K-5 Lesson Plans, Internet Safety, Google Maps, More: Monday Afternoon Buzz, September 18, 2017


EdSurge: ​Teachers Can Now Use IBM’s Watson to Search for Free Lesson Plans. “IBM’s famous Watson computing system—which defeated Jeopardy champ Ken Jennings in 2011—is coming to education, if not quite the classroom. As part of a new IBM philanthropic initiative, the supercomputer is helping to power a searchable database of open educational math resources designed for teachers in grades K-5.”

Arizona State University: ASU graduate creates website aimed at online safety for teenagers. “As her honors thesis project, [Jessica Swarner] created a website that could serve as a resource for parents concerned about their children’s online activities. The result was Parenting In The Digital Age, an Internet and social media safety resource for parents of teens. The site is full of useful information, including the pros and cons of internet and social media use; reviews and profiles of apps with features, policies, and safety and security measures; videos with tips from social media and public safety experts; and a constantly updated blog covering online safety.” Lots of resources here, and the sourcing game is on point, as the kids say.


Ubergizmo: Google Maps Now Supports Video Reviews. “According to reports, Local Guides will be able to upload short 10-second video clips that can act as quick reviews or a quick overview about a particular location. This feature was quietly launched about a couple of weeks ago, but it is expected that it will roll out publicly in the near future.”

Android Community: YouTube TV now available in 8 more US cities/regions. “While there are already several video streaming apps, those who also want to have the ability to watch Live TV when you want to. Well, doing it without the usual cable subscription or on a mobile device. YouTube TV is one such service, but it’s only available in selected areas in the US. Now they’re expanding to 8 more cities and regions, specifically Austin, Albuquerque, Sacramento, Birmingham, Norfolk, Greenville, Portland, and Raleigh. Just last July they added 10 more markets which means they are getting a bit faster in terms of expanding it to the rest of the major areas in the country.”


Wired: This Cardboard Google Home Only Costs $35. “GOOGLE HOME IS one of the better smart home speakers you can buy. Along with Amazon’s Echo, Home will duke it out with Apple’s upcoming HomePod later this year. But, even at $130, Google Home is out of reach of many who might want to try it out. Now the electronics retailer Micro Center is selling Google’s officially sanctioned AIY Voice kit, a $35 kit that includes all the parts you need to build your own smart-talkin’ speaker on the cheap.”


Daily Beast: Twitter Says It Fixed ‘Bug’ That Let Marketers Target People Who Use the N-Word. “Twitter said it fixed its advertising platform that allowed prospective marketers to target millions of users interested in derogatory words such as ‘n**ger’ and ‘wetback.’ The Daily Beast reported Friday that Twitter Ads returned 26.3 million users who may respond to the term ‘wetback,’ 18.6 million to ‘Nazi,’ and 14.5 million to ‘n**ger.'”

CNET: Inside Facebook’s plan to turn the world into the MoMA . “All over Facebook’s offices worldwide, the walls are decorated by art from artists commissioned by the company to liven up the environs for its more than 20,000 workers. Plaques with the artists’ names and short biographies sit beside their creations. At Building 20, a huge Frank Gehry-designed office structure where all of Facebook’s top brass works, the artwork includes a mural of polka dot flowers and a painting of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Then there’s that big blank white wall.”

TechCrunch: Yext looks to help businesses make their information more searchable by machines. “Yext, which went public earlier this year, said it is launching a feature called knowledge tags to help businesses make their websites and information more accessible to crawlers and other kinds of query services. It works by storing all the, well, ‘knowledge’ of a business — like its products and features — on Yext and helping their websites be more searchable by engines. That’s going to be important as website usage becomes less and less important over time and people access the Internet in different ways.” Walled garden? Walled data repository? I’m not sure how to unpack this…


The Guardian: US retaliation feared as Brussels prepares to close Google’s tax loopholes. “EU leaders have agreed to make ‘swift’ progress on raising the tax bills for digital giants such as Google and Facebook, despite warnings from smaller states that unilateral action could drive business away from Europe.”


BuzzFeed: Here’s Why It Doesn’t Matter If People Trust Facebook’s Fake News Label In The News Feed. “Almost exactly nine months ago, the company announced it would add a ‘disputed by third party fact-checkers’ label to links in the News Feed that external fact checkers deemed completely false. Since then, the label has been a major focus of reporting and research. ‘Tagging fake news on Facebook doesn’t work, study says,’ read the headline on a Politico story about a draft research paper. (Facebook questioned the study’s methodology and the validity of its findings.) But here’s the hidden truth people keep missing: the public’s reaction to the disputed label is largely irrelevant to stopping the spread of misinformation.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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