(I snuck in some time to start clearing out my mail and check my RSS feeds, so here’s an issue. Enjoy the 2am ResearchBuzz!)
The US Army Field Artillery School has new online finding aids for its archival collections.
Interesting: Using Facebook to predict and map obesity in the United States: “The higher the percentage of people in a city, town or neighborhood with Facebook interests suggesting a healthy, active lifestyle, the lower that area’s obesity rate. At the same time, areas with a large percentage of Facebook users with television-related interests tend to have higher rates of obesity. Such are the conclusions of a study by Boston Children’s Hospital researchers comparing geotagged Facebook user data with data from national and New York City-focused health surveys.”
The Arkansas History Commission has launched an online index of Arkansas deaths, 1819-1920. “Designed to supplement Arkansas’s vital records service which began in 1914, In Remembrance provides researchers with the location of death records in early Arkansas. The data have been collected from numerous sources including church publications, cemetery records, mortality censuses, newspaper obituaries, or county and local records from the AHC’s extensive holdings.”
Also Arkansas: Arkansas.gov has announced a redesign.
While going through my (extremely neglected) personal e-mail, I found out about a charming Tumblr from Erik Kwakkel, a Medieval book historian at Leiden University, The Netherlands. One recent post discusses a discovery of 132 notes and small bits of paper which were recycled as book boards. Other entries look at doodles in medieval margins, a chained library, and letters with faces. A great Tumblr.
David Rumsey’s huge, amazing historical map collection will now be available via the Digital Public Library of America — and the DPLA’s API.
There is a new database available that tracks pending energy-related legislation in all 50 US states. “The database, called the Advanced Energy Legislation Tracker, was co-created by the Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) and the Center for the New Energy Economy (CNEE) at Colorado State University…. The database not only is tracking more than 2,000 bills across the country that could impact how consumers produce, buy and use energy, but it also conducts analysis of policy trends…”
WordPress 3.6 beta 3 is now available.
Mmmkay. Bing is going to add Klingon to its translator. “The Bing service will translate text written in any one of 41 supported languages — including English, French, Hebrew and Urdu — into Klingon. Fear not, native Klingon speakers: words or phrases written in that language can be translated into the more than three dozen available tongues.”
Meanwhile, Google Translate has passed 70 languages with the addition of another five.
More Google: Google has aggregated its storage offerings. Now you get 15GB of space to use between GMail, Drive, and Google Plus Photos. Pardon me if I don’t sound too excited about this; I have 25GB for Gmail as part of my Google Apps account and it’s already 48% full — 15GB feels cramped.
Because I know how much you hate being productive, here’s a story about a Breakout Easter egg hidden inside Google’s image search. Hey Google, do Tempest, that was my favorite back in the day. Good morning, Internet…
Hey folks, I just wanted to let you know that ResearchBuzz is going to be on a hiatus for a while. I’ll post as I can on Twitter and Facebook but e-mail updates are going to be scanty, and if you’re waiting on a reply to an e-mail — well, let’s just say I got over 3000 messages in my in-box and I’m not really sure when I’m going to get back to them.
I’m undergoing some extremely stressful things in my life right now and I just need to focus all my energies on them. My health is fine (aside from the stress) so please don’t be concerned. This is just reality.
Can I get sappy on you for a minute?
As some of you know I live in North Carolina. I have ancestors here going back over 200 years (who were mostly piss-poor tobacco farmers, so don’t think I’m claiming any kind of merit badge.) I have lived here most of my life and I can’t imagine moving away, because of how much and how helplessly I love this state.
It would take me ages to explain to you why. A streaky dawn sky over a stand of pine trees. A warm evening, sitting on the porch, smelling the wisteria and watching the bats zoom around. Sometimes I’ll get up early and go for a walk, and I’ll hear the hawks going kyahh kyahh kyahh as they look for their breakfast, and I’ll see the crepe myrtles scattering their petals over the grass. And my heart will just clutch, because I am in the middle — this is my landscape and the context of my history — and I have given my soul to it in some vast, inexpressible way. And though it, in its totality, may love me back (who knows?), it is in a way that I do not have the capacity to truly understand and appreciate.
ResearchBuzz is the context of my intellectual existance. Not just the Web site, but every thing that makes it possible. The people who care enough to create the resources and share them. The people who teach and grow and make more from what has come before. There is so much to despair of in this world, but there is so much hope in those everywhere who choose to move forward and build and share and learn.
ResearchBuzz is only a drop in that vast ocean. But the ocean has been so welcoming and accepting to a life which in some ways has not had much of that kindness. I feel for that context and that landscape the same witless gratitude and overflowing emotion that I feel toward the state where I live. And the feelings for both are tinged with regret and self-recrimination, because I know in neither case will I ever be able to repay everything that has been given to me.
I’m not sure when I’ll be able to come back and devote as much time as I would like to ResearchBuzz — to be honest, I have no idea how this will end. But it seemed very important that I say something, and most important that I tell you: I love. I love the world that makes ResearchBuzz possible, though I have to leave it for a while. And I will not stop.
See you soon.
Copyright Law, Clip Art, DJ Screw, and James Joyce: Astoundingly Short But Eclectic Sunday Morning Buzz, April 21, 2013
The University of Southern California Gould School of Law is now the home of the Music Copyright Infringement Resource. It’s just what it says on the box: a digital archive of decisions on US music copyrights. (I saw some cases from Canada as well.) They go back to 1845!
Openclipart has a new logo and some updates.
Why yes, I am into hip-hop (and pretty much all music except opera, sorry opera fans, I just don’t get it) – the University of Houston libraries has announced a new finding aid for its DJ Screw Papers collection.
The University at Buffalo has added more photographs to its online James Joyce Collection. Good morning, Internet…
META: Any researchers out there who specialize in online medical research? I have done this as favors to friends and for families, but I am not any kind of a pro. A reader writes: “My spouse is grappling with chronic heartburn. They’ve done some basic Google searches and hunted around online for resources. I suggested that they may want to pay an online researcher for an hour or two of work to try and dig up some obscure patient forums of people who have battled/dealt with chronic heartburn.” If you are a medical-oriented researcher or know one, please leave a note in the comments (or, if you get this via e-mail, send me an e-mail)! Thank you!
Forbes has an article about Julian Assange’s new online archive (not really a search engine as I’ve seen in called in a few articles) the Public Library of United States Diplomacy (PLUS D). “The group has started with a searchable archive that includes the 250,000 leaked State Department memos it had previously titled Cablegate and added to them 1.7 million files from the State Department during the 1973 to 1976 tenure of Henry Kissinger as Secretary of State. In total, the archive includes about a billion words.”
Vermont citizens, your state treasurer has created new tools for finding and claiming lost life insurance benefits.
The city of Petersburg, Alaska now has an online newspaper archive. The current archive spans from 1913 to 1931.
More newspapers: meanwhile, the San Bernardino County Sun archives are being donated to the San Bernardino County Historical Archives and Cal State San Bernardino’s John M. Pfau Library. The newspaper archives, which go back to 1894, will be digitized by the San Bernardino County Archives.
Wait, Tumblr has shut down Storyboard? What?
I found out from PetaPixel about
PhotosNormandie, an online archive of over 3000 photos from the Battle of Normandy and afterwards.
The Ministry of Culture of Taiwan is planning an oral history project, the results of which will be posted in an online database.
So apparently the further you travel from your home the happier your tweets get? Hey, let’s test this out — somebody send me to the moon!
More Twitter: there are 20 million fake Twitter accounts?
I’m not sure WHY you’d want to do this, but you can now hide messages in photos on Facebook, thanks to a new browser extension.
Hey! You can now search video on HouseLive.gov. There’s also a new RSS feed to track activity on the House floor.
When you’re stuck in line and want something better to do than playing Scramble (not that there’s anything better than playing Scramble.) Udemy aggregates both paid and free classes into an iOS app.
And in our “OH FREAKIN’ SWEET!” department, we have a new free tool that takes tables of data in PDF files and extracts them into CSV format.
Useful: USA.gov has a tool for verifying whether social media accounts are official government accounts or not.
Remember when I mentioned that Google was stopping the publication of Frommer’s travel guides in print? Arthur Frommer has bought the brand back and will be resuming publication of the travel guides in ebook and paper format. You GO Mr. Frommer.
More Google: Google+ has gotten full-size image uploads from the desktop.
The SEC has decided that it’s okay for public companies to use social media to make disclosures. So a company could have their CEO account announce something to Facebook “friends,” and that’s okay (but the friend limit is 5000 people.) Or make an announcement at 5pm on Friday via a Facebook fan page, knowing very well that Facebook does not distribute fan page posts to all fans. I won’t even go INTO searching social media archives to find something a year or two after the fact. I think this is a terrible idea.
Firefox Version 20 is now available.
Greg at Search Engine Showdown has an update on Bing’s date searching. URL switches! Woo!
Interesting: Yahoo Mail has teamed up with Dropbox.
Do you use SoundCloud? TechHive offers some hints for digging into it. Good morning, Internet…
Hey guys, work has totally kicked my tail this week. I’ll have some new stuff up this weekend. I’m going through writing-ResearchBuzz withdrawal….
META: Is anybody else getting a flood of Google Alerts for “old” content — like from early and mid March? (This is not an April Fool; I’m getting tons of them suddenly for some reason)
Yelp has released a free revenue estimation tool for local businesses.
The Wilson Center has released a massive new declassified materials archive. “… declassified official documents from nearly 100 different archives in dozens of different countries that provide fresh, unprecedented insights into the history of international relations and diplomacy.”
Amazon has acquired Goodreads.
Microsoft has launched a Web site for searching its patents.
Apparently Google’s new Compose experience is now the default. Afraid I don’t care for it — I’ll have to get used to it..
Delicious has some new features. I like the idea of logging into Twitter and having Delicious automatically pull my links.
blekko has announced some new features for its search engine, izik.
The US Census Bureau has released a new extraction tool for employment data. “Primarily for advanced users, the new tool allows users to extract data for specific geographies and industries without first downloading large data sets. The data are available in comma separated value (.csv) format for states, counties, metropolitan and micropolitan areas, and workforce investment areas. Future updates to the tool will include additional Local Employment Dynamics data products.”
An article at INC. compares Google Keep to Evernote. I’ll be sticking with Evernote, thanks.
I never know whether to post on April Fools’ Day — but if you’re into that sort of thing here are popular pranks from years gone by. I’ll post links to roundups of this year’s pranks tomorrow. Good morning, Internet…