Sainsbury’s, Oregon Flooding, Mozilla Thunderbird, More: Thursday ResearchBuzz, January 3, 2019


Sainsbury’s: Sainsbury Archive goes digital to mark 150 years. “The Sainsbury Archive is putting almost a hundred thousand never-before-seen items online for the first time, allowing the public to easily access materials which tell the story of the Sainsbury family and the changing face of retail from the mid-19th century to the present day.” This announcement really confused me because I had a bell ringing in my head for a fairly recent Sainsbury’s archive release. That, I remembered after scrabbling around for a few minutes, was for packaging design.

Register-Guard: Deep data: Oregon offers new online resource for potential flooding around the state. “Riverside property owners, anglers and others with interest in stream levels around Oregon have a new way to check for potential flooding. The Oregon Office of Emergency Management last month released a new online dashboard. The tool includes an interactive map and a list of how many stream gauges are expected to be nearing flood stage, or have minor flooding, moderate flooding or major flooding. As of early this week, no gauges around Oregon indicated flooding.”


Neowin: Mozilla Thunderbird to get prettier and faster this year. “Mozilla’s Thunderbird is not as well known of a project as the Firefox browser, so much so that the organization decided to separate the development of the two a few years back, and then moved Thunderbird to a new home in 2017. Nonetheless, the e-mail client still gets major annual updates, such as Thunderbird 60 released in 2018, which introduced a new icon, support for light and dark themes, and much more.”

Engadget: Google wins FCC approval to keep developing radar-based hand sensor. “Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) team has been working on Project Soli since 2015. The gesture-based system uses broad beam radar to detect and capture hand movements, turning them into commands for mobile devices. Until now, though, the tech has been restricted, with some companies — including Facebook — claiming that the high frequency levels required might interfere with existing technology. Now, the FCC has granted a waiver that will allow Soli to operate at higher levels than currently allowed, and therefore continue development as Google originally intended.”


Technotification: Best Python Tools For Machine Learning And Data Science. “… when it comes to Data Science, Python has packages that are rooted specifically for data science job. SciPy, NumPy, and pandas facilitate data analysis and can be easily integrated with web apps. It can include statistical code in production database if needed. And at last, it is an open-source programming language having a lot of resources and high-quality documentation and active community of developers willing to provide advice and assistance through all stages of the development process.”

MakeUseOf: 11 Beautiful Data Visualization Sites That’ll Impress and Hook You. “The internet is awash with an unimaginable amount of data. Nearly every piece of information in the world today is available online. Not all of it is in dull datasets and spreadsheets. Creative data visualization has turned unknowable information into stories. You can check how diverse a city is or slip back in time to pour through archaic manuscripts preserved for centuries.”


CNN: We tested Tumblr’s ban on porn. It needs work. “A picture of a woman breastfeeding a baby. A fully clothed woman taking selfies in the mirror. A photo of a vase. These images were all wrongly flagged by Tumblr as improper. Tumblr began its crackdown on adult content several weeks ago. But behind the scenes its technology still struggles to figure out the difference between what’s banned and approved nudity.”

India Times: This Guy Took A 15-Minute Shortcut Suggested By Google Maps & Ended Up On A Two-Hour Road Trip. “If you are someone who loves adventure, just get on Google maps and trust it for giving you some of the most convoluted directions. That’s right, directions on Google maps aren’t always accurate and some of the routes suggested by the app are hilariously wild. This is exactly what happened to one Australian guy who just wanted a 15-minute shortcut to a particular place and the maps ended up taking him on the most scenic two-hour drive of his life.” Fortunately the guy had plenty of supplies and documented his journey with some great pictures.

New York Times: Overlooked No More: Karen Sparck Jones, Who Established the Basis for Search Engines. “When most scientists were trying to make people use code to talk to computers, Karen Sparck Jones taught computers to understand human language instead. In so doing, her technology established the basis of search engines like Google.”


The Next Web: Did you #DeleteFacebook? Shady players can still exploit your data. “Did you #DeleteFacebook in 2018? Caring about our online privacy might be popular right now, but on a wider level, it’s not as easy as we think to escape the hole we’ve dug ourselves into.”

TechCrunch: Hackers are spreading Islamic State propaganda by hijacking dormant Twitter accounts. “Hackers are using a decade-old flaw to target and hijack dormant Twitter accounts to spread terrorist propaganda, TechCrunch has learned. Many of the affected Twitter accounts appeared to be hijacked in recent days or weeks — some longer — after years of inactivity. A sudden shift in tone or the language used in tweets often gives away the hijack — usually a single tweet in Arabic, sometimes praising Allah or retweeting propaganda from another account.”

CNET: Judge dismisses lawsuits against Facebook, Google, Twitter over San Bernardino shooting. “A federal judge has dismissed lawsuits that alleged Facebook, Google and Twitter were liable for a mass shooting that took place in San Bernardino, California in December 2015. In a decision Monday, Judge Laurel Beeler of the District Court for the Northern District of California said the attack wasn’t a direct result of social media and internet companies allegedly letting the Islamic State use their platforms.” Good morning, Internet…

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