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You Can't Escape Data Surveillance In America
From ACM Opinion

You Can't Escape Data Surveillance In America

In America, surveillance has always played an outsized role in the relationship between creditors and debtors.

One Easy Way to Make Wikipedia Better
From ACM Opinion

One Easy Way to Make Wikipedia Better

The Pacific Northwest tree octopus existed years before Wikipedia was founded. I’m using "existed" loosely here, of course, because there's no such thing as a Pacific...

How Early Computer Games Influenced Internet Culture
From ACM Opinion

How Early Computer Games Influenced Internet Culture

Sometimes it seems the Internet is, at its core, a tremendous nostalgia machine.

Why Technological Innovation Relies on Government Support
From ACM Opinion

Why Technological Innovation Relies on Government Support

Andy Grove, the Silicon Valley pioneer who died last week at age 79, was many things: a survivor of the Nazi occupation of Hungary and refugee of Cold War Eastern...

How Self-Driving Cars Will Threaten Privacy
From ACM Opinion

How Self-Driving Cars Will Threaten Privacy

Allow me to join you, if I may, on your morning commute sometime in the indeterminate future.

Toward the End of Pilots
From ACM Opinion

Toward the End of Pilots

A memory that’s stayed with me from my stint in the military nearly 50 years ago is a sign that my supply sergeant kept on his desk: "We’ve been working with less...

Can Google's Driverless Car Project Survive a Fatal Accident?
From ACM Opinion

Can Google's Driverless Car Project Survive a Fatal Accident?

Everybody knew this day would come.

How to Build an ­nbeatable Poker-Playing Robot
From ACM Opinion

How to Build an ­nbeatable Poker-Playing Robot

Each summer, the computer-science researchers behind the world's best poker-playing robots bring their creations together for a tournament.

How the Microscope Redefined the Fact
From ACM Opinion

How the Microscope Redefined the Fact

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but the inverse is also true: A word is worth a thousand pictures.

Planet Nine May Help ­S Slingshot Our Way to Interstellar Space
From ACM Opinion

Planet Nine May Help ­S Slingshot Our Way to Interstellar Space

In his famous sonnet, On First Looking into Chapman's Homer, John Keats describes the moment he first came to appreciate some of the great works of classical antiquity...

How the Internet of Things Limits Consumer Choice
From ACM Opinion

How the Internet of Things Limits Consumer Choice

In theory, the Internet of Things—the connected network of tiny computers inside home appliances, household objects, even clothing—promises to make your life easier...

Driverless Cars Are Like Elevators
From ACM Opinion

Driverless Cars Are Like Elevators

One of the challenges in describing the potential of self-driving cars is that they promise to do so much.

Pop Culture Is Finally Getting Hacking Right
From ACM Opinion

Pop Culture Is Finally Getting Hacking Right

The idea of a drill-wielding hacker who runs a deep-web empire selling drugs to teens seems like a fantasy embodying the worst of digital technology.

The Room Where the Internet Was Born
From ACM Opinion

The Room Where the Internet Was Born

Starting a cross-country drive to New York in Los Angeles is pretty inconvenient, unless your cross-country drive is also a vision quest to see the Internet.

Scores of Scores: How Companies Are Reducing Consumers to Single Numbers
From ACM Opinion

Scores of Scores: How Companies Are Reducing Consumers to Single Numbers

In his novel Super Sad True Love Story, Gary Shteyngart imagined ubiquitous poles installed on sidewalks that display people’s credit scores as they walked by.

If You're Not Paranoid, You're Crazy
From ACM Opinion

If You're Not Paranoid, You're Crazy

I knew we'd bought walnuts at the store that week, and I wanted to add some to my oatmeal.

What Science-Fiction Gadget Would Be Most Valuable in Real Life?
From ACM Opinion

What Science-Fiction Gadget Would Be Most Valuable in Real Life?

Nicole Perlman, screenwriter, Guardians of the Galaxy: As someone who’s both accident-prone and constantly putting her foot in her mouth, my first thought is the...

Mark Zuckerberg and the End of Language
From ACM Opinion

Mark Zuckerberg and the End of Language

Earlier this year, Mark Zuckerberg hosted an online Q&A session on his personal Facebook page.

Humans, Not Robots, Are the Real Reason Artificial Intelligence Is Scary
From ACM Opinion

Humans, Not Robots, Are the Real Reason Artificial Intelligence Is Scary

Unfortunately, much of the recent outcry against artificial-intelligence weapons has been confused, conjuring robot takeovers of mankind.

What Is a 'computer' Anymore?
From ACM Opinion

What Is a 'computer' Anymore?

People used to be computers.
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