Winston-Salem African-Americans, Coral Reef Maps, Podcast Discovery, More: Thursday Evening ResearchBuzz, April 25, 2019


DigitalNC: Newly Digitized Materials from Winston Salem’s African-American Community Now Online. “We have added materials that capture some of Winston Salem’s rich African-American history from 1930 to 1990, courtesy of the Winston Salem African American Archive. Included in this batch are several editions of The Columbian, the student newspaper for Columbian Heights High School, and articles from other local papers highlighting notable community members and events.”

Phys .org: Scientists create largest collection of coral reef maps ever made . “The high-resolution coral reef maps made for this study can be found on the World Reef Map, an interactive coral reef atlas where users can explore all of the coral reefs and shallow water marine habitats mapped on the Global Reef Expedition. Although they by no means cover every reef worldwide, this new atlas covers a meaningful portion of key reef provinces around the world.”


Big thanks to Wallace S. for pointing out this one! From Radio Ink: New App Hopes To Help With Podcast Discovery . “The product is called Swoot and the goal of the new app is to make it easy for podcast listeners to recommend shows to friends.” The article makes it almost sound like Google Reader for podcasts.

Merriam-Webster: We Added New Words to the Dictionary in April 2019. “The English language never sleeps, and neither does the dictionary. The work of revising a dictionary is constant, and it mirrors the culture’s need to make sense of the world with words. There are always new things to be named and new uses for existing words to be explained. A release of new words is also a map of the workings of a dictionary—you get to see what we’ve been up to—and of how words from different contexts come to reside in the same place.”


ProPublica: Here’s How TurboTax Just Tricked You Into Paying to File Your Taxes. “Did you know that if you make less than $66,000 a year, you can prepare and file your taxes for free? No? That’s no accident. Companies that make tax preparation software, like Intuit, the maker of TurboTax, would rather you didn’t know.”

The Verge: Blocking social networks after terrorist attacks can do more harm than good. “Imagine for a moment that you run a small country prone to outbreaks of sectarian violence. Terrorist attacks hit a series of churches and hotels in your country on a major religious holiday, prompting fears that violence will spread. Your citizens are using social networks to get in touch with their loved ones and you coordinate disaster response efforts — but they also appear to be using those same networks to plan further violence. It’s your job to bring the situation under control in a way that balance speech rights with safety. Do you leave Facebook online, or do you shut it off?”


Ubergizmo: This Colorful Patch Stops AI Cameras From Tracking You. “Thanks to the efforts of a group of engineers from the University of KU Leuven in Belgium, they have somehow managed to beat AI-powered cameras from identifying and tracking you. It also appears that the method involved isn’t particularly sophisticated and all it involves is a colorful patch that you can print out at home.”


Quartz: An MIT researcher demonstrated how we can now search the internet through a wearable “sticker”. “At the TED conference last week, MIT Media Lab’s Arnav Kapur showed that we might be one step closer to becoming cyborgs. For the first time, the 24-year old intelligence augmentation researcher conducted a live public demo of AlterEgo, his wearable device that allows users to access the internet or any computing device without typing or using our voice.”

The Next Web: Why ‘Magic: The Gathering’ is AI’s toughest challenge. “Games make the perfect teaching environment for developers to train machine learning models in, but which game produces the strongest AI? You can put your money on DeepMind’s AlphaGo or OpenAI’s DotA 2-playing machine, but we’ll take whichever one is the first to master Magic: The Gathering – humanity’s hardest game.” Good evening, Internet…

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