California, Facebook, Status Codes, More: Monday Buzz, December 21st, 2015


The state of California has a new database of government salaries. “State Controller Betty Yee has released a new searchable database of local government salaries, covering 602,377 positions with more than $36 billion in wages.


Facebook is opening its livestreaming feature to verified business pages. This is huge. Now any small business can livestream. You can do it with Periscope already, of course, but this feels a lot more integrated. By the way, I’ve done Facebook page verification and it’s very simple. Takes five minutes. The only stumble is if you have two businesses in the same building and only one business name is on public listings like phone book, etc. Then you have to provide more documentation.

You may be seeing a new status code in your browser soon. There are, among many others, 404 for file not found, 403 for forbidden, and now, possibly, 451. “Today, the IESG approved publication of ‘An HTTP Status Code to Report Legal Obstacles’. It’ll be an RFC after some work by the RFC Editor and a few more process bits, but effectively you can start using it now.”

Vine’s app now includes a channel of recommended Vines. “You’ll see a new section at the top of the app, pointing you to the For You channel. Tap it to dive in. ” It’s only on iOS right now but will be coming to Android shortly.


MakeUseOf: The 5 Best Online Tools for Making Professional Videos. Two of these tools are more about making vids from scratch.

Tech.Cloud has a quick writeup on a free PDFePub converter (it works both ways.) The tool also converts MobiePub.

Wow: Five ways to find someone on Facebook without logging in.

Oh, this could be fun: there’s a Linux distro especially for Chromebooks. “Besides patching things and including needed drivers, Gallium OS does something incredible to set itself away from the rest of the Linux pack: Chrome device hardware optimization. This is important as Chromebooks run on low resources. The developers have taken it upon themselves to tweak the OS to run better on such low-resource hardware. It’s certainly not as light as Google’s offering, but it’s close.”


ZDNet: “Born Digital” Records a Minefield for Archivists. “Archivists, especially in the public sector, are struggling to manage digital records after a decade or more of ad hoc records management projects by individual government agencies, Archives New Zealand says….In a report (pdf) on its agency audits in 2014 and 2015, Archives NZ said it was disappointing to see that although the Public Records Act 2005 was now a decade old, barely half the offices audited had significant records keeping maturity.”

Yes, Yahoo is still doing acquisitions – at least in Japan. “Softbank and Yahoo joint venture Yahoo Japan has unveiled a bid to buy Ikyu, popular restaurant reservation and online travel platform in Japan for around $830 million. Yahoo Japan is offering to pay 3433 JPY($2836) per share for Ikyu being listed on the Japanese stock exchange. This will be representing a 42 percent premium on IKyu’s most recent share price and means Yahoo Japan can pay 100 billion JPY for their transaction. This will be adjusting around $829 million based on present exchange rates.”

The state of California wants to make auto auto requirements very tight, at least initially. “Some of Senate Bill 1298’s regulations include requiring additional certification, not only from the automaker, but also from a third-party organization. There will be a new ‘autonomous vehicle operator certificate,’ and a certificate holder must be present in any self-driving car on the road, in the event he or she needs to take control of the vehicle. To that end, California will also require any autonomous vehicle to possess physical controls like a steering wheel.” As you might imagine, Google ain’t happy.


Do you use MongoDB? Better make sure it’s locked down. “There are at least 35,000 publicly accessible and insecure MongoDB databases on the Internet, and their number appears to be growing. Combined they expose 684.8 terabytes of data to potential theft. This is the result of a scan performed over the past few days by John Matherly, the creator of the Shodan search engine for Internet-connected devices.” Good morning, Internet…

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