Pokemon in Japan, Pennsylvania Boozicorns, New York City Classrooms, More: Thursday ResearchBuzz, August 1, 2019


Comicbook: New Website Helps Plan Your Next Pokemon Vacation to Japan. “Have you ever wanted to check out all the Pokemon sights and events in Japan, but the language barrier kept you from doing so? Good news, Pokemon Masters in training! Pokemon Local Acts, which catalogs all these things, has opened up an English-language version of the website for anyone looking to plan out their stops in the country — assuming they’re only interested in Pokemon-related tourism.”

The Citizens’ Voice: Online database helps track down ‘Boozicorns’ available statewide. “Pennsylvania’s regulation of wine and spirits offers unique frustrations and, sometimes, opportunities. One of the opportunities is the ability to search the entire state for specific products through the state’s centralized web portal. Anyone who does this regularly will see how often odd lots of wine or spirits— a bottle or a few — may be tucked away somewhere, frustratingly, in Bryn Mawr or Cambria County. A wise-cracky techie created a program and website to scrape the data for those odd lots available in just a single store and dubbed them Boozicorns.”

Chalkbeat: Over 900 NYC classrooms serving the city’s youngest children have deteriorating lead paint, new data show. “More than 900 New York City elementary school classrooms have tested positive for lead after inspections revealed the presence of peeling, chipped, or otherwise deteriorating lead paint, according to new data released Wednesday night by the education department.”


Android Police: Exclusive: Google now testing ‘Play Pass’ app and game subscription service. “Earlier this year, Apple announced Apple Arcade, a monthly subscription service that gives you access to a library of mobile games (including some exclusive titles) on iOS devices. Apple Arcade isn’t live yet, but Google is already testing its own competing service, named Play Pass.”

9to5 Google: Google begins replacing ‘Voice search’ on Android with Assistant. “Before Assistant, Google had ‘Voice search’ capabilities that were closely integrated with full on Search. Over the past several years, all innovation has been focussed on Assistant and Google is now in the process of fully replacing Voice search on Android.”


Brandeis University: Digitized Audio Recording Reveals Kurt Vonnegut Broadcast on Abbie Hoffman. “The Archives last year received a series of audio recordings created by producer Stuart Hutchison on the subject of Abbie Hoffman…. These recordings are now being digitized, preserved, and described as they make their way toward availability for research. One set of recordings is of a production called ‘Dear Abbie,’ created and broadcast in 1989 after Hoffman’s death. One excerpt from this production features American writer Kurt Vonnegut on writing, honesty, humor and opposing the Vietnam War.”

The Atlantic: A Wikipedia for Generation Z. “If you want to know who the biggest TikTok star is right now, who is in Emma Chamberlain’s squad, or where Baby Ariel grew up, only one website will give you the answers: Famous Birthdays.”


The Register: Fix LibreOffice now to thwart silent macro viruses – and here’s how to pwn those who haven’t . “LibreOffice version 6.2.5, which was supposed to patch the macro security hole, is still vulnerable, and exploit code is now available. Disable LibreLogo immediately if it is present and enabled in your build of LibreOffice.”

Computing: Honda’s unsecured database exposes 134 million documents with 40GB worth of information. “An unsecured Elasticsearch database belonging to Honda Motor Company was found exposing sensitive information about the company’s internal systems and device data.”


MIT Technology Review: A new tool uses AI to spot text written by AI. “AI algorithms can generate text convincing enough to fool the average human—potentially providing a way to mass-produce fake news, bogus reviews, and phony social accounts. Thankfully, AI can now be used to identify fake text, too.”

Portland Press Herald: Wildlife group is mapping out Maine’s roadkill hot spots. “A Maine Audubon online database will allow people who see roadkill to report it so the group can identify hotspots, said Sarah Haggerty, a conservation biologist and geographic information system manager for the wildlife conservation organization. The online database is part of a three-year program to identify where animals are getting hit the most and come up with a way to reduce the fatalities.”


Thanks to Esther S. for pointing this one out, from Ben Collins: Google Sheets Formula Clock. “It’s a working analog clock built with a single Google Sheets formula. That’s right, just a single formula. No Apps Script code. No widgets. No hidden add-ons. Just a plain ol’ formula in Google Sheets!” Good morning, Internet…

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