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What Went Wrong With IBM's Watson
From ACM Opinion

What Went Wrong With IBM's Watson

What if artificial intelligence can't cure cancer after all?

Who Needs Democracy When You Have Data?
From ACM Opinion

Who Needs Democracy When You Have Data?

In 1955, science fiction writer Isaac Asimov published a short story about an experiment in "electronic democracy," in which a single citizen, selected to represent...

A Bold Mission to Touch the Sun
From ACM Opinion

A Bold Mission to Touch the Sun

On Sunday, August 12, NASA launched a bold mission to fly directly into the sun's atmosphere, with a spacecraft named the Parker Solar Probe, after solar astrophysicist...

Billion-Dollar Telescopes Could End ­p Beyond the Reach of ­S Astronomers
From ACM Opinion

Billion-Dollar Telescopes Could End ­p Beyond the Reach of ­S Astronomers

Every ten years, US astronomers set research priorities for the following decade.

The Future of Television Is … More Television
From ACM Opinion

The Future of Television Is … More Television

Call it Jeffrey Katzenberg's unicorn newborn. An operating company has come into being, ex nihilo, with the blandest of names—NewTV—and a valuation north of $1...

What Are Rare Earths, Crucial Elements in Modern Technology? 4 Questions Answered
From ACM Opinion

What Are Rare Earths, Crucial Elements in Modern Technology? 4 Questions Answered

Most Americans use rare earth elements every day—without knowing it, or knowing anything about what they do. That could change, as these unusual materials are becoming...

Honoring the '80s, Def Con's Badge Is also a Text Adventure
From ACM Opinion

Honoring the '80s, Def Con's Badge Is also a Text Adventure

Nearly 30,000 people came to Las Vegas last week for the 26th edition of DEF CON, the iconic security conference. And no small amount of the mental energy of that...

Hackers Are Out to Jeopardize Your Vote
From ACM Opinion

Hackers Are Out to Jeopardize Your Vote

Russian hackers targeted US electoral systems during the 2016 presidential election.

Why AI Researchers Shouldn't Turn Their Backs on the Military
From ACM Opinion

Why AI Researchers Shouldn't Turn Their Backs on the Military

More than 2,400 AI researchers recently signed a pledge promising not to build so-called autonomous weapons—systems that would decide on their own whom to kill....

We Are Merging With Robots. That's a Good Thing.
From ACM Opinion

We Are Merging With Robots. That's a Good Thing.

Here are some things that are true today:

Google Tracks You Even If Location History's Off. Here's How to Stop It
From ACM Opinion

Google Tracks You Even If Location History's Off. Here's How to Stop It

If, like most people, you thought Google stopped tracking your location once you turned off Location History in your account settings, you were wrong.

How Your Brain Tricks You Into Believing Fake News
From ACM Opinion

How Your Brain Tricks You Into Believing Fake News

Sitting in front of a computer not long ago, a tenured history professor faced a challenge that billions of us do every day: deciding whether to believe something...

There Will Never Be an Age of Artificial Intimacy
From ACM Opinion

There Will Never Be an Age of Artificial Intimacy

Years ago I spoke with a 16-year-old girl who was considering the idea of having a computer companion in the future, and she described the upside to me.

What America Must Do to Remain the World's High-Tech Leader
From ACM Opinion

What America Must Do to Remain the World's High-Tech Leader

Artificial intelligence (AI) often is erroneously identified as an emerging technology.

3D-Printed (and CNC-Milled) Guns: Nine Questions You Were Too Afraid to Ask
From ACM Opinion

3D-Printed (and CNC-Milled) Guns: Nine Questions You Were Too Afraid to Ask

By now, you've probably seen all the news regarding Defense Distributed, company founder Cody Wilson, and 3D-printed guns.

Online Hate Is Rampant. Here's How to Keep It From Spreading
From ACM Opinion

Online Hate Is Rampant. Here's How to Keep It From Spreading

Back in the last presidential campaign season, reporters on the tech and politics beats began noticing a rise in far-right memes that supported Trump. Memes being...

Startup JITX ­ses AI to Automate Complex Circuit Board Design
From ACM Opinion

Startup JITX ­ses AI to Automate Complex Circuit Board Design

While anyone can learn how to design a circuit board, it takes a skilled engineer to design a circuit board that is both well optimized and unlikely to melt, explode...

Mars Is Frigid, Rusty and Haunted. We Can’t Stop Looking at It.
From ACM Opinion

Mars Is Frigid, Rusty and Haunted. We Can’t Stop Looking at It.

There it was: Glowering red on the dashboard of the sky like an astrological warning light next to the full Blood Moon Friday. Mars.

China's Numbers Force Google to Recalculate Its Morals
From ACM Opinion

China's Numbers Force Google to Recalculate Its Morals

In 2010, Google made a moral calculus. The company had been censoring search results in China at the behest of the Communist government since launching there in...

As Moore's Law Dies, the Chip Giants Seek Fresh Prey
From ACM Opinion

As Moore's Law Dies, the Chip Giants Seek Fresh Prey

After a five-year, $240 billion acquisition spree, there's a suspicion that the nature of deal-making in the semiconductor industry may be starting to change.
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