SQL, Dundee, Stanford, More: Saturday Buzz, November 14th, 2015


A new, free tool helps find sensitive data in SQL databases (PRESS RELEASE). “IDERA SQL Column Search searches the string definitions of table columns in an SQL Server database to match them to a set of user-defined strings. Rather than searching the data itself, the tool searches the column name definitions for typically sensitive words like social security, date of birth or account number. The flexible design comes preconfigured with 45 common sensitive data search strings with the ability to easily create custom strings and multiple search profiles.”

The City of Dundee, in Scotland, now has an online database of war dead. “The details of over 4,200 soldiers, returnees and civilians linked to the war effort have been collated and organised by Great War Dundee. The four-year-old organisation aims to share the memory of the city’s war efforts with a wider audience.”

Stanford University’s Cantor Arts Center has digitized its collection. “Students, faculty, scholars and the general public can now visit the museum’s website, type in a title, artist, theme or other search criteria, and see high-quality digital images of the majority of the 45,000-plus objects in the collection. Partial inventories of the museum’s collection have been made since it opened in 1894, but this was the first complete inventory since 1916.”

A new online database provides health and environmental information for over 100 commonly-used building products. “The database was developed by Google; Flux, a technology firm; the Healthy Building Network, which aims to reduce toxic building materials; and think, a software company.”

The state of Tennessee is going to keep an online database of people convicted of animal abuse. “It is part of the Tennessee Animal Abuser Registration Act. The list will include a photograph of the convicted animal abuser, the person’s full name and other identifying data as determined necessary by the [Tennessee Bureau of Investigation].”

Bing has released a new tool to determine how mobile-friendly your Web site is. “When you submit the URL of a page to be analyzed to the Mobile Friendliness Test tool, our Bing Mobile crawler fetches and renders the page, extracting important features that are used by the tool to determine how the page performs against each of the above factors. The outcomes are then aggregated into a consolidated mobile-friendliness verdict for the page.”

YouTube has launched an app just for music. “No matter where you start in the app, the music will never stop. Every song you play or artist you choose will take you on an endless journey through YouTube’s music catalog. A simple tap and you’re on your way, enjoying your favorite music and discovering new artists effortlessly. The home tab will recommend tracks just for you and create personalized stations based on your tastes.”


The American Legion has expanded its digital archives. “The latest additions are the full archives of National Convention programs (1919-2014) and Emblem Sales catalogs (1919-2015). In early years, the Auxiliary and Sons had their own Emblem catalogs. The project took about three months to complete.”

Tumblr now has instant messaging. “Not all users will immediately have Tumblr Messaging, given the staged rollout. Instead, those who see a ‘smiley balloon’ (pictured above) hanging on their screen will know that the feature has been turned on for their account. At that point, if you choose to message another Tumblr user, they, too, will receive the messaging feature, if they didn’t already have it.”

LinkedIn has apparently realized how annoying getting hammered with LinkedIn mail is and is promising to ease up. “We’d like to ensure that we only send you messages that you want to read no matter how you hear from us. That’s why we have been working on developing a new email and notifications platform called Air Traffic Controller (ATC). ATC is a single platform for all communication to our members across LinkedIn, including email, mobile and SMS. Our platform uses learning algorithms, which take into account member interactions to better determine the right frequency of communication you get from LinkedIn, at the right time, and through the right channels.” My husband is planning to quit LinkedIn because the mail was driving him nuts.


Nerding out at this Wired article: How Instagram Solved Its Justin Bieber Problem. “… every so often, company co-founder Mike Krieger, normally a jovial character, would suddenly turn serious and intense. He would hunker over his computer keyboard and mutter ‘We’ve gotta fix this.’ This meant that Instagram had slowed to a crawl for users across the globe, and the cause was always the same: Justin Bieber.”

Wow! Google Analytics is ten years old. Good morning, Internet…

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