afternoonbuzz

The Orphan’s Friend, Google, Zombie Apps, More: Friday ResearchBuzz, September 20, 2019

sometimes things are difficult.

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

DigitalNC: More of The Children’s Friend and The Orphan’s Friend are now online, thanks to the Grand Lodge of North Carolina!. “Over 100 new issues of The Children’s Friend and The Orphan’s Friend are now available on DigitalNC, thanks to our partners at the Grand Lodge of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons of North Carolina. Both published for an orphanage in Oxford, North Carolina, The Children’s Friend was in print from January to May 1975, and The Orphan’s Friend succeeded it until May 1895.” 99% sure that the “May 1975” should be “May 1875”.

CanIndia: Google goes bullish on India, unveils multiple products. “In its bid to make the Internet more accessible, inclusive and empowering for everyone in India, Google on Thursday announced a slew of products, including an artificial intelligence (AI) lab in Bengaluru, BSNL partnership, ‘Google Pay for Business’ app for merchants along with expanding Indian language support across Google Assistant, Discover, Lens and Bolo products.”

USEFUL STUFF

Popular Mechanics: How to Kill the Zombie Apps Destroying Your Phone. “With Halloween approaching, it’s time to purge your phone of the pre-installed ‘zombie apps’ that suck its blood (a.k.a. battery life) and leave your data at the mercy of hackers. Here’s how to spot a zombie app in the, uh, flesh.”

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

Seattle Times: Facebook still auto-generating Islamic State, al-Qaida pages. “In the face of criticism that Facebook is not doing enough to combat extremist messaging, the company likes to say that its automated systems remove the vast majority of prohibited content glorifying the Islamic State group and al-Qaida before it’s reported. But a whistleblower’s complaint shows that Facebook itself has inadvertently provided the two extremist groups with a networking and recruitment tool by producing dozens of pages in their names.”

Radio Prague: National Museum searching for early Czech sound recordings in US. “Few people in the Czech Republic know that a significant chapter in the history of early Czech sound recordings was written by Czech immigrants in the United States. For several years now, Filip Šír from the National Museum in Prague has been searching for the lost recordings and the stories of the people behind them. Last year, he published his findings in a book called Bohemia on Records, written together with music collector Gabriel Goessel. But he says there is still much more waiting to be discovered.”

SECURITY & LEGAL

Ars Technica: Protocol found in webcams and DVRs is fueling a new round of big DDoSes. “Hackers have found a new way to amplify the crippling effects of denial-of-service techniques by abusing an improperly implemented tool found in almost 1 million network-connected cameras, DVRs, and other Internet-of-things devices.”

Mashable: Facebook was also listening to Portal commands and will start again soon . “A new report confirms that contractors working for Facebook had been listening to audio recorded from users’ Portal requests and the company plans to restart the practice soon.”

The Japan Times: Four Japanese publishers sue U.S. ‘pirate’ manga websites. “Four Japanese publishers have filed a damages lawsuit with a court in New York against several U.S.-hosted websites that allow visitors to view manga, alleging ‘massive’ copyright infringement.”

RESEARCH & OPINION

Washington Post: Border fence construction could destroy archaeological sites, National Park Service finds. “Bulldozers and excavators rushing to install President Trump’s border barrier could damage or destroy up to 22 archaeological sites within Arizona’s Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in coming months, according to an internal National Park Service report obtained by The Washington Post.”

University of Alaska Fairbanks: New tsunami map tool empowers Alaskans to plan for the worst. “The Alaska Earthquake Center’s new Alaska Tsunami Hazard Map Tool will help people plan for the worst. The tool, which went live this month, is an online map portal that displays potential tsunami hazard zones for settlements across Alaska.”

Bing Blogs: Microsoft releases 18M building footprints in Africa to enable AI Assisted Mapping. “Since the inception of Tasking Manager, the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) community has mapped at an incredible rate with 11 million square kilometers mapped in Africa alone. However, large parts of Africa with populations prone to disasters still remain unmapped — 60% of the 30 million square kilometers. Under Microsoft’s AI for Humanitarian Action program, Bing Maps together with Microsoft Philanthropies is partnering with HOT on an initiative to bring AI Assistance as a resource in open map building. The initiative focuses on incorporating design updates, integrating machine learning, and bringing new open building datasets into Tasking Manager.” Good evening, Internet…

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