New York, Facebook, Snapchat, More: Wednesday Buzz, February 24, 2016


The city of New York has launched a new resource for crime statistics. “Prior to launch CompStat 2.0, crime data was reported based on the seven major crime categories with no additional information on date, time or specific type of crime within the category. Now…the public can access crime data including all the additional information, even down to accurate location mapping down to the closest intersection.”


A number of media outlets, including WIRED, are reporting that Facebook’s new “reactions” – designed to take the place of a simple “Like” have gone live. I’m not seeing them, though. (Desktop, Chrome.)

Snapchat is keeping the fun going with a new birthday lens. “Birthday Party works like any other ‘lens,’ as Snapchat calls its photo and video effects — tap and hold on your face to enable the feature. Then you can send the image to a friend or post it to your story.”


Cyndi Ingle, maven of Cyndi’s list, will be doing a free Webinar today. She’ll be giving you a brief history of her Web site, Cyndi’s List, and showing you how to use it to best effect. Considering that her site has over 300,000 resources listed in it, it can be very useful to genealogy researchers!

Coca-Cola has released a video showing how to make a Google Cardboard-type VR viewer out of its packaging. “The video below shows that all you need is a Coke box, a phone, and some other pieces that need to be cut out of the packaging using guides supplied by Coca-Cola. It looks like the only piece missing is a plastic lens, but we can imagine Coke somehow including it with new versions of its soda packaging marketed specifically as Coke boxes that can be made into VR viewers (maybe even Cardboard-certified viewers).”


Facebook is apparently going to make another push into search. That’s great, because searching on Facebook right now is awful. “The idea behind the new search effort, according to Mike Vernal, [Tom] Stocky’s boss and a vice president of search, is that the average Facebook post is interesting for longer than the customary five hours it might be immediately findable in the news feed.”

Oh wow! Remember Technorati? it just got bought for $3M. “Technorati, as you might know, was one of the earlier players online, founded in 2002. It made its name initially by tracking top news and blogs by way of traffic as well as general ‘buzz’, posting the results on a much-watched and influential leaderboard.”

Could TIME be interested in Yahoo?


How bad are the breaches of personal information that occur on the Internet? Pretty bad. “More than 49 million personal information records of California residents were compromised in 657 data breaches from 2012 to 2015, state Attorney General Kamala Harris said in a report citing tips on how people and businesses can protect themselves.”

After a long legal fight, documents pertaining to the early history of Korean-Americans in California will be digitized and put online. “Kyeyoung Park, a UCLA anthropology professor who teaches a class on the Korean American experience, said the records are a rare source of information about a poorly documented period of Korean American history. Many of her students are surprised to learn that the history of Korean immigration in California stretches back a century, she said.”


The Internet is great for finding information on clinical trials. But what if trial results aren’t completed in a timely manner? “The results of clinical trials need to be published speedily if the studies are to be useful to physicians. But only 35.9% of clinical trials at leading US academic medical centres have their results reported within two years of trial completion, US researchers revealed in the BMJ on 17 February”. Good morning, Internet…

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