afternoonbuzz

Tech Startups, Chicago Murals, United Arab Emirates, More: Thursday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, May 2, 2019

NEW RESOURCES

TechCrunch: Golden unveils a Wikipedia alternative focused on emerging tech and startups. “Jude Gomila, who previously sold his mobile advertising company Heyzap to RNTS Media, is taking on a new challenge — building a “knowledge base” that can fill in Wikipedia’s blind spots, particularly when it comes to emerging technologies and startups. While Gomila is officially launching Golden today, it’s already full of content about things like the latest batch of Y Combinator startups and morphogenetic engineering.”

Art Critique: New database in Chicago aims to preserve street art. “The Mural Registry will act as one way to protect and recognize the public works that adorn the buildings of Chicago and, in just over a week, the register already contained over 150 city-wide murals.”

The National: Treasure trove of priceless UAE archives now online. I mentioned the initiative for this archive back in 2017. “The online portal contains 250,000 priceless archives. The majority are text documents and come from British foreign office files about the Gulf but photographs and video footage from the UAE are also included…. Work on digitising the documents began two years ago and the collection that has gone online is vast. Letters, treaties, maps and telegrams chart 200 years of intrigue, political strife, war, independence and progress. It would take researchers months to go through them all but some catch the eye immediately.”

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

BuzzFeed News: Here Are All The New Facebook, Instagram, And WhatsApp Features Announced At F8. “At Facebook’s F8 developer conference in San Jose, California, Tuesday, the company took pains to present itself as a privacy-friendly company that prioritizes its users’ safety following a scandal-ridden year. Yet while it touted encryption, secure data storage, and private interaction, Facebook continues to press forward with more ways for users to engage with the platform, leaving plenty of data behind.”

Remove .bg posted this update in late March and I missed it: Product Image Cutouts now available. “Up until now remove.bg worked for photos of persons only. Not anymore! Starting today, you can remove backgrounds from product photos 100% automatically and in less than 5 seconds.”

Mashable: Waze app can tell you how to get to Sesame Street . “t’s been 50 years of sunny days sweeping the clouds away. The beloved children’s show Sesame Street has been on air for half a century. To celebrate this major milestone, a New York City street is permanently becoming Sesame Street and you’ll be able to get to Big Bird, Elmo, Cookie Monster, Bert and Ernie, and even Oscar the Grouch’s stomping grounds. Instead of asking someone to tell you how to get to Sesame Street, you can plug it into the Waze navigation app.”

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

Bloomberg: Googlers Protest Retaliation; Even Some Facebook Staff Join Fray. “At over a dozen offices of Alphabet Inc.’s Google, workers staged sit-ins, with the largest protests drawing hundreds of workers, according to people who attended. Employees told personal stories about suffering retaliation, and in some cases discussed the possibility of forming a union. At Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, California, an employee activist in a cowboy hat handed out flyers to passersby, while discouraging workers from talking to a reporter. In New York, the largest protest, the group posed for a photograph. The organizers then posted it on Twitter – with all the faces blurred out.”

SECURITY & LEGAL

The Verge: DuckDuckGo wrote a bill to stop advertisers from tracking you online. “Today, DuckDuckGo CEO Gabriel Weinberg is mounting a new campaign to revive the Do Not Track standard, a privacy system first introduced 10 years ago and largely abandoned by the industry in the years since. Weinberg has developed a draft bill titled The Do-Not-Track Act of 2019, which is aimed at giving the Do Not Track standard a legal force it’s never had before. As he sees it, it’s the easiest single step to undo the tangle of online advertising.”

RESEARCH & OPINION

EurekAlert: US cities host more regionally unique species than previously thought. “To better understand whether rapidly growing cities are hosting the same species, a concept known as urban homogenization, a team from the California Academy of Sciences analyzed an immense volume of data gathered by citizen scientists during the four-day global City Nature Challenge. The 14 U.S. cities included in the study amassed more than 65,000 wildlife observations identified to species level through the mobile app iNaturalist.”

Fronteras: Study In Mexico Reveals Unusual Patterns In Social Media ‘Trolling’. “Social media is a powerful tool for politics, but sometimes its use becomes questionable. A recent study in Mexico reveals an unusual pattern on Twitter, where some attacks work in favor of a top politician: Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO).” Good afternoon, Internet…

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