Billboard, Breaking, Elsevier, More: Friday Afternoon Buzz, March 28, 2014

Billboard and Twitter are teaming up to create the Billboard Twitter Real-Time Chart, “…which will track the real-time U.S. music conversation, using Twitter data.”

Speaking of music, there’s a rumor going around that Amazon is considering a free streaming media service in addition to providing media streaming to Prime subscribers. Amazon is denying it.

Google has released another update to its transparency report. “Government requests for user information in criminal cases have increased by about 120 percent since we first began publishing these numbers in 2009. Though our number of users has grown throughout the time period, we’re also seeing more and more governments start to exercise their authority to make requests.”

More Google: you can now edit images in Google Slides.

Pinterest has apparently gotten hacked and flooded with weight loss spam. Hey, finally a reason to be happy that I don’t get Pinterest!

A little nervous now that people on Twitter can tag you in photos? Here’s how to prevent it.

Interesting from the MIT Technology Review: The Evolution of Automated Breaking News Stories. “A Google engineer has developed an algorithm that spots breaking news stories on the Web and illustrates them with pictures. And it is now filing its first stories on Twitter.”

Elsevier has announced a new open access journal (press release). “As a spin-off from companion journal Schizophrenia Research, which is one of the most recognized journals in the field, Schizophrenia Research: Cognition specializes in providing a forum on all aspects of cognition in schizophrenia, including clinical neuropsychology, neurocognition, social cognition, functional capacity, cognitive and social neuroscience, and aspects of everyday outcome as related to cognition.”

Wikimedia is testing a hovercards feature. Good afternoon, Internet…

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19th Century Medical Books, Bing, Archives, More: Thursday Morning Buzz, March 27, 2014

Bing has launched product ads.

Twitter is going to let you tag people in photos. You’ll also be able to share multiple photos in one tweet, which is nice.

Library and Archives Canada has launched an initial set of Alberta Residential School photos. More are coming. “Some 150,000 Aboriginal children attended over 130 residential schools located across the country.”

The Wellcome Library has undertaken a huge project to digitize 25,000 19th century medical books. “As with the Wellcome Library’s own collections we are interpreting ‘medicine’ quite broadly, to include related sciences, consumer health, sport and fitness and food and nutrition, as well as kinds of medical practice – mesmerism, phrenology and hydrotherapy, for example – that have since fallen out of favour, but which were important in their time.”

OOoooh, Lifehacker! How to stream your movie collection anywhere with Google Drive. This article also goes into other media like music.

Fun from Mashable: 10 Amazing Google Earth & Maps Discoveries.

More Google: A new Web tool lets you search Google without being tracked: “Disconnect routes your searches through a proxy before the major search engines receive your request. This way, it looks to Google or Bing like the search request is coming from Disconnect and they never know any information about you.”

A bunch of new collections are available at “These birth, death, and marriage indexes from Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, and Montana contain more than 10 million records.” Good morning, Internet…

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DOS, Python, D&AD, More: Wednesday Morning Buzz, March 26, 2014

Microsoft has released the source code for early versions of DOS and Word.

Wow! Quartz took a look at the Million Dollar Homepage (remember the Million Dollar Homepage?) and finds that 22% of it has “rotted away” (or 404′d away).

Instagram now has 200 million users.

China has a new search engine, but it appears unlikely it’ll get much traction: “The search engine was built by the IT arm jointly funded by China’s state-run media outlets including four local newspapers, two news agencies, and the state broadcaster China Central Television. People’s Daily and Xinhua are among the founders., though, is unlikely to gain much share in a market that’s already pretty much fossilized.”

Twitter is investigating a bug that is apparently causing missing tweets.

Fun with the Internet Archive. Fun with Python. ALMOST TOO MUCH FUN! Downloading all the items in an Internet Archive collection using Python.

Google has has announced big price drops for its cloud computing services. “Google Compute Engine is seeing a 32 percent reduction in prices across all regions, sizes and classes. App Engine prices are down 30 percent, and the company is also simplifying its price structure.”

More Google: it has been granted a patent for the Panda algorithm.

Design and Art Direction (D&AD) is launching an online archive that will be available via free membership. “At present, the online archive only goes back as far as 1990, but the full archive, dating back to the first D&AD Professional Awards in 1963, is scheduled to available from August 2014.” Good morning, Internet…

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Schema, Twitter, Sanskrit, More: Tuesday Afternoon Buzz, March 25, 2014

Google has integrated Google Custom Search with the standard.

More Google: Google Now is now available for Chrome on desktops.

Ray-Ban Google Glass: you’ll be able to buy more fashionable versions of the tech everybody loves to hate.

Google wants to make the Gmail promotions tab more visual. “To take part in this field trial, you can sign up at and if you’re selected, a new grid view will bring to the top of your inbox key images from deals, offers, and other marketing emails if you have the Promotions tab enabled. Grid view also comes with infinite scrolling, making it easy to quickly scan through your messages and find the ones that look interesting.”

Remember that article about tech company collusion I linked to recently? Turns out Facebook was invited to play and refused.

Now available: a free textbook for learning Sansrkit. “The e-text was developed by Grazia Scotellaro in the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific’s Digital Learning Project and Sanskrit lecturer Dr McComas Taylor. Scotellaro says the e-text gives students unprecedented access to their teachers.”

First there was a tool to see your first tweet. Now there’s a tool to discover your first Twitter follower.

More Twitter: This is a slightly scary stat: only 11% of new Twitter accounts from 2012 are still tweeting. Good afternoon, Internet…

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Tumblr, SAS, Quora, More: Tuesday Morning Buzz, March 25, 2014

Nice one from MakeUseOf: 4 Ways to Make Photo and Movie Slideshows with Music.

The British Library has added its part of the Codex Sinaiticus to its digitized manuscripts collection. “The manuscript itself is now distributed between four institutions: the British Library, the Universitäts-Bibliothek at Leipzig, the National Library of Russia in St Petersburg, and the Monastery of St Catherine at Mt Sinai. … Over the next twelve months, a further 350 Greek manuscripts will be added to Digitised Manuscripts, in a project funded by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, the A.G. Leventis Foundation, and a range of other donors.”

There’s a zero-day exploit out there targeting Outlook and Word 2010. “To be clear, Microsoft said the exploits it has seen so far attacking this vulnerability have targeted Word 2010 users, but according to Microsoft’s advisory the flaw is also present in Word 2003, 2007, 2013, Word Viewer and Office for Mac 2011.”

Google Now is going to start warning of traffic accidents.

Quora has launched verified profiles starting with Barack Obama. “Being verified doesn’t give users any additional functionality besides a blue check mark next to their questions, answers, and comments. However, it could make other readers more confident they’re getting answers from real experts, not fakers. Quora says it isn’t taking requests to be verified right now and has a long list of people its hoping to get into the system.”

Hey! Tumblr now has two-factor authentication! AND AMAZON STILL DOESN’T! ARGH!

Data wonks: universities will be able to use SAS Analytics for free. “SAS has already teamed up with universities to create graduate degrees in advanced analytics, and the free offering is an expansion of those ongoing efforts.” 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!

Shakespeare, Glass, Vanishing Planes, More: Monday Buzz, March 24, 2014

Transparency reports are the new black. Here’s one from Time-Warner.

It looks like Twitter is testing showing the number of views your tweet got.

And yet I still don’t know what to do for ResearchBuzz: 20 Ideas for Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn Cover Images.

Open Culture has a nifty post on where to read Shakespeare online. I had no idea there were so many versions.

“Well, that was a complete surprise,” said nobody ever: Google Glass spyware. “The stealthy software, designed by 22-year-old Mike Lady and 24-year-old Kim Paterson, takes a photo every ten seconds when Glass’s display is off, uploading the images to a remote server without giving the wearer any sign that his or her vision is being practically livestreamed to a stranger.”

More Google: Google Alerts has added filters for region and language.

Wondering how many planes have vanished since the end of World War II? Here’s a map. Note that this is not a static image and you can hover over one of the dots to get more information about that particular plane.

MIT Technology Review: How your tweets reveal your home location. This is not about geo-tagging. This is about a method developed that can guess home location (city) with an accuracy of almost 70 percent. 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!

XP, Music, Twitter, More: Sunday Buzz, March 23, 2014

Lifehacker has a nifty sites that lets you grab videos and images from different services and do various things with them. For example, If I wanted to use “The Pizza Song” as a ringtone, I could go to and I would get links to various tools to download the video, convert it to MP3, etc. (Warning: do not watch the video unless you want a pizza-flavored earworm.)

This is a long, tough read, but man, is it important: “Confidential internal Google and Apple memos, buried within piles of court dockets and reviewed by PandoDaily, clearly show that what began as a secret cartel agreement between Apple’s Steve Jobs and Google’s Eric Schmidt to illegally fix the labor market for hi-tech workers, expanded within a few years to include companies ranging from Dell, IBM, eBay and Microsoft, to Comcast, Clear Channel, Dreamworks, and London-based public relations behemoth WPP. All told, the combined workforces of the companies involved totals well over a million employees.”

Are you going to keep your Windows XP machine despite the fact that security support ends next month? Here are some hints so you can stay as safe as you can. Disclosure: I’m keeping it too because I’ve got some software programs that really run best on XP. But it’s never going on the Internet again!

More good stuff from Hongkiat: 20 (More) Websites To Download Creative Commons Music for Free. Note that all of these are not free commercial use, so check your licenses…

Sunday fun: there’s a Twitter bot that randomly generates a new verse for the song 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover every few hours. Note the chances of these making sense are minimal (“Ferret a spud, Bud”.) I think my favorite one is “Seed the calm twitch, Rich.”

I recently mentioned that Yahoo is teaming up with Yelp. Now Yelp is also teaming up with YP (press release). Interesting.

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!


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