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Communications of the ACM

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The opinion archive provides access to past opinion stories from Communications of the ACM and other sources by date.

August 2019


From ACM Opinion

CS Professor Says We Can Probably Make Email Better For Everyone

CS Professor Says We Can Probably Make Email Better For Everyone

Cal Newport, a computer science professor at Georgetown University, argues that our grandkids will be mystified by our addiction to email. He has some thoughts about how we got here and how we might do it better.


From ACM Opinion

Why Tech Will Never Be Able to Predict the Next Mass Shooting

Why Tech Will Never Be Able to Predict the Next Mass Shooting

Following the horrific mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton last weekend, President Trump called on social media companies to develop tools that could help identify violent shooters before they act. Technically, this is a nearly…


From ACM Opinion

Shoot-'Em-Up Videogames Don't Warp Minds – Big Tech Does

Shoot-'Em-Up Videogames Don't Warp Minds – Big Tech Does

It takes a lot of effort, research, and efficiency to manipulate people online and influence their behavior in the real world. Silicon Valley has it down to a science.


From ACM Opinion

Western Academia Helps Build China's Automated Racism

Western Academia Helps Build China's Automated Racism

Researchers in China are developing new and more invasive techniques to surveil the Uyghurs minority. Some of their work is being supported by academia in the West.


From ACM Opinion

Why Robot Umpires Are Inevitable in Baseball's Future

Why Robot Umpires Are Inevitable in Baseball's Future

I don't know how long it will be before we get robot umpires calling balls and strikes, but the technology is here to do it today.


From ACM Opinion

Digital Textbooks Are Forcing a Radical Shift in Higher Education

Digital Textbooks Are Forcing a Radical Shift in Higher Education

The last several years have seen a shift in textbook policies at colleges and universities — one that has more recently turned tectonic.


From ACM Opinion

Op-Ed: 'Ethical AI' Matters — The Problem Lies in Defining It

Op-Ed: 'Ethical AI' Matters — The Problem Lies in Defining It

News that Microsoft will invest around $1 billion to examine ethical artificial intelligence signals that the tech sector is thinking deeper about the ethics underlying transformative technologies. But what is ethical AI?


From ACM Opinion

Inflation Is Dead – And Technology Killed It!

Inflation Is Dead – And Technology Killed It!

What if the true lasting effect of technology is to deflate pricing power and kill inflation? 


From ACM Opinion

AI Researchers Need to Stop Hiding the Climate Toll of Their Work

AI Researchers Need to Stop Hiding the Climate Toll of Their Work

Researchers are sounding the alarm about the surprisingly large carbon footprint of the computations required for deep learning.


From Communications of the ACM

Block-based Programming in Computer Science Education

Block-based Programming in Computer Science Education

Considering how block-based programming environments and tools might be used at the introductory level and beyond.


From Communications of the ACM

A Response to Fake News as a Response to Citizens United

A Response to Fake News as a Response to <i>Citizens United</i>

How boundaries on speech could free the market for speech.


From Communications of the ACM

MUST and MUST NOT

MUST and MUST NOT

On writing documentation.


From Communications of the ACM

The Success of the Web: A Triumph of the Amateurs

The Success of the Web

Connecting the unique factors that influenced the origination and subsequent development of the World Wide Web.

Blog at CACM
We Should Stop Saying 'Language Independent.' We Don't Know How To Do That
We Should Stop Saying 'Language Independent.' We Don't Know How To Do That
08.13.2019

 We know how to make multi-lingual pseudocode-based assessments, not language-independent assessments.

Who Manufactured the Mysterious Chinese Android?
Who Manufactured the Mysterious Chinese Android?
08.01.2019

In the 18th century, there were several famous makers of automatons in Europe; who created the Chinese musical clock automaton …

Lessons from a First-Year Seminar
Lessons from a First-Year Seminar
07.27.2019

Teaching a first-year seminar to a mixed group musters the basics of computer science.

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Virtual 'Universe Machine' Sheds Light on Galaxy Evolution
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08.16.2019

Researchers at the University of Arizona have used supercomputer simulations …

Apple Transforms Central Park Into an Augmented Reality Gallery
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