The Troubles, Instagram, Coronavirus Fact-Checking, More: Tuesday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, February 18, 2020


News Letter: Future of Ulster University’s historic Troubles archive still shrouded in uncertainty . “The CAIN internet service (standing for Conflict Archive on the Internet) is a vast repository of speeches, murals, treaties, death records and more, covering decades. It is entirely open to the public and is run by the University of Ulster – but last year the university said funding pressures meant its future was in jeopardy. It now refuses to shed light on its current funding status as the clock ticks down to a decision deadline.”

TechCrunch: Bloomberg memes push Instagram to require sponsorship disclosure. “Instagram is changing its advertising rules to require political campaigns’ sponsored posts from influencers to use its Branded Content Ads tool that puts a disclosure label of ‘Paid Partnership With’ on posts. The change comes after the Bloomberg presidential campaign paid meme makers to post screenshots that showed him asking them to make him look cool.”


Poynter: These are false cures and fake preventative measures against coronavirus. Help fact-checkers spread the word. “Over the past three weeks, the #CoronaVirusFacts / #DatosCoronaVirus alliance, which brings together more than 90 fact-checkers from 39 countries under the coordination of the International Fact-Checking Network, has published a total of 398 checks about the lethal virus. In this list, there are dozens of fact-checks about false ways to prevent and/or cure the coronavirus 2019.”

FedTech Magazine: How Agencies Are Transitioning to Electronic Archives. “Federal agencies are nearing the end of a 10-year project to go paperless, and they’re about to begin the most challenging part of the process. By 2022, they must comply with a 2019 directive from the National Archives and Records Administration and the Office of Management and Budget that requires all permanent records to be ‘in an electronic format and with appropriate metadata.'”


CNET: Plastic surgery images and invoices leak from unsecured database. “Thousands of images, videos and records pertaining to plastic surgery patients were left on an unsecured database where they could be viewed by anyone with the right IP address, researchers said Friday. The data included about 900,000 records, which researchers say could belong to thousands of different patients.”

IdeaStream: Ohio’s Judges Considering Statewide Sentencing Database. “Members of Ohio’s judicial system are calling for more uniformity in sentencing practices across courtrooms. The state’s criminal sentencing commission argues an online database of previous sentences could aid in that effort.”


UCLA Anderson Review: Machine Learning Can Help Reduce Postsurgical Hospital Readmissions. “In a study published in the medical journal Anesthesiology, UCLA Anderson’s Velibor V. Mišić and Kumar Rajaram, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center’s Eilon Gabel and Ira Hofer, and University of Pittsburgh’s Aman Mahajan report devising three ‘machine learning’ models that scored significantly higher than standard statistical programs in predicting which surgical patients were at greatest risk of readmission.”

Gaming Bolt: What Is Going On With Google Stadia?. “The announcement of Google Stadia, the all-online cloud gaming device, was met with plenty of positivity… at first. As we discussed before, it’s an excellent idea. Plenty of people are over managing hard drive space, let alone physical space, and are far more attracted to the idea of still being able to have those experiences but without buying expensive consoles. Likewise, there are still plenty of us who prefer the relative security of having a copy of a game owned locally, but truth be told, the group who doesn’t care about that is the one growing at the larger rate. With that, Google Stadia was able to garner plenty of interest, but with that interest eventually came questions, and with those questions came some less than satisfying answers.”

EurekAlert: Storytelling can reduce VR cybersickness. “A storyline with emotionally evocative details can reduce virtual reality cybersickness for some people, according to a new study. Researchers from the University of Waterloo found that storylines that provide context and details can help users feel immersed in VR experiences and can reduce feelings of nausea, disorientation and eye strain, depending on a user’s gaming experience.”


Mashable: The northern lights cam just turned on and it’s the perfect season for ghostly skies. “The same live webcam site that brings you Alaska’s glorious, salmon-hungry fat bears just turned on its webcam in the northern reaches of Churchill, Canada. This town, famous for the polar bears who regularly stroll down its streets, is ideally situated to watch the glowing, emerald northern lights, aka the Aurora borealis.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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