Commun, AI Basics, Twitter, More: Tuesday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, December 24, 2019


Decrypt: Commun’s launch kicks off new wave of decentralized social media. “Two weeks ago, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey announced intentions to create a set of standards for decentralized social media networks—with the hope of Twitter one day conforming to those standards. But while that’s in the distant future for Twitter, Commun, a fork of Steemit—a decentralized social media network that looks like Reddit—launched today.”

Morning Brew: Finland Expands AI Basics Course to EU. “Finland will relinquish the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU at the end of the year. Its outgoing gift = expanding Elements of AI to 1% of the EU population by 2021. Starting next year, the course will be available in all 24 official EU languages. But since there are no restrictions on who can take the course, this is basically a Christmas present to anyone who speaks one of those languages. Since it launched, over 220,000 people from 110 countries have signed up to take the class (it was available online in English). ” I signed up, said I lived in the United States, no problem.

Neowin: Twitter tests new feature to let you continue your most recent tweet. “Twitter appears to be experimenting with a new capability that will allow you to keep your most recent tweet rolling. The testing was spotted by a tipster who shared a few screenshots with Android Police.”


MakeUseOf: 5 Tools to Make Wikipedia Better and Discover Interesting Articles. “Wikipedia is a great place to find information about any topic you’re interested in. But it can also be a great place to discover interesting topics you didn’t even know about. These tools help you discover new Wikipedia pieces and track what you want to read.” Weeklypedia is way too tempting…


Hartford Courant: Opening a searchable treasure trove: Old Manchester newspapers being digitized. “The conversion of 431 rolls of microfilm — every page of each paper — into online, searchable formats is underway and should be done early in the new year. The project of the Manchester Historical Society, which has raised $12,800 of the estimated total cost of up to $15,000, reflects state and nationwide efforts to preserve old newspapers and make them available to anyone with a computer.”

NHK World Japan: Data journalism is helping restore faith in media in South Korea. “TV networks, newspapers, and news sites have in recent years had to contend with drastic changes in the media landscape. The dissemination of vast amounts of false information has damaged public trust in news outlets. But some experts say the way to combat this erosion in trust is by reporting with a purely empirical focus. One method of doing so is data journalism, or reporting based on the analysis of data released by governments, corporations, and other bodies. In South Korea, it has become increasingly wide-spread.”


Mashable: Company says it can extract email addresses and passwords from locked iPhones. “A Russia-based cybersecurity company said it found a new way into your locked iPhone. Elcomsoft, which creates digital forensic software for governments and law enforcement agencies, said on Friday that its iOS Forensic Toolkit can now extract some data from locked iPhones and iPads in Before First Unlock (BFU) mode.”

Route Fifty: South Carolina Lawmaker Wants to Mandate Media Literacy Classes. “Education officials in South Carolina would be required to develop media literacy curriculum to teach students to be more critical consumers of news under a bill filed in the state legislature. As written, the legislation would require the state Department of Education to develop a plan to teach ‘critical thinking and media literacy skills’ in the state’s public schools with input from an advisory committee.”


VentureBeat: Yann LeCun: AR glasses will be the killer app of energy-efficient machine learning . “Facebook AI Research chief AI scientist Yann LeCun believes augmented reality glasses are an ideal challenge for machine learning (ML) practitioners — a ‘killer app’ — because they involve a confluence of unsolved problems.”

Nieman Lab: Native verification tools for the blue checkmark crowd. “…my prediction for the coming year is that at least one platform will engage with its most influential users, giving them access to special tools and training to identify and contextualize sources and claims in their feeds. This will allow platforms to split the difference between a clutter-free onboarding for Aunt Jane and a full-featured verification and sourcing interface for users whose every retweet goes out to hundreds of thousands of people, or whose page or group serves as an information hub for users and activists. These tools and training will also eventually be released to the general public, though for the general public, they will default to off.” I’d be more excited about this if the verification process on Twitter weren’t such a mess. (Brand names like Mr. Peanut get verified. Actual humans might have a harder time.) Good afternoon, Internet…

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