Sign In

Communications of the ACM

Opinion Archive


Archives

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

October 2012


From ACM Opinion

Why Is This Man Running For President of the Internet?

Why Is This Man Running For President of the Internet?

It's an unseasonably cold early October evening in Lincoln, Nebraska, and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian is giving his elevator pitch to a flustered but rapt woman behind the counter of a fast-food joint, Runza, where he's…


From ACM Opinion

Technology Helps Track a Terrorist in 'the Finish'

Technology Helps Track a Terrorist in 'the Finish'

In late summer 2010, at the end of a morning briefing, one of President Obama's security advisers said, "Mr. President, Leon and the guys at Langley think they may have come up with something."


From ACM Opinion

Patent Could Shackle 3D Printers with Drm

Patent Could Shackle 3D Printers with Drm

One of the greatest benefits of 3D printing technology—the ability to make replacements or parts for household objects like toys, utensils and gadgets—may be denied to U.S. citizens thanks to the granting of a sweeping patent…


From ACM Opinion

How I Accidentally Helped Compromise the Secret Keys of High-Security Handcuffs

How I Accidentally Helped Compromise the Secret Keys of High-Security Handcuffs

In the age of freely available modeling software, laser cutters and 3D printers, shapes that must stay secret for security's sake don't stay secret for long. Especially, it turns out, when a reporter wielding an iPhone camera…


From ACM Opinion

10 Predictions About Networking and Moore's Law from Andy Bechtolsheim

10 Predictions About Networking and Moore's Law from Andy Bechtolsheim

Sun Microsystems cofounder and networking guru Andy Bechtholsheim predicted that networking chips—which determine how quickly you can surf the Internet—will keep following the path of progress that it has for decades.


From ACM Opinion

Google's Little Nemo Tribute: Maybe The Best Google Doodle Ever

Google's Little Nemo Tribute: Maybe The Best Google Doodle Ever

Winsor McCay (1869–1934) was one of the first important creators of both comic strips and animation, and a pretty fair political cartoonist to boot.


From ACM Opinion

On the Moore's Law Hot Seat: Intel's Mike Mayberry

On the Moore's Law Hot Seat: Intel's Mike Mayberry

Intel vice president Mike Mayberry lives 10 years in the chip technology future, charting a course for the computing industry and transforming research ideas into high-volume manufacturing.


From ACM Opinion

In Digital War, Patents Are the Weapon of Choice

In Digital War, Patents Are the Weapon of Choice

If you don't think of patents as a particularly exciting or interesting field, consider a point Charles Duhigg makes in his recent New York Times article, "The Patent, Used as a Sword": According to an analysis done at Stanford…


From ACM Opinion

Linus Torvalds Compares Hard Disks to Satan

Linus Torvalds Compares Hard Disks to Satan

Linus Torvalds—creator of the Linux open source operating system—is a man of strong opinions.


From ACM Opinion

Where's the Discussion of Trojan Horses?

Where's the Discussion of Trojan Horses?

The Mykonos Vase, discovered in 1961 in the Cyclades, is one of the earliest accounts of the Trojan Horse, used as a subterfuge by the Greeks to enter the city of Troy during the Trojan War.


From ACM Opinion

The Limits of Big Data

The Limits of Big Data

Stop me if you've heard this one: Three statisticians go rabbit hunting.


From ACM Opinion

Eric Schmidt: Android-Apple Is the Defining Fight in the Industry Today

Eric Schmidt: Android-Apple Is the Defining Fight in the Industry Today

The fight between Google and Apple over mobile devices is great for consumers, but the patent wars that have resulted are awful, said Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, in conversation with Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher.


From ACM TechNews

Kurzweil: Brains Will Extend to the Cloud

Kurzweil: Brains Will Extend to the Cloud

Inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil says human brains will one day extend into the cloud, and it will be possible to selectively erase pieces of memory while keeping other parts.  


From ACM Opinion

The Chinese Steve Jobs Is Probably a Pirate

The Chinese Steve Jobs Is Probably a Pirate

When discussing innovation, the Chinese like to tout the country’s "Four Great Inventions"—paper, gunpowder, the compass, and woodblock printing—and their enormous impacts on human civilization.


From ACM Opinion

Why Polaroid Inspired Both Steve Jobs and Andy Warhol

Why Polaroid Inspired Both Steve Jobs and Andy Warhol

Few companies can claim they altered the path of an entire medium but that’s exactly what Polaroid did in the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s to photography. Founded by Edwin H. Land in 1937, Polaroid was the Apple of its day and Land,…


From ACM Opinion

A Better Approach to Huawei, Zte, and Chinese Cyberspying? Distrust and Verify

A Better Approach to Huawei, Zte, and Chinese Cyberspying? Distrust and Verify

In the wake of the 60-page report from Congress’s Select Committee On Intelligence recommending U.S. companies stop buying Chinese-made telecommunications gear for fear of cyberspying, the smaller of China’s two telecom giants…


From ACM Opinion

The Apple Maps Debate and the Real Future of Mapping

The Apple Maps Debate and the Real Future of Mapping

The news of the last couple weeks about the stark differences between Apple and Google's mapshave shed light on how hard it is to build a mobile map.


From ACM TechNews

Nsf-Ncsa Study Probes Relationship Between Industrial Applications and ­nderlying Science

Nsf-Ncsa Study Probes Relationship Between Industrial Applications and ­nderlying Science

In an interview, U.S. NCSA director Merle Giles discusses the findings of a study to determine whether improvements in the science inside applications and other factors could help industrial HPC users.  


From ACM Opinion

Digital First Isn't an Option for Media—It's the Only Way Forward

Digital First Isn't an Option for Media—It's the Only Way Forward

Everywhere you look in the traditional media industry, you can see signs of turmoil and disruption: to take just a few recent examples, the New York Times is fighting with its union over cutbacks to benefits, The Guardian is 


From ACM Opinion

Even Ray Kurzweil Is Nervous About a Future with Hyper-Intelligent Machines

Even Ray Kurzweil Is Nervous About a Future with Hyper-Intelligent Machines

Ray Kurzweil is looking forward to the year 2029.


From ACM Opinion

Twitter: Who Do the Politicians Follow?

Twitter: Who Do the Politicians Follow?

You can tell a lot about a politician's priorities from who they deign to follow on Twitter. When David Cameron joined the service on Saturday, he started out following just three peopleBoris JohnsonJeremy Hunt, and William…


From ACM Opinion

Rose's Law For Quantum Computers

When I first met Geordie Rose in 2002, I was struck by his ability to explain complex quantum physics and the "spooky" underpinnings of quantum computers. I had just read David Deutsch'sFabric of Reality where he predicts the…


From ACM Opinion

Hp: Why Bill And Dave Would Back A Break-­p Plan

Hp: Why Bill And Dave Would Back A Break-­p Plan

The time has come to break up Hewlett-Packard into parts. That’s the view of UBS analyst Steve Milunovich, who goes so far as to assert that founders Bill Hewlett and David Packard would likely support slicing the company into…


From ACM Opinion

How Steve Jobs' Legacy Has Changed

How Steve Jobs' Legacy Has Changed

When Apple co-founder Steve Jobs succumbed to cancer in his California home a year ago today, the world rushed to eulogize him in glowing terms: Genius. Visionary. A modern-day Thomas Edison.


From ACM Opinion

Facebook's 1 Billion ­sers and What They Say About the Future of Computing

Facebook's 1 Billion ­sers and What They Say About the Future of Computing

After several months as the Internet's punching bag, Facebook finally has something to brag about: 1 billion active users.


From ACM Opinion

Facebook's 'Next Billion': A Q&A With Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook's 'Next Billion': A Q&A With Mark Zuckerberg

In 2004, Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook from his Harvard University dorm room, hoping to see what his classmates were up to on campus. The following eight years brought international fame, unimaginable wealth, a hit Hollywood…


From ACM Opinion

Ietf Approves Hsts as Proposed Standard

One of the things that makes attackers dance around their basement lairs is finding unencrypted Web sessions.


From ACM Opinion

The Extremely Personal Computer: The Digital Future of Mental Health

The Extremely Personal Computer: The Digital Future of Mental Health

It's 2018, and you're not feeling your best.


From ACM Opinion

The Supreme Court Needs To Weigh In on Warrantless Cell Phone Tracking By Law Enforcement

The Supreme Court Needs To Weigh In on Warrantless Cell Phone Tracking By Law Enforcement

Americans should have no reasonable expectation of privacy over the location data stored by their mobile phone.


From ACM Opinion

Ibm's Ginni Rometty Looks Ahead

Ibm's Ginni Rometty Looks Ahead

Ginni Rometty's first customer conference as CEO of IBM was an unusual affair, especially by Big Blue's buttoned-up standards.

Blog at CACM
Computing Ethics and Teaching It
Computing Ethics and Teaching It
07.06.2020

Ethics can and should be presented to computer science students in appropriate ways.

'Underrepresented Minority' Considered Harmful, Racist Language
'Underrepresented Minority' Considered Harmful, Racist Language
06.19.2020

The foundation of any collective action, of any community, is language. It influences how we feel, react, and understand.

The Advantages of Teaching Soft Skills to CS Undergrads Online
The Advantages of Teaching Soft Skills to CS Undergrads Online
06.08.2020

On the added value of teaching an online soft skills course to undergrad computer science students.

View More Blog@CACM

Latest News
NSF Reveals First Details on Foreign-Influence Investigations
NSF Reveals First Details on Foreign-Influence Investigations
07.10.2020

The U.S. National Science Foundation has taken action in 16-to-20 …

AI's Carbon Footprint Problem
AI's Carbon Footprint Problem
07.09.2020

A new tool measures the hidden cost of machine learning.

National Security Agency Warns That VPNs Could Be Vulnerable to Cyberattacks
National Security Agency Warns That VPNs Could Be Vulnerable to Cyberattacks
07.09.2020

A cybersecurity advisory issued by the National Security Agency's Cybersecurity …

View More News