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Tor Is Easier Than Ever. Time to Give It a Try
From ACM Opinion

Tor Is Easier Than Ever. Time to Give It a Try

You probably know about the digital anonymity service Tor, but for whatever reason you may not actually use it.

Don't Fear the Robot Overlords; Embrace Them as Coworkers
From ACM Opinion

Don't Fear the Robot Overlords; Embrace Them as Coworkers

In a chilly warehouse just outside of Boston, the brute toils away. It's 600 pounds of orange and black metal and whirring motors, a massive robotic arm that picks...

What the California Wildfires Can Teach Us About Data Sharing
From ACM Opinion

What the California Wildfires Can Teach Us About Data Sharing

When a massive earthquake and tsunami hit the eastern coast of Japan on March 11, 2011, the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant failed, leaking radioactive material...

Try Landing InSight on Mars (Without Exploding)
From ACM Opinion

Try Landing InSight on Mars (Without Exploding)

NASA just parked its InSight lander on Mars. Yes, Mars. This is a pretty big deal since quite a few Mars missions didn't make it.

You Know What? Go Ahead and Use the Hotel Wi-Fi
From ACM Opinion

You Know What? Go Ahead and Use the Hotel Wi-Fi

As you travel this holiday season, bouncing from airport to airplane to hotel, you'll likely find yourself facing a familiar quandary: Do I really trust this ...

What the Boston School Bus Schedule Can Teach Us About AI
From ACM Opinion

What the Boston School Bus Schedule Can Teach Us About AI

When the Boston public school system announced new start times last December, some parents found the schedules unacceptable and pushed back.

Paper and the Case for Going Low-Tech in the Voting Booth
From ACM Opinion

Paper and the Case for Going Low-Tech in the Voting Booth

In September 2017, barely two months before Virginians went to the polls to pick a new governor, the state's board of elections convened an emergency session. The...

Why the Search for Aliens Could Unite Us Here on Earth
From ACM Opinion

Why the Search for Aliens Could Unite Us Here on Earth

If aliens are trying to talk to us (or even if they are not), Jill Tarter will be the one to find them.

You're Expecting Too Much Out of Boston Dynamics' Robots
From ACM Opinion

You're Expecting Too Much Out of Boston Dynamics' Robots

At the WIRED25 festival in San Francisco Sunday evening, Boston Dynamics' SpotMini robot got onstage and did what no other quadruped robot has done before: It danced...

How Bots Ruined Clicktivism
From ACM Opinion

How Bots Ruined Clicktivism

I recently came across two tweets—or rather, thousands of tweets sharing the same two ideas over and over again.

Why Westerners Fear Robots and the Japanese Do Not
From ACM Opinion

Why Westerners Fear Robots and the Japanese Do Not

As a Japanese, I grew up watching anime like "Neon Genesis Evangelion," which depicts a future in which machines and humans merge into cyborg ecstasy.

A Landmark Legal Shift Opens Pandora's Box for DIY Guns
From ACM Opinion

A Landmark Legal Shift Opens Pandora's Box for DIY Guns

Five years ago, 25-year-old radical libertarian Cody Wilson stood on a remote central Texas gun range and pulled the trigger on the world's first fully 3-D-printed...

A Plea for AI That Serves Humanity Instead of Replacing It
From ACM Opinion

A Plea for AI That Serves Humanity Instead of Replacing It

Sixty-two years ago this summer, Dartmouth professor John McCarthy coined the term artificial intelligence. Joi Ito, director of MIT's Media Lab, has come to think...

Going To the World Cup? Leave the Laptop at Home
From ACM Opinion

Going To the World Cup? Leave the Laptop at Home

A Russian sports official earlier this year estimated that as many as 2 million people would flock to the country during the World Cup, the month-long celebration...

The Many Shades of Bad Physics
From ACM Opinion

The Many Shades of Bad Physics

What happens when you see bad physics in the world? Does it make you angry? Does it make you laugh?

Facial Recognition Tech Is Creepy When It Works, And Creepier When It Doesn't
From ACM Opinion

Facial Recognition Tech Is Creepy When It Works, And Creepier When It Doesn't

For the last few years, police forces around China have invested heavily to build the world's largest video surveillance and facial recognition system, incorporating...

AI Can Help Cybersecurity, If It Can Fight Through the Hype
From ACM Opinion

AI Can Help Cybersecurity, If It Can Fight Through the Hype

Walking the enormous exhibition halls at the recent RSA security conference in San Francisco, you could have easily gotten the impression that digital defense was...

When John Doerr Brought a 'Gift' to Google's Founders
From ACM Opinion

When John Doerr Brought a 'Gift' to Google's Founders

On a fall day in 1999, in the heart of Silicon Valley, I arrived at a two-story, L-shaped structure off the 101 freeway. It was young Google's headquarters, and...

The FCC Should Use Blockchain to Manage Wireless Spectrum
From ACM Opinion

The FCC Should Use Blockchain to Manage Wireless Spectrum

The technology at the heart of cryptocurrencies like bitcoin—blockchain—has captured the world's attention, much as the internet, peer-to-peer file transfers, apps...

Med Students Are Getting Terrible Training in Robotic Surgery
From ACM Opinion

Med Students Are Getting Terrible Training in Robotic Surgery

If you think your on-the-job training was tough, imagine what life is like for newbie surgeons.
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