afternoonbuzz

PG&E Bankruptcy, Google Earth, Outlook.com, More: Wednesday Evening ResearchBuzz, November 20, 2019

NEW RESOURCES

PR Newswire: New website officialfireclaims.com and 888-909-0100 phone number opened to help NorCal wildfire victims file loss claims to PG&E Bankruptcy Court (PRESS RELEASE). “This extension and information outlets (website, phone number and service centers) are important to anyone who has not already filed a claim with the PG&E bankruptcy court, including, but not limited to: property owners, renters, occupants, businesses and others. Filing a claim is free and can be filed for any reason, but typical claims include damages to or loss of a home, personal property and more. Renters may file claims as well as homeowners. Non-residents may also file a claim. Persons or entities can also file claims for losses or damages that were not covered by their insurance.”

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

Google Blog: Create your own maps and stories in Google Earth. “For nearly 15 years, people have turned to Google Earth for a comprehensive view of our planet. But our mission has never been to just show you a static picture of the planet; we want to bring the world to life. With new creation tools now in Google Earth, you can turn our digital globe into your own storytelling canvas, and create a map or story about the places that matter to you.”

BetaNews: Microsoft rolls out Gmail, Google Drive and Google Calendar integrations to Outlook. com. “Microsoft seems to have started rolling out new integration options to Outlook.com, making life easier for anyone who uses both Microsoft and Google services. As well as offering Gmail integration to allow people to read emails from their Google accounts within Outlook online, Microsoft is also in the process of adding support for Google Calendar and Google Drive.”

USEFUL STUFF

How-To Geek: Fonts and Browser Extensions That Help Those with Dyslexia Read the Web. “Dyslexia is a learning condition characterized by difficulties with reading and, to a lesser extent, writing. As the web is full of written content, the right fonts and extensions can make consuming digital content much easier for those with dyslexia.”

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

Vox: For 20 years, Neopets has taught us how to care for virtual pets — and each other. “It’s hard to pinpoint when, exactly, kids and teens became 100 percent plugged in — fully online, all the time. But 1999 would be a decent guess, and November 1999 an especially good one, as it marked the launch of Neopets: a kid-friendly social network that combined virtual pets with discussion forums, games, and even a stock market. Neopets ultimately evolved into something magical, and an inextricable part of many a millennial’s formative years.”

The Verge: Bot campaign on Twitter fuels confusion about Bolivian unrest. “Since last week, a network of Twitter bot accounts has been spreading confusion about the events surrounding Bolivian President Evo Morales’ abrupt resignation. The messages, which appear in English and Spanish, all carry the exact same text, beginning with the words, ‘Friends from everywhere, in Bolivia there was no coup.'”

SECURITY & LEGAL

Ars Technica: Think of the children: FBI sought Interpol statement against end-to-end crypto. “Justice Department officials have long pushed for some sort of backdoor to permit warranted surveillance and searches of encrypted communications. Recently, that push has been taken international with Attorney General William Barr and his counterparts from the United Kingdom and Australia making an open plea to Facebook to delay plans to use end-to-end encryption across all the company’s messaging tools.”

Techdirt: Music Collection Org: Revenues Are Booming… And That’s Proof Why We Need Even More Draconian Copyright Laws. “As we showed earlier this year in our latest Sky Is Rising report, revenue in the entertainment industry continues to shoot upwards — and not because of draconian new anti-piracy laws, but almost entirely because of successful innovations from internet companies that have opened up massive new markets for content creators. You’d think that maybe this would make some copyright system supporters think twice about continuing to push for expansionary copyright policies that are likely to hamstring the very internet services that have provided them this windfall, but that would be expecting self-reflection from an industry famous for blaming everyone else for everything that has ever gone wrong.”

RESEARCH & OPINION

Phys .org: Dozens of potential new antibiotics discovered with free online app. “A new web tool speeds the discovery of drugs to kill Gram-negative bacteria, which are responsible for the overwhelming majority of antibiotic-resistant infections and deaths. The tool also offers insights into discrete chemical changes that can convert drugs that kill other bacteria into drugs to fight Gram-negative infections.”

University of Texas at Austin: Consumers Need to be More Aware of What They Are Giving Facebook. “Facebook is the largest social networking platform in the world, with 2.41 billion people actively using the platform. It also offers the largest advertising audience of all the platforms including Google. More of us should be taking more ownership in understanding how platforms such as Facebook and Google use consumer data for advertising and how it contributes to the shifting dynamic in advertising because the stakes are high for our privacy.” Good evening, Internet…

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