Biodiversity Conservation, Cruise Ship Photography, Instagram, More: Tuesday Evening ResearchBuzz, June 16, 2020


PLOS Blogs: Introducing the Biodiversity Conservation Collection. “It is with great pleasure that we announce the launch of our Biodiversity Conservation Collection. This Collection showcases research on a broad range of conservation science related topics, including anthropogenic impacts on biodiversity, such as habitat degradation, the spread of invasive species and global warming; conservation of key ecosystem services, such as carbon sequestration and pest regulation; and new management strategies to prevent further biodiversity loss.”

New-to-me, from Cruise Industry News: Top Cruise Photos from Oceanliner Pictures. “With the global cruise fleet in a temporary and extended service pause, take a look at these top cruise photos from expert photographer Oceanliner Pictures (by Oliver Asmussen), which is the largest cruise ship photo archive for photos of cruise ships, interior photos and maritime travel, currently with over 780,000 photos.”


CNET: Instagram to review how its policies, algorithm impact black users. “Instagram plans to reevaluate its policies in an effort to ensure black voices are heard on the app. In a blog post on Tuesday, Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri promised to address inequities in the social media company’s approach to harassment, account verification, content distribution and algorithmic bias.”

Google Blog: Providing Google. org support to LGBTQ+ organizations worldwide. “Today is donating more than $1.2 million to over 70 local LGBTQ+ organizations around the world—many of which are located in cities around the world where Google is proud to call home. Read on to learn how some of these grantees are meeting heightened health, social and economic risks impacting LGBTQ+ communities during this time, providing year round resources and support, and celebrating Pride.”


Digital Inspiration: How to Embed Google Slides Like a Pro!. “It takes 2 easy steps to embed any Google Slides deck in your website. Open Google Slides, go to the File Menu and choose Publish to web. Your presentation becomes public and you are presented with an IFRAME HTML tag that you can copy-paste in any web page. The embedded Google Slides player can be easily customized by modifying the src attribute of the IFRAME tag.”


Data Center Dynamics: How cows caused a small Google network outage. “Outages are often caused by simple things like power failures, someone pulling the wrong cable, or adverse weather effects. Sometimes, however, they are caused by cows. In a series of tweets about trouble on the Oregon trail, Google’s senior vice president of technical infrastructure, Urs Hölzle, explained a rather unusual incident.”

BuzzFeed News: These Controversial Loop Giveaways On Instagram Have Some Things In Common With MLMs. “A group of influencers announced they were hosting a loop giveaway for a car, sparking immediate backlash and a ton of questions. I reached out to Instagram, and a spokesperson told me these types of giveaways are against its policy and that the company was investigating. You can read about it here or on my Instagram, where I detailed my reporting. As I reported this out, I got messages from a few people who said these giveaways reminded them of MLMs, or multilevel marketing companies. I think this is a rather apt comparison for a few key reasons.” I had no idea what a “loop giveaway” is. Thanks to this article I am better informed.


Excuse me a moment while I headdesk? Washington Post: Elite CIA unit that developed hacking tools failed to secure its own systems, allowing massive leak, an internal report found. “The theft of top-secret computer hacking tools from the CIA in 2016 was the result of a workplace culture in which the agency’s elite computer hackers ‘prioritized building cyber weapons at the expense of securing their own systems,’ according to an internal report prepared for then-director Mike Pompeo as well as his deputy, Gina Haspel, now the current director.”


Science Magazine: Huge open-access journal deal inked by University of California and Springer Nature. “The University of California (UC) system today announced it has signed the biggest open-access (OA) deal in North America with one of the largest commercial scientific publishers. The agreement with Springer Nature includes a commitment by the publisher to explore making all articles that UC corresponding authors publish in the Nature family of journals immediately free to read on publication starting in 2022.”

Penn Today: What do ‘Bohemian Rhapsody,’ ‘Macbeth,’ and a list of Facebook friends all have in common?. “To an English scholar or avid reader, the Shakespeare Canon represents some of the greatest literary works of the English language. To a network scientist, Shakespeare’s 37 plays and the 884,421 words they contain also represent a massively complex communication network. Network scientists, who employ math, physics, and computer science to study vast and interconnected systems, are tasked with using statistically rigorous approaches to understand how complex networks, like all of Shakespeare, convey information to the human brain.” Good evening, Internet…

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