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Electronic Contracts and the Illusion of Consent
From ACM Opinion

Electronic Contracts and the Illusion of Consent

Q: What do you do when you see a little button on a webpage or app screen that says I agree?

The Two Codes Your Kids Need to Know
From ACM Opinion

The Two Codes Your Kids Need to Know

A few years ago, the leaders of the College Board, the folks who administer the SAT college entrance exam, asked themselves a radical question: Of all the skills...

Trump's Plan to Keep America First in AI
From ACM Opinion

Trump's Plan to Keep America First in AI

The US leads the world in artificial intelligence technology. Decades of federal research funding, industrial and academic research, and streams of foreign talent...

There's No Good Reason to Trust Blockchain Technology
From ACM Opinion

There's No Good Reason to Trust Blockchain Technology

In his 2008 white paper that first proposed bitcoin, the anonymous Satoshi Nakamoto concluded with: "We have proposed a system for electronic transactions without...

How Silicon Valley Puts the 'Con' in Consent
From ACM Opinion

How Silicon Valley Puts the 'Con' in Consent

The average person would have to spend 76 working days reading all of the digital privacy policies they agree to in the span of a year. Reading Amazon's terms and...

Google Assistant Is Getting Sci-Fi Ambitious
From ACM Opinion

Google Assistant Is Getting Sci-Fi Ambitious

From 550 feet in the air, Google's Scott Huffman peers down at the Las Vegas skyline. It's a sunny afternoon in early January and, at the moment, Google owns this...

'The Goal Is to Automate Us': Welcome to the Age of Surveillance Capitalism
From ACM Opinion

'The Goal Is to Automate Us': Welcome to the Age of Surveillance Capitalism

We're living through the most profound transformation in our information environment since Johannes Gutenberg's invention of printing in circa 1439.

Offices Are Too Hot or Too Cold; Is There a Better Way to Control Room Temperature?
From ACM Opinion

Offices Are Too Hot or Too Cold; Is There a Better Way to Control Room Temperature?

In any office, home or other shared space, there's almost always someone who's too cold, someone who's too hot—and someone who doesn't know what the fuss around...

Five Emerging Cyber-Threats to Worry About in 2019
From ACM Opinion

Five Emerging Cyber-Threats to Worry About in 2019

Last year was full of cybersecurity disasters, from the revelation of security flaws in billions of microchips to massive data breaches and attacks using malicious...

What the Future of Work Means for Cities
From ACM Opinion

What the Future of Work Means for Cities

Two weeks ago, MIT's David Autor gave the prestigious Richard T. Ely lecture at the annual meeting of American economists in Atlanta. Introduced by the former chair...

The Quiet Threat Inside 'Internet of Things' Devices
From ACM Opinion

The Quiet Threat Inside 'Internet of Things' Devices

As Americans increasingly buy and install smart devices in their homes, all those cheap interconnected devices create new security problems for individuals and...

To Cover China, There's No Substitute for WeChat
From ACM Opinion

To Cover China, There's No Substitute for WeChat

How do New York Times journalists use technology in their jobs and in their personal lives? Li Yuan, a technology columnist in Hong Kong, discussed the tech she's...

Etch a Sketch Lives On in Browser-Based Chrome Labs Project
From ACM Opinion

Etch a Sketch Lives On in Browser-Based Chrome Labs Project

Everyone who remembers the Etch A Sketch slabs of yesteryear remembers how difficult it was to translate your vision onto its "magic screen," and how proud youWeb...

Never Mind Killer Robots; Here Are Six Real AI Dangers to Watch Out for in 2019
From ACM Opinion

Never Mind Killer Robots; Here Are Six Real AI Dangers to Watch Out for in 2019

Once it was fashionable to fret about the prospect of super-intelligent machines taking over the world. The past year showed that AI may cause all sorts of hazards...

In Memory of Lawrence Roberts
From ACM Opinion

In Memory of Lawrence Roberts

Beeeeeeep.

Tor Is Easier Than Ever. Time to Give It a Try
From ACM Opinion

Tor Is Easier Than Ever. Time to Give It a Try

You probably know about the digital anonymity service Tor, but for whatever reason you may not actually use it.

7 Arguments Against the Autonomous-Vehicle Utopia 
From ACM Opinion

7 Arguments Against the Autonomous-Vehicle Utopia 

Self-driving cars are coming. Tech giants such as Uber and Alphabet have bet on it, as have old-school car manufacturers such as Ford and General Motors.

Don't Fear the Robot Overlords; Embrace Them as Coworkers
From ACM Opinion

Don't Fear the Robot Overlords; Embrace Them as Coworkers

In a chilly warehouse just outside of Boston, the brute toils away. It's 600 pounds of orange and black metal and whirring motors, a massive robotic arm that picks...

The Tech That Was Fixed in 2018 and the Tech That Still Needs Fixing
From ACM Opinion

The Tech That Was Fixed in 2018 and the Tech That Still Needs Fixing

Personal technology was so awful this year that nobody would think you were paranoid if you dug a hole and buried your computer, phone and smart speaker under six...
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