Flu, Korea News, Emojis, More: Monday Afternoon Buzz, February 20, 2017


A new Web site provides information on flu activity around the US. “When you enter a zip code on, it shows where the flu level is in your county, breaks it down by age group based on real-time data from local physicians and helps connect you with nearby doctors.” It told me the flu activity was high in this county, which based on all the people taking off work I would have guessed…

The (South) Korea National Library has launched an archive of pre-1950 Korea news. “The ‘Korea Newspaper Archive’ has about 192 million articles from 70 newspapers.” The article I’m linking to, in the Korea Times, is very sparse. I went to the Korea National Library at , and while I did get a warning for the security certificate, I was also able to find the newspaper archive in the library’s full text holdings – the Korea National Library has an excellent English interface. (All the newspapers I found were in Korean.)


Search Engine Land: Google brings back emojis in the search results snippets for relevant queries. “Google has confirmed with Search Engine Land that they have brought the ability for emojis to be displayed in the search results listing page. In June 2015, Google removed emojis from showing up in the results after promising to disable them over webmaster abuse.”

BetaNews: Google Home gets shop-by-voice. What could POSSIBLY go wrong? “One alternative to Amazon’s solution is Google Home. The search-giant’s device is essentially the same concept as Echo — an always-listening assistant ready to serve you. Today, Google announces that its assistant-focused device is gaining a really great new feature — shopping. Consumers can leverage their voices to buy goods — no need to go to their laptop or smartphone.”


Social Media Explorer: 4 Advanced Facebook Ad Hacks For Small Budgets. “I’m a huge fan of how easy Facebook has made it to advertise on their platform. You can create a campaign with zero experience and have it submitted to Facebook Ad Approvers within minutes. It’s truly a powerful time we live in. Want to know what’s not amazing? The fact that there are some incredibly profitable elements that 99% of Facebook Advertisers don’t know about.”


Boing Boing: Watching Wikipedia’s extinction event from a distance. “After being a major contributor for many years, I’ve cringed as Wikipedia slowly devolves like a dying coral reef. Today’s example is hemovanadin, an innocuous article deleted through a mix of vandalism, bots, and incompetent humans.”


TorrentFreak: Pirate Site With No Traffic Attracts 49m Mainly Bogus DMCA Notices. “It’s likely you’ve never heard of since the site has very little traffic. However, thanks to a bungling anti-piracy outfit, the site is now the second most complained about ‘pirate’ site on the Internet, with Google receiving more than 49 million notices in just over six months.”

From NPR: Banned In Germany: Kids’ Doll Is Labeled An Espionage Device. “It’s nice to have a friend who’s a good listener, but a doll called My Friend Cayla listens a little too well, according to German regulators who say the toy is essentially a stealthy espionage device that shares what it hears and is also vulnerable to takeover by third parties.”


From University at Buffalo: Is Your Big Data Messy? We’re Making an App for That. “The project, backed by a $2.7 million National Science Foundation grant, launched in January. Like Excel and other spreadsheet software, Vizier will allow users to interactively work with datasets. For example, it will help people explore, clean, curate and visualize data in meaningful ways, as well as spot errors and offer solutions. But unlike spreadsheet software, Vizier is intended for much larger datasets; it will be used to examine millions or billions of data points, as opposed to hundreds or thousands typically plugged into spreadsheet software.” Remembering the need to forget . “We are built to forget – it is a psychological necessity. But in a social media world that captures – and, more importantly, remembers – everything we say and do, forgetting is becoming a thing of the past. If we lose the ability to forget our past, we lose the ability to construct our own stories – a part of what it means to be human, warned one Western researcher.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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