Micro Machines, UK History, Musical Instruments, More: Tuesday Buzz, July 18, 2017


New-to-me: a digital archive of Micro Machines toy cars. “Micro Machines collector Tim Smith has turned his obsession with the 80s miniature toy cars into an online showroom for the enjoyment of other fans and collectors. The labour of love, called Micro But Many, is based on Smith’s own collection of some 1,000-plus Micro Machines toys, with each one lovingly photographed to show off their intricate detailing.”

AHA Today: Digitizing the Royal Archives: The Georgian Papers Programme. “The goal of the Georgian Papers Programme, established by the Royal Archives in 2015 in partnership with King’s College London, is to make the approximately 350,000 materials in the Royal Archives and the Royal Library from the Georgian period (1714–1837) fully available online for scholars and the general public.”

Isle of Man: Historic Musical Instruments from Manx National Heritage Collections Made Available Online. “Over 70 musical instruments from the Manx National Heritage’s archives have been photographed by Dr Matthew Hill from MINIM-UK using high-end digital photography to produce top-quality digital images. The instruments include a barrel organ known as the ‘Santon Seraphim’, which may well be the oldest surviving musical instrument from a Manx church; a bugle given to Captain James Bridson by a French soldier during the evacuation of Le Havre in 1940 and an electric guitar used by rock band ‘Twisted Angels’, part of the thriving Manx music scene in the early 2000s.” I did write about this project in November 2015 but now we have a launch date: October of this year.


BetaNews: Google Maps tells you the best time to start your journey. “Time your departure time wrong, and even the simplest of journeys can end up taking far longer than it was meant to. Hit traffic, and your journey time could be doubled — or worse. A new feature of Google Maps aims to eliminate this problem.”

CNET: Google Fiber CEO steps down after five months on the job. “Google Fiber is without a chief executive for the second time in less than a year. Gregory McCray has stepped down as CEO of Access, the Alphabet unit that houses Google Fiber, a Google spokesperson said Monday. McCray was tapped in February to run Google’s broadband and cable business after the departure of Craig Barratt in October.” Wow, Google Fiber really seems to be spinning its wheels.


Hongkiat: A Look into VeraCrypt – A Powerful Data Encryption Tool. “VeraCrypt, the successor of TrueCrypt, is a free, multi-platform, on-the-fly encryption program similar to the Microsoft‘s BitLocker. The former, surprisingly, works on various platforms including Windows, MacOS, Linux and Raspbian, unlike the latter.” A handy article, especially if you had to abandon TrueCrypt after all its weirdness.


3Ders: Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site will let you 3D print artifacts for free. “A museum in Indianapolis is changing the digitization game: the Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site, home of the 23rd U.S. president, is now allowing visitors to 3D print replicas of its artifacts for free. The unique service is part of the museum’s New Century eCollection project, which will oversee the digitization of the Site’s 10,000-piece collection, ranging from statues and ornaments to gifts to the late Harrison.”

All Africa: Kenya May Shut Off Social Media During August Elections. “The government may consider shutting off social media during the August 8 General Election in the event it threatens the country’s peace and stability.”


The Next Web: It’s far, far too easy to break into old Myspace accounts. “Myspace, perhaps conscious of the fact that many people have since lost access to the email accounts associated with their profiles, offers a tool that lets you recover them. You simply have to verify your identity by providing a few pieces of information. Unfortunately, according to information shared exclusively with TNW by security researcher Leigh-Anne Galloway, this process is deeply flawed, and makes it trivially easy for a bad actor to gain unauthorized access to any account.”


Washington Post: Spreading fake news becomes standard practice for governments across the world. “Campaigns to manipulate public opinion through false or misleading social media postings have become standard political practice across much of the world, with information ministries, specialized military units and political operatives shaping the flow of information in dozens of countries, a British research group reported Monday…. Though most social media platforms are designed and run by corporations based the United States, the platforms are infiltrated almost immediately upon their release to the public by a range of international actors skilled at using information to advance political agendas, within their own countries and beyond, said the researchers from Oxford University’s Computational Propaganda Research Project.”

Penn State University: Twitter data changing future of population research. “Twitter may have started out as a way to connect to other people and share news quickly, but the social media platform is also a powerful tool, with the data generated representing the largest publicly accessible archive of human behavior in existence. Guangqing Chi, associate professor of rural sociology and demography and public health sciences in Penn State’s Department of Agricultural Economics, Sociology, and Education and director of the Computational and Spatial Analysis (CSA) Core in the Social Science Research Institute, and his team have collected over 30 terabytes of geo-tagged tweets over the last four years.”

Newswise: Emojis Can Bring a Smile, but Also Spur Innovation, at Work. “…sending and receiving emojis in the workplace could have an impact on productivity and innovation in the workplace. University of Delaware management professor Kyle Emich, whose research explores the effects of emotions on teams and performance, answered a few questions on the possibility of emojis influencing workplace behavior…” Good morning, Internet…

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