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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.

March 2010


From ACM TechNews

Skin Becomes Gadget Control Pad

Skin Becomes Gadget Control Pad

A method in which tapping one's skin to control gadgets using a combination of sensors and software has been worked out by Carnegie Mellon University Ph.D student Chris Harrison and colleagues at Microsoft Research. 


From ACM TechNews

Could Robots Help Older People Look After Themselves

Researchers are participating in a European project aimed at developing an intelligent system comprised of a robot and smart sensors that can support independent living for the elderly. 


From ACM TechNews

3-D Tabletop Display Gets Rid of the Glasses

3-D Tabletop Display Gets Rid of the Glasses

University of British Columbia researchers have developed a device called pCubee that offers all the thrills of the three-dimensional (3-D) experience without the annoyance of glasses. 


From ACM TechNews

Playing 'Pong' with the Blink of an Eye

Playing 'Pong' with the Blink of an Eye

Imperial College London students have developed an open source computer game where a player moves a bat to hit a ball using only eye movements. 


From ACM TechNews

Researchers Sound Alarm on Web App 'Side Channel' Data Leaks

Researchers Sound Alarm on Web App 'Side Channel' Data Leaks

Researchers who have tested the security of popular online tax, health, investing, and search sites report that the Web applications are becoming more vulnerable to data leaks. 


From ACM TechNews

Security Researchers Hacked iPhone

The University of Luxembourg's Ralf-Philipp Weinmann and Zynamics' Vincenzo Iozzo chained existing code bits  to compromise the iPhone during the PWN2OWN hacking contest in Vancouver, Canada. 


From ACM TechNews

Robots, Space Technology Run Australia's Mining Miracle

Robots, Space Technology Run Australia's Mining Miracle

Rio Tinto plans to use satellite, motion-sensor technology, and robotics to become the most technologically advanced mining company in the world. 


From ACM News

ACM Awards Recognize Computer Science Innovation

ACM Awards Recognize Computer Science Innovation

ACM has announced the winners of six prestigious awards for their innovations in computing technology that demonstrate the benefits of computational thinking for industry, education, and society.


From ACM News

Technology Coalition Calls for an Update of Online Privacy Laws

Technology Coalition Calls for an Update of Online Privacy Laws

A broad technology coalition would like to see the Electronic Communications Privacy Act updated to define the U.S. government's access to e-mail and private files stored in the Internet "cloud."


From ACM News

What If All Software Was Open Source?

What If All Software Was Open Source?

A new system makes it possible to add custom features to any standard software program like Microsoft Word, Adobe Photoshop, or Apple iTunes.


From ACM News

A Tiny Defect That May Create Smaller, Faster Electronics

A Tiny Defect That May Create Smaller, Faster Electronics

Researchers at the University of South Florida have developed a technique to turn defects in graphene into tiny metallic wires.


From ACM News

James Bond Spies Fail Social Networking

James Bond Spies Fail Social Networking

The director-general of MI5 says he's concerned the Britain's spy agency is being held back by some James Bond-generation agents who don't understand the world of computer technology.


From ACM News

Recession Will Keep IT Spending Flat in 2010, Study Says

Recession Will Keep IT Spending Flat in 2010, Study Says

Most companies feel battered by the recession and expect that external spending on computers, software and related services will be flat in 2010, according to a new study by RONIN Corp.


From ACM TechNews

Pedophiles in Chatrooms May Be Trapped by Their Typing

Pedophiles in Chatrooms May Be Trapped by Their Typing

Newcastle University researchers are developing technology that could be used to prevent convicted sex offenders from committing further crimes. The technology can determine a typist's age, sex, and culture within 10 keystrokes…


From ACM TechNews

City Tours by Mouse Click

City Tours by Mouse Click

Fraunhofer IFF researchers have developed software that can provide virtual tours of cities for everyone from commercial investors to potential and current residents. 


From ACM News

NASA Will Help Probe Toyota Acceleration Problem

NASA Will Help Probe Toyota Acceleration Problem

NASA and the National Academy of Sciences are joining the U.S. government's effort to figure out what caused the sudden acceleration problems that led to Toyota's massive recalls.


From ACM News

Playing it Safe With Two Networks

Playing it Safe With Two Networks

To protect itself from hackers, Cryptography Research runs two unconnected networks—one for sensitive data and core engineering work that is not connected to the Internet, and another for e-mail, Web surfing and other Internet…


From ACM News

From Chalk To Bytes: The Digital Classroom

From Chalk To Bytes: The Digital Classroom

Colleges and universities are experimenting with different ways to connect students and teachers. More than 200 institutions are using open-source software created by Sakai or Moodle.


From ACM TechNews

Cyberattacks Are 'Existential Threat' to U.S., FBI Says

The threat from cyberattacks is so severe that it actually threatens the very existence of the United States, says Steven Chabinsky, the deputy assistant director of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation's cyber division. 


From ACM TechNews

Scientists Achieve New World Record in Energy-Efficient Data Processing

Scientists Achieve New World Record in Energy-Efficient Data Processing

Computer scientists from Frankfurt's Goethe University and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology have set a new world record in energy-efficient data processing. 


From ACM TechNews

Multicore Requires OS Rework, Windows Architect Advises

The basic architecture of modern operating systems may need to be rethought in order to accommodate multicore processors, according to a recent presentation at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


From ACM TechNews

Survey: U.S. Women and Minority Scientists Often Discouraged From Pursuing STEM Careers

Survey: U.S. Women and Minority Scientists Often Discouraged From Pursuing STEM Careers

A lack of quality science and math education programs, persistent stereotypes, and financial issues related to the cost of education are the top three causes for the underrepresentation of women and minorities in STEM fields,…


From ACM TechNews

Rising Demand for SQL, Linux Skills

ITWorldCanada.comA recent Technology Demand and Supply Q4 2009 report, produced for the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, found that SQL, C#, .NET and Linux were the only skill areas where demand increased for two consecutive…


From ACM TechNews

Grant Ensures Sustainable Future for Software

Grant Ensures Sustainable Future for Software

The Software Sustainability Institute has been launched in the United Kingdom to help research communities in various disciplines manage their software tools beyond the lifetime of the original funding. 


From ACM TechNews

Can the iPhone Save Higher Education?

Abilene Christian University's Mobile Learning project seeks to evaluate the potential of personal digital devices and social networks to transform teaching and learning. 


From ACM TechNews

Computer Scientists Empower Citizen Scientists

Computer Scientists Empower Citizen Scientists

Binghamton University computer science professor Kenneth Chiu and his students have created a Web site that enables people to access large amounts of information and learn what is happening in New Hampshire's Lake Sunapee region…


From ACM TechNews

Initiative Grants Access to STEM Curriculum

A program to help enhance American Indian students' achievement in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields has been developed by the American Indian Higher Education Consortium in collaboration with…


From ACM News

The Sheer Delight of Tackling Shear Stress

The Sheer Delight of Tackling Shear Stress

NASA's commitment to provide aeronautical research opportunities to U.S. universities has led to another success, this time through an inventive student who earned his Ph.D. by creating a tiny sensor that beats anything seen …


From ACM News

Biometric Identity Project in India Aims to Provide for Poor, End Corruption

Biometric Identity Project in India Aims to Provide for Poor, End Corruption

In this country of 1.2 billion people, Inderjit Chaurasia could not prove his identity.

When the migrant worker tried to open his first bank account in New Delhi, he was turned away because he had only a driver's license for…


From ACM News

'Supertaskers' Among Few Who Can Drive and Yak on Phone

'Supertaskers' Among Few Who Can Drive and Yak on Phone

A new study from University of Utah psychologists found a small group of people with an extraordinary ability to multitask: Unlike 97.5 percent of those studied, they can safely drive while chatting on a cell phone.

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