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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.

May 2019


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Find Patterns Associated with Extreme Floods

Researchers Find Patterns Associated with Extreme Floods

Researchers used a machine-learning based analysis of extreme floods in the U.S. to learn that these events are associated with four types of atmospheric patterns.


From ACM TechNews

Cybersecurity Jobs Abound. No Experience Required.

Cybersecurity Jobs Abound. No Experience Required.

There are many U.S. cybersecurity job openings, and a shortfall of qualified professionals is prompting employers to look outside traditional pipelines to find job candidates.


From ACM News

Welcome the Plants That Move on their Own

Welcome the Plants That Move on their Own

Exploring the potential of plant-robot hybrids that can produce architectural artifacts and living spaces.


From ACM TechNews

Hummingbird Robot Flies, Hovers Like Real Thing

Hummingbird Robot Flies, Hovers Like Real Thing

Purdue University researchers have built robot hummingbirds that learn to fly and hover like their real-world counterparts, using algorithms and computer simulation.


From ACM TechNews

San Francisco Bans Facial Recognition Technology

San Francisco Bans Facial Recognition Technology

San Francisco's Board of Supervisors has banned the use of facial recognition technology for surveillance purposes by police and other agencies in the city.


From ACM TechNews

For the First Time, Engineers Measure Accuracy of 2 Qubits in Silicon--and It Works

For the First Time, Engineers Measure Accuracy of 2 Qubits in Silicon--and It Works

Researchers have quantified the accuracy of two-quantum-bit operations in silicon, in another step toward reliable quantum computing.


From ACM TechNews

When Computer Science Majors Take Improv

When Computer Science Majors Take Improv

Northeastern University computer science majors are required to take a class in theater and improvisation, where they practice exercises to cultivate empathy, creativity, and teamwork.


From ACM TechNews

Robots Thrive in the Forest on Jobs Humans Find Too Boring

Robots Thrive in the Forest on Jobs Humans Find Too Boring

Sweden's forest companies are embracing technology to cut costs and boost profits, while freeing employees from mundane tasks.


From ACM TechNews

Scientists in China Develop ­ltra-Long Range AI Camera

Scientists in China Develop ­ltra-Long Range AI Camera

Researchers in China have developed camera technology that can render human sized-subjects from up to 28 miles away.


From ACM News

New Secret-spilling Flaw Affects Almost Every Intel Chip Since 2011

New Secret-spilling Flaw Affects Almost Every Intel Chip Since 2011

Almost every computer with an Intel chips dating back to 2011 are affected by the vulnerabilities.


From ACM News

AI Accelerates Innovation

AI Accelerates Innovation

Yet patent attorneys fear the darker consequences of artificial intelligence.


From ACM TechNews

How Chinese Spies Got the NSA's Hacking Tools, and ­sed Them for Attacks

How Chinese Spies Got the NSA's Hacking Tools, and ­sed Them for Attacks

Symantec researchers discovered Chinese intelligence agents had acquired National Security Agency hacking tools and used them in 2016 to attack American allies and private firms in Europe and Asia.


From ACM TechNews

Dataset Bridges Human Vision and Machine Learning

Dataset Bridges Human Vision and Machine Learning

Researchers have created a new dataset that allows cognitive neuroscientists to better leverage deep learning models that have significantly improved artificial vision systems.


From ACM TechNews

Low-Cost Intervention Boosts ­ndergraduate Interest In Computer Science

Low-Cost Intervention Boosts ­ndergraduate Interest In Computer Science

Researchers have shown that an online intervention taking less than 30 minutes significantly increases interest in computer science among both male and female undergraduate students.


From ACM TechNews

CM­ Researcher Designs Suitcase, App to Help the Blind at Airports

CM­ Researcher Designs Suitcase, App to Help the Blind at Airports

 An international team of researchers has developed a combined suitcase/smartphone app to help the blind navigate airports with greater independence.


From ACM TechNews

Rattled by Cyberattacks, Hospitals Push Device Makers to Improve Security

Rattled by Cyberattacks, Hospitals Push Device Makers to Improve Security

With cyberattacks against Internet-connected medical devices on the rise, hospitals and health systems in the U.S. are pressuring device manufacturers to bolster their products' safety.


From ACM TechNews

For Better Computing, Liberate CP­s From Garbage Collection

For Better Computing, Liberate CP­s From Garbage Collection

Researchers have created a compact accelerator that relieves a CPU of the "garbage collection" task of deleting redundant or irrelevant data from apps to make more memory available.


From ACM TechNews

R's Out of Top 20 Programming Languages Despite Boom in Statistical Jobs

R's Out of Top 20 Programming Languages Despite Boom in Statistical Jobs

Tiobe ranks the R programming language as the 21st most popular in its monthly index for May, marking the first time in three years the language sits outside the top 20.


From ACM TechNews

Top Schools Are Offering More Blockchain, Cryptocurrency Courses

Top Schools Are Offering More Blockchain, Cryptocurrency Courses

A recent Coinbase study found that 42% of the top 50 universities worldwide now offer at least one course on cryptocurrency and blockchain.


From ACM TechNews

Android App to Tackle Cybersecurity in the Developing World

Android App to Tackle Cybersecurity in the Developing World

Android is offering a free app to boost security for smartphone users in the developing world.


From ACM TechNews

Amazon Accused of Violating Kids' Privacy With Smart Speakers

Amazon Accused of Violating Kids' Privacy With Smart Speakers

Privacy and child-advocacy organizations have filed a complaint alleging Amazon has been illegally recording and retaining conversations of children using its Echo Dot Kids device.


From ACM TechNews

­.K. Drones Map Chernobyl's 'Red Forest'

­.K. Drones Map Chernobyl's 'Red Forest'

U.K. researchers used a drone-mapping system they developed to survey Chernobyl's "Red Forest," one of the most radioactive locations on Earth.


From ACM TechNews

'RobbinHood' Ransomware Takes Down Baltimore City Government Networks

'RobbinHood' Ransomware Takes Down Baltimore City Government Networks

A "RobbinHood" ransomware attack earlier this week crippled networks used by Baltimore's city government.


From ACM TechNews

World's Fastest Supercomputer Coming to ­.S. in 2021

World's Fastest Supercomputer Coming to ­.S. in 2021

In 2021, Oak Ridge National Laboratory will become home to a $600-million exascale machine that could become the world's fastest supercomputer.


From ACM TechNews

Nike Wants Your Sneakers to Fit Better, So It's ­sing AR

Nike Wants Your Sneakers to Fit Better, So It's ­sing AR

Starting in July, customers in any Nike retail store in the U.S. can have their feet scanned to learn exactly what shoe size they need, in any style Nike makes.


From ACM TechNews

OS­ Researchers Develop Better Way to Determine Coastal Flooding Risk

OS­ Researchers Develop Better Way to Determine Coastal Flooding Risk

A new computer-model assembly technique could lead to better insights into coastal flood risks.


From ACM TechNews

The Pentagon's Drones May Soon Run on Open Source Software

The Pentagon's Drones May Soon Run on Open Source Software

The U.S. Department of Defense's Defense Innovation Unit has reached a deal with Swiss company Auterion to enhance the agency's open source drone software.


From ACM TechNews

Dell Laptops and Computers Vulnerable to Remote Hijacks

Dell Laptops and Computers Vulnerable to Remote Hijacks

Dell laptops and personal computers can be remotely commandeered via a vulnerability in the Dell SupportAssist utility.


From ACM TechNews

New Approach Could Accelerate Efforts to Catalog Vast Numbers of Cells

New Approach Could Accelerate Efforts to Catalog Vast Numbers of Cells

A new technique can derive fully comprehensive samples, or "sketches," of vast cellular datasets, to simplify analysis.


From ACM News

Hacking the Body Electric

Hacking the Body Electric

Electroceuticals use electricity, rather than chemicals, to treat the body's ills.