iPhones, Washington Newspapers, WordPress, More: Sunday Buzz, December 4, 2016


Do you have an iPhone with battery problems? Apple has created a new tool to see if you’re eligible for a replacement. “You’ll get a message telling you whether your iPhone is eligible or not –or in my case, a message warning the serial number entered is not valid. If Apple determines your iPhone 6s is one of the affected units, you still have to make an appointment at the Genius Bar, but you get a free replacement battery out of it.”


The state of Washington has added content to its historic newspapers database. “Nearly 50,000 newly digitized pages from historic newspapers based in Centralia, Eatonville, Tacoma and Spokane are being added to the Washington State Library’s online newspaper collection this year. The latest titles are the Centralia Daily Hub (1914-16), The Eatonville Dispatch (1916-61) and Den Danske Kronike (1916-17), a Danish-English publication based in Spokane. The Centralia and Eatonville papers were added this month. Den Danske Kronike was added last summer, along with the Tacoma Evening Telegraph (1886-87).”

WordPress is moving more towards SSL. “We’re at a turning point: 2017 is going to be the year that we’re going to see features in WordPress which require hosts to have HTTPS available. Just as JavaScript is a near necessity for smoother user experiences and more modern PHP versions are critical for performance, SSL just makes sense as the next hurdle our users are going to face.”

Apple wants to be Google Maps with a drone fleet. “Per Bloomberg’s sources, Apple’s drones will be able to collect new mapping data faster than the modified minivan it currently uses. The idea with drones is that mapping data would be more accurate and up to date as Apple can deploy them faster than a minivan that has to navigate traffic. The drones would also be able to collect other data a minivan would struggle with, like street signs or construction occurring in a specific area.”

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) is proposing changes to mobile ad guidelines. “The proposed changes, which are open for industry comments until Jan. 30, frequently call for companies that serve ads in apps to provide more information to marketers. The new guidelines will call on companies serving in-app ads to tell advertisers whether consumers let the app access their devices’ locations, for example, and to provide further data about users’ whereabouts.”

After a lot of backlash, the NFL is easing up on its social media rules. “About two months ago the NFL implemented a new social media policy that effectively banned teams from posting any video-based content during games. The backlash was tremendous, with fans and teams criticizing the NFL for negatively impacting fan’s social media experiences, especially during a TV ratings slump. But now it seems the NFL has decided to relax these restrictions.”

Twitter has purchased Yes. “Twitter is gaining a social app start-up and a new vice-president of product all in one go. The microblogging firm announced its acquisition of Yes on Thursday as well as the instalment of its CEO and founder Keith Coleman in the long vacant position at Twitter.”


Hey! From The Boston Globe: Museums ‘swap’ Instagram accounts to promote one another. “If you scrolled through Instagram Thursday morning and were confused as to why the Museum of Fine Arts was posting pictures of the Leonardo DaVinci exhibit at the Museum of Science; and why the Museum of Science was sharing images of a paint-spattered canvas at Brandeis University’s Rose Art Museum — don’t worry, it’s not a glitch in the app. Your phone is working just fine.”

Your Story: How Baidu intends to give Google tough competition in India this coming year . “Since late 2015, Chinese giants have been eyeing India for investments in Indian companies. But now, several companies like Apus, One Plus, and LeCo are looking at the country as a market where they can aggressively expand their operations. One such recent player is web services company Baidu. Tim Yang, Country Head, India, looks at India as a market of plentiful opportunity. YourStory caught up with Yang when he was in Bengaluru for the GMIC conference, where he spoke at length of Baidu’s India plans.”


USA Today: Hackers use typosquatting to dupe the unwary with fake news, sites. “The proliferation of fake news has shone a light on another murky corner the web, the practice of typosquatting. These are the URLs that pass for common ones — say instead of — if the user isn’t paying close attention to the Web address.”


From Science Magazine: Q&A: Should all animal experiments be listed in a public registry? “Animal research has a publication problem. About half of all animal experiments in academic labs, including those testing for cancer and heart drugs, are never published in scientific journals, and those that are have been notoriously hard to replicate. That’s part of the reason that most drugs that work in animals don’t work in people—only 11% of oncology compounds that show promise in mice are ever approved for humans—despite billions of dollars spent by pharmaceutical and biotech companies. Meanwhile, academic labs waste money, mice, and other resources on experiments that, unbeknownst to them, have already been done but were never reported.”

Northwestern: Fake news on Facebook is no game, but it can explain game theory . “Game theory allows economists to view problems in the social sciences as ‘games,’ or competitions between self-interested parties who understand that their fates are in some way intertwined. Both parties cannot ‘win’ equally, and so begins the game. Jeff Ely, Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor of Economics at Northwestern University, explains Game Theory using the example of fake news on Facebook.” Good morning, Internet…

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