Category Archives: Uncategorized

Virginia, Canada, Genealogy, Flickr, More – Labor Day Buzz, September 2, 2013

The state of Virginia has launched a new database/map of park and ride lots all over the state (about 300 of ‘em!)

Lifehacker has a roundup of alternatives to using your phone provider’s texting service.

Larry Ferlazzo is keeping up with a list of the best Web sites to learn about what’s happening in Syria.

Libary and Archives Canada has embarked on a huge digitzing project.

Have you found Yahoo’s 30 days of new logos a little mehtastic? You’re not the only one.

Daniel Russell has a fantastic short article on how to tilt your Web search results toward the technical by using one little word — diagram!

Roundup: the best apps for making animated GIFs.

So simple! (Smacks forehead) – Test your printer with the Google home page.

The National Archives Virtual Genealogy Fair is this week! Check out this infographic for more details – there’s also a PDF flyer.

Now at the Flickr Commons: the Schlesinger Library. “The Schlesinger Library is part of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. It documents the history of women in America, and its holdings are strongest in women’s rights and feminism; health and sexuality; and culinary history.” Good morning, Internet…

I love your comments, I love your site suggestions, and I love you. Feel free to comment on the blog, or @ResearchBuzz on Twitter. Thanks!

Google, IFTTT, Wolfram|Alpha, More – Sunday Morning Buzz, September 1, 2013

Apparently Google and Microsoft are going to sue over US surveillance requests. “Microsoft and Google are to sue the US government to win the right to reveal more information about official requests for user data. The companies announced the lawsuit on Friday, escalating a legal battle over the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (Fisa), the mechanism used by the National Security Agency (NSA) and other US government agencies to gather data about foreign internet users.”

IFTTT now has an Instagram video trigger.

The latest company to throw its hat into the smartwatch developer ring? Why, it’s Google!

More Google: a doctor wearing Google Glass livestreamed a surgery.

Speaking of Google Glass, here is your new vocabulary word for the day: glogging – blogging using Google Glass.

Another cool find from Amit Agarwal — a way for your tweets to self-destruct after a time you set via hashtag.

Marcus Zillman has updated his free “Healthcare Bots and Subject Directories” white paper – it’s 30 pages long at this point!

Wow, Facebook apps do all KINDS of stuff — like matching college roommates.

Wolfram|Alpha has added a bunch of amusement park data to its search engine. Good morning, Internet…

I love your comments, I love your site suggestions, and I love you. Feel free to comment on the blog, or @ResearchBuzz on Twitter. Thanks!

E-Mail, Genealogy, Twitter, NerdyData, More: Sunday Morning Buzz, August 4, 2013

Rick Broida takes a look at four utilities to help keep your e-mail organized. You know, I need to quit looking at these because I GET ALL DEPRESSED THINKING ABOUT EUDORA.

A Mashable article offers 8 alternatives to iTunes. They’re very Mac OS oriented; read the comments for many more options.

I find the new Facebook Graph search irritating because you can’t do post searches. But this Forbes article offers some interesting ways businesses can use the new Graph search feature.

Huh. I didn’t know Google would let you set a timer.

Twitter has added more content to its Web search results, specifically accounts and photos.

Hey, this is interesting: NerdyData, a search engine that searches source code. “The company’s custom crawler has visited more than 140 million homepages and collected 6.2 terabytes of HTML, Javascript, and CSS code. They have also designed several search interfaces that allow users to query against the source code of webpages, or in the Enterprise membership, download a list of sites containing a specific term.” It’s freemium; searches past a certain point require $$$.

The British Museum and the Penn Museum are teaming up. “The British Museum and the Penn Museum are embarking on a dynamic digital collaboration … that will provide unprecedented access to the archaeology of the ancient kingdom of Ur. This new online resource will open the remarkably successful Mesopotamian excavations conducted by Sir Leonard Woolley on behalf of both museums from 1922–1934—excavations which brought to light some of archaeology’s most extraordinary and famous finds—to scholars and the public alike.”

A VERY interesting read from Digital Trends: Instagram: The Dictator’s Choice! How Social Media Lets Us Mingle With Villains

Julie Tarr has finished her “Family History Through the Alphabet” post series. It covers several aspects of genealogy, from “Autosomal DNA” to “Zigzag”.

Speaking of genealogy, the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Society Conference is going to livestream 50 sessions. Good morning, Internet…

Buffer, Indian Music, Arctic Fauna Bones, Patent Trolls, Census Bureau, MUCH MORE: Fat Friday Buzz, August 2, 2013

Buffer now offers custom scheduling and I am so, so happy..

Coming soon: an artic fauna bone database. “Known as the Virtual Zooarchaeology of the Arctic Project, or VZAP, the database pulls together data from universities and museums around the world. The Burke Museum, Smithsonian Institution and Canadian Museum of Civilization have partnered with Maschner to offer their considerable collections.”

Also coming: a a collection of digitized medieval texts.

Aaaand a new database of burials in a 160+ year old cemetery in Ireland: “Now, staff from the City Archives in conjunction with the history department at Mary Immaculate College have spent the past two years manually transcribing thousands of handwritten records of those buried between 1855 and 2008 and have created a database. The records include the name, age, address and in many cases, the cause of death…” (Over 70K records.)

Cinefex is running a Kickstarter to digitize its back issues and make them available via iPad. I wish it wasn’t just iPad though…

Bookshelves of Doom did a huge shootout of book recommendation engines. Great stuff.

You can now upload 360 degree photos to Google Maps. The “360º photo spheres” look like an Android thing, though, so I don’t think I’ll be contributing…

More Google: Sam Grobart does not like what Google has done to Zagat. “But this is a mobile app, for the love of Mike. Isn’t it patently obvious that, if I’m firing up a mobile app about restaurants, I am probably looking for one? Even clicking on the little menu button in the upper left doesn’t get you to any sort of sortable search feature like the old Zagat app. I tapped on “Lists,” thinking I’d find those “Best Italian/Best Steakhouse/etc.” lists that I used to consult from time to time in the back of an old Zagat book. Nope. Instead, I get ‘Best Sushi Restaurants in 8 U.S. Cities.’ I’ll remember that the next time I’m planning an eight-city sushi tour.”

Now available: a new clearinghouse for patent troll information. “The online resource aims to unite and empower would-be victims of patent trolls through a crowdsourced database of demand letters and to serve as a clearinghouse of information on the troll epidemic.”

Darn it, I missed this press release about a new tool from the US Census Bureau. “The U.S. Census Bureau has released My Congressional District, the first interactive tool geared exclusively toward finding basic demographic and economic statistics for every congressional district in the U.S. This Web app uses the latest annual statistics from the American Community Survey, providing the most detailed portrait of America’s towns and neighborhoods.”

You can now embed public Facebook posts.

This is a little outside my remit but I’ve covered CyberAlert before. The company has announced new monitoring service, this time for radio. “CyberAlert Radio monitors more than 250 news and talk radio stations in the Top 50 U.S. markets. The monitoring covers all local and national news along with local and syndicated talk shows. Using advanced speech-to-text technology, the new radio monitoring service identifies radio clips based on key words specified by CyberAlert’s clients and delivers the text of the radio broadcast. Clients can also order high-quality downloadable audio files of broadcasts from most radio markets.”

From the always-fabulous Robin Good: a roundup of tools for monitoring hashtags.

Now available from tech conference site Lanyrd: a speaker directory.

Wow! Now available: an online archive of Indian gramophone recordings. It looks like the clips are hosted on Soundcloud. Good morning, Internet…

Diagon Alley, Open-Access Manuscripts, Bing, Twitter, More – Friday Morning Fizzy Fireworks Buzz, July 5, 2013

Now on Google Street View: Diagon Alley (from Harry Potter).

PC Magazine offers 9 Replacements for Google Reader. I like Newsblur. (By the way, if you haven’t gotten your Google Reader data yet, you’ve got until 15 July.) Oh, and now that Google Reader is well and truly gone, can I start ranting about the fact that I’m freaking furious that Undrip went out????!!! it was the only chance I had of keeping up with Twitter and now, once again, I am without a tool. Drat you Undrip, you were buggy as a June picnic but you were also incredibly useful!

Nice news from Nature Blog — the NIH is is seeing a surge in open-access manuscripts. “In May, authors approved more than 10,000 peer-reviewed manuscripts arising from NIH-funded research to go into the agency’s online free repository, PubMed Central. That’s a huge jump from the average 5,100 per month in 2011–12, and suggests the agency is nearing its goal of getting everyone it funds to make their papers publicly available.”

Bing has added a usage rights filter to its image search.

Lifehacker has some sweet GMail / IFTTT recipes.

Hubze has an extensive guide on how to network on Google+. Meanwhile, I am still struggling to get it. So many cool people on there. Here’s me having a hard time getting oriented. If you groove on Google+ give me a shoutout and I’ll try to wrap my head around it. Again.

Tweets from the Twitter accounts of some Egyptians are being automatically translated by Twitter. “Twitter has provided a list of all the Egyptian accounts it is translating, called egypt2013, which has 63 members.” Good morning, Internet…

Google Reader (ARRRRRGH!), Yahoo, Oral Histories, Oregon, More: Miss You Monday Buzz, July 1, 2013

(Hey guys! I’m still drowning but I woke up an hour early and I couldn’t resist the chance to take a thwack at my ridiculously-overloaded e-mail and my two RSS readers. I remain livid about the demise of Google Reader but you know, NewsBlur is pretty darn good! Anyway, I love you, be good, and I’ll try to be back later this week.)

Speaking of Google Reader, if you procrastinated and haven’t grabbed your stuff yet, you might find that Google Takeout doesn’t offer enough of a data export. There are some Python scripts available to give you a more complete takeout.

Yahoo has announced another list of projects to be torched – including AltaVista. That little pang I felt was either heartburn or nostalgia.

Meanwhile, back in the 21st century, Rutgers has received a Google Grant to develop personalized data search systems. “The system designed by Marian and Nguyen would not only comb social media threads on Facebook, FourSquare, Twitter and Instagram but could also search weather reports and calendars. So if you were searching for something you did when it was snowing, the data can be retrieved. The app could also scan credit card purchases to help you remember the name of a restaurant you visited a year ago.”

The University of Kentucky has developed a program called the Oral History Metadata Synchronizer. “The synchronizer allows interviews to be tagged with keywords that take listeners to those portions of the interview. A written synopsis or transcription of the interview also is provided beneath the audio or video footage.” And even better: “The Nunn Center is preparing the system for free open-source distribution, meaning it will be available for other archivists to put their interviews online. Boyd hopes to see that happen in a year or so.”

A new digital archive of newspapers from The Dalles (Oregon) is now available. The newspapers go back to 1864.

I love the idea of public access TV making their programs video on demand. “People can get access to this program by visiting, and clicking the Video On Demand tab. The locally produced programs are in its playlist, which can also be searched by name.” And it’s not all city council meetings either: “MATV can also track which programs are being watched on-demand. By the end of May, one of the most popular programs was a documentary about Walter “Killer” Kowalski, a famous wrestler from Malden.”

More fun visualizations: geotagged tweets as topographical maps. Good morning, Internet…

Boss Battle: Here Is My Heart, I’ll Be Back For It

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.


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