type of memory cell based on superconductors would be hundreds of times faster than the types of memory devices commonly used today, according to scientists from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and the Moscow…


From ACM TechNews

Why Students Are Throwing Tons of Money at a Program That Won't Give Them a College Degree

Why Students Are Throwing Tons of Money at a Program That Won't Give Them a College Degree

Computer-coding "boot camps" are surging in popularity, but these non-accredited programs do not offer a college degree, so graduates who invest a lot of money in such courses are often denied the high-paying positions such boot…


From ACM TechNews

App to Tackle Impact of Injuries on Nfl Players

App to Tackle Impact of Injuries on Nfl Players

Researchers last week rolled out a new smartphone app to enable former NFL players and the general public to collectively participate in a clinical study to evaluate how on-the-field injuries affect the long-term health of players…


From ACM TechNews

­tah Republicans Open Caucuses to Online Voters

­tah Republicans Open Caucuses to Online Voters

Utah residents this week will be able to cast ballots in the Republican presidential contest using computers, tablets, and smartphones, representing the largest online presidential voting experiment since 2004.


From ACM News

Living Factories of the Future

Living Factories of the Future

From an evolutionary perspective, yeast has no business producing a pain killer. But by re-engineering the microbe's genome, Christina Smolke at Stanford University in California has made it do precisely that.


From ACM News

Science Papers Reveal New Aspects of Pluto and its Moons

Science Papers Reveal New Aspects of Pluto and its Moons

A year ago, Pluto was just a bright speck in the cameras of NASA's approaching New Horizons spacecraft, not much different than its appearances in telescopes since Clyde Tombaugh discovered the then-ninth planet in 1930.


From ACM News

Driverless Cars Must Have Steering Wheels, Brake Pedals, Feds Say

Driverless Cars Must Have Steering Wheels, Brake Pedals, Feds Say

Driverless cars should have a fairly easy time getting the green light to operate on U.S. roadways, as long as they look and act like the vehicles people have been driving for the past century.


From ACM TechNews

Javascript Most Popular Language

Javascript Most Popular Language

JavaScript is the most popular programming language, according to Stack Overflow's annual survey of 56,033 developers.


From ACM TechNews

This New Discovery Could Put Quantum Computers Within Closer Reach

This New Discovery Could Put Quantum Computers Within Closer Reach

Researchers at Florida State University's National High Magnetic Field Laboratory have found a way to dampen qubits' susceptibility to magnetic disruptions, or "noise," using atomic clock transitions.


From ACM TechNews

New Technique Wipes Out ­nwanted Data

New Technique Wipes Out ­nwanted Data

Researchers have developed a machine-learning method that involves making such systems forget the data's "lineage" so they can remove the data and undo its effects and allow future operations to run as if the data never existed…


From ACM TechNews

Solving Silicon Valley's Gender Problem

Solving Silicon Valley's Gender Problem

In an interview, former Stanford University Graduate School of Business doctoral students Julie Oberweis and Monica Leas discuss the genesis of a survey detailing Silicon Valley's inhospitable culture toward women.


From ACM TechNews

Robot Learning Companion Offers Custom-Tailored Tutoring

Robot Learning Companion Offers Custom-Tailored Tutoring

Researchers from Tel Aviv University and MIT have developed a socially assistive robot that can serve as a one-to-one peer for learning in the classroom or for play.