Sign In

Communications of the ACM

News Archive


Archives

The news archive provides access to past news stories from Communications of the ACM and other sources by date.

February 2010


From ACM TechNews

Wireless Optical Transmission Key to Better Indoor Communications

Wireless Optical Transmission Key to Better Indoor Communications

Penn State University researchers have developed a wireless optical communications system that could provide faster, more secure communications with a wider bandwidth. 


From ACM TechNews

High, Not Flat: Nanowires for a New Chip Architecture

High, Not Flat: Nanowires for a New Chip Architecture

Researchers from the Max Planck Institute of Microstructure Physics and the Forschungszentrum Dresden-Rossendorf have described the electrical resistance and current flow inside silicon nanowires. Their research could lead to…


From ACM TechNews

Competition Seeks to Attract More Women Into It

Competition Seeks to Attract More Women Into It

Britain's Women in Technology has teamed up with the National IT Learning Center to introduce the Rise of the Cyberella Competition, which will provide funding for information technology (IT) training as its prize. Women interested…


From ACM TechNews

Best Connected Individuals Are Not the Most Influential Spreaders in Social Networks

Boston University researchers have developed a method for studying and identifying hubs within social networks. The approach emphasizes the location of the individual within the network as opposed to the number of connections…


From ACM TechNews

Making Vagueness Into an Exact Science

Making Vagueness Into an Exact Science

Aberdeen University computer scientist Kees van Deemter is creating a system that would be able to understand the meaning of vague phrases. 


From ACM News

Web Exhibit Tells Story of Laser's Invention

Web Exhibit Tells Story of Laser's Invention

Military agencies wanted a death ray, and they were willing to pay for it. That was one of the forces spurring scientists in a race that ended with the invention of the laser in 1960, fifty years ago this May.


From ACM News

Firm Develops Technology to Crush Cyber Attacks in Their Tracks

Firm Develops Technology to Crush Cyber Attacks in Their Tracks

Cyber attacks are becoming the bane of governments and companies alike. A Virginia based engineering research company may have the answer. InZero Systems has developed computer protection technology that some experts claim is…


From ACM News

Toyota Problems 'Caused by Faulty Software'

Toyota Problems 'Caused by Faulty Software'

Steve Wozniak, the co-founder of Apple and a Toyota Prius owner, has suggested that the "unintended acceleration" problems affecting Toyota's cars may be caused by faulty software. The comments, from one of the most respected…


From ACM News

Trail of Iowa Computer Hack Points to China

Iowa investigators suspect a serious breach of a state government computer database last week originated in China. The hackers gained access to a computer system operated by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission. The breach allowed…


From ACM News

Silicon Valley Tech Workers Earning Less Than in 2000

Silicon Valley Tech Workers Earning Less Than in 2000

While some of the latest government wage data appears to show that Silicon Valley's high-tech workers are making more now than they did in 2000, a closer look at the numbers shows that's not exactly the case.

High-tech employees…


From ACM News

DARPA Develops 4-Legged Robot to Haul Equipment Over Rugged Terrain

DARPA Develops 4-Legged Robot to Haul Equipment Over Rugged Terrain

Looking like a robotic mule, the Legged Squad Support System (LS3) being developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency will carry 400 pounds of equipment for US soldiers and Marines over rugged terrain inaccessible…


From ACM News

Crts Going Down the Tubes? Hardly

Crts Going Down the Tubes? Hardly

Many people may assume that conventional television sets and computer monitors — the kind that use  CRTs rather than flat panel screens — have virtually disappeared from the market. But a new MIT study reports that demand for…


From ACM TechNews

Internet Backbone Breaks the 100-Gigabit Barrier

Internet Backbone Breaks the 100-Gigabit Barrier

A new 900-kilometer fiber-optic link between Paris and Frankfurt is the first step to creating a high-speed Internet backbone with enough capacity to satisfy bandwidth demands well into the future. 


From ACM News

Acacia: The Company Tech Loves to Hate

For a company that makes no products, Acacia Research spends a lot of time fighting over patents in court. Acacia has filed at least 337 patent-related lawsuits in its 18 years. To make money—sales are expected to rise to $68…


From ACM News

Videogame Glitches Open the World of Computing to Students

Videogame Glitches Open the World of Computing to Students

Why is the National Science Foundation helping Morehouse College pay students to test videogames? The school's Glitch Game Testers program is one of many NSF efforts to draw students to computer science.


From ACM News

Computer Model Demonstrates That White Roofs May Successfully Cool Cities

Computer Model Demonstrates That White Roofs May Successfully Cool Cities

Painting the roofs of buildings white has the potential to significantly cool cities and mitigate some impacts of global warming, a new study indicates. The research, which is the first computer modeling study to simulate the…


From ACM News

Google Attack Highlights 'zero-Day' Black Market

The recent hacking attack that prompted Google's threat to leave China is underscoring the heightened dangers of previously undisclosed computer security flaws called "zero-day" vulnerabilities caused by programming errors that…


From ACM News

Innovative Technique Can Spot Errors in Key Technological Systems

Innovative Technique Can Spot Errors in Key Technological Systems

An innovative computational technique developed at the National Center for Atmospheric Research and the University of Colorado at Boulder  draws on statistics, imaging, and other disciplines to detect errors in sensitive technological…


From ACM News

Hacking For Fun and Profit in China's Underworld

Hacking For Fun and Profit in China's Underworld

With a few quick keystrokes, a computer hacker who goes by the code name Majia calls up a screen displaying his latest victims. He operates secretly and illegally, as part of a community of hackers who exploit flaws in computer…


From ACM News

The Uncertain Future For Social Robots

The Uncertain Future For Social Robots

Being hacked by a robot requires much less hardware than I expected. There’s no need for virtual-reality goggles or 3D holograms. There are no skullcaps studded with electrodes, no bulky cables or hair-thin nanowires snaking …


From ACM TechNews

Energy-Harvesting Rubber Sheets Could Power Pacemakers, Mobile Phones

Energy-Harvesting Rubber Sheets Could Power Pacemakers, Mobile Phones

Princeton University researchers have developed power-generating rubber films that can harness natural body movements such as breathing and walking to power electronic devices such as pacemakers and mobile phones. The material…


From ACM TechNews

Survey Reveals Ways to Enhance Teens' Interest in STEM

Survey Reveals Ways to Enhance Teens' Interest in STEM

A recent Lemelson-MIT Invention Index survey found that teens are enthusiastic about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), with 77 percent interested in pursuing a career in those fields. The survey found…


From ACM TechNews

Insectlike 'microids' Might Walk, Run, Work, in Colonies

Insectlike 'microids' Might Walk, Run, Work, in Colonies

Purdue University researchers have developed microids, miniature, insect-like robots that feature tiny legs and mandibles built using solid-state muscles. Computer simulations indicate that microids will have much better dexterity…


From ACM TechNews

Computer Scientists Develop Neuro-Computer That Actively Learns

Researchers from the Institute for Theoretical Science at the Graz University of Technology are creating a new generation of neuro-computers based on learning mechanisms found in the brain. The Brain-i-Nets research project…


From ACM TechNews

Signing Contracts on the Telephone

Signing Contracts on the Telephone

The Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology (SIT) in Germany has developed VoIPS, software that prevents the tampering and manipulation of telephone calls. The software is designed to create a digital signature…


From ACM TechNews

Educators Seek New Ways to Steer Kids Toward Technical Fields

Educators Seek New Ways to Steer Kids Toward Technical Fields

School systems across the United States are pushing students to pursue science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) by providing joint programs with local universities. 


From ACM TechNews

Robots Display Predatory-Prey Co-Evolution, Evolve Better Homing Techniques

Researchers at the Laboratory of Intelligent Systems in the Ecole Polytechnique Federale of Lausanne are applying evolutionary principles to robot development. 


From ACM News

Game Changers: How Videogames Trained a Generation of Athletes

Game Changers: How Videogames Trained a Generation of Athletes

The situation was desperate for the Denver Broncos. On the first Sunday of the National Football League’s 2009 season, with only 28 seconds left in the game, they trailed the Cincinnati Bengals 7-6. The ball was on the 13-yard…


From ACM News

U.k. Report on Chinese Spying 'unsubstantiated'

A Chinese military expert Sunday (January 31) refuted claims by the U.K.'s national security intelligence agency that China has engaged in commercial espionage, calling the claims unsubstantiated. The U.K. security service, known…


From ACM News

Smart Dust? Not Quite, but We

Smart Dust? Not Quite, but We

In computing, the vision always precedes the reality by a decade or more. The pattern has held true from the personal computer to the Internet, as it takes time, brainpower and investment to conquer the scientific and economic…