Fungal Diversity, Oregon Police Misconduct, Seattle National Archives, More: Monday ResearchBuzz, July 13, 2020


Universiteit Leiden: New database brings structure to global fungal diversity. “An organized overview of the current global fungal diversity, that is what Irene Martorelli and colleagues try to achieve with the new MycoDiversity Database (MDDB) she builds in collaboration with Naturalis Biodiversity Center. The new database will make it easier and quicker to observe which fungi are known and how they are distributed over the globe. This may lead to discovery of new fungal species.”

KOBI: Oregon releases new, online database showing police misconduct. “A new database is now available showing Oregon law enforcement officers’ suspensions, open investigations, and who has lost their badge. It comes in the wake of George Floyd’s death and the passage of House Bill 4207 in the legislature in recent weeks.”


MyNorthwest: Fate of Seattle National Archives facility still in limbo. “The archives serve the Pacific Alaska Region and are located on Sand Point Way near Magnuson Park. Sitting on 10 acres along the Burke-Gilman Trail, the location is prime real estate in one of the city’s nicest neighborhoods. The facility itself is housed in a World War II-era warehouse, which was converted in the early 1960s and which is operated by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The Seattle office, and most NARA facilities, have been closed to the public since March 23 because of COVID-19. In spite of the pandemic, multiple processes appear to still be underway to try and prevent the archival materials, if not the actual NARA facility itself, from leaving Washington.”

CNN: Facebook considers banning political ads in days before US election. “Facebook is considering banning political advertising on its platform in the days leading up to the US presidential election in November, a person familiar with the discussions told CNN Business. The potential ban has been under consideration since last fall, the person said.” I am 100% opposed to this because I believe Facebook will mess it up and not apply it consistently.

Newsum: Ecosia: Green search engine plants 100 million trees!. “Ecosia, headquartered in Berlin, Germany, is a green search engine. It works in a very interesting manner – it uses the profit that it makes to make the world a better and a greener place. And what does that mean? Ecosia uses all the profits from user searches to plant trees where they are most needed! And recently, Ecosia hit a massive milestone. It successfully planted 100 million trees across the world. This would help remove around 1771 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere!”


Binghamton Homepage: Federal funding granted to the National Baseball Hall of Fame Museum for educational programs. “The funds will support Safe at Home virtual programming, including the delivery of sixteen baseball-themed curriculum units in mathematics, American history, fine arts, and science. The money will also support the expansion of the museum’s digital collection, which includes oral histories, museum artifacts, and more.”

Reuters: Hong Kong Tiananmen museum turns to digitalisation after new law. “A Hong Kong museum chronicling the crackdown by Chinese troops on pro-democracy protesters in Tiananmen Square is raising funds to digitalise its collection as concerns over a new national security law create uncertainty over its future.”

The Collegian: Digital archive of East End Cemetery to be released in August. “The East End Cemetery Collaboratory will release a primary version of a digital repository of information about the people interred at East End Cemetery in August, said Collaboratory leaders from the University of Richmond. East End Cemetery, a historic African American burial ground, is located on the border of Henrico County and the city of Richmond.”


TechCrunch: CBP says it’s ‘unrealistic’ for Americans to avoid its license plate surveillance. “U.S. Customs and Border Protection has admitted that there is no practical way for Americans to avoid having their movements tracked by its license plate readers, according to its latest privacy assessment. CBP published its new assessment — three years after its first — to notify the public that it plans to tap into a commercial database, which aggregates license plate data from both private and public sources, as part of its border enforcement efforts.”


Getty Iris: Thinking outside the Boxing Ring: A Journey through 500 Photos. “It’s a quick moment of action frozen in time. Joey Maxim, World Light Heavyweight Champion, is being knocked to the side, his face contorted from a powerful blow. His opponent, fists raised, can only be seen in profile, making it nearly impossible for me to make out his facial features. This print is one of 534 boxing photographs in the Department of Photographs collection and it was making my job as cataloger difficult. I needed to figure out as much information about this photograph as possible, including when and where it took place, in order to fully catalog it. Joey Maxim’s career spanned nearly twenty years and over 100 fights. Without a name, I wouldn’t be able to place this print.”

Times Higher Education: Creating and supporting digital archives to improve access and research. “Now more than ever, there is a demand for universities to make available content in digital form from archives and collections that include books, primary sources and multimedia material. However, the cost of this type of digital transformation is considerable. To make the job easier, Jisc, the UK education and research technology solutions not-for-profit, is bringing together libraries, publishers and academic institutions to make digital collections more accessible.”

CNET: Give IBM your unused computing power to help cure coronavirus and cancer. “When Sawyer Thompson was just 12 years old, he discovered his father Brett unconscious in their Washington, DC area home. Sawyer called an ambulance and Brett was rushed to the hospital, where the family learned the worst: He had brain cancer. After a year of surgeries, radiation and chemotherapy, Brett’s cancer is in remission. But Sawyer wanted to do more to fight against cancer, and is tapping his interest in tech to make a bigger difference.” Good morning, Internet…

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