British Library, Nebraska Birds, Google Goggles, More: Sunday Buzz, August 19, 2018


British Library: A bumper crop of manuscripts (part 1). “The summer holidays may be here but we have been busy at the British Library, adding more items to our Digitised Manuscripts site. Here are some of the highlights.” Gorgeous illuminated manuscripts.

Inspired Living Omaha: Sparrow or house wren? New online resource helps you identify those birds in your feeder. “Feeding the birds is a popular hobby. As many as 53 Americans take part each year. Most people can identify a cardinal or a woodpecker. But it can be frustrating if you don’t know the other species of birds in your feeder. A new website makes it easier for birders to learn about the birds that inhabit Nebraska.”


Engadget: Google Goggles is officially dead. “Google signed Goggles’ death warrant the moment it launched Lens, and now it looks like the tech giant is ready to bid farewell to its old image recognition app. As Android Police has noticed, the only thing you’ll see when you fire up the Goggles app is a note that says it’s going away.”


MakeUseOf: How to Identify Music and Songs in YouTube Videos. “It’s a common situation. You are happily watching a video on YouTube, perhaps a commercial or a movie trailer, and it has a catchy song playing in the background. You want to know what the music is, but how do you find out? Identifying some music and songs is easy, while others require a little more persistence. But thanks to this step-by-step walkthrough, you are (almost) guaranteed to identify any music or songs you hear online. All you need is a little time and patience.”

I heard about a Library of Congress browser extension that shows you LoC images every time you open a browser tab. From the page: “Explore free to use images from the Library of Congress anytime you open a new tab!” This extension is NOT available in the Chrome store.


New York Times: Trump Accuses Social Media Firms of Discrimination Against Conservatives. “President Trump said on Saturday that conservative voices were being unfairly censored on social media, hinting that he might intervene if his allies’ accounts continued to be shut down. ‘Social Media is totally discriminating against Republican/Conservative voices,’ Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter, saying that ‘censorship is a very dangerous thing.'”

Recode: Inside Facebook’s plan to protect the U.S. midterm elections. “On one hand, Facebook’s safeguards to prevent another election interference campaign appeared to work. On the other, it was a sign that Facebook will once again be a target — or perhaps a weapon — for people who want to divide American voters ahead of the 2018 midterms and destabilize support for government officials. Harvard lecturer Eric Rosenbach is bracing for the latter.”

The Daily Beast: The Far-Right Is Conning IMDb: They’re Exploiting ‘a Weakness in the System’. “In a recent blog post, Mike Cernovich, the far-right social media personality and Pizzagate pusher, tacked another profession on to his resume: character actor. After The New York Times ran an article in which he was briefly mentioned and described as someone not worth taking seriously, Cernovich offered a retort in his usual triumphalist style. In the blog, he rattled off a laundry list of his recent accomplishments, including the trailer for the next film he’s producing, which Cernovich asserted is in pre-production and he has promised will arrive shortly.”


Ubergizmo: Glitch Accidentally Exposes Twitch Private Messages. “Back in May earlier this year, Twitch decided to ultimately kill off one of their features in the form of Messages. However the company also gave its users the option of downloading an archive of all their private messages should they decide to keep it for whatever reasons. Unfortunately a glitch with the system seems to have exposed the private messages of some users.”


The Outline: Let’s All Go Back To Tumblr. “Maybe you’re familiar with the many reasons why people hate Twitter. It’s a time sink, it enables the spread of fake news and bigotry, it encourages white hot anger predicated on context collapse, it’s allowed mildly clever people to build careers on a foundation of bullshit, and so on. The memes are good, and the animal GIFs too (and the political solidarity and the righteous signal boosting and all of the other legitimately positive things, please don’t tell me about them) but increasingly there is a sense — or rather, a range of senses — that much of this fussing around is not exactly healthy, for ourselves or society or anyone else.”

Medium: Plan for Publishing CRS Reports Falls Short. “In March, new legislation from Congress required the Library of Congress publish all non-confidential Congressional Research Service reports online by September 19th of this year. That deadline is rapidly approaching and while congressional and civil society concerns about the library’s implementation plan remain unaddressed, the Librarian of Congress, Dr. Hayden, declined a direct request from Rep. Lofgren for the Librarian to meet with civil society about improving the website.” Good morning, Internet…

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