Syrian Refugees, GitHub, GeneaBloggers, More: Tuesday Buzz, May 23, 2017


The Verge: Google explains the Syrian refugee crisis with a new interactive website. “The United Nations’ refugee agency has partnered with Google to launch a new website aimed at answering the five most common questions about the Syrian refugee crisis. The ‘Searching for Syria’ site launched on Monday and will be featured on the Google home page ‘in selected countries,’ according to a press release from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).”


CBR News: GitHub makes data access easier with platform updates. “GitHub has revealed several updates to its platform to help developers to create custom software more easily. The code repository site, which is holding its customer and partner conference Satellite, revealed the addition of GitHub Marketplace, Apps, and GraphQL API.”

Thomas MacEntee has an update with what’s going on with Geneabloggers. “Here is information on some decisions I’ve made regarding and transitioning the GeneaBloggers concept to a community owned/administered asset . . . meaning run by genealogy bloggers as a community resource.”


MakeUseOf: You Can Now Comprehend Any Scientific Paper Using This Site. “The web has brought scientific knowledge at our fingertips. But how do you make sense of it all? How can you even begin to understand complex papers without the requisite education and training? Call upon the aid of artificial intelligence and meet Iris.AI. It’s a tool that gives you a shortcut to all the science that’s out there on the web. It acts as a science assistant and makes sense of any openly available scientific paper you come across.” That’s a heck of a claim. Going to have to try it.

Digital Trends: OK Google, Where’s Barb? How to set up Google Assistant shortcuts to Netflix and more. “Shortcuts for Google Home are incredibly useful, but they have prerequisites — and they’re a little challenging to get the hang of. Here’s everything you need to know.”


The Guardian: Revealed: Facebook’s internal rulebook on sex, terrorism and violence. “Facebook’s secret rules and guidelines for deciding what its 2 billion users can post on the site are revealed for the first time in a Guardian investigation that will fuel the global debate about the role and ethics of the social media giant.”

AdNews: Google admits AdWords was too complex for small businesses. “Google has admitted its AdWords product became too complex for everyday small business owners to leverage, which led the digital giant to overhaul the offering and the launch of a regional roadshow.”

Poynter: Facebook is testing products to connect its users to local news. “As part of its ongoing push to build relationships with local publishers, Facebook is testing products that can help people better connect with local news. Those tests, part of the Facebook Journalism Project, have just begun, but they’re all aimed at helping people discover and engage with news outlets in their communities, a Facebook spokesperson told Poynter.”

Dunya News: Imran warns of protests if action against social media activists not stopped. “Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Imran Khan has warned the government on Sunday to taking to roads if action against social media activists is not stopped. A message posted on Twitter stated: ‘We will take to the streets if action is taken against our social media activists under garb of national security.'”


UGH. The Guardian: Revealed: Google tried to block media coverage of gender discrimination case. “Google has tried to restrict reporting on a high-stakes gender discrimination case brought by the US government and fought to have the case thrown out of court because of a federal attorney’s comments to a reporter. Court documents reveal that Google unsuccessfully argued that a judge should dismiss a lawsuit filed by the US Department of Labor (DoL), claiming that a government attorney may have violated ethics rules by doing an interview with the Guardian on 7 April.”


Radio New Zealand: Search for NZ superbug cure turns to crowdfunding. “A New Zealand microbiologist has had to resort to crowdfunding to raise money for research into the growing global problem of antibiotic resistance.”

The Register: Kill Google AMP before it KILLS the web. “Quite a few high-profile web developers have this year weighted in with criticism and some, following a Google conference dedicated to AMP, have cautioned users about diving in with both feet. These, in my view, don’t go far enough in stating the problem and I feel this needs to be said very clearly: Google’s AMP is bad – bad in a potentially web-destroying way. Google AMP is bad news for how the web is built, it’s bad news for publishers of credible online content, and it’s bad news for consumers of that content. Google AMP is only good for one party: Google. Google, and possibly, purveyors of fake news.” Good morning, Internet…

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