African-American Women, Megafauna Brains, Google+, More: Thursday Afternoon Buzz, January 19, 2017


DigitalNC has added new materials from the North Carolina Federation of Negro Women’s Clubs. “Founded in 1909 by Dr. Charlotte Hawkins Brown, the North Carolina Federation of Negro Women Clubs, Young Adult & Youth Clubs, Incorporated is a social service organization focused on issues that affect women, children, and communities of color in North Carolina.The group still meets regularly and many of the materials date from the most recent conference. This exhibit contains materials relating the organization’s statewide activities, including conferences, fundraisers, and service activities.”

New to me and apparently in its early stages: a digital archive for the brain scans of megafauna. From the “Background” page: “Despite the advances in neuroimaging tools, they have not been widely applied to the brains of non-human animals. Apart from humans, non-human primates, rats and mice, almost no information exists about the connectivity of other species’ brains. For example, what is it in a tiger’s brain that makes it a tiger? Or in a bear’s brain that makes a bear? The relationship between brain and species is fundamental to understanding the evolution of the nervous system, and can illuminate sensory, motoric, and cognitive adaptations that help situate each species in its ecological niche. A leading theory suggests that as brains get bigger they become more modularized. With new imaging tools and advances in network science, we can now test these ideas.”


Google has announced some changes to Google+. “With this latest round of updates, we believe the new Google+ is really your Google+— designed around your suggestions, requests and needs. It also means it’s time to say goodbye to classic Google+ on the web, which we’ll be turning down on January 24.”

BloombergQuint: Alphabet’s Google Buys Mobile App Tool Fabric From Twitter. “Alphabet Inc.’s online search division agreed to purchase Fabric, a Twitter business that provides a software toolkit for mobile apps. The companies didn’t disclose financial terms. For Twitter, the deal allows it to offload another asset as it faces pressure to deliver growth. For Google, which is absorbing Twitter employees working on Fabric, the acquisition is designed to help it recruit mobile developers, a key constituent, to its cloud computing service.”


CNET has what it’s calling a “complete list” of commands for Google Home. “Google hasn’t released a full list of commands for Home, so we had to do our best to assemble and test everything we could think of. If we’re missing anything, make sure to leave it in a comment so we can update the list as we go. Here’s the (almost) complete list of voice commands for the Google Home so far.”

TheNextWeb: 12 keyword research tools and creative ways to use them. “For over seven years, I’ve used keyword research to consistently bring myself and clients valuable, targeted long lasting traffic. It can be one of the biggest land grab opportunities in SEO – if you know the tools to use and how to use the tools.” I am not particularly interested in SEO, but I find keyword tools useful for expanding my search vocabulary.

Useful-for-a-Given-Value: Boing Boing has a writeup on a site that lets you surface (almost) unwatched YouTube videos. “ randomly plays new YouTube video that have close to 0 views. It plays a few seconds of each video before moving on to another random video. If a certain video catches your attention, click the dot below the video to see the whole thing.”


From Nonprofit Quarterly: Social Media as an Organizational Game Changer. “If you are one of those nonprofits still approaching social media as simply another tool in your belt, you are very much missing the point. Social media has been an assumption buster for nonprofits of all kinds, and on a larger basis, for civil society. Its naturally reciprocal and boundary-crossing character is at the very center of its transformative potential—but in some nonprofits this central characteristic may find an open and hospitable host, and in others it may find an unimaginative, slow-to-adjust, recalcitrant setting.”

Government Technology: What to Do When a Social Media Star Collapses. “Vine came into the world with a roar, but left with a whimper that equated to some rearranging of its business strategy and a newish, but much more limited application. What has been described as the ‘death’ of the platform raises some important questions for those in the public sector. Namely, what do you do when a social network withers and dies?”


Newswire: Social Media Poised to Take Over Advertising by 2020. “According to a recent study from Zenith Group, we’ve seen social media advertising double over the past two years with more than $16 billion in ad revenue in 2016. It’s growing at a rate of 20 percent, and experts are certain that this form of media will be the top grossing advertising field by 2020.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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