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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.

April 2011


From ACM News

Iranian General Accuses Siemens of Helping ­.s., Israel Build Stuxnet

An Iranian military commander Saturday accused the German electronics giant Siemens with helping U.S. and Israeli teams craft the Stuxnet worm that attacked his country's nuclear facilities.


From ACM TechNews

Using Computers and Sensors to Curb Electricity Use in Buildings

Using Computers and Sensors to Curb Electricity Use in Buildings

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have developed algorithms and a real-time occupancy sensor network to create a smart heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning system.


From ACM TechNews

New Global Portal For Cyber-Physical Systems Research Launched

New Global Portal For Cyber-Physical Systems Research Launched

Vanderbilt University's Institute for Software Integrated Systems recently launched the Cyber-Physical Systems Virtual Organization, a U.S. National Science Foundation-backed portal designed to unite researchers, educators, and…


From ACM TechNews

Aberdeen Researchers to Collaborate With India on Development of Trusted Mobile Technologies For Rural Healthcare

Aberdeen Researchers to Collaborate With India on Development of Trusted Mobile Technologies For Rural Healthcare

University of Aberdeen researchers, in collaboration with Indian institutions, are launching the TRUMP project, a three-year study to explore how mobile technologies can help manage chronic diseases in rural areas of the United…


From ACM News

Robots on the Farm

Commercial farms of the future may be staffed by robots that will identify, spray and pick individual pieces of produce from plants, even when their targets are grapes, peppers and apples that are as green as the leaves that…


From ACM TechNews

Mentorship Key For Women in It, Says Collaborate Panel

A recent panel discussion at the Collaborate 11 Oracle user conference concluded that mentors and sponsors are crucial to helping women advance their careers in information technology.


From ACM News

Testing Google's Panda Algorithm: Cnet Analysis

Google's sweeping changes to Web site rankings have roiled the Web industry, including the company's announcement last week that its algorithms now incorporate more "user feedback signals."


From ACM News

Reprogrammable Chips Could Enable Instant Gadget Upgrades

Reprogrammable Chips Could Enable Instant Gadget Upgrades

Obsolescence is the curse of electronics: no sooner have you bought a gadget than its hardware is outdated. A new, low cost type of microchip that can rearrange its design on the fly could change that.


From ACM News

Hoops 2.0: Inside the Nba

Hoops 2.0: Inside the Nba

Outside Oracle Arena, it’s a balmy 65-degree spring day. But up in the building’s rafters, 80-odd feet above the hardwood floor, the air is crisp and the view vertigo-inducing.


From ACM News

The Business Market Plays Cloud Computing Catch-­p

The Business Market Plays Cloud Computing Catch-­p

The big spenders on technology are businesses and government agencies. They buy about 75% of the computing goods and services sold worldwide. Yet it is increasingly evident they are not driving the new ideas, excitement, and…


From ACM TechNews

New Kde Project Aims at Tablets, Mixed ­is

KDE is developing two open source projects designed to provide a consistent user interface across a variety of touchscreen interfaces and to advance data integration.


From ACM TechNews

Can Supercomputers Help Japan Predict Earthquakes?

Can Supercomputers Help Japan Predict Earthquakes?

Dell Computer and several U.S. universities have provided Japanese researchers with supercomputing capacity following the March 11 earthquake, as rolling blackouts have made it difficult for them to use their supercomputers to…


From ACM TechNews

Computational Thinking 'vital For Child's Analytical Ability'

Computational Thinking 'vital For Child's Analytical Ability'

Computational thinking ought to be embedded within educational programs in order to cultivate children's analytical ability, says CMU professor Jeannette M. Wing.


From ACM News

Evolutionary Babel Was in Southern Africa

Where did humanity utter its first words? A new linguistic analysis attempts to rewrite the story of Babel by borrowing from the methods of genetic analysis—and finds that modern language originated in sub-Saharan Africa and…


From ACM News

Kinect For Windows Sdk Means Business

Kinect For Windows Sdk Means Business

Microsoft had some fun while offering up details of the software development kit for Kinect for Windows. A technology evangelist named Clint Rutkas jury-rigged a lounge chair with wheels, wiring, and a Kinect motion-sensing…


From ACM News

Mobile App Talent Pool Is Shallow

Mobile App Talent Pool Is Shallow

This year, magazine publisher Hearst Corp. intends to add five software engineers to its mobile development staff. Social-networking company Ning Inc. plans to nearly double its mobile development team. And Web start-up Where…


From ACM News

Constant Connection

Constant Connection

For most of the 20th century, the paradigm of wireless communication was a radio station with a single high-power transmitter. As long as you were within 20 miles or so of the transmitter, you could pick up the station.


From ACM News

Just How Creepy Is 'creepy'? A Test-Drive

Just How Creepy Is 'creepy'? A Test-Drive

You probably know that some Internet and cell phone applications like Foursquare or Twitter can broadcast your location to the world. And you might know that Web sites with names like PleaseRobMe and ICanStalkYou have been…


From ACM News

Physicists Discover New Way to Visualize Warped Space and Time

Physicists Discover New Way to Visualize Warped Space and Time

When black holes slam into each other, the surrounding space and time surge and undulate like a heaving sea during a storm. This warping of space and time is so complicated that physicists haven't been able to understand the…


From ACM News

Atlas Gives Scientists New View of the Brain

Atlas Gives Scientists New View of the Brain

Scientists funded by Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul Allen unveiled a $55 million computerized atlas of the human brain Tuesday, offering the first interactive research guide to the anatomy and genes that animate the mind.


From ACM TechNews

Airborne Radar Will Map the Ground in 3D

Airborne Radar Will Map the Ground in 3D

Aircraft radar will be capable of mapping landscapes and buildings in three dimensions (3D), making it easier to spot partly hidden objects on the ground, using a software upgrade to existing radar systems. 


From ACM TechNews

Malware Writers Making Code Tougher to Decode, Harder to Find

Reverse-engineering experts say that malware writers are doing a better job of hiding their code and making it difficult to crack. 


From ACM TechNews

Creative, On-Line Learning Tool Helps Students Tackle Real-World Problems

Creative, On-Line Learning Tool Helps Students Tackle Real-World Problems

Iowa State University researchers have developed ThinkSpace, a computer interface that helps students use what they have learned in horticulture classrooms and apply it to real-world problems. 


From ACM TechNews

Internet2 Turns 15. Has It Delivered on Its Promise?

The Internet2, which is reserved for research and education, recently received $100 million in new funding that will upgrade its backbone capacity to 8.8 terabytes per second and expand its services to thousands of libraries,…


From ACM News

How Google Is Teaching Computers to See

How Google Is Teaching Computers to See

Computers used to be blind, and now they can see.  Thanks to increasingly sophisticated algorithms, computers today can recognize and identify the Eiffel Tower, the Mona Lisa, and a can of Budweiser. Still, despite huge technological…


From ACM News

IBM Says It Knows How Bad Your Commute Will Be

IBM Says It Knows How Bad Your Commute Will Be

If you're a commuter stuck in traffic, it doesn't help you all that much to know what road conditions are like right now. You already know you're being delayed. But what if there was a way to alert you to problems before you…


From ACM News

What Is a Cpu Thread?

What Is a Cpu Thread?

Tech pundits, analysts, and reviewers often speak of "multithreaded" programs, or even "multithreaded processors," without ever defining what, exactly, a "thread" is. Truth be told, some of those using the term probably don't…


From ACM News

3d Avatars Could Put You in Two Places at Once

3d Avatars Could Put You in Two Places at Once

If Jim Blascovich and Jeremy Bailenson are right, here is what’s in store for you and your avatar very soon, probably within the next five years:


From ACM TechNews

Reitinger's Quest: Build a Safer Internet

Reitinger's Quest: Build a Safer Internet

U.S. Department of Homeland Security deputy undersecretary Philip Reitinger has established the goal of developing a more secure Internet ecosystem, which he says is essential to functioning in a world that is increasingly connected…


From ACM TechNews

Computer Science Enrollments Rebound, ­p 10% Last Fall

Computer science enrollments increased for the third consecutive year at Ph.D.-granting institutions, are up 10 percent from a year ago, but are still below the peak reached in 2001, according to the CRA's latest annual Taulbee…