Cornell Suffrage, Data Scientists, JPEG Compression, More: Friday Afternoon Buzz, November 9, 2018


Cornell Chronicle: Exhibit commemorates women’s right to vote. “As voters make their voices heard on Election Day, a new online exhibit looks back at a time when casting a ballot in itself was a triumphant feat for women.”


Harvard Business Review: The Kinds of Data Scientist. “In 2012, HBR dubbed data scientist ‘the sexiest job of the 21st century’. It is also, arguably, the vaguest. To hire the right people for the right roles, it’s important to distinguish between different types of data scientist. There are plenty of different distinctions that one can draw, of course, and any attempt to group data scientists into different buckets is by necessity an oversimplification. Nonetheless, I find it helpful to distinguish between the deliverables they create. One type of data scientist creates output for humans to consume, in the form of product and strategy recommendations. They are decision scientists. The other creates output for machines to consume like models, training data, and algorithms. They are modeling scientists.”

Hongkiat: Minify & Optimize JPG Images Online with “The free tool lets anyone convert their existing images into optimized JPEG files without any software. You simply upload your images and the website does everything for you on the backend.” Decent overview of how it works.

How-To Geek: Google Killed Chrome Apps, But You Can Easily Make Your Own. “If you live in Chrome the way I live in Chrome (which is basically all the time) but also appreciate running webapps in dedicated windows for better multitasking, Applicationize is a killer tool to have in your toolbox.”


The Telegraph: Urgent appeal to save huge photo archive depicting Venice in its post-war heyday. “In urgent appeal has been launched to save a huge archive of photographs depicting Venice in its post-war, Dolce Vita heyday, when the Grand Canal and St Mark’s Square were frequented by the likes of Paul Newman, Sean Connery, Ernest Hemingway and Sophia Loren. The archive of more than 320,000 photographs, amassed by a now defunct Italian photography agency called CameraPhoto, depicts world leaders such as Winston Churchill and Pope John Paul II, as well as artists such as Dali and Picasso and the American poet Ezra Pound.”


Krebs on Security: SMS Phishing + Cardless ATM = Profit. “A number of financial institutions are now offering cardless ATM transactions that allow customers to withdraw cash using nothing more than their mobile phones. But this also creates an avenue of fraud for bad guys, who can leverage phished or stolen account credentials to add a new phone number to the customer’s account and then use that added device to siphon cash from hijacked accounts at cardless ATMs.”

BetaNews: Number of data breaches falls but 2018 is still set to be the second worst year on record. “In the final quarter of 2018, the number of reported breaches is down by eight percent and the number of exposed records is down around 49 percent, from seven billion in 2017. The latest Data Breach QuickView report from Risk Based Security shows that seven breaches exposed 100 million or more records with the 10 largest breaches accounting for 84.5 percent of the records exposed this year to date.”


CNET: Watch this creepy AI anchor talk like a real person. “China’s state-run media Xinhua and Beijing-based search engine Sogou debuted two “AI composite anchors” — one each for English and Chinese viewers — at the World Internet Conference in Wuzhen Wednesday. The AI are ‘cloned’ from real-life anchors, according to Xinhua’s report, sporting the same faces and voices.”

Columbia Business School: Is Facebook Bad for News?. “Is Facebook raising the quality of top newspapers? According to new research from Carson Family Professor of Business Miklos Sarvary, the answer might be yes. His analysis is detailed in ‘Social Media and News: Attention Capture via Content Bundling,’ a working paper co-authored with Alexandre Cornière of the Toulouse School of Economics. The pair built a mathematical model of the relationship between a news provider (e.g., The New York Times) and a social media platform (e.g., Facebook) and assess how the newspaper may adjust its quality in response to Facebook bundling news in members’ newsfeeds.”

Genealogy’s Star: Ten Threats to the Future of Genealogical Research. “As time passes, certain social, economic, and cultural factors do not bode well for the future of genealogical research. Because of the involvement of large, online genealogy companies, we are being led to believe that the “future” of genealogical research lies in their huge online collections of documents and the application of genealogical DNA testing, but despite these two greatly beneficial developments, we still have, at best, a murky genealogical future.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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