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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.

July 2013


From ACM TechNews

Github Improves Open Source Licensing Policies

Github Improves Open Source Licensing Policies

Until recently, open source development community site GitHub did not have licenses for the majority of its hosted projects. 


From ACM News

Are Schools Getting Enough Bang For Their Technology Buck?

Are Schools Getting Enough Bang For Their Technology Buck?

Public schools in the United States have a lot to learn about integrating technology into education.


From ACM News

Nsa Revelations Reframe Digital Life For Some

Nsa Revelations Reframe Digital Life For Some

In Louisiana, the wife of a former soldier is scaling back on Facebook posts and considering unfriending old acquaintances, worried an innocuous joke or long-lost associate might one day land her in a government probe.


From ACM News

Where Do You Test a Tool Bound For Mars? Greenland

Where Do You Test a Tool Bound For Mars? Greenland

Every morning this week, Justin Spring and Sean Yoon got up and drove down a bumpy dirt road. They piled their packs onto their backs and hiked 45 minutes up a hill. Then they stepped onto Mars.


From ACM News

A Black Box For Car Crashes

A Black Box For Car Crashes

When Timothy P. Murray crashed his government-issued Ford Crown Victoria in 2011, he was fortunate, as car accidents go.


From ACM TechNews

Stanford Expert Says Internet's Backbone Can Readily Be Made More Sustainable

Stanford Expert Says Internet's Backbone Can Readily Be Made More Sustainable

The U.S. Department of Energy wants to establish minimum energy efficiency standards for all computers and servers sold in the United States.


From ACM TechNews

Conductivity Gain for Stretchable Electronics

Conductivity Gain for Stretchable Electronics

Networks of spherical nanoparticles embedded in elastic materials could make the best bendable conductors, which could make possible flexible electronics. 


From ACM TechNews

How Computer Analysis ­ncovered J. K. Rowling's Secret Novel

How Computer Analysis ­ncovered J. K. Rowling's Secret Novel

A Duquesne University professor used computer analysis to determine that Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling wrote "The Cuckoo's Calling." 


From ACM TechNews

'Huge Opportunities' for Harvesting Data Shown

'Huge Opportunities' for Harvesting Data Shown

Huge quantities of useful information are being created by Internet users, but much of it is owned by commercial companies or public agencies. 


From ACM TechNews

A Faster Internet--Designed By Computers?

A Faster Internet--Designed By Computers?

A new computer system generates transmission control protocol algorithms with transmission rates two to three times higher than those designed by humans. 


From ACM TechNews

Cello Could Be Music to the Ears of C Developers

Cello Could Be Music to the Ears of C Developers

A development tool anticipated for release in the next few months will facilitate higher-level programming in the C language. 


From ACM TechNews

Computer Smart as a 4-Year-Old

Computer Smart as a 4-Year-Old

Researchers have IQ-tested the ConceptNet4 artificial intelligence system and found that it is about as smart as the average four-year-old. 


From ACM News

Optical Lattice Atomic Clock Could 'Redefine the Second'

Optical Lattice Atomic Clock Could 'Redefine the Second'

We currently use atomic clocks to count the seconds, but tests on an alternative atomic timekeeper have revealed that it is more precise.


From ACM News

Reports Detail Mars Rover Clues to Atmosphere's Past

Reports Detail Mars Rover Clues to Atmosphere's Past

A pair of new papers report measurements of the Martian atmosphere's composition by NASA's Curiosity rover, providing evidence about loss of much of Mars' original atmosphere.


From ACM News

Taiwan a 'Testing Ground' for Chinese Cyber Army

Taiwan a 'Testing Ground' for Chinese Cyber Army

Taiwan is the frontline in an emerging global battle for cyberspace, according to elite hackers in the island's IT industry, who say it has become a rehearsal area for the Chinese cyberattacks that have strained ties with the…


From ACM TechNews

Putting Humans Into the Visual Equation

Putting Humans Into the Visual Equation

Small-scale image-analysis technology is not yet refined enough to produce accurate and reliable results, despite decades of advances in machine vision. 


From ACM TechNews

­csc Researchers Develop 3D Display With No Ghosting For Viewers Without Glasses

­csc Researchers Develop 3D Display With No Ghosting For Viewers Without Glasses

A new 3D+2D television offers three-dimensional images to viewers with stereo glasses, while maintaining a normal picture for those without glasses. 


From ACM TechNews

Eye-Tracking Could Outshine Passwords If Made User-Friendly

Eye-Tracking Could Outshine Passwords If Made User-Friendly

A new biometric authentication technique identifies users based on their eye movements. 


From ACM TechNews

Study Finds Clues on How to Keep Kids Engaged With Educational Games

Study Finds Clues on How to Keep Kids Engaged With Educational Games

A game-based curriculum currently under development teaches middle-school students about computer science principles.


From ACM TechNews

Graphene Promises Cooler, Greener Computing

Graphene Promises Cooler, Greener Computing

New research on graphene could lead to more energy-efficient and longer-lasting computers. 


From ACM Opinion

Sebastian Thrun on the Future of Learning

Sebastian Thrun on the Future of Learning

Sebastian Thrun has worn many hats in the tech world: Stanford research professor, founder of Google's X Labs, where he oversaw the development of self-driving cars and Google Glass, and, most recently, passionate advocate for…


From ACM News

MIT Whiz Wants to Turn Your Skin Into a Computer Interface

MIT Whiz Wants to Turn Your Skin Into a Computer Interface

According to Lynette Jones, a senior research scientist in MIT's Department of Mechanical Engineering, your skin has about as many sensory receptors as your eyeballs, making it a hugely underutilized medium for receiving information…


From ACM News

The Creepy, Long-Standing Practice of Undersea Cable Tapping

The Creepy, Long-Standing Practice of Undersea Cable Tapping

In the early 1970s, the U.S. government learned that an undersea cable ran parallel to the Kuril Islands off the eastern coast of Russia, providing a vital communications link between two major Soviet naval bases.


From ACM TechNews

Icann President Sees Growth and International Acceptance

Icann President Sees Growth and International Acceptance

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers has embarked on a path toward becoming a more international organization over the past year. 


From ACM TechNews

Sensitive Piano Keys Let Pianists Create New Sounds

Sensitive Piano Keys Let Pianists Create New Sounds

A new keyboard that uses touch-detecting sensors to bring the sound of string instruments to the piano. 


From ACM TechNews

Small, Electric-Powered Nano-Lasers May Help Keep Moore’s Law Valid

Small, Electric-Powered Nano-Lasers May Help Keep Moore’s Law Valid

A seven-year research project has resulted in an electrically powered nano-laser that would let developers put even more lasers in the same space. 


From ACM TechNews

Bug Bounty Programs Beat Internal Researchers

Bug Bounty Programs Beat Internal Researchers

A new study suggests that paying external parties to discover bugs is worth it. 


From ACM News

How Scientists Search For Habitable Planets

How Scientists Search For Habitable Planets

There is only one planet we know of, so far, that is drenched with life.


From ACM Opinion

Who Scores Games By Hand Anymore?

Who Scores Games By Hand Anymore?

The first thing Bruce Levy did upon recent entry into Yankee Stadium while accompanied by his in-laws and teenage son was to purchase a program in the area of the concourse behind home plate.


From ACM News

Collect Yourself Before You Forget Yourself

Collect Yourself Before You Forget Yourself

Lifelogging attempts to capture, interpret, and supplement memories.