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

February 2016


From ACM News

Pentagon Starts Aggressive Cyberwar Against IS

Pentagon Starts Aggressive Cyberwar Against IS

Not long after Defense Secretary Ash Carter prodded his cyber commanders to be more aggressive in the fight against Islamic State, the U.S. ramped up its offensive cyberattacks on the militant group.


From ACM News

Opportunity Mars Rover Goes Six-Wheeling up a Ridge

Opportunity Mars Rover Goes Six-Wheeling up a Ridge

NASA's senior Mars rover, Opportunity, is working adeptly in some of the most challenging terrain of the vehicle's 12 years on Mars, on a slope of about 30 degrees.


From ACM TechNews

Automatic Programming Makes Swarm Robots Safer and More Reliable

Automatic Programming Makes Swarm Robots Safer and More Reliable

An automated programming method previously used in manufacturing could make swarm robots more user-friendly and more reliable. 


From ACM TechNews

Computers Can Tell If You're Bored, Shows New BSMS Study

Computers Can Tell If You're Bored, Shows New BSMS Study

University of Sussex researchers have found computers can read a user's body language to tell whether they are bored or interested in what is on the screen. 


From ACM TechNews

Internet2 at 20: Alive and Kicking

Internet2 at 20: Alive and Kicking

Nearly two decades since its launch, Internet2 continues to run on U.S. university campuses. 


From ACM TechNews

Building Living, Breathing Supercomputers

Building Living, Breathing Supercomputers

McGill University researchers says the substance that provides energy to human cells also could be used to power the next generation of supercomputers. 


From ACM TechNews

Research Meets Light Art in This Microsoft Installation

Research Meets Light Art in This Microsoft Installation

An installation at Microsoft's headquarters uses an open source software development kit to transform a room into a space of audiovisual elements to stimulate the senses.


From ACM News

Exoplanet Census Suggests Earth Is Special after All

Exoplanet Census Suggests Earth Is Special after All

More than 400 years ago Renaissance scientist Nicolaus Copernicus reduced us to near nothingness by showing that our planet is not the center of the solar system.


From ACM News

The Promise of Artificial Intelligence Unfolds in Small Steps

The Promise of Artificial Intelligence Unfolds in Small Steps

Venture capital investors poured $8.5 billion into artificial intelligence start-ups last year.


From ACM News

Report Cites Dangers of Autonomous Weapons

Report Cites Dangers of Autonomous Weapons

The report warns about a range of real-world risks associated with weapons systems that are completely autonomous.


From ACM News

Wesley A. Clark, Made Computing Personal, Dies at 88

Wesley A. Clark, Made Computing Personal, Dies at 88

Clark’s computer designs built a bridge from the era of mainframe systems to personal computers.


From ACM News

The Frozen Canyons of Pluto's North Pole

The Frozen Canyons of Pluto's North Pole

This ethereal scene captured by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft tells yet another story of Pluto's diversity of geological and compositional features—this time in an enhanced color image of the north polar area.


From ACM News

Google Unveils Neural Network with 'Superhuman' Ability to Determine the Location of Almost Any Image

Google Unveils Neural Network with 'Superhuman' Ability to Determine the Location of Almost Any Image

Here's a tricky task. Pick a photograph from the Web at random. Now try to work out where it was taken using only the image itself.


From ACM News

Facebook Is Making a Map of Everyone in the World

Facebook Is Making a Map of Everyone in the World

Americans inhabit an intricately mapped world.


From ACM TechNews

Will the NSA Finally Build Its Superconducting Spy Computer?

Will the NSA Finally Build Its Superconducting Spy Computer?

The U.S. National Security Agency vision of a superconducting supercomputer may leap forward with the Cryogenic Computing Complexity program. 


From ACM TechNews

Chameleon Adapts to Secure the Cloud

Chameleon Adapts to Secure the Cloud

A minority-led group of researchers is looking to the U.S. National Science Foundation-funded Chameleon cloud platform as a tool for developing cyberattack prevention. 


From ACM TechNews

A New Algorithm From MIT Could Protect Ships From 'Rogue Waves' at Sea

A New Algorithm From MIT Could Protect Ships From 'Rogue Waves' at Sea

Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers have developed a predictive tool that could give ships a two- to three-minute advance warning of approaching rogue waves.


From ACM TechNews

IBM Watson Machine Learns the Art of Writing a Good Headline

IBM Watson Machine Learns the Art of Writing a Good Headline

The latest milestone for IBM researchers in their development of the Watson platform is the creation of a system for automatically abstracting documents.


From ACM TechNews

Big-Data Visualization Experts Make Using Scatter Plots Easier for Today's Researchers

Big-Data Visualization Experts Make Using Scatter Plots Easier for Today's Researchers

A new study found outcomes acquired via algorithmic methods do not always correlate to human perception assessments when grouping scatter plots according to similarity.


From ACM News

Apple Encryption Stand Highlights Mobile Operators' Dilemma

Apple Encryption Stand Highlights Mobile Operators' Dilemma

Apple Inc's stance on privacy in the face of a U.S. government demand to unlock an iPhone belonging to one of the San Bernardino attackers has raised awkward questions for the world's mobile network operators.


From ACM News

The Secret History of America's Cyber War

The Secret History of America's Cyber War

Two months earlier, Edward Snowden, a contractor with the National Security Agency, had leaked tens of thousands of highly classified documents, revealing that the NSA was intercepting phone calls and emails of millions of Americans…


From ACM News

Should Self-Driving Cars Have Drivers Ready to Take Over?

Should Self-Driving Cars Have Drivers Ready to Take Over?

The day when you'll be chauffeured to work by your car may not be far off.


From ACM News

Apple Is Said to Be Trying to Make It Harder to Hack iPhone

Apple Is Said to Be Trying to Make It Harder to Hack iPhone

Apple engineers have begun developing new security measures that would make it impossible for the government to break into a locked iPhone using methods similar to those now at the center of a court fight in California, according…


From ACM TechNews

Flaws in Wireless Mice and Keyboards Let Hackers Type on Your PC

Flaws in Wireless Mice and Keyboards Let Hackers Type on Your PC

Bastille researchers warn of a new hacking technique in which malefactors armed with antennas can hijack wireless keyboards and mice from seven companies.


From ACM TechNews

Autonomous Vehicle Technology Will Keep Soldiers Safer on Air, Land, Sea

Autonomous Vehicle Technology Will Keep Soldiers Safer on Air, Land, Sea

Carnegie Mellon Robotics Institute researchers are developing autonomous warfare technology, including an unmanned air vehicle and an unmanned ground vehicle. 


From ACM TechNews

Using Plasmonics to Transmit More Data

Using Plasmonics to Transmit More Data

Northwestern University researchers have developed a means to modulate light signals in the near-infrared wavelength region.


From ACM TechNews

UROP Student's Project: a Thinking Robot

UROP Student's Project: a Thinking Robot

Boston University engineering student Emily Fitzgerald has developed a robot that can recognize specific objects and steer around obstacles without human guidance. 


From ACM News

Planet Nine Hunters Enlist Big Bang Telescopes and Saturn Probe

Planet Nine Hunters Enlist Big Bang Telescopes and Saturn Probe

The fate of an entire world is at stake. Astronomers are enlisting every telescope and space probe they can think of in the hunt for the solar system's potential ninth planet, and some unlikely sources may be key to tracking…


From ACM Careers

What Role Should Silicon Valley Play in Fighting Terrorism?

What Role Should Silicon Valley Play in Fighting Terrorism?

On Friday, January 8, several high-level officials from the Obama administration—including the attorney general, the White House chief of staff, and the directors of the FBI and the NSA—met at a federal office in San Jose with…


From ACM News

Should You Edit Your Children's Genes?

Should You Edit Your Children's Genes?

Ruthie Weiss's basketball team seemed to be minutes away from its fourth straight loss.

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