Lighthouse Photography, Inuit Graves, Hurricane Irma, More: Monday Afternoon Buzz, September 25, 2017


NARA: The Digitization of 26-LG. “Earlier this year, Still Picture Branch completed the digitization of the series 26-LG: Lighthouses, 1855 -1933. This is a mid-sized series for Still Picture Branch, being just over 84 linear feet, and was a particularly good candidate for digitization due to the age, condition, and research value of the photographs therein. The photographs are Coast Guard records and were created and collected by the Bureau of Lighthouses. Because they were taken between 1855 and 1933, the Albumen, Gelatin-Silver Printing Out, and Gelatin-Silver Developing Out photographic processes are all represented in the series. There are also a few Cyanotypes. Most of the photographic prints were mounted, and mounts often contain caption information that was transcribed during the digitization process.”

Metro News (Canada): ‘Where is she buried?’ Government prepares database on Inuit tuberculosis graves. “After nearly 10 years of work, the federal government is preparing to release a database holding everything that is known about what happened to people who were taken south for tuberculosis treatment…. Since 2008, [Elizabeth] Logue and a team of researchers have been pouring over records from federal departments, provincial and territorial archives, church files, records from cemeteries, sanatoria and hospitals as well as from individual informants. They now have a database of records on about 4,500 Inuit who were taken south.”


Florida Memory: Share Your Digital Photos: Hurricane Irma. “Now that Irma has passed, it will be remembered alongside Camille, Andrew, and Charley as one of many hurricanes that have shaped Florida’s history. Help the State Archives preserve that history by donating your digital images of preparation, damage, volunteers, shelters, recovery and other effects of this event. To learn more about donations, please see below.”

MakeUseOf: PicMonkey Now Makes You Pay to Save Your Images. “PicMonkey, one of the most popular online photo-editing suites around, has rendered its free offerings absolutely pointless. You can still edit photos for free, spending hours crafting a visual masterpiece, but to actually save your creation you’ll have to pay. Which is ridiculous.” I have used PicMonkey for years and I like it – I have a “Superpremium” account, which is $99 a year. (Now that I’m not using it for work I might step that back.) If you do a lot of editing from a lot of different computers I think it’s worth $7.99 a month or $47.88 annually. But making users unable to save or export their work is a pretty awful way to cripple it.


Lifehacker: This Bot Will Help You Unearth Your Forgotten ‘Kodak Moments’. “Over the course of a year, I take thousands of pictures that I either share on Facebook or Instagram or leave to die on my smartphone’s camera roll. While the idea is that I’ll go back and look at them at some point, truth be told that rarely happens. The closest I get is when something comes up in conversation, I remember I took a picture years ago, and I search through Google Photos or my Facebook photo gallery to see if I can find it, which I do roughly 50% of the time. Now, Kodak has a new app and Facebook bot designed specifically to help you unearth those awesome memories that you captured by then forgot about.”

Digital Trends: What Is Reddit? A Guide To The Front Page Of The Internet . “Reddit’s front page looks only slightly better than the original Space Jam website, and phrases and acronyms are thrown around that sound borrowed from a different language. What’s important to remember about Reddit is that every member of the community — aka, ‘Redditors’ — also had to ask ‘what is Reddit’ at some point or another. Thankfully, our guide to the self-proclaimed ‘front page of the internet’ will get you Reddit-ready in no time.” More a guide to vocabulary and structure than a step-by-step.

Online Journalism Blog: Anchor just created a great audio-to-social-video tool – here are 5 other ways you can create social video from audio. “The social audio app Anchor this month launched the latest – and possibly most powerful – addition to its toolset: the ability to convert audio clips into social media-ready videos. Its incorporation of speech recognition and multiple output formats make it particularly useful – but it isn’t the only tool you can use to create social audio.”


New York Times: When Disaster Hits and Landlines Fail, Social Media Is a Lifeline. “Since Hurricane Maria lashed Puerto Rico this week, Carol Mitchell has not heard a word from her mother. Ms. Mitchell, who is in Tampa, Fla., said her mother lives in Utuado, a mountainous Puerto Rican municipality where there have been reports of fatal landslides. Unable to reach the area directly — power is out across the island, and communication is severely constrained — Ms. Mitchell is using phone messaging apps like Zello and WhatsApp to reach people in San Juan, the capital.”

Reuters: China’s Baidu launches $1.5 billion autonomous driving fund. “Chinese search engine Baidu Inc (BIDU.O) announced a 10 billion yuan ($1.52 billion) autonomous driving fund on Thursday as part of a wider plan to speed up its technical development and compete with U.S. rivals. The ‘Apollo Fund’ will invest in 100 autonomous driving projects over the next three years, Baidu said in a statement.”


Quartz: Analysis of 500 million Reddit comments shows how the alt-right made the alt-left a thing. “By taking a deep-dive into the data, we can see the different ways in which the alt-right have attempted to capitalize on Trump’s speech and the opportunity to turn the ‘alt-left’ into a mainstream political concept. Through examining the last six months of Reddit comments—all half a billion of them—we can see the intensity with which /r/The_Donald has attempted to push the focus of public conversation toward condemnation of the left, not the right.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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