Clean Energy Worldwide, Windows 10, Twitter, More: Wednesday ResearchBuzz, April 24, 2019


NREL: New I-JEDI Online Tool Examines Jobs and Economic Impacts of Clean Energy Around the World. “The USAID-NREL Partnership has launched the new International Jobs and Economic Development Impacts (I-JEDI) website, which houses the I-JEDI tool. I-JEDI can estimate the potential economic impacts of wind, solar, biomass, and geothermal energy projects. Countries represented in the I-JEDI tool include Colombia, Mexico, the Philippines, South Africa, and Zambia.”


ZDNet: Windows 10’s ‘Sets’ feature is gone and not expected to return. “In 2017, Microsoft officials provided a preview of two new features coming to Windows 10: Timeline and Sets. Timeline made it into Windows 10 as part of the April 2018 Update, but Sets didn’t. And it’s looking like it never will be included in Windows 10.”

CNET: Twitter beats expectations as users grow and streamlining continues. “On Tuesday, Twitter said that monthly active users increased to 330 million in the first quarter from 321 million users in the fourth quarter. From now on, though, Twitter will stop reporting monthly active users, which had been its benchmark for engagement. Instead, the company will report daily active users.”

Reuters: Google completes subsea cable to Chile in global cloud push. “Alphabet Inc’s Google has completed a 10,000-kilometer (6,214-mile) subsea cable linking the coast of California to Chile, a key step in its plans to bolster its global cloud computing infrastructure.”


Lifehacker: The Best Competitors To Every First-Party Google App And Service. “Because of new EU anti-trust laws, Google is legally obligated to show its users apps and browsers from its competitors. While these laws are in effect, Google doesn’t have to fill you in on similar products that may be available from other companies. Don’t worry, though — we went ahead and found that information ourselves.” Almost no annotation, unfortunately…


The Conversation: Mukurtu: an online dilly bag for keeping Indigenous digital archives safe. “Mukurtu (pronounced MOOK-oo-too) is an online system that aims to help Indigenous communities conserve stories, videos, photographs, songs, word lists and other digital archives. Mukurtu is a Warumungu word meaning ‘dilly bag’ or a safe keeping place for sacred materials. It’s a free, mobile, and open source platform built with Indigenous communities in mind to manage and share digital cultural heritage.”

Wired: How Recommendation Algorithms Run the World. “What should you watch? What should you read? What’s news? What’s trending? Wherever you go online, companies have come up with very particular, imperfect ways of answering these questions. Everywhere you look, recommendation engines offer striking examples of how values and judgments become embedded in algorithms and how algorithms can be gamed by strategic actors.”

Slate: Anti-Immigrant Armed Militias Posted Videos and Fundraised Through Facebook for Months. “The Facebook video starts from the perspective of the driver’s seat of a truck, peering out the windshield at night. It’s pitch black. A few seconds in, a man’s voice snaps, ‘They’re going up the road.’ The engine starts, and headlights flash on to reveal a line of people hunched over, darting across the dirt carrying children. The camera, which appears to be from a smartphone, keeps rolling as the man filming grabs a bigger flashlight and runs out of his truck toward a woman kneeling on the ground holding a crying child, dousing the two in bright light.”


Nieman Lab: What the EU’s copyright overhaul means — and what might change for big tech. “Last week, the Council of the European Union — the EU body that represents the executive governments of its member states — signed off on the new EU Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market — the first significant update to EU copyright rules in almost two decades. That was the last Europe-level hurdle for a process that lasted nearly three years.”

FBI: FBI Releases the Internet Crime Complaint Center 2018 Internet Crime Report. “The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) 2018 Internet Crime Report includes information from 351,936 complaints of suspected Internet crime, with reported losses in excess of $2.7 billion. The top three crime types reported by victims in 2018 were non-payment/non-delivery, extortion, and personal data breach. In addition to the 2018 statistics, the report contains information about the IC3, the FBI’s work in combating Internet crime, and the most prevalent scams.”

Washington Post: How Nest, designed to keep intruders out of people’s homes, effectively allowed hackers to get in. “Tara Thomas thought her daughter was just having nightmares. ‘There’s a monster in my room,’ the almost-3-year-old would say, sometimes pointing to the green light on the Nest Cam installed on the wall above her bed. Then Thomas realized her daughter’s nightmares were real. In August, she walked into the room and heard pornography playing through the Nest Cam, which she had used for years as a baby monitor in their Novato, Calif., home.”


BBC: Could a computer ever create better art than a human?. “Last year a portrait of Edmond Belamy sold for $432,000 (£337,000). A bit steep, you might think, for a picture of someone you’ve never heard of. And you won’t have heard of the artist either, as the picture was created by an algorithm drawing on a data set of 15,000 portraits painted between the 14th and 20th Centuries. And to be honest, it’s a bit rubbish.” Good morning, Internet…

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