North Carolina History, Caribbean Drought, International Space Station, More: Thursday Afternoon Buzz, July 20, 2017


State Archives of North Carolina: New Digital Collection: The General Assembly Session Records. “The General Assembly Session Records collection is now available online via the North Carolina Digital Collections. This collection features records of early North Carolina state legislatures from the State Archives of North Carolina…. The physical collection includes items from 1709 through 1999, but the digital collection will focus on the earliest materials. This digital collection is currently in progress, and more items will be added as they are digitized. Check back for future updates on the status of this project.” Climate scientists create Caribbean drought atlas. “Cornell atmospheric scientists have developed the first-of-its-kind, high-resolution Caribbean drought atlas, with data going back to 1950. Concurrently, the researchers confirmed the region’s 2013-16 drought was the most severe in 66 years due to consistently higher temperatures – a hint that climate change is to blame. Because of its topographic complexity, the new atlas delivers critical research data by providing a historical climate backdrop.”


USA Today: Google Street View comes to the International Space Station . “The search engine giant announced Thursday that its popular map imagery tool, Street View, will allow anyone a peek inside the International Space Station. Viewers will have access to complete 360 degree, panoramic imagery that shows how astronauts aboard the space station live.”

BetaNews: LastPass lets you share passwords with its new Families subscription. “Sharing some accounts with friends or family members has its perks, but it can also be risky. Many people expect to use simple passwords, which is why you may be tempted to go for something that’s easy to remember. Not to mention that they also lose the credentials from time to time, so you have to share them again via email or texts, which is not really safe. But LastPass may have come up with a better option.”


The Next Web: This Chrome extension will blur out offensive language on your feed. “Soothe is a Chrome extension that blurs out content that is considered homophobic, racist, sexist, transphobic, violent, and sexually violent by the user. Just choose the general categories you want to censor, and the extension will analyze the site’s content to blur out any triggering language.”


Irish Times: Digital Irish content in danger of disappearing, specialist warns. “Ger Wilson, head of digital collections at the National Library of Ireland, said that with its research showing that as much as 50 per cent of website content can disappear within a year, it is ‘highly likely’ that some critical material has already disappeared. She was speaking following the issuing of a tender notice by the library to carry out an extensive crawl of Irish-registered domains later this year. This is part of an attempt to archive the Irish web so that historians of the future will be able to see what the Irish internet looked like in 2017.”

TechCrunch: Facebook may begin testing a paywall for selected media stories as soon as October. “Facebook could begin testing a paywall for subscription news stories as early as October, according to a top company executive. Campbell Brown, who heads up the social network’s new partnerships business, made the reveal at the Digital Publishing Innovation Summit on Tuesday, The Street reported. We have independently confirmed that, too.”


CNET: Google ‘right to be forgotten’ case referred to top EU court. “The European Union’s top court will decide whether or not Google is required to remove certain results from its iconic search engine. The crux of the matter is the so-called ‘right to be forgotten,’ a policy in Europe that lets people ask search engines to remove some results from queries of their own names. What’s in question isn’t the policy itself — Google already complies with it — but how far-reaching those de-listings should be.”

The Verge: San Francisco’s biggest public radio station has been battling ransomware for over a month. “For the last month, San Francisco’s KQED has been recovering from a massive ransomware attack, the station revealed today to The San Francisco Chronicle. The infection began on June 15th, but more than a month later, many crucial systems remain offline at the National Public Radio member-station.”


Florida State University: Heat tweet: Users flock to Twitter when temperatures rise. “For more than a decade, people have used social media to express themselves and inform and engage users across the globe. Now, a new study by Florida State University researchers examines the impact rising temperatures have on Twitter activity, and how government officials use the social media tool to warn the general public of heatwave conditions.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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