England / Wales Charities, WA Medical Costs, NC Governors, More: Tuesday Buzz, July 3, 2018


UK Fundraising: New database unites public information on charities in England & Wales. “A free, open source charity data portal, CharityBase, has launched, providing public information on the activities, locations and finances of the 168,000 charities registered in England and Wales.”

Washington Governor: Washington launches online tool that lets patients compare prices for medical procedures. “If you or a loved one needed knee replacement surgery, would you want to know which surgeon in your community has the highest rating for quality of care? Would you like to know how much a knee replacement costs, on average, at all of the medical offices close to your home? Those are the types of information easily accessed through Washington state’s new HealthCareCompare website, an online tool that launched today. The user-friendly website is part of the state’s larger effort to make health care costs more transparent, and gives the public access to health care price and quality information from the Washington All-Payer Claims Database.”


State Archives of North Carolina: More Historical Governors’ Papers Added to North Carolina Digital Collections. “The Historical Governors’ Papers collection has been going strong. In the past year, we transferred papers from North Carolina’s colonial governors into the collection. Those were originally housed in MARS, the online catalog for the State Archives, but are now available in the North Carolina Digital Collections.”

Ubergizmo: WhatsApp Adds One-Way Broadcast Messages To Groups. “WhatsApp has recently been improving the groups experience for its users. It has added some new features such as group descriptions, a new catch up feature, and protection for people who are added to groups they have left repeatedly. The Facebook-owned company today announced that it’s adding a one-way broadcast messages feature to groups.”

The Verge: YouTube apologizes to LGBTQ creators over issues with its ad and monetization policies. “Following complaints from users, YouTube has apologized for some of the problems that its LGBTQ creators have faced regarding its monetization and ad policies in recent months. The apology comes at the end of Pride month, and the video platform says that it will do better by its creators.”


Fold3: Access Revolutionary War Records for Free* . “To commemorate Independence Day, Fold3 is providing free access* to our Revolutionary War Collection July 1–15.” The asterisk means you’ll have to register for a free account to access the free content.

The Daily Dot: How to (legally) read your favorite comics online for free. “We’re living in a golden age of digital comics, with the market providing a myriad of options when it comes to reading your favorite books online. The downside is, most of these options cost money. For people looking for free comics, there are two options, piracy or compromise. Plenty of sites offer pirated scans of today’s top books for free, but the sites listed below are 100-percent illegal. What’s a cash-strapped fan to do? Fret not, here are the best legal ways to read free comics online, from mainstream classics to indie favorites.”


Inside Higher Education: A Race Against Time to Preserve University Media Collections. “In the basements and back rooms of universities across the country, boxes and boxes of video and audio tapes, discs and film reels sit rotting, their content slowly being permanently lost instead of saved for posterity. For institutions tasked not only with creating knowledge, but also preserving it, this is a big problem. Digitizing and preserving this so-called time-based media requires specialized equipment, skilled engineers and a lot of cash — resources that many institutions simply don’t have to spare.”

Wired: Why Tech Worker Dissent Is Going Viral. “SILICON VALLEY HAS a long and secretive history of building hardware and software for the military and law enforcement. In contrast, a recent wave of employee protests against some of those government contracts has been short, fast, and surprisingly public—tearing through corporate campuses, mailing lists, and message boards inside some of the world’s most powerful companies.”


Ars Technica: LTE wireless connections used by billions aren’t as secure as we thought. “The Long Term Evolution mobile device standard used by billions of people was designed to fix many of the security shortcomings in the predecessor standard known as Global System for Mobile communications. Mutual authentication between end users and base stations and the use of proven encryption schemes were two of the major overhauls. Now, researchers are publicly identifying weaknesses in LTE that allow attackers to send nearby users to malicious websites and fingerprint the sites they visit.”

Quartz: California just passed the toughest data privacy bill in the US. “In one day (June 28th), the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 unanimously passed both legislative chambers and was signed into law by governor Jerry Brown. Similar to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which went live in Europe in May, the law requires that Californians have access to and the ability to delete the data tech companies hold on them. It also gives users the ability to opt out of companies sharing (and theoretically selling) their data to third parties.”


CNET: Will AI need therapy in the future?. “Considering we live in a world where MIT researchers created Norman, a psychopathic AI, it makes sense — perhaps we’ll soon occupy a future where we have to ‘treat’ AI for potential personality disorders, in much the same way we treat human beings. ”

The Next Web: The EU’s disastrous copyright reform will sabotage internet culture. “When you say ‘copyright law,’ people’s eyes glaze over. It’s not the most interesting topic. It’s obscure and currently winding its way through the complex bureaucracy that is the EU Parliament — an equally arcane process. And yet there’s ample reason to pay attention. Because the outcome of the copyright vote on July 4 and 5 (a re-do after it passed in committee) could be really, really bad for the internet as we know it. Indeed, how the vote unfolds will impact countless, more interesting topics — from selfies and online entertainment to popular parody and memes. Here’s why.” Good morning, Internet…

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