Cambridge Dictionary, HTML Editors, New Year’s Day, More: Monday Afternoon Buzz, January 1, 2018


Cambridge Independent: Picking the Cambridge Dictionary word of 2017. “The world-renowned Cambridge Dictionary has just chosen its word of the year for 2017 – following on from austerity (2015) and paranoid (2016), populism is the latest winner of the accolade.”


Make Use Of: 5 Best Free Online HTML Editors to Test Your Code . “HTML runs the modern world. True, if you ask anybody what it takes to be a web developer, they’ll tell you all about JavaScript web frameworks, Python web frameworks, web programming practices, etc. Yet underneath all of that, HTML is what holds it all together. There is no web without HTML, and you need to know how to edit it if you want to do any kind of web work. But setting up a robust HTML editing workflow in Sublime Text or Visual Studio Code may be overkill if you aren’t working on a full-blown project. For times when you just want to fiddle around with a small snippet of HTML so you can tweak it to your liking, an online HTML editor will serve you better.”


Search Engine Roundtable: New Year’s Day 2018 From Google, Bing, Dogpile & More. “Happy New Years Day 2018 everyone! Wishing all my readers and the expanded search community a happy, healthy, and successful 2018. It will be the year of not just mobile, but a huge jump in voice search – so be ready. Of course, machine learning by that time will take over the world and we will get stuck in the matrix. But until then, focus on those featured snippets!”

New York Times: Facebook Removes Chechen Strongman’s Accounts, Raising Policy Questions. “The strongman leader of the Chechen Republic has long been a prolific social media user, filling his accounts with photos of him cuddling his cat, lifting weights or soliciting poems about President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia. So when Ramzan Kadyrov’s Facebook and Instagram accounts, which had four million followers between them, were unexpectedly taken down on Dec. 23, people took notice.”

Engadget: Congo orders cuts to internet and SMS to stifle protests. “Authoritarian leaders are fond of severing communications in a bid to hold on to power, and that tradition sadly isn’t going away. The Democratic Republic of Congo’s government has ordered telecoms to cut internet and SMS access ahead of planned mass protests against President Joseph Kabila, whose administration has continuously delayed elections to replace him. Telecom minister Emery Okundji told Reuters that it was a response to ‘violence that is being prepared,’ but people aren’t buying that argument. ”

Arab News: Iran cuts social media access as unrest turns deadly. “Iran cut access to social media on Sunday in a bid to head off further protests after days of unrest that saw two people killed and dozens arrested. The interior minister warned protesters will ‘pay the price’ as footage on social media showed thousands marching across the country overnight in the biggest test for the Islamic republic since mass demonstrations in 2009.”


Bleeping Computer: Chrome Extension with 100,000 Users Caught Pushing Cryptocurrency Miner. “A Chrome extension with over 105,000 users has been deploying an in-browser cryptocurrency miner to unsuspecting users for the past few weeks. The extension does not ask for user permission before hijacking their CPUs to mine Monero all the time the Chrome browser is open.”

BBC News: Germany starts enforcing hate speech law. “Germany is set to start enforcing a law that demands social media sites move quickly to remove hate speech, fake news and illegal material. Sites that do not remove ‘obviously illegal’ posts could face fines of up to 50m euro (£44.3m). The law gives the networks 24 hours to act after they have been told about law-breaking material.”

Freedom to Tinker: No boundaries for user identities: Web trackers exploit browser login managers. “We show how third-party scripts exploit browsers’ built-in login managers (also called password managers) to retrieve and exfiltrate user identifiers without user awareness. To the best of our knowledge, our research is the first to show that login managers are being abused by third-party scripts for the purposes of web tracking. The underlying vulnerability of login managers to credential theft has been known for years. Much of the past discussion has focused on password exfiltration by malicious scripts through cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks. Fortunately, we haven’t found password theft on the 50,000 sites that we analyzed. Instead, we found tracking scripts embedded by the first party abusing the same technique to extract emails addresses for building tracking identifiers.”


The Verge: You can help teach a snake-spotting AI to spot snakes better. “A team of reptile and amphibian enthusiasts is asking for the public’s help training artificial intelligence to spot snakes, frogs, and more from photos. The team wants to eventually create an app that can help people identify these creatures in their backyards — and prevent people from killing them. But first, their AI has to get better at making those photo IDs.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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