New-to-me: an archive of LGBTQ pride t-shirts. “There is a perception by some that LGBTQ history didn’t happen in the Midwest. And while it is true that many of the most notable LGBTQ-related events seemed to favor larger, more coastal cities across the U.S., there is certainly a wealth of history that can be found locally. That negative view of his homeland is exactly what Eric Gonzaba refused to believe when he was looking for a way to understand the Midwest’s historical impact on the nation. That’s why in college he began what would become the internationally-known Wearing Gay History T-shirt archive project.”
The Local DE: Virtual museum to immerse worldwide audience in history of German migration. “A museum which can be ‘visited’ online and looks at the history of migration in Germany was presented at the Documentation Center and Museum on Migration in Germany (DOMid) in Cologne on Monday. An employee at DOMid, the association which set up the virtual museum, told The Local on Wednesday that although an exact launch date has not yet been set, the museum will likely go live online in two weeks.”
Affordable Housing Finance: New Database Offers a Close Look at Inclusionary Housing. “More than 800 local inclusionary housing programs nationwide are identified in a new Inclusionary Housing Database Map. The online tool also includes data on state-level legislation and judicial decisions that are related to the adoption of local inclusionary housing policies and programs.” I had only the haziest idea of what inclusionary housing is; the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy got me up to speed.
TWEAKS AND UPDATES
Medium: UC Berkeley Open-Sources 100k Driving Video Database. “UC Berkeley’s Artificial Intelligence Research Lab (BAIR) has open-sourced their newest driving database, BDD100K, which contains over 100k videos of driving experience, each running 40 seconds at 30 frames per second. BDD100K’s total image count is 800 times larger than Baidu ApolloScape (released this March), 4,800 times larger than Mapillary and 8,000 times larger than KITTI.”
BetaNews: No, Google hasn’t given up on tablets! Blame a bug for the confusion. “Yesterday — following the sudden and unexplained disappearance of the Tablets section of the Android website — we, like many others, wondered if Google was walking away from tablets completely. Today we know that the answer is ‘no’. The section has made a reappearance after its earlier vanishing act, and a bug has been blamed… but not everyone is convinced.”
University at Buffalo: UB launches online blockchain course series, available to public . “Blockchain technology is expected to revolutionize the world and is advancing at an unprecedented pace. That’s why, as University at Buffalo computer science and engineering research associate professor Bina Ramamurthy says, there is urgency in supporting those who will propel it forward…. Ramamurthy is the instructor of a set of four new online courses about blockchain offered on the Coursera platform, which features 25 million registered users and courses from 150 universities.”
AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD
The Register: Whois? Whowas. So what’s next for ICANN and its vast database of domain-name owners?. “DNS overseer ICANN has tried to put a brave face on it but even for an organization with a self-importance that often leads it down a path to delusion, being told that your most important contract is effectively unenforceable has to sting. This week, a German court in Bonn informed the organization, which oversees the naming and numbering functions of the global internet, that one of its most critical services is so outdated that its contractors have every right to ignore it.” A pretty deep dive.
Miami Herald: Who is the secretive Google offshoot that has access to Ancestry’s DNA database?. “…when customers sign up to have their data shared with research partners of Ancestry, 23andMe and other companies, they are taking a leap of faith. Ancestry’s main research partner is Calico, founded by Google and now part of its Alphabet Inc. parent company, which researches therapies aimed at extending the human life span. Unlike public institutions, California-based Calico discloses little about its DNA work, and many view it as a vanity project for Silicon Valley billionaires seeking breakthroughs to extend their own lives. ‘Calico was founded around the idea of making people live forever,’ said John Simpson, an advocate with Consumer Watchdog, a nonprofit group that monitors Google and other Silicon Valley players. ‘It is very murky, and they are not very forthcoming about what they are doing.'”
New York Times: Tech Was Supposed to Get Political. It’s Hanging Back in This Election.. “What is happening — or rather not happening — in San Francisco is part of a broader urge in the tech community to stay behind the scenes in state and national politics. The overwhelmingly Democratic-leaning Silicon Valley was shocked by the 2016 election of Donald J. Trump and aghast at his anti-immigration ban, which cut to the heart of their existence as a multinational industry whose companies have often been founded by immigrants.”
BBC News: The online war between Qatar and Saudi Arabia. “A year-long political conflict between the tiny, wealthy state of Qatar and its larger neighbours – including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates – has been fought with a new arsenal of weapons: bots, fake news and hacking.”
SECURITY & LEGAL
WRAL: Bipartisan bill would require ‘paid for’ labels on social media political ads. “Legislation filed this week would require political ads on social media and anywhere else online in North Carolina to carry the same ‘paid for by’ labels already required on print ads, mailers and television commercials.”
RESEARCH & OPINION
National Post: Dark side of fandom: Study on Blue Jays fan tweets argues sports aren’t always unifying. “After sifting through thousands of tweets about the Toronto Blue Jays, a researcher in Regina is challenging the notion that fandom has a magical ability to unite people. It was a notion peddled constantly during the Jays’ electrifying reign as a playoff contender in 2015 and 2016 – beer commercials, politicians in ball caps, all heralding the official Blue Jays slogan: Come Together. But according to University of Regina PhD candidate Katie Sveinson, Blue Jays fans on Twitter give a starker portrait.” Good morning, Internet…
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