Speech Errors, Characters, Health Data, More: Thursday Buzz, August 6th, 2015


Oh this should be interesting: an online, crowdsourced database of speech errors. “The public-at-large can access the tool at Researchers hope users will enter their own and others’ experiences of tip-of-the-tongue states, as well as slips of the tongue, slips of the ear (where people misperceive words) and malapropisms. A description of the website recently was published in the open access journal Frontiers in Psychology. The ‘provisional’ copy is online now.” Anyone who’s friends with me on Facebook knows I do this constantly, usually through misreading. I think my brain is trolling me.

Bluesky is making old aerial photos of Britain available online (PRESS RELEASE). “Thousands of aerial photographs of Britain, dating back more than seventy years, are now available online. Visitors to can now search, view and download images from the Old Aerial Photos collection, which includes some of the earliest commercial aerial survey images, military photographs as well as many national archives.” This is a paid resource. Most of the maps I looked at were about £20 for a download. More if you wanted prints or a statement of authenticity.

If you never see me again, it’s BoingBoing’s fault. It hipped me to a new database of fictional characters. “Basically CharacTour is an expansive online database for fictional characters. Like Facebook or a dating website, each character gets their own profile page. So far the site has over 4,500 spoiler-free profiles about characters’ origins, interests, skills, and journeys. Not only can you search for your favorites, you can find new characters to love as well.” Jo March and Tony Stark were in the database, while Eve Dallas and Dirk Struan weren’t.

Under development: a digital archive of oral histories from Hiroshima survivors. (This is a video news report with a full transcript.)


Hootsuite can now schedule Instagram posts, but you have to go around your elbow a little bit. “While you can get your posts ready through either the Hootsuite app or dashboard, you still need your phone handy to actually publish. According to an Instagram spokesperson, when your post is ready to be sent out, you will receive a push notification from the Hootsuite app directing you to the Notification Center. You then tap the post, which will open in the Instagram app to publish.”

Yelp is adding healthcare data for hospitals and nursing homes to reviews. Excellent. “The San Francisco company said Wednesday that it will provide statistics for 4,600 hospitals, 15,000 nursing homes and 6,300 dialysis clinics in the U.S. The information is compiled by ProPublica from their own research and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and will be updated quarterly.”

Instagram has banned another hashtag: this time it’s #EDM. Heaven forbid you use it innocently, or you want to find new electronic dance music. This is really ham-handed of Instagram.

Facebook is adding tools to make it easier for Page admins to privately message fans. Of course, thanks to Facebook’s reach throttling, it’s not clear how many people are actually seeing your page, but why must I be a buzzkill. “A new ‘Message’ button will appear next to the Like and Reply ones under a comment. It’ll open up a Messenger interface, along with the original comment for reference. Facebook will also inform the customer that he or she is communicating via private message.”


Journalists, looking for your tribe? Here’s a resource list. “I’m a big fan of getting new voices into journalism and keeping them there. One of the ways to help level the existing playing field is to make sure everyone knows about the groups that already exist. Many of these groups are not well-advertised and are hard to find, particularly if you’re a freelancer or new to the field. So I decided to round up all the ones I know about in one place.” Read the comments for a huge argument over whether a group can reasonably prohibit any mention of its existence.

I missed this article when it came out last month — Wasim Ahmed has done an excellent roundup of currently-available tools for social media research. This is social scientist level research, not “Find out how many people are following you” type stuff. “By searching for relevant software (as documented in the table), I have noticed that there are very few tools that can be used to obtain data from other social media platforms such as, Pinterest, Goolge+, Tumblr, Instagram, Flickr, Vine, LinkedIn, and Amazon among others. Regarding this, I would like to see more software for those in the social sciences to obtain data for a range of platforms and including a range of data i.e., web links, images, and video. At the Masters and PhD level there should be more emphasis on training for social science students in effectively using existing software that can be used to capture data analyse data from social media platforms.”


Digitizing documents would be bad enough. But how about portraits. Some of you might remember the big presidential portrait move Archives staff did around this time last year. With the help of the staff of the Bone Student Center, we successfully moved the historic Illinois State presidential portraits from the Circus Room to our secure storage space. Last week, we moved them (temporarily) once again to Milner Library where they’ll soon be getting a digital makeover!”

What is the most Google’d museum in the world? “The research, in collaboration with London & Partners to launch London’s Autumn Season of Culture, showed that for international searches, the Science Museum in London ranks on average as the most googled museum in the world. The Natural History Museum comes second and third is the British Museum.” Good morning, Internet…

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