Minor White, Freedmen’s Bureau, Transgender Victims, More: Friday Buzz, December 9, 2016


A new digital archive for the photography of Minor White is now available. “When Minor White, the prolific American photographer and founding editor of Aperture magazine passed away in 1976, he bequeathed his entire archives to Princeton University. His former student Peter C. Bunnell, then a professor and curator at the university’s art museum, had helped facilitate the acquisition, which comprises over 26,000 objects that include negatives, undocumented finished photographs, and the artist’s archive of correspondence, personal and public writings, and exhibition notes.”

Now available: an indexed version of the Freedmen’s Bureau database. . “The Freedmen’s Bureau, organized under an 1865 Congressional order at the conclusion of the Civil War, offered assistance to freed slaves in many ways. Handwritten records of these transactions include records such as marriage registers, hospital or patient registers, educational efforts, census lists, labor contracts and indenture or apprenticeship papers and others. The records were compiled in 15 states and the District of Columbia.”

Mic has assembled a database of information about the murders of transgender people, going back to 2010. “Working with the New York City Anti-Violence Project, transgender advocacy organizations, activists, academics and the loved ones and friends of victims, the Mic journalists gathered a wealth of demographic, multimedia and biographical information that the website has posted online for the world to see.”

A new blog will cover Facebook’s foray into classified advertising. “‘Facebook Watch,’ a blog from the publishers of Classified Intelligence Report, is tracking the growth of Facebook Marketplace as it expands from four countries into others, and Facebook Jobs as the company tests a new way for users to find jobs and employers to find job-seekers.”


The state of New York has expanded its portal for finding addiction treatment options in that state. “Through the newly expanded application available at, visitors can find up-to-date information on available treatment beds, outpatient services and opioid treatment programs anywhere in the state, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The application’s search feature includes proximity searches that return reports on available treatment within three, five, 10, 25 and 50 miles of the searcher’s location. Queries are simple and customizable allowing for searches by location, gender of the patient, age, city, county or zip code as specified by the user.”

NASA’s GIF archive is now available on GIPHY and Pinterest. “NASA now is sharing its best images on official Pinterest and GIPHY accounts, providing visitors an out-of-this-world journey through animated GIFs and images of Earth and beyond. On Pinterest, NASA is posting new and historic images and videos, known as pins, to collections called pinboards…. NASA also is now on GIPHY, a database and search engine of animated images in GIF format.”

The Drum: Google delivers New York’s holiday windows to the masses via VR. “Google Shopping is offering a virtual tour of New York’s renowned holiday windows, Winter Wonderland, which allows consumers to use a smartphone or computer to see windows from 18 stores, including Lord & Taylor’s Enchanted Forest, as well as Barney’s — in which artist Nick Cave tackles race and gender — and Saks 5th Avenue, which features couture gowns from designers that were inspired by holiday treats.” I don’t want to go look at it now, because I don’t think the actual couture gowns can beat the things my brain is thinking up.

Google Cloud Print is apparently messing up some Epson printers. “Owners of Epson WorkForce, WorkForce Pro, and XP Series printers recently got a rude surprise, as the printers got stuck in a perpetual restart loop. And it quickly became apparent that the cause had something to do with the printers’ connection to the Internet.”

Google is opening Google Assistant to third party developers. “Google Assistant is about to get a bit smarter, thanks to third-party developers. The Alphabet-owned company said Thursday it is opening up its digital assistant with new tools for developers who want to interact with customers through Google Home, its always-listening smart home speaker.” We’re seeing this over and over – release something, let it get a little traction, and then make it available to third party developers. Stop wondering why Twitter is in such bad shape.


Remember, NoScript is your very good friend. From Ars Technica: Millions exposed to malvertising that hid attack code in banner pixels. “Millions of people visiting mainstream websites over the past two months have been exposed to a novel form of malicious ads that embed attack code in individual pixels of the banners. Researchers from antivirus provider Eset said ‘Stegano,’ as they’ve dubbed the campaign, dates back to 2014. Beginning in early October, its unusually stealthy operators scored a major coup by getting the ads displayed on a variety of unnamed reputable news sites, each with millions of daily visitors. Borrowing from the word steganography—the practice of concealing secret messages inside a larger document that dates back to at least 440 BC—Stegano hides parts of its malicious code in parameters controlling the transparency of pixels used to display banner ads. While the attack code alters the tone or color of the images, the changes are almost invisible to the untrained eye.”


On Liquid Love, Facebook and Friendship: a case study. “According to Bauman’s Liquid Love (2003), the advance in virtual proximity makes human connections frequent and shallower and simultaneously intense and shorter. It makes us wonder if ‘friendships’ on social networks are for ‘the good, the pleasant or useful’ (Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, Book VIII ).The aim of this study is to investigate three different types of relationships between young Internet users; exclusive Facebook friend, recently added Facebook friend and exclusive face-to-face friend with regard to social attraction,self-disclosure, predictability, trust, gender, length of relationship, self-esteem and sociability.” You have to wade through a really long TOC and acknowledgements, but keep going and you’ll get to the paper.

Flickr has released stats for 2016 uploads to its service. “In 2016, we saw interesting trends continue with the top manufacturers and devices. As in previous years, smartphones have grown as the dominant device of choice, while point and shoot and DSLR cameras both lost ground. Smartphones accounted for 48% of the photos uploaded to Flickr, up from 39% last year. DSLR was 25%, down from 31% in 2015, and point and shoot was 21%, down from 25% in 2015. Mirrorless remained flat at 3% of photos uploaded in 2016.” Good morning, Internet…

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