Oregon Water, Pearl Harbor, Facebook, More: Thursday Afternoon Buzz, December 8, 2016


A new online resource lets visitors check lead levels in the drinking water of Oregon schools. “State health and education officials have launched a database for accessing water test results for lead in Oregon schools. The tool provides an interactive map of Oregon and displays results for individual school buildings across the state. The mapping tool acts as a one-time source for sharing information as schools transition from providing individual test results on their websites to submitting Healthy and Safe School Facilities plans to the Oregon Department of Education in 2017.”

A new Pearl Harbor digital archive from Japan focuses on the lives of the citizens of Pearl Harbor. “The website … was launched Wednesday, the 75th anniversary of the fateful event, by Hidenori Watanave, associate professor of information technology and design at Tokyo Metropolitan University…. Watanave also said he has an impression that in many war exhibitions in the U.S., the suffering of ordinary citizens in the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombings is little explained. Likewise in Japan, the suffering of ordinary people in the Pearl Harbor attack is little known, he said.”


Facebook has apparently announced the biggest trending topics and live videos of the year. No word if the real is separated out from the fake. “You’ll have noticed that there are still three weeks until the end of the year, but Facebook has chosen to cover the period from January 1 to November 27. Compiling the top ten most-viewed videos was a fairly easy affair, and when it comes to trending topics the social network assures users that their privacy has not been infringed upon…”


Great stuff as usual from Social Media Examiner: How to Automate Your Social Media Marketing With IFTTT Applets. “Looking for effective ways to streamline your social media marketing tasks? Have you heard of IFTTT applets? Applets let you automate social media posting tasks so you can spend more time engaging with your audience.”

I am one of those people who spends the holiday season trying to ignore as much music as possible, because if I hear “Silver Bells” one more time I will go 100% spare. For that reason, I really appreciate these annual holiday mashups. There’s some Hanukkah stuff available as well as Christmas music, and everything’s free.


From the AP, via ABC News: France Allows Holocaust Museums to Digitize WWII Archives. “France has signed an accord to allow Holocaust museums in Paris and in Washington, D.C., to digitize the vast French World War II archives — so that the museums can more easily display information on the Vichy regime to the public.”

TechCrunch: Workplace by Facebook seeks work life balance. “Workplace by Facebook officially launched six weeks ago and director Julien Codorniou came onstage at Disrupt London today to talk about how the platform is responding to and building features to reduce interruption at work.”


I think the biggest problem of 2017, tech-wise, will be that the Internet of Things is a huge security mess. “New research published this week could provide plenty of fresh fodder for Mirai, a malware strain that enslaves poorly-secured Internet of Things (IoT) devices for use in powerful online attacks. Researchers in Austria have unearthed a pair of backdoor accounts in more than 80 different IP camera models made by Sony Corp. Separately, Israeli security experts have discovered trivially exploitable weaknesses in nearly a half-million white-labeled IP camera models that are not currently sought out by Mirai.”


WebWire: Social Media Could Take Only a Fraction of Users’ Time With New Georgia Tech Method. “Implemented in a web browser, the visualization tool, called SentenTree (short for Sentence Tree), has been used to take almost a quarter of a million tweets shared in a 15-minute window of time during the 2014 World Cup and filter the conversation. The resulting single 100-word social post revealed that Brazil scored a goal in its own net, putting them down 0-1 in their match against Croatia. In the example post, ‘World Cup’ and ‘own goal’ are larger than other words, signaling that they appear more frequently. In the middle of and connecting these two phrases are ‘2014,’ ‘bad,’ and ‘Brazil,’ which together give an idea of the larger social conversation. If users want more context, SentenTree allows them to hover over any word and drill down to see more details, including the number of times the phrases appear along with the original tweets.”

Mathbabe: I quit Facebook and my life is better now. “I was like you, spending more time than I was comfortable with on Facebook. The truth is, I didn’t even go there on purpose. It was more like I’d find myself there, scrolling down in what can only be described as a fetid swamp of echo-chamber-y hyper partisan news, the same old disagreements about the same old topics. So many petitions.” Wow, if that’s what my Facebook timeline was like, I’d quit too… Good afternoon, Internet…

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