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An edited collection of advanced computing news from Communications of the ACM, ACM TechNews, other ACM resources, and news sites around the Web.


Planet Hunters Seek New Ways to Detect Alien Life
From ACM News

Planet Hunters Seek New Ways to Detect Alien Life

In the search for life beyond Earth, false alarms abound.

Chinese Satellite Is One Giant Step For the Quantum Internet
From ACM News

Chinese Satellite Is One Giant Step For the Quantum Internet

China is poised to launch the world's first satellite designed to do quantum experiments. A fleet of quantum-enabled craft is likely to follow.

Chinese Scientists to Pioneer First Human Crispr Trial
From ACM News

Chinese Scientists to Pioneer First Human Crispr Trial

Chinese scientists are on the verge of being first in the world to inject people with cells modified using the CRISPR–Cas9 gene-editing technique.

Human Brain Mapped in ­nprecedented Detail
From ACM News

Human Brain Mapped in ­nprecedented Detail

Think of a spinning globe and the patchwork of countries it depicts: such maps help us to understand where we are, and that nations differ from one another.

Atom Wranglers Create Rewritable Memory
From ACM News

Atom Wranglers Create Rewritable Memory

Engineers can only stuff so much computing power into devices like smartphones and tablets before they run up against physical barriers.

Brain-Data Gold Mine Could Reveal How Neurons Compute
From ACM News

Brain-Data Gold Mine Could Reveal How Neurons Compute

Inspired by the large-scale sky surveys with which astronomers explore the cosmos, neuroscientists in Seattle, Washington, have spent four years systematically...

Clouds Get High on Climate Change
From ACM News

Clouds Get High on Climate Change

Clouds are moving up, up and away. An analysis of satellite data has found that, since the early 1980s, clouds have shifted towards Earth's poles and cloud tops...

Expansion of Early ­niverse Modelled in ­nprecedented Detail
From ACM News

Expansion of Early ­niverse Modelled in ­nprecedented Detail

For the first time, cosmologists have used the full power of Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity to perform detailed calculations of the Universe's evolution...

First Crispr Clinical Trial Gets Green Light from ­S Panel
From ACM News

First Crispr Clinical Trial Gets Green Light from ­S Panel

CRISPR, the genome-editing technology that has taken biomedical science by storm, is finally nearing human trials.

Quantum Computer Makes First High-Energy Physics Simulation
From ACM News

Quantum Computer Makes First High-Energy Physics Simulation

Physicists have performed the first full simulation of a high-energy physics experiment—the creation of pairs of particles and their antiparticles—on a quantum...

Ligo Detects Whispers of Another Black-Hole Merger
From ACM News

Ligo Detects Whispers of Another Black-Hole Merger

Just before 4 a.m. on 26 December, B. S. Sathyaprakash woke up to some good news: gravitational waves had been detected for only the second time in history.

A Simpler Twist of Fate
From ACM News

A Simpler Twist of Fate

Until the day it dies, a cell that has become a skin cell remains a skin cell—or so scientists used to think.

Google Moves Closer to a ­niversal Quantum Computer
From ACM TechNews

Google Moves Closer to a ­niversal Quantum Computer

An experimental prototype of a universal quantum computer can solve a wide range of problems and has the potential to be scaled up to larger systems, researchers...

Google Moves Closer to a ­niversal Quantum Computer
From ACM News

Google Moves Closer to a ­niversal Quantum Computer

For 30 years, researchers have pursued the universal quantum computer, a device that could solve any computational problem, with varying degrees of success.

CRISPR Gene-Editing System ­nleashed on RNA
From ACM News

CRISPR Gene-Editing System ­nleashed on RNA

Researchers who discovered a molecular "scissors" for snipping genes have now developed a similar approach for targeting and cutting RNA.

Plan to Synthesize Human Genome Elicits Mixed Response
From ACM News

Plan to Synthesize Human Genome Elicits Mixed Response

Proposals for a large public-private initiative to synthesize an entire human genome from scratch—an effort that could take a decade and require billions of dollars...

Two-Hundred-Terabyte Maths Proof Is Largest Ever
From ACM News

Two-Hundred-Terabyte Maths Proof Is Largest Ever

Three computer scientists have announced the largest-ever mathematics proof: a file that comes in at a whopping 200 terabytes1, roughly equivalent to all the digitized...

Illuminating Life's Building Blocks
From ACM News

Illuminating Life's Building Blocks

Biophysicist Joerg Bewersdorf says that 2006 was fluorescence microscopy's annus mirabilis—a 'miraculous year' as momentous in its own way as 1905, when Albert...

1,500 Scientists Lift the Lid on Reproducibility
From ACM News

1,500 Scientists Lift the Lid on Reproducibility

More than 70% of researchers have tried and failed to reproduce another scientist's experiments, and more than half have failed to reproduce their own experiments...

Light-Controlled Genes and Neurons Poised For Clinical Trials
From ACM News

Light-Controlled Genes and Neurons Poised For Clinical Trials

Every time something poked its foot, the mouse jumped in pain.
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