Roadside Architecture, Access for Disabilities, Google Blocks, More: Friday Afternoon Buzz, July 7, 2017


Library of Congress: Free to Use and Reuse: John Margolies Photographs of Roadside America. “Over the span of nearly 40 years, Margolies took more than 11,000 color-slide photographs of vernacular structures across America’s highways, byways and main streets. Traversing the country, he was drawn to the architecture that came to define travel by car—motels, diners and gas stations—but also to quintessentially American oddities: buildings in the shape of dinosaurs, the sculpted concrete and plaster obstacles of miniature golf courses and parks featuring attractions from parrots to petrified rocks.”


Google Blog: Building a map for everyone . “Many of us take for granted simple things like walking through a doorway, taking the stairs to the next floor, or always having a comfortable seat at a restaurant table. But for tens of millions of people worldwide, those very things aren’t possible unless a place has a wheelchair accessible entrance, elevator or accessible seating. Today we’re introducing a new way to add accessibility details about places to Google Maps and Search.”

Digital Trends: Google Blocks Makes It Easy For Anybody To Create VR Objects In 3D. “Google has taken a particular approach to induce developers and creative professionals to create the tools and assets that can bring AR and VR worlds to life. Specifically, Google has focused in part on making it easier to create artwork and 3D objects for use in AR/VR environments and then sharing them with the world. Its newest offering is an app called Blocks, which is aimed at creating 3D assets in its most natural environment — that is, from within VR headsets themselves.”


From the Helen Brown Group: No Budget For Paid Research Resources? This is for you!. “This week we welcome HBG Senior Researcher Heather Hoke to share her knowledge on the blog. Every year, nearly a third of attendees at our professional association conference are brand new to our field. The Apra conference in July is one of the best places for new researchers to find in-depth training and unparalleled opportunities to network, test-drive critical resources, and learn from experienced colleagues. If you don’t have the budget this year but still need information to get you started, Heather’s article will help launch you with lots of advice and resources.”


The Guardian: Press Association wins Google grant to run news service written by computers. “Robots will help a national news agency to create up to 30,000 local news stories a month, with the help of human journalists and funded by a Google grant. The Press Association has won a €706,000 (£621,000) grant to run a news service with computers writing localised news stories.”

Economic Times (India): Police directs suspension of social media sites in Kashmir from tonight . “The Jammu and Kashmir Police today directed internet service providers to block all social media sites or shut down their services in Kashmir from 10 pm today till further orders in view of the first death anniversary of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani this weekend.”

Ars Technica: Facebook, Snapchat could pay millions for World Cup 2018 highlight rights. “Live sports streaming is a hot commodity for Internet companies, and now some have their sights on the 2018 World Cup. According to a Bloomberg report, Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat are looking to obtain online streaming rights for World Cup game highlights. Fox Sports is the exclusive rights holder for the 2018 World Cup, to be hosted by Russia, and those social media websites are reportedly bidding tens of millions of dollars for the rights to stream highlights of games broadcast in the US.”


ZDNet: Zero-day Skype flaw causes crashes, remote code execution. “Granted a CVSS score of 7.2, the stack buffer overflow flaw is considered dangerous as it permits attackers to remotely crash the application with an unexpected exception error, to overwrite the active process registers, and to execute malicious code.”

Forbes (of all places): Massive WWE Leak Exposes 3 Million Wrestling Fans’ Addresses, Ethnicities And More. “WWE fans take note: an IT error may have left your personal information open to anyone, including addresses, educational background, earnings and ethnicity. Earlier this week, Bob Dyachenko, from security firm Kromtech, told Forbes he’d uncovered a huge, unprotected WWE database containing information on more than 3 million users, noting it was open to anyone who knew the web address to search. Looking at samples of the leaked information provided by Dyachenko, all data was stored in plain text.” (Estonia): First ‘data embassy’ to open in Luxembourg . ” Data of the Estonian administration may be stored on servers in Luxemburg as well as in Estonia already towards the end of this year. The ‘data embassy’ created this way will contain information vital to the functioning of the state, and make an attack on the country’s systems more difficult.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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