Irish Startups, Skype, Loire Valley, More: Wednesday Buzz, July 6, 2016


Now available: a database of Irish technology companies. “A beta version of Tech Ireland — an initiative from the Dublin Commissioner for Startups — is live with profiles of more than 500 startups, as well as details of 90 venture capital funds which have invested in Ireland and 40 or so of the country’s startup hubs.”


Microsoft has launched Skype Meetings. Sounds a bit too pared-down: “The more fully-featured Skype for Business product allows you to host meetings with up to 250 people and it’s deeply integrated into Outlook, Word and PowerPoint. Skype Meetings, on the other hand, only allows for PowerPoint collaboration (screen sharing, laser pointer, etc.) and screen sharing. Video calls are also limited to a maximum of 10 people during the first two months. After that, the maximum number of participants drops to 3 people.”

Google Street View went to France. “Thanks to Street View image capture technology, people can take virtual tours of Chenonceau, Chambord, Azay-le-Rideau and 15 other of the national treasures strung along the Loire in central France, including spaces that are normally off-limits to the public. Seven of the sites can be overflown in three dimensions.”

You’ve probably seen that Facebook is getting a new translation feature. Looks like it might be getting a new language as well. “Facebook is on the verge of signing a deal with the Maori Language Commission to develop a tool which will translate posts into te reo Maori. Suzanne Wolton contacted the Herald recently, outraged to discover, when setting up a Facebook page for her Pt Chevalier wig and beauty salon, that the language was not one of the 94 language options on the social media giant’s site.”


MakeUseOf rounds up alternatives to Reddit. Hacker News was included but Slashdot wasn’t. wow…


Wondering if you should be using Facebook Live or not? Check out this experiment Poynter did. “The chart below shows our top four Facebook posts in June. Our very top post was a live video chat on the ethical ramifications of CNN hiring Donald Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, which reached 283,000 users. That was 50 percent more than our second-best performer, a post on changes in the Associated Press Stylebook.” On the other side of the coin, look at the engagement stats for the top four posts…

Google Street View, a VR-type setup, and an exercise bike are helping dementia and Alzheimer’s patients. “The jDome BikeAround, created by Swedish company Brighter, is designed to immerse patients living with dementia within a virtual replica of real-world streets – locations that have some personal significance and, the hope is, to kickstart a memory of a particular time or place: a walk to work. A walk home. A fight. A glance. A kiss. A sucker punch. The street view is lifted from Google Maps, tinkered with enough to give the impression of responsive movement when cycling on the attached bike.”

Teenagers beware: the adults are invading Snapchat. “According to analytics firm comScore, roughly 67.5 percent of smartphone users between the ages of 18 and 24 are on Snapchat. The report further found that 38 percent of smartphone users ages 25 to 34 use the service, as do 14 percent of those ages 35 and older. Just three years ago, these figures were just five and two percent, respectively.”

The Israeli Air Force has concluded that the “Google formation” incident was a mistake. “The Israeli Air Force erred by having soldiers stand in formation to create the Google logo for the company’s visiting executives, a report of the IAF’s inquiry into the incident concluded. IAF Commander Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel presented the findings to IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot on Monday.”


The Supreme Court of India is coming down on search engines for some of their advertising. “Supreme Court today pulled up online search engines like Google, Yahoo and Microsoft for failing to check advertisements pertaining to pre-natal sex determination saying they were patently violating Indian law.”


Google’s DeepMind is taking aim at eye diseases. “Google will investigate how DeepMind’s technology can be taught to analyze scans for the two diseases –the diagnoses of which have been time-consuming efforts for eye doctors due to their complexity. The results could mean earlier diagnoses for patients and therefore earlier treatment, leading to less deterioration in eyesight down the line.” Good morning, Internet…

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