Climate Change Planning, NASA Pluto Explorations, TikTok, More: Thursday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, February 20, 2020


UN Environment Programme: New toolkit to help countries switch to climate-smart urbanization . “The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change secretariat, and the Commonwealth Secretariat, in collaboration with several United Nations entities, have developed a law and climate change toolkit to promote climate-smart urbanization.”


Smithsonian Magazine: Take a Trip Around Pluto and Charon With These New Animations. “Two years ago this month, New Horizons zipped by the dwarf planet Pluto, giving humanity its first close-up look at the icy world. Though the fly-by may be long over, scientists are still working through the trove of data beamed back during the venture. And to mark the anniversary, NASA released a new series of maps and videos to explore these distant bodies.”

Engadget: TikTok lets parents set time limits and vet DMs on teen accounts. “As TikTok has become increasingly popular with teens, the platform has gradually introduced a number of measures to help keep young people safe — it introduced age checks last year, and more recently it banned videos showing ‘underage delinquent behavior.’ Now, it’s added a range of parental controls into the mix.”


How-To Geek: Windows 10’s New Update Is Deleting People’s Files Again. “Microsoft released a buggy security update for Windows 10 last week. Some Windows users report all the files on their desktop have been deleted. Here’s everything you need to know, including how to fix the bug and get your files back.”


BBC: Transgender users accuse TikTok of censorship. “Transgender users on TikTok have complained of censorship after their posts were removed. Videos, including some of people discussing their lives, were taken down and others had the sound removed, according to some posters.”

Protocol: Facebook tried to ban gun sales 4 years ago. It’s still trying.. “In early 2016, Facebook took a political stand unlike any it had before, prohibiting private gun sales on its website. Four years later, the fallout — gun enthusiast groups moving into the shadows where sales remain common, sellers gaming the Marketplace feature, and the well-documented use of coded language by gun owners — demonstrates how difficult it is for Facebook and other platforms to monitor and control the powerful forums they provide.”


Ars Technica: US natural gas operator shuts down for 2 days after being infected by ransomware. “A US-based natural gas facility shut down operations for two days after sustaining a ransomware infection that prevented personnel from receiving crucial real-time operational data from control and communication equipment, the Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday.”

New York Times: Germany to Require Social Media Sites to Report Hate Speech. “According to the bill passed by ministers Wednesday, internet companies will have to flag far-right propaganda, graphic portrayals of violence, murder or rape threats, posts indicating that someone is preparing a terrorist attack or distributing child sexual abuse images.”


China Daily: Big data plays major role in epidemic control. “Telecom carriers are using big data analysis to help fight the novel coronavirus outbreak, by leveraging the data pool of China’s billion-plus smartphone users. China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom are playing an active part in mining data insights to assist local governments in epidemic prevention and on the prerequisite of ensuring users’ data privacy.”

ScienceDaily: Researchers devise approach to reduce biases in computer vision data sets. “Addressing problems of bias in artificial intelligence, computer scientists from Princeton and Stanford University have developed methods to obtain fairer data sets containing images of people. The researchers propose improvements to ImageNet, a database of more than 14 million images that has played a key role in advancing computer vision over the past decade.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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