Google Street View Lebanon, Elive OS, Browser Extensions, More: Thursday Afternoon Buzz, September 13, 2018


Trade Arabia: Google brings Lebanon’s rich history and culture to the world. “Today, anyone with an internet connection can virtually explore the natural landscape of Lebanon including the pearl of nature Jeita Grotto, Al Shouf Cedar Nature Reserve, and learn about the country’s history from Baalbek & Temple of Jupiter. The team also captured The National Museum of Beirut which was reopened in 2016. The imagery also includes different universities some of which date back over a hundred years including the American University of Beirut.”


The Register: Dust off that old Pentium, Linux fans: It’s Elive. “Designed to run on minimal hardware, Elive is very much a passion project of its leader, Samuel F Baggen. Based on Debian, the first version took a bow in 2005. The second stable version made an appearance in 2010 and it has been a long eight years for the third stable version to become available.” If you’ve got some old rigs laying around that need an OS, this might do this trick. Crazy-low system requirements.


The Daily Dot: The 50 all-time best Google Chrome extensions. “If you use the Google Chrome browser without using extensions, then sorry honey, but—ya basic. There is a veritable smorgasbord of software that can totally enhance your browsing experience. We’ve hand-picked 50 of what we think are some of the best Chrome extensions out there. Our alphabetical list has an emphasis on practicality and usefulness, but we’ve also included some more fun and light-hearted options.” Interesting, and decently-annotated for a list this size.


ThinkProgress: Facebook’s idea of ‘fact-checking’: Censoring ThinkProgress because conservative site told them to. “The Weekly Standard brought its third-party ‘fact-checking’ power to bear against ThinkProgress on Monday, when the outlet determined a ThinkProgress story about Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was ‘false,’ a category defined by Facebook to indicate ‘the primary claim(s) in this content are factually inaccurate.'”

CNET: Google’s Sergey Brin calls 2016 election ‘offensive’ in leaked video. “Google co-founder Sergey Brin told a company gathering that he felt offended by the 2016 election, according to a leaked video published by Breitbart on Wednesday, comments that will likely fuel criticism among conservatives that the search giant is biased against them.”


Threatpost: Open .Git Directories Leave 390K Websites Vulnerable. “A scan of more than 230 million web domains worldwide has uncovered 390,000 web pages with open .git directories – a worrying state of affairs that can expose a range of sensitive information.”

Washington Post: Google’s location privacy practices are under investigation in Arizona. “Google’s alleged practice of recording location data about Android device owners even when they believe they have opted out of such tracking has sparked an investigation in Arizona, where the state’s attorney general could potentially levy a hefty fine against the search giant.”

The Hacker News: Apple Removes Several Trend Micro Apps For Collecting MacOS Users’ Data. “Apple has removed almost all popular security apps offered by well-known cyber-security vendor Trend Micro from its official Mac App Store after they were caught stealing users’ sensitive data without their consent. The controversial apps in question include Dr Cleaner, Dr Cleaner Pro, Dr Antivirus, Dr Unarchiver, App Uninstall, Dr. Battery, and Duplicate Finder for Mac computers.”


Freedom of the Press Foundation: Google should protect whistleblowers and increase transparency, not stifle it. “Companies that claim to care about transparency—especially those like Google, which have the power to influence civil liberties for people across the world—should implement robust internal policies to protect whistleblowers. Whether they bring their ethical concerns to their supervisors or the press, tech workers should not have to fear retaliation for alerting people to an issue of profound public concern.”

MIT Technology Review: A plan to advance AI by exploring the minds of children. “The project brings computer scientists and engineers together with neuroscientists and cognitive psychologists to explore research that might lead to fundamental progress in artificial intelligence. [Josh] Tenenbaum outlined the project, and his vision for advancing AI, at EmTech, a conference held at MIT this week by MIT Technology Review.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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