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Master of Science in Artificial Intelligence
Welcome to the May 20, 2024 edition of ACM TechNews, providing timely information for computer professionals three times a week.

Sophia the humanoid robot and John Rizk D'Youville University in Buffalo, NY, had an unconventional commencement speaker: an AI robot from Hong Kong's Hanson Robotics named Sophia, which answered questions from student body president John Rizk. When Rizk asked if the robot could talk about the most common insights shared in graduation speeches, Sophia answered, “Embrace lifelong learning, be adaptable, pursue your passions, take risks, foster meaningful connections, make a positive impact, and believe in yourself."
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The New York Times; Jesus Jiménez (May 15, 2024)

Chief Justice Earl Warren Former Northwestern University professor Jerry Goldman is building a website that will feature recreations of the oral arguments of U.S. Supreme Court cases from decades ago using voice-cloning technology. The "Brown Revisited" recreation, posted on, features the voice of Chief Justice Earl Warren (pictured) reading the ruling in Brown v. Board of Education from 1954, one year before the court began recording oral arguments.
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Associated Press; David Bauder (May 15, 2024)

Archie, the Internet’s first search engine Researchers at The Serial Port channel on YouTube have "rescued" Archie, the first Internet search engine, created in 1989 by Alan Emtage, then a student at Canada's McGill University. After locating the last working version of Archie (a 3.5 beta), The Serial Port team began running an Archie server on an emulated SunSPARCstation 5 and is indexing its mirror of the Hobbes OS/2 Archive and the FTP sites for FreeBSD, Adobe, and D Bit emulation.
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Ars Technica; Kevin Purdy (May 16, 2024)
NASA has created the Aviary modeling tool for engineers to digitally test how aircraft concepts would work in the real world prior to making costly flight tests. Users can input data on an aircraft's shape, range, and other characteristics, which Aviary will use to create a corresponding digital model. Aviary, which builds on two prior modeling tools NASA created decades ago, can link with other codes and programs to expand its capabilities.
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UPI; Ehren Wynder (May 17, 2024)

An AI tool makes it possible to issue text commands to surgical robots A virtual assistant developed by researchers at Canada's University of Toronto could allow surgeons to instruct surgical robots to perform small tasks by inputting simple text prompts into an AI chatbot. The SuFIA virtual assistant can translate those prompts into commands for a surgical robot using OpenAI's GPT-4 large language model. It breaks down the surgeon's request into a sequence of smaller subtasks, triggering software to run in a surgical robot or camera.
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New Scientist; Alex Wilkins (May 16, 2024)

Tile Sticker and Apple AirTag To prevent location tracking stalking, Apple and Google announced that iPhone and Android phone users will receive alerts if a wireless location tracking device is nearby. Phones with up-to-date software will show users a message that a Bluetooth tracker is "found moving with you," with options to have the tracker play a sound so it can be located and instructions to disable it. The alerts will be required in "Find My" lost device trackers built by third-party companies.
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CNBC; Kif Leswing (May 13, 2024)
Microsoft is asking hundreds of employees in its China-based cloud-computing and AI operations to consider transferring outside the country. The move comes as the U.S. seeks to put tighter curbs around China’s capability to develop state-of-the-art AI. The White House is considering new rules that would require Microsoft and other U.S. cloud-computing companies to get licenses before giving Chinese customers access to AI chips.
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The Wall Street Journal; Raffaele Huang; Yoko Kubota (May 17, 2024)

tool empowers users to fight online misinformation Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers developed a Web browser extension that could help curtail the spread of online misinformation by allowing users to flag misinformation and identify trusted users for online content assessments. The Trustnet Extension works for social media posts, articles on news aggregator sites, videos on streaming platforms, and any other website content. Trustnet checks all links on a webpage being read by the user, placing indicators next to links that trusted sources have assessed and fading the text of those determined to have inaccurate content.
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MIT News; Adam Zewe (May 16, 2024)

A Waymo minivan The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced it is investigating Waymo's automated driving system after receiving 17 crash reports involving the company's self-driving vehicles and five reports of potential traffic law violations. NHTSA also is investigating Amazon's Zoox self-driving vehicles, partially automated driver-assist systems from Tesla and Ford, and General Motors' Cruise autonomous vehicle unit.
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Associated Press; Tom Krisher (May 14, 2024)

Justice Department charges MIT brothers with $25 million crypto theft The U.S. Department of Justice indicted two Massachusetts Institute of Technology students, for allegedly tampering with the ethereum blockchain to steal $25 million in cryptocurrency in just 12 seconds. The scheme took advantage of a vulnerability in the process just after a transaction is conducted but before it is added to the blockchain. It involved creating a series of ethereum validators though shell companies and foreign exchanges and deploying "bait transactions" to attract specialized bots used by buyers and sellers to identify lucrative prospects.
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Ars Technica; Ashley Belanger (May 15, 2024)

Technique Improves Finishing Time for 3D Printed Machine Parts A 3D-printing technique developed by North Carolina State University researchers improves the efficiency of manufacturing metal machine parts by detecting possible flaws during the finishing process without needing to remove the parts from the manufacturing equipment. The largely automated system combines 3D printing, automated machining, laser scanning, and touch-sensitive measurement technologies with software that contains measurements of the desired part and guides the finishing device to polish out any irregularities.
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NC State University News; Matt Shipman (May 14, 2024)

Orangutans are known for their vocal repertoire and social behavior Cornell University researchers used AI to decode the long call vocalizations of orangutans. The researchers used machine learning to analyze video and audio recordings of long calls from 13 orangutans, with the goal of determining how many pulse types they could find in the vocalizations, their distinguishing features, and their gradations. Cornell's Wendy Erb said, "Through a combination of supervised and unsupervised analytical methods, we identified three distinct pulse types that were well differentiated by both humans and machines."
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Popular Science; Laura Baisas (May 14, 2024)
Computing Research Association (CRA) Practitioner to Professor (P2P) Survey
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