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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.

August 2017


From ACM Opinion

How We Won Gold in the Cyborg Olympics' Brain Race

How We Won Gold in the Cyborg Olympics' Brain Race

In October 2016, inside a sold-out arena in Zurich, a man named Numa Poujouly steered his wheelchair up to the central podium.


From ACM News

Reprogrammed Cells Relieve Parkinson's Symptoms in Trials 

Reprogrammed Cells Relieve Parkinson's Symptoms in Trials 

Japanese researchers report promising results from an experimental therapy for Parkinson's disease that involves implanting neurons made from 'reprogrammed' stem cells into the brain.


From ACM News

White House Floats Vision for IT Modernization

White House Floats Vision for IT Modernization

The report sets as high-level goals a vision for the future of federal IT, and a plan to jumpstart government transition to that vision.


From ACM Opinion

The Future of Computing Depends on Making It Reversible

The Future of Computing Depends on Making It Reversible

For more than 50 years, computers have made steady and dramatic improvements, all thanks to Moore's Law—the exponential increase over time in the number of transistors that can be fabricated on an integrated circuit of a given…


From ACM TechNews

Unifying Statistics, Computer Science, and Applied Mathematics

Unifying Statistics, Computer Science, and Applied Mathematics

A project led by Lehigh University will advance machine learning by merging statistical, computer science, and applied mathematical techniques.


From ACM TechNews

Your Broadband Provider Can Use Your Smart Devices to Spy on You

Your Broadband Provider Can Use Your Smart Devices to Spy on You

Internet service providers can access the data on Internet-connected devices people use in their homes, even when those devices are set up to protect users' privacy.


From ACM TechNews

Artificial Intelligence Analyzes Gravitational Lenses 10 Million Times Faster

Artificial Intelligence Analyzes Gravitational Lenses 10 Million Times Faster

Researchers have demonstrated that neural networks can accurately analyze gravitational lenses 10 million times faster than traditional methods.


From ACM TechNews

Making Datacenters More Energy Efficient

Making Datacenters More Energy Efficient

BlueCache is a more energy-efficient datacenter caching system that uses flash memory.


From ACM News

Enhancing Disease Modeling

Enhancing Disease Modeling

Computational math and biology yield sophisticated guidance for public health officials.


From ACM News

The Quest to Perfect the Universal Language of Science

The Quest to Perfect the Universal Language of Science

For millennia, humans have turned to the sky to tell time.


From ACM News

Cassini's 13 Years of Stunning Saturn Science—in Pictures

Cassini's 13 Years of Stunning Saturn Science—in Pictures

Twenty years ago, in the wee hours of a muggy Florida morning, the Cassini spacecraft lit up the skies as it blasted off from Cape Canaveral.


From ACM TechNews

Nagoya-Led Team Flips the Switch on Ferroelectrics

Nagoya-Led Team Flips the Switch on Ferroelectrics

An international research team has devised a new technique for controlling the domain structure of ferroelectric materials.


From ACM TechNews

New App Could Use Smartphone Selfies to Screen for Pancreatic Cancer

New App Could Use Smartphone Selfies to Screen for Pancreatic Cancer

The BiliScreen app provides pancreatic cancer screening by having users take photos of themselves with a smartphone.


From ACM TechNews

Everyone's an Expert, but a Computer Program May Be Able to Pick the Best Ones

Everyone's an Expert, but a Computer Program May Be Able to Pick the Best Ones

A new algorithm analyzed the estimates of an agribusiness expert and helped a business division at an agricultural chemicals company improve its forecast accuracy.


From ACM TechNews

Shark-hunting AI-Powered Algorithm to Begin Flying Over Aussie Beaches

Shark-hunting AI-Powered Algorithm to Begin Flying Over Aussie Beaches

SharkSpotter is a new deep learning algorithm that can use real-time video footage streamed from aerial drones to detect sharks and alert swimmers.


From ACM TechNews

Designing Custom Robots in a Matter of Minutes

Designing Custom Robots in a Matter of Minutes

The Interactive Robogami system lets users quickly design a robot, and then three-dimensionally print and assemble it in as little as four hours.


From ACM News

With a Simple DNA Test, Family Histories Are Rewritten

With a Simple DNA Test, Family Histories Are Rewritten

Bob Hutchinson's mother told him and his siblings almost nothing about her family, no matter how often they asked. "She was good at brushing people off," said Mr. Hutchinson, 60.


From ACM News

Europe's X-ray Laser Fires Up

Europe's X-ray Laser Fires Up

Scientists who make movies of molecules in motion have a new high-speed camera to shoot with. The €1.2-billion (US$1.4-billion) European X-ray Free Electron Laser (XFEL) will start running its first experiments in September near…


From ACM News

Magnetothermal Genetics: A Fourth Tool in the Brain-Hacking Toolbox

Magnetothermal Genetics: A Fourth Tool in the Brain-Hacking Toolbox

A scientist wanting to hack into an animal's brain used to have three different tools to choose from: electric current, drugs, and light. Now there's a fourth: magnetic fields.


From ACM TechNews

NYU Steinhardt Awarded More Than $4 Million From National Science Foundation for STEM Education Research

NYU Steinhardt Awarded More Than $4 Million From National Science Foundation for STEM Education Research

The National Science Foundation has awarded New York University grants totalling more than $4 million for research to improve computer science and computational thinking in elementary and middle schools.


From ACM TechNews

Accelerating the Mobile Web: 'Vroom' Software Could Double Its Speed

Accelerating the Mobile Web: 'Vroom' Software Could Double Its Speed

Vroom is a new software prototype that works by optimizing the end-to-end interaction between mobile devices and Web servers.


From ACM TechNews

Computer Algorithm Automatically Recognizes Soccer Formations and Defensive Strategies

Computer Algorithm Automatically Recognizes Soccer Formations and Defensive Strategies

Researchers have developed a deep-learning algorithm that automatically recognizes formations of teams when analyzing player tracking data.


From ACM News

2 to Receive 2017 ACM/IEEE George Michael Memorial HPC Fellowships

2 to Receive 2017 ACM/IEEE George Michael Memorial HPC Fellowships

The Fellowships honor exceptional Ph.D. students worldwide whose research focuses on high-performance computing, networking, storage, and large-scale data analysis.


From ACM News

NASA's Next Mars Mission to Investigate Interior of Red Planet

NASA's Next Mars Mission to Investigate Interior of Red Planet

Preparation of NASA's next spacecraft to Mars, InSight, has ramped up this summer, on course for launch next May from Vandenberg Air Force Base in central California--the first interplanetary launch in history from America's …


From ACM News

Conditions Like Those Inside Neptune Cause Diamond Formation

Conditions Like Those Inside Neptune Cause Diamond Formation

Carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen are some of the easiest heavier elements to form through fusion.


From ACM News

NIAC Cybersecurity Report Regarding Critical Infrastructure Issued

NIAC Cybersecurity Report Regarding Critical Infrastructure Issued

The draft report warns the U.S. is falling short on its ability to defend critical systems against aggressive cyberattacks.


From ACM News

Big Brother is Watching You

Big Brother is Watching You

Not only that, facial recognition technologies inform him of who you are and what you did.


From ACM News

A Game You Can Control With Your Mind

A Game You Can Control With Your Mind

When you pull the headset over your eyes and the game begins, you are transported to a tiny room with white walls.


From ACM News

Your Broadband Provider Can Use Your Smart Devices to Spy on You

Your Broadband Provider Can Use Your Smart Devices to Spy on You

How much of your privacy would you trade for a smarter home? Internet service providers (ISPs) can peek at the internet-connected devices people use in their own homes–baby monitorsTV set-top boxes, vibrators–even when those…


From ACM News

Even Artificial Neural Networks Can Have Exploitable 'Backdoors'

Even Artificial Neural Networks Can Have Exploitable 'Backdoors'

Early in August, NYU professor Siddharth Garg checked for traffic, and put a yellow Post-it onto a stop sign outside the Brooklyn building in which he works.

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