afternoonbuzz

Internet Archives, CES 2019, Hosts Files, More: Monday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, January 7, 2019

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

Internet Archive Blog: A Public Peek into 1923. “Commercial radio broadcasting began in the 1920s, bringing entertainment, news and music into people’s homes. Now, instead of needing to play a 78rpm disc on your phonograph, you could just tune in to listen to popular songs. And in 1923 that means you would have been listening to one of the many versions of ‘Yes! We Have No Bananas’ written by Frank Silver and Irving Cohn.”

Digital Trends: Digital Trends Live: Everything to expect from CES 2019 . This is mostly a video, but does have a good-sized article attached to it. “The latest episode of Digital Trends Live, DT’s live morning show, is the last one before CES, the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, and Digital Trends Live hosts Greg Nibler and Caleb Denison spent it previewing the many of the things we expect to see on the show floor.”

USEFUL STUFF

Lifehacker: How to (Really) Block Distracting Websites with Your Hosts File. “When you edit your hosts file, you’re telling your system to use a particular IP address instead of whatever your DNS server resolves to when you type a URL into your browser’s address bar. So, instead of facebook.com sending you to 31.13.71.36 (or whatever Facebook’s IP is when you read this article), you can have your browser send yourself to your own computer—127.0.0.1—which loads a fat pile of nothing on your screen.”

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

NBC News: He lures alleged child predators and shames them on Facebook. Now one of his targets is dead.. “On a cool evening in October, Alain Malcolm, 20, walked into a vacant two-story colonial house in Bristol, Connecticut. Two members of a local internet vigilante group — who regularly try to expose and shame alleged child predators they entice online — were waiting for him.”

Wired: How Does Photography Affect You? We Tried To Find Out. “At this point, people take more than a trillion photographs each year, the vast majority of which come courtesy of a smartphone. The cameras in our pockets may not be able to match high-end DSLR or mirrorless cameras, but they’re packed with sensors and software that can help us create stunning images instantly. We’ve responded by snapping pics at every conceivable moment, from mealtime to pilgramages to a day at the museum. We take photos of concerts, of our friends, of spectacles both planned and unplanned, and—depending on your age and social-media activity—of ourselves.”

Ars Technica: They’re dead to us: The Ars Technica 2019 Deathwatch. “If you’re stumbling across Ars’ Deathwatch for the first time, this is not a prediction of the actual demise of companies or technologies. It takes a lot to actually erase a company or a technology from the face of the Earth these days. Even the worst ideas and businesses often linger on through inertia or get absorbed by some other company and metastasize in new and horrific ways—for example, Yahoo. (We’ll get to them soon enough.)”

SECURITY & LEGAL

TechCrunch: Served a summons via tweet? It just happened to one allegedly elusive VC . “Jonathan Teo, a Bay Area venture capitalist, might be regretting having a Twitter account tonight. The reason: it was used to serve a summons to Teo by the law firm Baker Curtis & Schwartz, which represents a former employee of the early-stage venture firm Teo had cofounded in 2014, Binary Capital.”

RESEARCH & OPINION

United States Politics and Policy: A new tool can help us determine which conspiracy theories are false and which might be true. . “Many or even most conspiracy theories are demonstrably false. But some, like Watergate, are true. How can we determine which are which? Drawing on his own experiences with conspiracy theorists, Stephan Lewandowsky writes that conspiratorial thinking is not necessarily truth-seeking behavior, but can often be a near-self destructive form of skepticism. We can use this skepticism, along with conspiracists’ tendency towards pattern-seeking and self-sealing reasoning, to flush out which are false, and which might be true after all.”

Quartz: Tropical rainforests have a soundtrack. Recording it may save them. “Imagine a human city which has lost half of its inhabitants, or in which its diverse populations have been winnowed down to a single culture. While the buildings and roads may be standing, the many interactions that make the city hum would largely vanish. That’s what’s happening in many forests.”

CNN: The case for why Big Tech is violating antitrust laws. “Big Tech is behaving badly. And I’m not talking about Facebook handing over your personal data to the highest bidder or Amazon playing puppeteer in its HQ2 charade. Big Tech is violating the Sherman Act of 1890. If you think an antitrust law passed over a century ago couldn’t possibly address the problems of the digital era, you’re wrong. Much like our Constitution, the Sherman Act was written broadly enough to handle whatever the future might hold.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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