The opinion archive provides access to past opinion stories from Communications of the ACM and other sources by date.
How it teaches governments—and citizens—how to understand the future of technology.
In January 1986, Basit and Amjad Alvi, sibling programmers living near the main train station in Lahore, Pakistan, wrote a piece of code to safeguard the latest version of their heart-monitoring software from piracy.
This past June, Alan Rusbridger, the editor of The Guardian, phoned me and asked, mysteriously, whether I had any idea how to arrange a secure communication. Not really, I confessed.
Stuxnet and the iconic, pioneering hacker Captain Crunch.
This month, we were reminded how important it is that social media companies do what they can to protect the sensitive data they hold from the prying eyes of the government. As many news outlets have reported, the U.S. Department…
While the secret for Apple's success seems patently obvious to most&meash;as obvious as the form and function of the iPhone 4—a more subtle reason is the company's counter-intuitive knack for disrupting its own product lines…
Starbucks app Cash, credit, or gadget?
Can I let you in on a secret? Typing two spaces after a period is totally, completely, utterly, and inarguably wrong. And yet people who use two spaces are everywhere, their ugly error crossing every social boundary of class…
At the aptly named Tiny Thai restaurant here, a small table, about two and a half feet square, was jammed with a teapot, two plates of curry, a bowl of soup, two cups of tea, two glasses of water, a plate with two egg rolls…
Gayatri Buragohain, India’s ACM-W Ambassador, is an outspoken advocate for young women in India who are interested in technical careers but face an opportunity deficit due to legacy gender bias.
There is a growing sentiment among security researchers that the programmers behind the Stuxnet attack may not have been the super-elite cadre of developers that they've been mythologized to be in the media.
With Steve Jobs' third medical-related absence in six years, Silicon Valley must again confront one of its great mysteries: How much does Jobs matter to Apple?
Wolfram Research, a software company with deep mathematical and scientific expertise, is expanding to the broad education market with a range of mobile apps.
India's design industry is facing a "quality gap" with regard to talent, says Rahul Arya of Cadence Design Systems Inc. in Bangalore, India.
Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit, celebrates its 10th anniversary on Saturday.
Through the gates of Fort George Meade pass the most powerful technical minds that the government employs. But Fort Meade's website contains pixelized, faux-shaded green fonts and a two-column descending-text template not seen…
Professor P.K. Kannan at the University of Maryland, says the success of the iPhone 4 released by Verizon boils down to one word: "performance. That is, the performance of iPhone 4 on Verizon's CDMA wireless communications…
The many worlds of a video-game artist.
A year ago, Steve Ballmer took the stage of the Consumer Electronics Show to tout a technology that he promised would change the world: the Windows operating system. Newcomers to CES might have been baffled by this choice;…
The goal of the European Exascale Software Initiative (EESI) is to help effect the migration from petascale to exascale systems over the next 10 years by bringing together industry and government organizations.
ARM chief executive Warren East discusses major announcements from Microsoft, Nvidia, and Motorola involving his company and its chip architecture.
High-frequency trading networks, which complete stock market transactions in microseconds, are vulnerable to manipulation by hackers who can inject tiny amounts of latency into them.
Here is how Jon Leibowitz, chairman of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, describes the current state of affairs on the Internet: "Say I’m walking through a mall. And there’s a guy following me. He doesn't know my name, but…
Jacob Appelbaum fights repressive regimes around the world—including his own.
Is Google violating trademark law by operating its AdWords system?
A look in the rearview mirror reveals system and process blind spots.
Frances E. Allen, recipient of the 2006 ACM A.M. Turing Award, reflects on her career.
You want to know how to get my attention?" Jason Kalich asked the audience rhetorically. "First off, don't bring me a good idea—I've already got plenty of good ideas."
Privacy and confidentiality issues in cloud-based conference management systems reflect more universal themes.
Seeking to improve the educational mechanisms for efficiently training large numbers of information security workers.