Great Lakes Biodiversity, Confederate Monuments, Pakistan Laws, More: Thursday ResearchBuzz, August 22, 2019


Michigan State University: Great Lakes Water Life database documents biodiversity of Great Lakes native species. “The biological diversity of the North American Great Lakes makes this set of interconnected freshwater ecosystems unique on a global scale. To document the wide variety of flora and fauna native to the Great Lakes, NOAA-GLERL has partnered with US EPA and the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network to launch the new Great Lakes Water Life database: a comprehensive, accessible inventory of aquatic species found throughout the region.”

Washington Post: Two women lead a free tour of Charlottesville’s Confederate monuments each month. A new website lets everyone listen.. “Once a month, the two African American women walk to the former slave auction block in Charlottesville. They stand before a crowd that often numbers in the dozens. University of Virginia professor Jalane Schmidt gestures toward the ground, pointing out a small concrete marker, flush with the brick sidewalk, that declares: ‘On this site, slaves were bought and sold.’ Beside her, Andrea Douglas, executive director of the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center, clears her throat. ith that, the tour — which will stretch for roughly 90 minutes and take attendees through the history and legacy of Charlottesville’s embattled Confederate monuments — begins.”

Samaa: Govt gives public easier access to laws with new website. “The Pakistan Code website… contains more than 900 laws and an archive dating back to 1948, Law Minister Farogh Naseem announced during a press conference on Wednesday.”


CNET: Lightweight Google Go now available worldwide. “Google’s lightweight Google Go app will now be available globally, Google said Tuesday. At 7MB, the app is a much smaller version of the traditional Google app. It also offers versions of new Google features like Lens and an out-loud page-reader.”

TechCrunch: Microsoft’s new Chromium-based Edge browser is now in beta. “Microsoft today launched the first beta builds of its new Chromium-based Edge browser for Windows and Mac. The new beta channel, which will see a new update roughly every six weeks, will join the existing dev and canary channels, which will continue to see daily and weekly updates, respectively.”


The Guardian: Families of missing Uighurs use Tiktok video app to publicise China detentions. “Uighurs are sending out messages on social media video app Tiktok showing family members who have gone missing, in their latest attempt to raise awareness about the estimated 1 million Uighurs who have been detained in camps that have sprung up across China’s Xinjiang region.”

Wired: Building Virtual Worlds Is a New Form of Self-Expression. “As more people become literate in 3D world-building, what will it mean for society? It’s easy to see this moving mainstream, much as image-meme culture did. What began as a bunch of teenagers using Microsoft Paint to mess around with cat photos in the early aughts had by 2016 become a powerful form of political rhetoric—Bernie Sanders with the Beatles (‘DID SOMEONE SAY THEY WANT A REVOLUTION?’), Hillary Clinton as the Joker, Pepe the Frog as a fungible symbol for white supremacists.”

CNN: Social network Homeis thinks a safe space for immigrants online is possible. “For the past two years, an Israeli entrepreneur has been working on what may seem like an idealistic, impossible task for this moment in time: building a better corner of the internet for immigrants. Ran Harnevo, 44, is the co-founder and CEO of new startup Homeis — a social network that feels like a hybrid between neighborhood social networking app Nextdoor and Facebook (FB).”

The Verge: YouTube Shows Have Become A Secret Weapon For Rising Politicians. “Over the past few months, candidates Andrew Yang and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) have also appeared on YouTube podcasts with some of the platform’s most popular creators. All three have appeared on Rogan, with Yang also speaking with conservative commentator Dave Rubin and Ethan and Hila Klein from the H3 Podcast.”


Ahram Online: New law to impose tax on social media ads, online services: Egypt’s finance minister. “Egypt’s Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait has announced that his ministry is close to finalising a draft law which will impose a tax on social media advertisements and services offered through online platforms.”

Neowin: Mozilla and Google stop Kazakh government from intercepting traffic. “Mozilla has announced that it, and Google, have deployed technical solutions within Firefox and Chrome to stop the Kazakh government from intercepting internet traffic inside the country. According to Censored Planet, the government in Kazakhstan began using a fake root CA certificate to intercept HTTPS connections.”


CNBC: A new theory describes how hate travels across social media platforms and around the world — and one researcher compares it to water boiling. “In a new study mapping how hate travels across the online world, researchers explored how hate groups thrive on social media even when they are banned and offered new solutions to dismantle them.” Good morning, Internet…

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