afternoonbuzz

Library of Congress (Yes, Again), Free Science Seminars, Land Use/Land Rights, More: Tuesday Evening ResearchBuzz, May 26, 2020

NEW RESOURCES

Live for Live Music: Library Of Congress Announces New DJ Tool For Sampling Tracks. “Now with Citizen DJ, users are able to thumb through decade’s worth of material from the Library’s audio and moving-image collections. These sounds can come from a variety of resources, stretching back to early recordings of traveling vaudeville acts, royalty-free music, interviews, speeches, and more. While users are able to download specific audio files or mass files in bulk, they are also encouraged to interact with the original source material from the Library’s massive database.”

MIT News: A Ticketmaster for science seminars . “The Covid-19 pandemic has put a pause on seminars hosted physically on university campuses. But in mid-March, a small team of MIT mathematicians began to notice that institutions around the world were finding ways to continue hosting seminars, online. To virtually attend these talks, however, required hearing about them through word of mouth or digging through the webpages of individual departments or organizers. Enter researchseminars.org, a website the MIT team formally launched this week, that serves as a sort of crowdsourced Ticketmaster for science talks. Instead of featuring upcoming shows and concerts, the new site lists more than 1,000 free, upcoming seminars hosted online by more than 115 institutions around the world.”

Mongabay: New database wrangles data on land rights projects around the globe. “The Land Portal Foundation, a nonprofit organization based in the Netherlands, recently released what it’s calling ‘the largest global database of land and property rights projects.’ In around a decade of existence, the Land Portal Foundation has worked to pull together the often disparate information on these projects from its partners around the world so that researchers, donors and campaigners have a better idea of how these projects are transpiring, said Laura Meggiolaro, the organization’s team leader.”

WUWM: New Database Helps Scientists Track Climate Change Over Thousands Of Years. “The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released a new database earlier this month. It’s called Nature’s Archives, and NOAA says it’s the most comprehensive temperature change database ever assembled. Paul Roebber, a UWM distinguished professor of atmospheric science, says NOAA’s data gives context to changes climate scientists are observing.”

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

CNET: Facebook launches CatchUp, an experimental app for voice calls. “Facebook’s New Product Experimentation team on Tuesday released a Messenger Rooms-like app for voice calls called CatchUp. The experimental app aims to make coordinating group phone calls with up to 8 friends and family members a little easier.”

Mashable: ‘Minecraft Dungeons’ aims to be more than ‘baby’s first Diablo’. “The simple pitch for Minecraft Dungeons goes something like this: Two great games play great together. It works! Mostly. If you’re a fan of Minecraft but haven’t heard about Dungeons, an explanation is in order. It’s blocky Diablo, a game of crawling through dungeons and striking down monsters in hopes of scoring some sweet, deadly loot. The camera hangs overhead, giving you a wide view of the terrain as you smash and plunder your way to ever-more-powerful heights.”

USEFUL STUFF

Lifehacker: How to Get Free Email Forwarding from Mozilla. “Burner emails are the best invention since Hotmail. And permanent burner emails—fake addresses you give out when signing up for services that forward to your actual email address—are even better, because they give you a little spigot for turning off a large chunk of spam and other marketing bullshit in your inbox. Mozilla just started testing an email alias service called Firefox Private Relay, and I encourage you to check it out. Yes, you’ll have to use Firefox in order to install it, as it’s a Firefox extension, but that’s only for setup. Once you’ve got your dummy email up and running, you can go back to using whatever browser you want.”

Tom’s Hardware: How to use Google Stadia on Raspberry Pi. “Despite its size and low power, the Raspberry Pi has proven to be a useful addition to any game streaming setup. While it won’t run modern games, it can stream them from a PC with Steam or Parsec, but with Google Stadia, you don’t even need a PC. Using its Chromium web browser, a controller and a strong Internet connection, the Raspberry Pi 4 can play any of Stadia’s AAA games.”

RESEARCH & OPINION

Inside Higher Ed: Teaching With Digital Archives in the First-Year Writing Classroom. “When this semester started, I started exploring the possibility of incorporating the use of digital archives in my first-year writing course, titled Border Stories: Power, Poetics and Architecture. In ideal circumstances, I would have loved to take my students to the physical space of the archives, but I decided against it because it would have required more advance planning and coordination with archivists that I did not have the time or the scope for in a writing classroom. Although the class lesson on digital archives happened before universities shifted to remote learning, I think digital archives can be a useful tool for instruction during virtual learning. Besides, I was not too sure whether the physical archives in Pittsburgh would be relevant for the course themes, and therefore digital archives seemed to be the best alternative option.”

OTHER THINGS I THINK ARE COOL

The Tab: This is how to do that hilarious AI meme generator that everyone is doing on Twitter. “The generator, called This Meme Does Not Exist, is created by a site called site is called imgflip, who say on their site that the memes are generated by ‘a deep artificial neural network. Nothing about the text generation is hardcoded, except that the maximum text length is limited for sanity. The model uses character-level prediction, so you can specify prefix text of one or more characters to influence the text generated.'” Good evening, Internet…

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