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What the Digital Brains of the Future Might Be Like
From ACM Opinion

What the Digital Brains of the Future Might Be Like

It is the rare entrepreneur who hits it truly big twice. Those who do—such as Ev Williams, Ted Turner, and Elon Musk—tend to stay within the original industry that...

Governments Won't Need to Issue Ids: Data Brokers Will Identify You For Them
From ACM Opinion

Governments Won't Need to Issue Ids: Data Brokers Will Identify You For Them

Our government collects a lot of information about us. Tax records, legal records, license records, records of government services received—it's all in databases...

The Meaning of (making) Life
From ACM Opinion

The Meaning of (making) Life

Christina Agapakis is a rising star among the new generation of biology researchers. Trained in the science of custom-building organisms known as synthetic biology...

Time and Navigation: How We Found Our Way in the World
From ACM Opinion

Time and Navigation: How We Found Our Way in the World

Type an address into your phone, and up will pop a step-by-step route from where you are to where you want to be. This is, in its way, magic—magic that has, at...

How Big Data Can Solve America's Gun Problem
From ACM Opinion

How Big Data Can Solve America's Gun Problem

Big data might have stopped the massacres in Newtown, Aurora, and Oak Creek.

Why Google Maps Is Better Than Apple Maps
From ACM Opinion

Why Google Maps Is Better Than Apple Maps

There's a simple answer: people.

Data Doesn't Belong to the Democrats
From ACM Opinion

Data Doesn't Belong to the Democrats

One of the leading narratives of the 2012 campaign is that data trumped all.

Meet Mira, the Supercomputer That Makes ­niverses
From ACM Opinion

Meet Mira, the Supercomputer That Makes ­niverses

Cosmology is the most ambitious of sciences. Its goal, plainly stated, is to describe the origin, evolution, and structure of the entire universe, a universe that...

The Jet Propulsion Lab Is Way Weirder (and Awesomer) Than You Even Imagined
From ACM Opinion

The Jet Propulsion Lab Is Way Weirder (and Awesomer) Than You Even Imagined

For a center of cutting-edge scientific research, Caltech's Jet Propulsion Lab seems to be a pretty wacky place. Luke Johnson, a graphic designer at the lab, set...

The Measured Man
From ACM Opinion

The Measured Man

Like many people who are careful about their weight, Larry Smarr once spent two weeks measuring everything he put in his mouth. He charted each serving of food...

Inside Google's Plan to Build a Catalog of Every Single Thing, Ever
From ACM Opinion

Inside Google's Plan to Build a Catalog of Every Single Thing, Ever

The ugly truth is that computers don't know anything. They have no common sense.

Homeland Security's 'pre-Crime' Screening Will Never Work
From ACM Opinion

Homeland Security's 'pre-Crime' Screening Will Never Work

Here is a quiz for you.

The Big Data Boom Is the Innovation Story of Our Time
From ACM Opinion

The Big Data Boom Is the Innovation Story of Our Time

The data revolution has turned customers into unwitting business consultants, as our purchases and searches are tracked to improve everything from Web sites to...

From ACM News

You Are Data

Bits and Base Pairs explores the concept that the information encoded in our DNA can be compressed down to just 4MB, the equivalent, for example, of "the three...

Cloud-Powered Facial Recognition Is Terrifying
From ACM Opinion

Cloud-Powered Facial Recognition Is Terrifying

"I never forget a face," goes the Marx Brothers one-liner, "but in your case, I'll be glad to make an exception." Unlike Groucho Marx, unfortunately, the cloud...
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