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Why Robots and Humans Struggled with Darpa's Challenge
From ACM Opinion

Why Robots and Humans Struggled with Darpa's Challenge

When some of the world's most advanced rescue robots are foiled by nothing more complex than a doorknob, you get a good sense of the challenge of making our homes...

Toolkits For the Mind
From ACM Opinion

Toolkits For the Mind

When the Japanese computer scientist Yukihiro Matsumoto decided to create Ruby, a programming language that has helped build Twitter, Hulu, and much of the modern...

Reality Check: Comparing Hololens and Magic Leap
From ACM Opinion

Reality Check: Comparing Hololens and Magic Leap

I've seen two competing visions for a future in which virtual objects are merged seamlessly with the real world.

Our Fear of Artificial Intelligence
From ACM Opinion

Our Fear of Artificial Intelligence

Years ago I had coffee with a friend who ran a startup.

2014 in Computing: Breakthroughs in Artificial Intelligence
From ACM News

2014 in Computing: Breakthroughs in Artificial Intelligence

The holy grail of artificial intelligence—creating software that comes close to mimicking human intelligence—remains far off. But 2014 saw major strides in machine...

What Are Moocs Good For?
From ACM Opinion

What Are Moocs Good For?

A few years ago, the most enthusiastic advocates of MOOCs believed that these "massive open online courses" stood poised to overturn the century-old model of higher...

Isaac Asimov Mulls 'how Do People Get New Ideas?'
From ACM Opinion

Isaac Asimov Mulls 'how Do People Get New Ideas?'

In 1959, I worked as a scientist at Allied Research Associates in Boston.

The History Inside ­S
From ACM Opinion

The History Inside ­S

Every day our DNA breaks a little. Special enzymes keep our genome intact while we're alive, but after death, once the oxygen runs out, there is no more repair.

In Praise of Efficient Price Gouging
From ACM Opinion

In Praise of Efficient Price Gouging

In the four years since the car service Uber launched, it has been beset by criticism from myriad groups, including city officials annoyed by its sometimes cavalier...

Imposing Security
From ACM Opinion

Imposing Security

Three computer bugs this year exposed passwords, e-mails, financial data, and other kinds of sensitive information connected to potentially billions of people.

Do We Need Asimov's Laws?
From ACM News

Do We Need Asimov's Laws?

In 1942, the science fiction author Isaac Asimov published a short story called Runaround in which he introduced three laws that governed the behaviour of robots...

The Limits of Social Engineering
From ACM Opinion

The Limits of Social Engineering

In 1969, Playboy published a long, freewheeling interview with Marshall McLuhan in which the media theorist and sixties icon sketched a portrait of the future that...

From ACM Opinion

Why Google Doesn't Have a Research Lab

Research vice presidents at some computing giants, such as Microsoft and IBM, rule over divisions housed in dedicated facilities carefully insulated from the rat...

Glass, Darkly
From ACM Opinion

Glass, Darkly

Google Glass shares much of its electronics and software with the smartphone, but it's a very different machine.

Bitcoin's Political Problem
From ACM Opinion

Bitcoin's Political Problem

Money is always political.

Why Google Kept Motorola's Research Lab
From ACM Opinion

Why Google Kept Motorola's Research Lab

Google's $2.9 billion sale of Motorola Mobility to Chinese PC maker Lenovo might seem like lousy business, given Google's $12.5 billion purchase in 2012 and losses...

An AI Pal That Is Better Than 'her'
From ACM Opinion

An AI Pal That Is Better Than 'her'

In the movie Her, which was nominated for the Oscar for Best Picture this year, a middle-aged writer named Theodore Twombly installs and rapidly falls in love with...

Diagnosis For Healthcare.gov: ­nrealistic Technology Expectations
From ACM Opinion

Diagnosis For Healthcare.gov: ­nrealistic Technology Expectations

The fiasco with the $600 million federal health insurance website wasn't all bureaucratic.

Driverless Cars Are Further Away Than You Think
From ACM Opinion

Driverless Cars Are Further Away Than You Think

A silver BMW 5 Series is weaving through traffic at roughly 120 kilometers per hour (75 mph) on a freeway that cuts northeast through Bavaria between Munich and...

The Decline of Wikipedia
From ACM Opinion

The Decline of Wikipedia

The sixth most widely used website in the world is not run anything like the others in the top 10.
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