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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 2015


From ACM News

How Benford's Law Reveals Suspicious Activity on Twitter

How Benford's Law Reveals Suspicious Activity on Twitter

Back in the 1880s, the American astronomer Simon Newcomb noticed something strange about the book of logarithmic tables in his library—the earlier pages were much more heavily thumbed than later ones implying that people looked…


From ACM News

Nasa's Nexss Coalition to Lead Search For Life on Distant Worlds

Nasa's Nexss Coalition to Lead Search For Life on Distant Worlds

NASA is bringing together experts spanning a variety of scientific fields for an unprecedented initiative dedicated to the search for life on planets outside our solar system.


From ACM TechNews

Disney Researchers Show Soft Sides With Layered Fabric 3D Printer

Disney Researchers Show Soft Sides With Layered Fabric 3D Printer

Researchers have developed a three-dimensional printer that layers laser-cut sheets of fabric to form soft, squeezable objects. 


From ACM TechNews

A Research Agenda For Intelligent Systems Will Result in Fundamental New Capabilities For U­nderstanding the Earth System

A Research Agenda For Intelligent Systems Will Result in Fundamental New Capabilities For U­nderstanding the Earth System

The U.S. National Science Foundation last month hosted a workshop that, it hopes, will result in new capabilities for understanding the Earth system. 


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Hack Sony Headset to Simulate Autism

Researchers Hack Sony Headset to Simulate Autism

Japanese researchers have used an experimental headset to simulate the vision and hearing of people with autism spectrum disorder. 


From ACM TechNews

Smart City Technology May Be Vulnerable to Hackers

Smart City Technology May Be Vulnerable to Hackers

Cesar Cerrudo, chief technology officer at IOActive Labs, says "smart city" technologies are vulnerable to cyberattacks. 


From ACM TechNews

Revenge of the Nerds: Starting Salaries For Class of 2015 Techies Top $100k

Revenge of the Nerds: Starting Salaries For Class of 2015 Techies Top $100k

Demand for students graduating with computer science, software engineering, and computer engineering degrees is on the rise.


From ACM TechNews

Shifts in Computer Science Interest

Shifts in Computer Science Interest

A new study found that while interest in computer science among both men and women has fluctuated over the last four decades, women were consistently underrepresented. 


From ACM News

3D Simulations of Colliding Black Holes Hailed As Most Realistic Yet

3D Simulations of Colliding Black Holes Hailed As Most Realistic Yet

When astronomers try to simulate colliding giant black holes, they usually rely on simplified approximations to model the swirling disks of matter that surround and fuel these gravitational monsters.


From ACM News

What It Feels Like to Fly a Drone with Your Brain

What It Feels Like to Fly a Drone with Your Brain

 

At the Global Conference on CyberSpace, Vint Cerf tested technology that lets a person control a drone’s movements with his or her brain.

 


From ACM News

On Time-Lapse Rocket Ride to Trade Center's Top, Glimpse of Doomed Tower

On Time-Lapse Rocket Ride to Trade Center's Top, Glimpse of Doomed Tower

An imposingly realistic vision of the old 1 World Trade Center, the ultimately doomed north tower, will begin appearing next month in a most unlikely place: the five special elevators servicing the observatory atop the new 1.


From ACM News

How Factory Workers Learned to Love Their Robot Colleagues

How Factory Workers Learned to Love Their Robot Colleagues

Workers at a Navistar truck plant in Ohio weren't eager to make friends when a new colleague showed up on the factory floor nearly 40 years ago.


From ACM TechNews

Google's Project Loon Close to Launching Thousands of Balloons

Google's Project Loon Close to Launching Thousands of Balloons

Google is close to launching thousands of balloons in an effort to provide Internet access from the sky. 


From ACM TechNews

Paper Memory Ready to Roll

Paper Memory Ready to Roll

Researchers have printed memory circuits directly on paper using roll-to-roll printing techniques and commercially available metallic inks. 


From ACM TechNews

N-Zero Envisions 'asleep-Yet-Aware' Electronics That Could Revolutionize Remote Wireless Sensors

N-Zero Envisions 'asleep-Yet-Aware' Electronics That Could Revolutionize Remote Wireless Sensors

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Near Zero Power and Sensor Operations program is working to develop wireless, event-driven sensing capabilities.


From ACM News

ACM Honors Wing, Hall For Service, Contribution

ACM Honors Wing, Hall For Service, Contribution

 

Recognizing the vision and achievement of two leaders who have transformed the way the world views computing.

 


From ACM News

Technology That Prods You to Take Action, Not Just Collect Data

Technology That Prods You to Take Action, Not Just Collect Data

The bookshelves in Natasha Dow Schüll’s office at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are punctuated here and there with kitchen timers: a windup orange plastic device, an egg-shaped stainless steel mechanical timer, a…


From ACM News

Google's Search ­pdated Will Remake the Web in Its Own Image

Google's Search ­pdated Will Remake the Web in Its Own Image

Some people are calling it Mobilegeddon.


From ACM News

Glitter Cloud May Serve as Space Mirror

Glitter Cloud May Serve as Space Mirror

What does glitter have to do with finding stars and planets outside our solar system?


From ACM News

Rashid, Tevanian to Receive ACM 2014 Software System Award

Rashid, Tevanian to Receive ACM 2014 Software System Award

Microsoft's Rashid and former Apple executive Tevanian were selected for their roles as lead developers of a pioneering operating system.


From ACM News

Computing After Moore's Law

Computing After Moore's Law

The technologies chip makers hope can keep Moore's Law alive.


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Send Out an Extensive Look Into Email Behavior

Researchers Send Out an Extensive Look Into Email Behavior

Researchers conducted a large-scale study of email behaviors involving more than 2 million participants who sent 16 billion messages over several months. 


From ACM Opinion

3 Questions on Killer Robots

3 Questions on Killer Robots

Delegates to the United Nations Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons are meeting this week in Geneva to discuss fully autonomous weapons—machines that could decide to kill someone without any human input.


From ACM TechNews

Video Games Can Power ­p From Merely Fun to Meaningful Experiences

Video Games Can Power ­p From Merely Fun to Meaningful Experiences

Pennsylvania State University researchers have found many video games can have meaningful entertainment experiences for players. 


From ACM TechNews

Fighting the Next Generation of Cyberattacks

Fighting the Next Generation of Cyberattacks

Researchers recently received a $3-million U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency grant to develop software that can identify a new kind of vulnerability.


From ACM TechNews

Car Safety System Could Anticipate Driver's Mistakes

Car Safety System Could Anticipate Driver's Mistakes

Cornell University researchers have developed an algorithm-based automotive system to predict if the driver will turn, change lanes, or continue going straight. 


From ACM TechNews

A-Man Brings STEM to the Inner Cities

A-Man Brings STEM to the Inner Cities

The African-American Male Achievers Network encourages African-American and Latino students to enter science, technology, engineering, and math careers. 


From ACM TechNews

Hackers ­sing Startling New Ways to Steal Your Passwords

Hackers ­sing Startling New Ways to Steal Your Passwords

Rsearchers have found hackers can speculate PINs by interpreting video of people tapping their smartphone screens even when the display is not visible. 


From ACM News

Proto Quantum Computer Inspired By Victorians Gets a Speed Boost

Proto Quantum Computer Inspired By Victorians Gets a Speed Boost

Quantum computers should theoretically outpace ordinary ones, but attempts to build a speedy quantum machine have so far come up short. Now an approach based on a Victorian counting device seems to be getting close.


From ACM News

Nasa's New Horizons Nears Historic Encounter with Pluto

Nasa's New Horizons Nears Historic Encounter with Pluto

NASA's New Horizons spacecraft is three months from returning to humanity the first-ever close up images and scientific observations of distant Pluto and its system of large and small moons.