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Communications of the ACM

Table of Contents

Are We Headed Toward Another Global Tech Bust?

Enrollments in computing-related undergraduate degree programs are booming. What is driving the enrollment boom is undoubtedly the global technology boom. We must remember, however, we have witnessed such booms in the past.

Enrollments Explode! But Diversity Students Are Leaving . . .

I want to return to the theme of diversity in our discipline. To do this, I have enlisted the help of my colleague at Google, Maggie Johnson. We are both concerned the computer science community is still not benefiting from the …
DEPARTMENT: Letters to the Editor

Chaos Is No Catastrophe

I appreciated Phillip G. Armour's use of coupled pendulums as an analogy for software project management in his The Business of Software column "The Chaos Machine" (Jan. 2016) but would like to set the record straight on a few …

Sampling Bias in CS Education, and Where's the Cyber Strategy?

Mark Guzdial examines a logical fallacy in consumer science education; John Arquilla sees an absence of discussion about the use of information technologies in future conflicts.

Automating Proofs

Math struggles with the usability of formal proofs.

Existing Technologies Can Assist the Disabled

Researchers consider how to adapt broadly available technology products for those battling physical impairments.

Search Engine Agendas

Is Google trying to trick you on the way to the polls?

Marvin Minsky: 1927-2016

Marvin Minsky, an American scientist who co-founded the Massachusetts Institute of Technology AI laboratory and was honored with the ACM A.M. Turing Award, passed away on Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016 at the age of 88.

A Decade of ACM Efforts Contribute to Computer Science For All

President Obama has asked Congress to approve $4.1 billion in spending to support the Computer Science for All initiative, aimed at providing computer science education in U.S. public schools. CS education in public schools has …
COLUMN: Global computing

The Internet and Inequality

Is universal access to the Internet a realistic method for addressing worldwide socioeconomic inequality?
COLUMN: Kode Vicious

GNL Is Not Linux

What's in a name?
COLUMN: Technology strategy and management

The Need For Corporate Diplomacy

Whether global companies succeed or fail often depends on how effectively they develop and maintain cooperative relationships with other organizations and governments.
COLUMN: Viewpoint

Beyond Viral

The proliferation of social media usage has not resulted in significant social change.
SECTION: Practice

More Encryption Means Less Privacy

Retaining electronic privacy requires more political engagement.

Why Logical Clocks Are Easy

Sometimes all you need is the right language.

How SysAdmins Devalue Themselves

How to lose friends and alienate coworkers.
SECTION: Contributed articles

How Colors in Business Dashboards Affect Users' Decision Making

Business dashboards that overuse or misuse colors cause cognitive overload for users who then take longer to make decisions.

Multimodal Biometrics For Enhanced Mobile Device Security

Fusing information from multiple biometric traits enhances authentication in mobile devices.
SECTION: Review articles

40 Years of Suffix Trees

Tracing the first four decades in the life of suffix trees, their many incarnations, and their applications.
SECTION: Research highlights

Technical Perspective: Fairness and the Coin Flip

"Secure Multiparty Computations on Bitcoin" introduces an exciting new idea for how to provide fairness: leverage Bitcoin’s existing infrastructure for distributed consensus.

Secure Multiparty Computations on Bitcoin

In this work, we propose to use Bitcoin to design fully decentralized protocols that are secure even if no trusted third party is available.

Technical Perspective: The State (and Security) of the Bitcoin Economy

"A Fistful of Bitcoins" examines, in the context of Bitcoin, what we could learn by studying the patterns encoded in a complete record of every single financial transaction that took place worldwide over a span of five years.

A Fistful of Bitcoins: Characterizing Payments Among Men with No Names

Bitcoin has the unintuitive property that while the ownership of money is implicitly anonymous, its flow is globally visible. In this paper we explore this unique characteristic further, and consider the challenges for those …
COLUMN: Last byte

Upstart Puzzles: Sleep No More

We begin simply, with a 60-minute clock that counts only minutes, from 0 to 59. The alarm can also be set from 0 to 59 and will go off when the clock reaches the same value.