morningbuzz

Brazil, Ukraine, PDFs, More: Tuesday Buzz, September 1st, 2015

I don’t know why, but a bunch of people followed the ResearchBuzz blog yesterday. Two things: hello! And this is a regular (usually daily) digest; if you want individual entries tagged in an individual way, you want the ResearchBuzz Firehose at http://rbfirehose.com/ . Here’s an article on how to make the most of the Firehose: https://researchbuzz.me/2015/06/23/introducing-the-researchbuzz-firehose-how-to-use-it/ .

NEW RESOURCES

The Brazilian newspaper Diario de Pernambuco has been partially digitized. “The holdings of the newspaper that were digitized include November 1825 – September 1924 and these were contained on 276 reels of microfilm….The Diario de Pernambuco is acknowledged to be the oldest newspaper still in circulation in Latin America. The issues from 1825-1924 offer insights into early Brazilian commerce, social affairs, politics, family life, slavery, and other topics.”

The Open Knowledge Labs blog tipped me to a new service that allows you to upload PDFs and other files and get text in return. Click on Choose a file… and then once you’ve chosen a file choose Get Content. A list of supported file is available at http://tika.apache.org/1.10/formats.html . I threw a couple of marketing pieces I had in PDF format at it and it worked just fine… the second one took a couple minutes.

In development: an open database of historic cemeteries. “The MAP project’s interface will be an open-access website with a database of monumental records, a curated collection of research projects (connecting data to methods and interpretations), and an interactive means of contributing data and commenting on research. The primary interface will organise the user experience into two interactive schemes. On the landing page, a map will highlight areas where records exist, with pop-up summaries and links to the corresponding database (and project collections of methods/interpretations where possible). There will also be traditional drop-down menus and a search function to access databases, or collections, to view on the website or download for easy use of data. The range of options for use reflects the diversity of the audiences for whom this website will be of value and the orientation of their research.”

Ukraine is granting free access to its trademark applications database. “After much debate, the Ukrainian Institute of Intellectual Property granted free access to its online database of trademark applications on August 21, which is a step forward in developing IP rights protection in Ukraine. Even though the database only contains applications that passed the formal examination since August 20, trademark owners will be able to monitor new applications and daily updates, ensuring timely enforcement of their prior rights.”

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

Google is deprecating Web hosting support in Google Drive. “Beginning August 31, 2015, web hosting in Google Drive for users and developers will be deprecated. Google Apps customers can continue to use this feature for a period of one year until August 31, 2016, when serving content via googledrive.com/host/doc id will be discontinued.”

Newer Android Wear watches now work with iOS. “Once you’ve paired your watch with your iPhone (the app is compatible with the iPhone 5 and all newer iPhones as long as they run iOS 8.2 and up), the actual on-watch experience is pretty much the same as always. The app supports rich notifications from Gmail, Google Calendar and Apple Calendar, Google Now Cards, voice queries, Google Fit support, alarms, and everything else you’d expect (including support for the recently launched Translate app on Android Wear).”

Twitter is apparently testing new photo and video editing tools. “Lara Cohen, who is Twitter’s Director of Entertainment Talent, highlighted the new photos with tweets that implied (and seemingly confirmed) that the stars were roadtesting something new. It isn’t clear if this is a standalone app, or just an extension of the photo/videos features inside Twitter’s mobile apps. Photo functionality is limited to filters and cropping right now and Twitter only added native video capture on mobile this year. Nonetheless, it looks like you might soon be able to add stickers, your own doodles, text and more to photos and short video clips.”

USEFUL STUFF

From Hongkiat: 20 Cool Things Google Search Can Do. Most of these are tricks rather than serious search tools, but they’re fun.

Lifehacker has updated its roundup of the best browser extensions to protect your privacy. Unusually, the coments section on Lifehacker articles is usually worth reading. Some more thoughts there.

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

The National Archives of Thailand is in the process of digitizing its collections. “A huge task is digitising the microfilms that contain records of over 15 million written materials. The archives have only 131 staff and an annual budget of 80 million baht, so it will take time. So far, 45 microfilm rolls have been digitised and it is estimated that all of them will be ready for service next year. The equipment for this task is worth more than 2 million baht.” 80 million baht is a little over $2 million USD.

Brian Fanzo has a big writeup on an alternative to Google Hangouts called Blab. And he really, really likes it. “While we’ve only been using Blab.im for the last month or so, we have been so impressed that we’ve migrated our client-sponsored video Twitter Chatss off of Google Hangouts to Blab.im. There will undoubtedly still be some occasional use cases that will require our team to use Google Hangouts, including having more than four guests (which is never advisable) and the need for occasional private, off-air shows. However, when Google Hangouts were the only solution, it made sense to put up with its quirks and to try to ignore the fact that the team at Google didn’t care much about community. Now, when we have something like Blab.im to use that is the exact opposite, and brings a team wholly focused on creating a great user experience based on feedback from users—well, it’s a no brainer which we prefer.”

YouTube is apparently about to undergo some changes. “With the exception of a few video rentals, YouTube has always been a free, ad-supported service. But the company is about to get serious about subscription services, offering new ways for the users that create videos to make money. While two subscription offerings for the same service might seem odd to some — with one music industry source calling it ‘strange on top of strange’ — YouTube’s thinking was likened to that of a cable company offering different packages for sports and movies.” Here’s hoping YouTube cleans up its spam and gets some better search tools.

Marissa Mayer is expecting twins. “Since my pregnancy has been healthy and uncomplicated and since this is a unique time in Yahoo’s transformation, I plan to approach the pregnancy and delivery as I did with my son three years ago, taking limited time away and working throughout. I’ve shared the news and my plans with Yahoo’s Board of Directors and my executive team, and they are incredibly supportive and happy for me. I want to thank them for all of their encouragement as well as their offers of help and continued support.”

Bing is doing predictions again this football season. “Bing Predicts’ machine learning and deep knowledge takes power rankings to a new level. Instead of settling for just knowing where your teams stand today, Bing Predicts will give you a glimpse into your team’s future. Every Tuesday at noon PT we will update our power rankings with predictions of which team Bing thinks will win their respective division, and who is on-pace to earn those elusive wild-card spots.”

Librarians, you know this: Web site preservation is an enormous fail. “If the internet is at its core is a system of record, then it is failing to complete that mission. Sometime in 2014, the internet surpassed a billion websites, while it has since fallen back a bit, it’s quite obviously an enormous repository. When websites disappear, all of the content is just gone as though it never existed, and that can have a much bigger impact than you imagine on researchers, scholars or any Joe or Josephine Schmo simply trying to follow a link.”

SECURITY/LEGAL ISSUES

Google is being investigated in India for complaints about rigging search results. “Google is being investigated by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) after the agency received complaints that the search giant abused its dominant market position and rigged search results, reports The Economic Times. If found guilty, Google could face a fine of up to 10 percent of its income; the company posted a net income of more than $14 billion in 2014.” 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!

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