The opinion archive provides access to past opinion stories from Communications of the ACM and other sources by date.
By now, most people have heard of Bitcoin, the peer-to-peer currency whose value has soared over the past couple of years.
I like to plan ahead; that much I knew about myself before I plunged into exploring my genetic code.
Turn an ordinary table into a touch screen, monitor your kids' whereabouts, and place the power of 3D printing in the palm of your hand—and there’s more.
One of the dangers of a 304 -page report on a complex subject is that everyone gets to choose what he or she thinks is the bottom line.
When Microsoft launched its research labs in 1991, the personal computer was just beginning to blossom into a worldwide phenomenon, thanks in no small part to Windows.
Physicist John Pendry talks about the profound physics obscured by his invisibility cloak and how metamaterials could help realise the perfect lens.
Last week, the Internet security world was jolted by a Reuters report detailing a secret $10 million payment to the security company RSA from the National Security Agency.
Last month, several people appeared before a U.S. Senate committee to defend bitcoin, among them Patrick Murck, general counsel of the Bitcoin Foundation...
This is a tale of three money pits.
In defending the NSA's telephony metadata collection efforts, government officials have repeatedly resorted to one seemingly significant detail: This is just metadata—numbers dialed, lengths of calls.
This is going to sound silly, but I think Snapchat was the most important technology of 2013.
At a racetrack in Florida this weekend, 16 robots competed to complete a series of tasks inspired by challenges faced in cleaning up the destroyed Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant.
As the new Federal Communications Commission chairman, Tom Wheeler, has kicked up some dust in the tech community by laying the groundwork for a grand vision for the next generation of networks but then walking back one of the…
Right now, the average person's data footprint—the annual amount of data produced worldwide, per capita—is just a little short of one terabyte.
The familiar voice on the hotel room phone did not waste words.
In a sharp and unexpected shift, the national debate over U.S. government surveillance seems to be turning in favor of reining in the National Security Agency's expansive spying powers at home and abroad.
A couple of weeks ago, shortly after the Amazon C.E.O. Jeff Bezos unveiled, on "60 Minutes," that his company plans to deliver packages to customers with a swarm of autonomous, flying drones, Google made an announcement that…
New Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler faces a number of important decisions about the future of the wireless industry.
If you're the kind of person who keeps track of Internet policy and governance debates, you should know that the Internet Society has a new CEO.
The revelation that U.S. and British spy agencies have undermined a commonly used encryption code should alarm researchers.
It's a good bet that, in the next few weeks, President Obama will impose some serious reforms—and ask Congress to enact a few more—on how the National Security Agency scoops up and stores data from the phone and Internet records…
At 9 a.m. Monday, fire alarms went off in Harvard's Emerson Hall.
Theodor Holm Nelson, who coined the term hypertext, has been a thorn in the side of the computing establishment for more than a half century.
Federal Judge Richard Leon has become a sudden political celebrity after his remarkable opinion holding that antiterror surveillance is unconstitutional and, even more remarkably, enjoining the entire program.
Anyone who can watch you will watch you.
Randolph Kirchain, a senior research scientist in MIT's Engineering Systems Division, has long specialized in analyzing the raw materials used to manufacture new products and the waste generated by those projects at the end of…
Perhaps Edward Snowden's hoodie should have raised suspicions.
On a mission to convince the world that Bitcoin is enduring and serious, enthusiasts convened at a place that symbolizes the ephemeral and the glitzy: Las Vegas.
On Alpine Road in Portola Valley, a few miles southwest of the campus of Stanford University, where the flat suburban landscape begins to give way to the vistas of the Santa Cruz Mountains, there is an old wooden roadhouse called…
Planetary geologist Ellen Stofan joined NASA in August as the agency's chief scientist, an overarching role in which she advises on the science of all NASA programmes.
James Bond-like spies have been eclipsed by a new generation of operatives who don't travel the world (not physically, anyway) …
Finding errors is not the same strategy as making sure that a product works.
Early on in the study of quantum computers, computer scientists …
Getting robots to do things isn't easy: Usually, scientists have …
A storm of tiny dust particles has engulfed much of …