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Communications of the ACM

Table of Contents

Are You Talking to Me?

I recently attended a rather theoretical computer-science conference, and sat, as is my habit, in the front row. The speaker was trying to convey the fine details of a rather …
DEPARTMENT: Letters to the editor

Solved, For All Practical Purposes

Moshe Y. Vardi's Editor's Letter "Solving the Unsolvable" (July 2011) raised an important point — that we should reconsider the meaning of unsolvability. Even though a problem …

In the Virtual Extension

To ensure the timely publication of articles, Communications created the Virtual Extension to bring readers high-quality articles in an online-only format. The following articles are now available in their entirety to ACM members …

Jeannette M. Wing @ PCAST; Barbara Liskov Keynote

Jeannette M. Wing discusses her PCAST presentation about the importance of computer science and its impact. Valerie Barr shares highlights from Barbara Liskov's keynote at Grace Hopper.

A Breakthrough in Algorithm Design

Computer scientists at Carnegie Mellon University have devised an algorithm that might be able to solve a certain class of linear systems much more quickly than today's fastest solvers.

Invasion of the Mobile Apps

The market model pioneered by Apple and others is transforming the software world — and has profound implications for software companies and their customers.

Remaking American Medicine

Developing an IT ecosystem for health could improve — and transform — the practice of medicine.
COLUMN: Law and technology

Remix Nation

Assessing the threat the anticircumvention provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act pose for fair use.
COLUMN: Historical reflections

In Praise of 'Wilkes, Wheeler, and Gill'

Sixty years ago, Maurice Wilkes, David Wheeler, and Stanley Gill produced the first textbook on programming: The Preparation of Programs for an Electronic Digital Computer. It was a publication that spearheaded the software revolution …
COLUMN: Emerging markets

Corporate Social Responsibility and Global IT Outsourcing

How to improve IT outsourcing relationships while doing good for society.
COLUMN: The profession of IT

Managing Time, Part 2

Masterful time management means not just tracking of messages in your personal environment, but managing your coordination network with others.
COLUMN: Viewpoint

Realizing the Value of Social Media Requires Innovative Computing Research

How social media are expanding traditional research and development topics for computer and information scientists.
SECTION: Practice

Arrogance in Business Planning

Technology business plans that assume no competition — ever.

The Most Expensive One-Byte Mistake

Did Ken, Dennis, and Brian choose wrong with NUL-terminated text strings?

ACM CTO Roundtable on Mobile Devices in the Enterprise

Finding solutions as growth and fragmentation complicate mobile device support.
SECTION: Contributed articles

Protecting Users of the Cyber Commons

Establish a global cyber "neighborhood watch" enabling users to take defensive action to protect their operations.

Realizing the Future of Wireless Data Communications

Technologies are available to unlock radio spectrum as consumers need it.

Satisfiability Modulo Theories: Introduction and Applications

Checking the satisfiability of logical formulas, SMT solvers scale orders of magnitude beyond custom ad hoc solvers.
SECTION: Review articles

Quantitative Analysis of Real-Time Systems Using Priced Timed Automata

Timed automata and their extensions allow for analysis of a wide range of performance and optimization problems.
SECTION: Research highlights

Technical Perspective: Making Browser Extensions Secure

Vulnerabilities in browsers and their extensions have become the primary venue through which cyber criminals compromise the security of Web users and, ultimately, earn money …

Vetting Browser Extensions For Security Vulnerabilities with VEX

The browser has become the de facto platform for everyday computation and a popular target for attackers of computer systems. Among the many potential attacks that target browsers, vulnerabilities in browser extensions have received …

Technical Perspective: Abstracting Abstract Machines

Semanticss-based program analysis requires one to (1) start from a "friendly" semantics; (2) design a "congenial" lattice of runtime properties; (3) associate a "relevant" …

Abstracting Abstract Machines: A Systematic Approach to Higher-Order Program Analysis

Predictive models are fundamental to engineering reliable software systems. However, designing conservative, computable approximations for the behavior of programs remains a difficult and error-prone process for modern high-level …
COLUMN: Last byte

Puzzled: Solutions and Sources

Last month we posted a trio of brainteasers, including one as yet unsolved, concerning divisibility of numbers. Here, we offer solutions to two of them and a remark about the third. How did you do?

Q&A: Scaling Up

Eric Brewer talks about infrastructure, connectivity, and computing for developing nations.
SECTION: Contributed articles: Virtual extension

Crossing to the Dark Side: Examining Creators, Outcomes, and Inhibitors of Technostress

Exploring the factors that may lead to the inability of professionals to adapt or cope with emerging IS in a healthy manner.

Calculating and Improving ROI in Software and System Programs

The investment value of innovation follows from a technology's uncertain net present value and derived ROI calculations.