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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.

January 2015


From ACM News

New Rules in China Upset Western Tech Companies

New Rules in China Upset Western Tech Companies

The Chinese government has adopted new regulations requiring companies that sell computer equipment to Chinese banks to turn over secret source code, submit to invasive audits and build so-called back doors into hardware and…


From ACM News

Shopping Habits Reveal Personal Details in 'Anonymized' Data

Shopping Habits Reveal Personal Details in 'Anonymized' Data

Details about where and when you use your credit card could help reveal your identity to data thieves—even if they don't know your name, address and other personal information.


From ACM TechNews

Can Drones Hunt With Wolf Pack-Like Success? DARPA Thinks So

Can Drones Hunt With Wolf Pack-Like Success? DARPA Thinks So

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency wants to enable groups of drones to operate collaboratively under the supervision of a single human commander. 


From ACM TechNews

China Further Tightens Grip on the Internet

China Further Tightens Grip on the Internet

Chinese officials this week acted to block the functioning of several virtual private networks its citizens use to circumvent China's online censorship apparatus. 


From ACM TechNews

Business Secretary Cable Announces Partners in the Alan Turing Institute

Business Secretary Cable Announces Partners in the Alan Turing Institute

The U.K.'s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council has selected five universities to lead the Alan Turing Institute. 


From ACM TechNews

Qubits With Staying Power

Qubits With Staying Power

Researchers say they have developed a new technique that could enable the indefinite extension of quantum-secured communication links. 


From ACM TechNews

CSI Computer Science: Your Coding Style Can Give You Away

CSI Computer Science: Your Coding Style Can Give You Away

Researchers have developed a code stylometry using natural language processing and machine learning to determine the authors of source code based on coding style.


From ACM News

Gullies on Vesta Suggest Past Water-Mobilized Flows

Gullies on Vesta Suggest Past Water-Mobilized Flows

Protoplanet Vesta, visited by NASA's Dawn spacecraft from 2011 to 2013, was once thought to be completely dry, incapable of retaining water because of the low temperatures and pressures at its surface.


From ACM News

Portable Mind-Reader Gives Voice to Locked-In People

Portable Mind-Reader Gives Voice to Locked-In People

You wake up in hospital unable to move, to speak, to twitch so much as an eyelid.


From ACM TechNews

Coder Creates Smallest Chess Game for Computers

Coder Creates Smallest Chess Game for Computers

French coder Olivier Poudade has created BootChess, which is only 487 bytes in size, and the code can run on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux computers.


From ACM News

Will Nano- technology Soon Allow You to 'Swallow the Doctor'?

Will Nano- technology Soon Allow You to 'Swallow the Doctor'?

Imagine a swarm of microscopic robots, so tiny that a teaspoon can hold billions of them.


From ACM News

The Technology that Unmasks Your Hidden Emotion

The Technology that Unmasks Your Hidden Emotion

Paul Ekman, perhaps the world's most famous face reader, fears he has created a monster.


From ACM Careers

Charles H. Townes, Who Paved Way for the Laser in Daily Life, Dies at 99

Charles H. Townes, Who Paved Way for the Laser in Daily Life, Dies at 99

Charles H. Townes, a visionary physicist whose research led to the development of the laser, making it possible to play CDs, scan prices at the supermarket, measure time precisely, survey planets and galaxies, and even witness…


From ACM TechNews

Bitcoin Scams Steal at Least $11 Million in Virtual Deposits From Unsuspecting Customers

Bitcoin Scams Steal at Least $11 Million in Virtual Deposits From Unsuspecting Customers

Fraudulent schemes have scammed at least $11 million in Bitcoin deposits from unsuspecting cyber customers over the past four years, say researchers. 


From ACM TechNews

What Does Privacy 'Look' Like? Carnegie Mellon Project Seeks Drawings

What Does Privacy 'Look' Like? Carnegie Mellon Project Seeks Drawings

Privacy Illustrated, a Carnegie Mellon University project, invited people to draw what privacy means to them and already has amassed hundreds of drawings. 


From ACM TechNews

New Pathway to Valleytronics

New Pathway to Valleytronics

The optical Stark effect can be used to control valley excitons in MX2 semiconductors, say researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. 


From ACM TechNews

The Search Engine of the Future Will Be All-Seeing, All-Knowing 'Watcher in the Sky'

The Search Engine of the Future Will Be All-Seeing, All-Knowing 'Watcher in the Sky'

Stefan Weitz, until recently senior director of search at Bing, observes the Internet has become much more massive since Google was conceived in the 1990s. 


From ACM News

Top TechNews Stories of 2014

Top TechNews Stories of 2014

ACM delivers the TechNews computer science and technology newsletter to nearly 100,000 ACM members three times each week.


From ACM Opinion

In the Future, Your Touchscreens Will Touch You Back

In the Future, Your Touchscreens Will Touch You Back

You comfort your grieving friend online over chat, but you can't reach out and touch their shoulder.


From ACM News

Laser Flight Path Caught On Camera for the First Time

Laser Flight Path Caught On Camera for the First Time

Pew pew! Researchers have created the first video of a laser bouncing off a mirror.


From ACM Opinion

Netflix's Secret Special Algorithm Is a Human

Netflix's Secret Special Algorithm Is a Human

On the opening night of this year's Sundance Film Festival, two films, as usual, had their premières, gaining maximum exposure to reporters and critics.


From ACM Opinion

AI Will Not Kill Us, Says Microsoft Research Chief

AI Will Not Kill Us, Says Microsoft Research Chief

Microsoft Research's chief has said he thinks artificial intelligence systems could achieve consciousness, but has played down the threat to human life.


From ACM News

Virtual Dissection Method Could Reinvigorate Zoology

Virtual Dissection Method Could Reinvigorate Zoology

Last summer, researchers demonstrated that non-invasive imaging combined with a staining technique enables the fast comparison and study of earthworm species and other animals in unprecedented detail.


From ACM TechNews

New Search Engine Lets Users Look for Relevant Results Faster

New Search Engine Lets Users Look for Relevant Results Faster

Researchers at the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology believe they have developed technology that will make Web searches more efficient. 


From ACM TechNews

New Programming Language for Fast Simulations

New Programming Language for Fast Simulations

SINTEF researchers have developed a new language for faster programming and simulations. 


From ACM TechNews

More Students Earning STEM Degrees, Report Shows

More Students Earning STEM Degrees, Report Shows

The prevalence of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics degrees increased between 2004 and 2014 at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral levels. 


From ACM TechNews

Mass Surveillance 'Endangers Fundamental Human Rights,' Says Study

Mass Surveillance 'Endangers Fundamental Human Rights,' Says Study

A leading European human rights body warns mass Internet surveillance is a threat to basic human privacy rights and has not apparently prevented terrorist attacks. 


From ACM TechNews

A Machine Can Learn to Identify Sign Languages

A Machine Can Learn to Identify Sign Languages

A team of researchers is working to train a computer program to quickly identify the sign language of signers. 


From ACM Careers

The App Economy Is Now 'Bigger Than Hollywood'

The App Economy Is Now 'Bigger Than Hollywood'

What is the major cultural force in America right now? It might just be apps and the web.


From ACM TechNews

FTC Says Internet-Connected Devices Pose Big Risks

FTC Says Internet-Connected Devices Pose Big Risks

Internet-connected devices present serious data security and privacy risks, according to a U.S. Federal Trade Commission report released this week.

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