Beer in Movies, Facebook Events, Fonts and Language, More: Saturday Buzz, October 8, 2016

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New-to-me: a site archiving beer in film. From the about page: “People have asked what possessed me to create a website dedicated to beer placement in the movies. Well, here’s my tale. Legendary local Chicago monster movie host ‘Svengoolie’ was showing ‘The Invisible Man’ (1933) starring Claude Rains when I noticed a Bass Ale ad on the wall of the tavern. I have a pretty keen eye for logos having collected beer cans for 35 years and started thinking of beer scenes from some of my childhood favorites. ‘The Blues Brothers'(15 different brands), ‘Stripes'(Bill Murray and Schlitz), ‘Revenge of the Nerds'(Brown Derby, Dutch Treat) and other classics immediately flooded my brain. This epiphany made me realize it was now my mission to record these silver screen suds sightings for the world to enjoy. I like to think I didn’t choose ‘Beers on Film’…it chose me.”


Facebook is giving Events its own app. “The Facebook Events app launches today on iOS in the U.S., and is coming soon to Android. Facebook’s core app will still offer its Events feature, so you won’t be forced to switch like with Messenger. Facebook is still considering how to promote or shortcut to the standalone product from its core app.”

Google has created a new font that supports more than 800 languages. “Noto solves a big usability issue that most people don’t know exists. If you write in languages like English, Hindi, Mandarin Chinese, or Russian, for example, you rarely see tofu. Such languages are supported by Unicode, the consortium that approves emoji and maintains software internationalization standards, and your devices come with them. But people read and write in hundreds of languages. Unicode only recently approved Tibetan. Ditto Armenian.”

Google is shutting down Panoramio. “You might have never heard of Panoramio, but you’ve probably benefited from the site. Its photos have been a prime source of imagery on Google Maps. It worked because Panoramio was early to embrace location tagging that lets you see photos of a specific spot. Panoramio, acquired in 2007, and Picasa, acquired in 2004, were early Google forays into online photo sharing, but Google is phasing both out in favor of Google Photos.”

It didn’t work in India and now he wants to try it here? Oh, Mark. From the Washington Post: Facebook is talking to the White House about giving you ‘free’ Internet. Here’s why that may be controversial.. “The social media giant is trying to determine how to roll out its program, known as Free Basics, in the United States without triggering the regulatory scrutiny that effectively killed a version of the app in India earlier this year. If Facebook succeeds with its U.S. agenda for Free Basics — which has not been previously reported — it would mark a major victory for the company as it seeks to connect millions more to the Web, and to its own platform.”


Sometimes it has to be done. This post has been updated: How to block annoying Facebook political posts. ” I’m tired of friends who just can’t stop sharing how awful their anti-candidate is — multiple times a day. I get it. But I don’t need to hear it multiple times a day, and I sure don’t want to hear it about half-a-dozen times a day for the next several months. So, what can you do if you’re sick and tired of political rage in your Facebook feed? A lot of things, though the appropriate options depend on how far you’re willing to go.”


Walt Mossberg: Mossberg: How Google’s bold moves shake up the tech industry “Google’s decision to become a full-fledged, vertically integrated device maker — controlling and blending together hardware, software, and ecosystem design — may one day seem inevitable, obvious, or even a little late. But in the short and medium term, it’s a huge, bold move that will pose new challenges for the other major players in the tech industry.”

Is Snapchat headed for an IPO? I still wouldn’t be surprised if it bought Twitter. “Speculation that the Venice start-up will go public in the first quarter of next year escalated Thursday when the Wall Street Journal reported the company is eyeing a price tag of at least $25 billion, suggesting the plans are coming into focus. The valuation could produce the U.S. stock market’s biggest initial public offering since online shopping giant Alibaba debuted at a $168-billion valuation in 2014.”

JStor Daily: Inventing Rituals for the Digital World. “… there is a reason that ritual is such a pervasive part of human experience that it appears in every culture, and dissected by a wide range of disciplines. As Peter Maclaren points out in ‘Rethinking Ritual,’ rituals are ‘the symbolic codes for interpreting and negotiating events of everyday existence.’ In the absence of online rituals, we lack the signposts that can help us navigate difficult online experiences—or mark and appreciate the great ones.”


Google will have to face more action in an age-discrimination lawsuit. “Google suffered a setback in an age discrimination suit this week. A judge ruled that other software engineers over age 40 who interviewed with the company but didn’t get hired can step forward and join the lawsuit. The suit was brought by two job applicants, both over the age of 40, who interviewed but weren’t offered jobs.”

Gizmodo: Google’s AI Plans Are A Privacy Nightmare “Because Google’s assistant recommends things that are innately personal to you, like where to eat tonight or how to get from point A to B, it is amassing a huge collection of your most personal thoughts, visited places, and preferences. Google is pretty vague about what exactly the assistant is collecting. It can access information on your devices like contacts or storage (read: literally anything stored to your device), and it can also access ‘content on your screen.’ In order for the AI to ‘learn’ this means it will have to collect and analyze as much data about you as possible in order to serve you more accurate recommendations, suggestions, and data.”

The Intercept: Ex-yahoo Employee: Government Spy Program Could Have Given a Hacker Access to All Email “Contrary to a denial by Yahoo and a report by the New York Times, the company’s scanning program, revealed earlier this week by Reuters, provided the government with a custom-built back door into the company’s mail service — and it was so sloppily installed that it posed a privacy hazard for hundreds of millions of users, according to a former Yahoo employee with knowledge of the company’s security practices.” Good morning, Internet…

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