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The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) is an international learned society for computing. It was founded in 1947 and is the world's largest scientific and educational computing society. It is a not-for-profit professional membership group. Its membership is more than 100,000 as of 2011. Its headquarters are in New York City.
The ACM and the IEEE Computer Society are the umbrella organizations for US academic and scholarly interests in computing. Unlike the IEEE, the ACM is solely dedicated to computing.
ACM is organized into over 171 local chapters and 37 Special Interest Groups (SIGs), through which it conducts most of its activities. Additionally, there are over 500 college and university chapters. The first student chapter was founded in 1961 at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
Many of the SIGs, like SIGGRAPH, SIGPLAN, SIGCSE and SIGCOMM, sponsor regular conferences which have become famous as the dominant venue for presenting innovations in certain fields. The groups also publish a large number of specialized journals, magazines, and newsletters.
ACM also sponsors other computer science related events such as the worldwide ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC), and has sponsored some other events such as the chess match between Garry Kasparov and the IBM Deep Blue computer.
ACM has three kinds of chapters: Special Interest Groups, Professional Chapters, and Student Chapters. As of 2014, ACM has professional & SIG Chapters in 56 countries and ACM student chapters in 41 different countries.