Azerbaijan Artists, Land Use Monitoring, City Transportation, More: Sunday Buzz, October 22, 2017


Azernews: Database of Azerbaijani artists created. “Database of the Azerbaijani painters and gallery … will be presented in Baku Museum Center on October 27…. The website will cover cultural events country in Azerbaijan and provides artists with information about gallery’s activities.”

Mongabay: Suite of free, open-source tools to help even non-experts monitor large-scale land use change. “A recent study mapped the world’s dry forests using a relatively new tool that combines creative satellite image analysis with local- and national-scale knowledge. Natural resource agencies worldwide inventory their country’s vegetation cover, land uses, and forest carbon stocks in order to quantify the extent and impacts of land use change as well as their progress toward commitments to international treaties. However, they often lack the tools to compile and analyze the necessary data on land use change.”

Reuters: Uber opens up Paris travel database to help city planners. “Uber said on Friday it would open up its trove of travel data in Paris to the public to help city officials and urban planners better understand transportation needs, as the company seeks to woo national authorities. The U.S. ride-hailing app collects huge amounts of data from the billions of trips taken by customers which it uses to improve its services and has recently started to make it available for a number of cities including Washington D.C., Sydney and Boston.”


The Verge: Facebook Live now has a built-in screen-sharing function. “Today, Facebook added the ability to directly share your screen on Facebook Live, as spotted by The Next Web. Previously, third-party software was needed to do the same thing.”

The Next Web: Facebook Messenger teams up with PayPal for payments. “Facebook users are getting a new way to pay eachother with Messenger. Well, actually an old one – starting today, people in the US will be able to pay eachother using PayPal.”


Digital Trends: How to save Instagram videos with these six free apps and tools. “While it’s easy enough to take a screenshot or save a single photo, saving iconic videos from the platform is a bit more difficult – but not impossible. We’ve rounded up six different ways to download and organize all of your favorite Instagram videos and shared how to save Instagram videos for resharing or archiving content.”


LA Times: Google parent turns on internet balloons in Puerto Rico . “Google’s parent Alphabet Inc. said Friday that its stratospheric balloons are now delivering the internet to remote areas of Puerto Rico where cellphone towers were knocked out by Hurricane Maria. Two of the search giant’s ‘Project Loon’ balloons are already over the island enabling texts, emails and basic web access to AT&T customers with handsets that use its 4G LTE network.”

Washington Post: Zimbabwe created a new ministry to monitor social media. But most Zimbabweans don’t want government monitoring.. “In a highly anticipated reshuffling of cabinet appointments last week, Zimbabwe’s president, Robert Mugabe, created a new ministry of ‘Cyber Security, Threat Detection and Mitigation,’ to be led by former finance minister Patrick Chinamasa. The government claims the ministry was created because of growing abuse of social media, including cyberbullying. But observers claim that the real reason is to clamp down on citizens who’ve been using social media to criticize the government as the country’s economic instability grows — and see the move as a threat to freedom of expression.”


MyBroadband: Massive South African database leak just got bigger – 60 million records online. “The leak of a database containing the personal details of millions of South Africans is much larger than initially thought. Security researcher Troy Hunt said he was alerted to the leak of a massive database called ‘Master Deeds’ earlier this week. According to reports, the leak originated from the main web server of Jigsaw Holdings, which handles several property brands.” This breach might encompass the entire population of South Africa.

The Register: Do fear the Reaper: Huge army of webcams, routers raised from ‘one million’ hacked orgs. “Miscreants are right now assembling a massive army of hacked Internet of Things devices – and at a far faster rate than the powerful Mirai botnet swelled its ranks last year. This new cyber-militia of compromised gadgets, dubbed IoT_reaper or Reaper by experts at Qihoo 360 Netlab, can be instructed by its masters to attack websites and smash services offline.”


TechCrunch: 18 pessimistic opinions on the next 10 years of fake news (and 5 optimistic ones). “A topic like fake news, or more broadly the question of trust and verification on the internet, is a complex one — a land of contrasts. Sometimes you just have to poll the room and get a feel for what people are thinking before drawing any conclusions. That’s what Pew Internet did, contacting thousands of experts in tech, internet and social policy and asking how they thought things would go over the next decade. They were not optimistic!”

Science Blog: Digital Map Helps Historians Get Granular With Holocaust Research. “Looking at the list of names on Waitman Beorn’s computer screen is staggering. The eye blurs almost automatically as it searches through the 18,000 people – recorded by name, approximate birthdate and address – on the list compiled by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Yet, these 18,000 are only a small fraction of the nearly 160,000 Jews who were placed into forced labor or systematically murdered under the brutal Nazi rule in Lviv, Ukraine.” Good morning, Internet…

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