Google Photos, Facebook Forecast, 3D Photos, More: Thursday ResearchBuzz, June 25, 2020


Android Police: Google Photos subscription service for printed pictures is shutting down. “Google Photos has offered the ability to create and order photo books for years, but earlier this year, a new subscription option for photo prints was added. For $8 a month, ten of your best pictures from the previous month would be automatically selected, printed on cardstock, and mailed to you. However, after only four months, Google is ending the service.”

PC Magazine: Help Predict the Future With Facebook’s Forecast App. “Can you predict whether there will be a second wave of COVID-19 cases in the US this year? Do you think AMC Theatres will file for bankruptcy in 2020? Want to weigh in on the chances of Netflix commissioning a Tiger King spinoff? There’s a Facebook app for that.”

CNET: 3D photos on iOS or Android are now a thing, thanks to this new, free app. “After being in beta for months, the 3D photo app LucidPix is now available to iOS and Android users. Whether you have a newer phone like the iPhone 11 or Samsung Galaxy Z Flip or an older one like a Motorola Moto G6 or iPhone 6S, you can use the app take 3D photos. Best of all, you don’t need a special accessory or multiple rear cameras. Instead, LucidPix uses artificial intelligence to render 3D photos that will move as you tilt and pan your phone.”


The Conversation: How fake accounts constantly manipulate what you see on social media – and what you can do about it. “Undoubtedly you’ve heard reports that hackers and even foreign governments are using social media to manipulate and attack you. You may wonder how that is possible. As a professor of computer science who researches social media and security, I can explain – and offer some ideas for what you can do about it.”

Screen Rant: How To Use Instagram Filters To Create TikTok Videos. “Using popular Instagram filters to create TikTok videos is a great way to combine the best of both social media platforms, and even give TikTokkers an edge over the competition. While it might seem difficult to take the filters from one app and use them in another, it is actually fairly easy to do, and worth the extra effort to create a video that is less often seen on TikTok.”


Baltimore Magazine: The Womanist Reader Creates an Online Library of Black Literature. “Named after Layli Phillips’ 2006 anthology, The Womanist Reader is an Instagram account that acts as a free online library and features PDF texts from Black female writers across the African diaspora.”

CNN: Facebook exec admits there is a ‘trust deficit’ as advertiser boycott accelerates. “A Facebook executive acknowledged Tuesday that the social media giant faces a ‘trust deficit’ amid a widening advertiser revolt over misinformation and hate speech on the platform.”

Mashable: The stark divide between ‘Straight TikTok’ and ‘Alt TikTok’. “TikTok is notorious for its viral dances, lip synced ‘acting,’ and uncomfortably horny POV videos in which the user pretends to take the audience out on dates. But on another side of the platform, which algorithmically recommends content based on each user’s preferences, is ‘Alt TikTok.’ Also known as ‘Gay TikTok,’ ‘Beans TikTok,’ or ‘Elite TikTok,’ the subsect rejects mainstream trends in favor of surreal humor and alternative aesthetics. Shaped by the dredges of emo culture and the heavy Dadaist influence of its millennial predecessors, Alt TikTok embodies all that is queer.”


Fresno Bee: Devin Nunes can’t sue Twitter over statements by fake cow, judge rules. “A judge has ruled that Rep. Devin Nunes has no right to sue Twitter over statements made by a fake Internet cow, someone parodying his mother and a Republican strategist.”

Reuters: New Google default wipes users’ location, web history after 18 months. “Alphabet Inc’s Google said on Wednesday it will automatically delete some location history after 18 months for new users and make it easier for everyone to access its search, Maps and YouTube apps without being tracked.”


EurekAlert: Meet the superusers who hold together health social media. “Online health communities help people to self-manage certain aspects of their long-term conditions better through harnessing support and knowledge held by other users in the network. They are mostly run on a voluntary basis by their users. Superusers (the 1 per cent highly active users) play a central role in these communities as a result of the characteristics of their online activity and their constant engagement.”

The Register: Good luck using generative adversarial networks in real life – they’re difficult to train and finicky to fix. “Generative adversarial networks (GANs) are a brilliant idea: get two neural networks and pit them against each other to get a machine to generate completely new, realistic looking images. But in practice they are notoriously difficult to train and deploy, as one engineer told El Reg.” Good morning, Internet…

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