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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 2015


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Prove Html5 Can Be ­sed to Hide Malware

Researchers Prove Html5 Can Be ­sed to Hide Malware

The upcoming HTML5 standard could enable hackers to execute drive-by download attacks, according to researchers in Italy. 


From ACM TechNews

The Unintended Consequences of Rationality

The Unintended Consequences of Rationality

Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences professor David C. Parkes contends rational models of economics are applicable to artificial intelligence. 


From ACM News

The Tools Inspectors Can Use to Catch Iran's Nuclear Hijinks

The Tools Inspectors Can Use to Catch Iran's Nuclear Hijinks

After Tuesday's historic agreement between Iran and the "P5+1" group of countries, inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency will have access to all of the Mideast power's nuclear facilities.


From ACM News

A New 'model For Models' in Software Development Effort Estimation

A New 'model For Models' in Software Development Effort Estimation

Researchers put forth an automatically transformed linear model as a suitable baseline model for comparison against software estimation effort models.


From ACM News

The Square Kilometre Array: Radio Silence in Western Australia For Most Powerful Telescope in History

The Square Kilometre Array: Radio Silence in Western Australia For Most Powerful Telescope in History

In outback Western Australia, around 350k northeast of the small town of Geraldton, lies an area of land about the size of the Netherlands, but with only 100 humans living in it: the shire of Murchison.


From ACM News

NASA's New Horizons Discovers Frozen Plains in the Heart of Pluto's 'Heart'

NASA's New Horizons Discovers Frozen Plains in the Heart of Pluto's 'Heart'

In the latest data from NASA's New Horizons spacecraft, a new close-up image of Pluto reveals a vast, craterless plain that appears to be no more than 100 million years old, and is possibly still being shaped by geologic processes…


From ACM TechNews

Firing Squad Synchronization, Computer Science's Most Macabre-Sounding Problem

Firing Squad Synchronization, Computer Science's Most Macabre-Sounding Problem

Getting a firing squad to fire in sync is a puzzle that was studied in computer science's early days, because it was vital to automata theory. 


From ACM TechNews

RoboCup World Championship: UNSW Student Engineers Take Robots to China to Defend Title

RoboCup World Championship: UNSW Student Engineers Take Robots to China to Defend Title

University of New South Wales student engineers are in Hefei, China, to defend their Standard Platform League title at the RoboCup World Championships. 


From ACM TechNews

NASA Algorithms Keep Unmanned Aircraft Away From Commercial Aviation

NASA Algorithms Keep Unmanned Aircraft Away From Commercial Aviation

New algorithms could enable large unmanned aircraft to remain "well clear" of commercial airliners in flight and prevent a disaster. 


From ACM TechNews

Data Miners Dig For Answers About Harper Lee, Truman Capote, and 'go Set a Watchman'

Data Miners Dig For Answers About Harper Lee, Truman Capote, and 'go Set a Watchman'

Literature researchers used data science to investigate long-standing debates about the work of Harper Lee, author of "To Kill a Mockingbird" and "Go Set a Watchman."


From ACM TechNews

­-M Will Test 3D-Printed, Autonomous 'smartcarts'

­-M Will Test 3D-Printed, Autonomous 'smartcarts'

University of Michigan researchers are working to understand the challenges of a transportation-on-demand system built around autonomous cars. 


From ACM Careers

Coders Balk at Making Apps Searchable

Coders Balk at Making Apps Searchable

The giants of the Web have been pressing developers of mobile apps to index their content so it can be parsed by search engines or linked to from other sites.


From ACM News

The Hard Disk of the Future Will Be Ten Thousand Times Faster, Researchers Say

The Hard Disk of the Future Will Be Ten Thousand Times Faster, Researchers Say

Think your computer is pretty slow?


From ACM News

Moore's Law Is Showing Its Age

Moore's Law Is Showing Its Age

No company sounds more religious about Moore’s Law than Intel Corp., whose co-founder made a famous observation about the miniaturization of chip circuitry 50 years ago.


From ACM News

As Tech Firms Track Your Location, Advertisers Zero In For the Sale

As Tech Firms Track Your Location, Advertisers Zero In For the Sale

Mapping technology advancements from Google Inc and Facebook Inc that provide more precise user location data than ever before are starting to dent advertisers' longtime skepticism about boosting mobile ad spending.


From ACM News

In Memoriam: Robert Dewar, 1945-2015

In Memoriam: Robert Dewar, 1945-2015

Robert Dewar, a significant contributor to the early development and continuing success of the Ada programming language, died June 21 at age 70.


From ACM TechNews

Researchers at University of Virginia Use Leds to Create Wireless Networks

Researchers at University of Virginia Use Leds to Create Wireless Networks

An enhancement to Wi-Fi-based networks could enable more data to be transmitted without requiring additional energy. 


From ACM TechNews

Waldio Mode to Improve Smartphone Life Explained at ­senix

Waldio Mode to Improve Smartphone Life Explained at ­senix

Researchers  say they have resolved an anomaly in the Android IO stack known as journaling of journal. 


From ACM TechNews

New Cyber Programs Debut in California, Louisiana

New Cyber Programs Debut in California, Louisiana

Louisiana Tech University and the University of San Diego are creating new cyber programs. 


From ACM TechNews

Computing at the Speed of Light

Computing at the Speed of Light

Massachusetts Institute of Technology researcher Sergio Cantu studies how light can act as an information carrier in computing and calculating. 


From ACM News

Transparent Paper Produces Power With Just a Touch

Transparent Paper Produces Power With Just a Touch

A new transparent-paper device can generate electrical power from a user's touch (ACS Nano 2015, DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.5b02414).


From ACM News

The Icy Mountains of Pluto

The Icy Mountains of Pluto

New close-up images of a region near Pluto's equator reveal a giant surprise: a range of youthful mountains rising as high as 11,000 feet (3,500 meters) above the surface of the icy body.


From ACM Careers

Welcome to the AI Conspiracy: The 'canadian Mafia' Behind Tech's Latest Craze

Welcome to the AI Conspiracy: The 'canadian Mafia' Behind Tech's Latest Craze

In the late '90s, Tomi Poutanen, a precocious computer whiz from Finland, hoped to do his dissertation on neural networks, a scientific method aimed at teaching computers to act and think like humans.


From ACM TechNews

Minecraft Shows Robots How to Stop Dithering

Minecraft Shows Robots How to Stop Dithering

Brown University researchers have developed an approach that enables robots to quickly determine the sequence of actions that will work in a particular environment.


From ACM TechNews

Computer Program Fixes Old Code Faster Than Expert Engineers

Computer Program Fixes Old Code Faster Than Expert Engineers

Researchers have developed a program designed to automatically fix existing code without requiring the original source. 


From ACM TechNews

Where Do Most of the Internet Users Live?

Where Do Most of the Internet Users Live?

Researchers at the Oxford Internet Institute have updated their 2011 visualization of Internet users around the world, using 2013 data from the World Bank. 


From ACM TechNews

Can the Apple Watch Enhance Student Achievement?

Can the Apple Watch Enhance Student Achievement?

Pennsylvania State University researchers will test how the Apple Watch can enhance student achievement via self-regulation and learning strategy. 


From ACM TechNews

Astronomers Teach Machine to 'See' Galaxies in Space

Astronomers Teach Machine to 'See' Galaxies in Space

University of Hertfordshire researchers say they have taught a machine to "see" astronomical images, including the ability to distinguish between galaxies. 


From ACM News

The Camera Behind the New Pluto Photos

The Camera Behind the New Pluto Photos

For decades after its discovery in 1930, Pluto looked like nothing more than a gray smudge in the abyss of space.


From ACM News

Virtual Medical Training: Don’t Call It Virtual Reality

Virtual Medical Training: Don’t Call It Virtual Reality

Medical professionals prefer to reference the technology with terms that are "less sci-fi."