Police Policies, Iowa City Newspapers, Geothermal Projects, More: Friday Buzz, July 27, 2018


WAMC: NYCLU Launches Database Of Police Policies . “The New York Civil Liberties Union has launched an online database of policies from a number of police departments across the state. The idea is to bring internal policies and data to the public, along with accountability and transparency.”

Little Village: Hard-cider, tetanus deaths and poisoned ice cream: ICPL launches an online archive of historic Iowa City newspapers . “On Tuesday, decades of Iowa City history suddenly became much more accessible, when the Iowa City Public Library launched an online archive of newspapers covering the years 1841 to 1925. The searchable archive features editions from seven different Iowa City newspapers previously available only on microfilm at the library.”

Think Geoenergy: Kenya Database on Public Private Partnership Projects features three geothermal projects. “Kenya has launched a website with a database on projects currently under way in Public Private Partnership model in the country. The database includes currently three geothermal projects in Menengai and Olkaria.”


Nieman Lab: News Counts is a collaborative project to protect the 2020 Census (and help journalists get the best stories out of it). “‘$600 billion is going to be given away in the next ten years according to the count that’s produced,’ said Mark Hansen, professor at Columbia Journalism School, director of the Brown Institute for Media Innovation, and cofounder of News Counts, an effort to create a national journalism network that will cover the 2020 census. ‘Getting a good count has always been a crucially important measure of the health of our society, and we wanted to see the ways in which journalism could help not only raise awareness about the importance of people exercising their constitutional right to be counted, but also see where the census is. Where are we compared to 10 years ago?'”

TechCrunch: Apple is rebuilding Maps from the ground up. “I’m not sure if you’re aware, but the launch of Apple Maps went poorly. After a rough first impression, an apology from the CEO, several years of patching holes with data partnerships and some glimmers of light with long-awaited transit directions and improvements in business, parking and place data, Apple Maps is still not where it needs to be to be considered a world-class service. Maps needs fixing. Apple, it turns out, is aware of this, so it’s re-building the maps part of Maps.”


BBC News: Manchester Arena attack: Tributes preserved online. “Thousands of items left as tributes to the Manchester Arena attack victims are to be recorded in a digital archive. The archive will document 10,000 objects – including soft toys, lanterns and a guitar – held at Manchester Art Gallery which were left across the city after bomb attack on 22 May 2017.”

New York Times: Facebook Starts Paying a Price for Scandals. “For nearly two years, Facebook has appeared bulletproof despite a series of scandals about the misuse of its giant social network. But the Silicon Valley company’s streak ended on Wednesday when it said that the accumulation of issues was starting to hurt its multibillion-dollar business — and that the costs are set to continue playing out for months.”

Bloomberg Quint: Inside Google’s Shadow Workforce. “Every day, tens of thousands of people stream into Google offices wearing red name badges. They eat in Google’s cafeterias, ride its commuter shuttles and work alongside its celebrated geeks. But they can’t access all of the company’s celebrated perks. They aren’t entitled to stock and can’t enter certain offices. Many don’t have health insurance.”


Lovely. From BetaNews: Demand for dark web malware exceeds supply. “Malware writers have been using a free market model to sell their wares for some time. The success of this approach is clear from new research by Positive Technologies that finds demand for malware creation on the dark web is three times greater than supply. Demand for malware distribution is twice the supply. This mismatch of supply and demand has led to interest among criminals in new tools, which are becoming more readily available in the form of partner programs that include malware-as-a-service and malware distribution-for-hire.”


The Outline: Infowars Is The Hill That Tech Companies Are Choosing To Die On. “The tech companies have so far faced little repercussion for failing to regulate their platforms over the last decade-plus, which is why they’ve done so little. But as this unrest starts to impact their bottom line, their gestures at cleaning up may not be enough.

STAT News: IBM’s Watson supercomputer recommended ‘unsafe and incorrect’ cancer treatments, internal documents show. This article is paywalled. “Internal IBM documents show that its Watson supercomputer often spit out erroneous cancer treatment advice and that company medical specialists and customers identified ‘multiple examples of unsafe and incorrect treatment recommendations’ as IBM was promoting the product to hospitals and physicians around the world.”

Phys .org: University of Leicester leads new project to accurately measure Earth’s land temperature. “The Land Surface Temperature CCI project is part of a coordinated effort to understand surface temperature change across domains within the European Space Agency’s Climate Change Initiative (CCI), which confronts the challenging set of satellite-based product requirements for climate. Accurate knowledge of land surface temperature (LST) plays a key role in describing the physics of land-surface processes at regional and global scales as they combine information on both the surface-atmosphere interactions and energy fluxes within the Earth Climate System. This provides important information across a range of disciplines including monitoring drought, impact on human health, and changes in vegetation.” Good morning, Internet…

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