Illinois Champion Trees, Chromebook, Google Maps, More: Tuesday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, July 21, 2020


Quad-City Times: Illinois’ big trees are on the map. “From the depths of the Shawnee National Forest to backyards in the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois’ biggest trees are branching out. For the first time, the state’s champion trees are now available as an interactive digital map.” Never heard of champion trees? Check this out.


BetaNews: Google announces Explore app for Chromebook. “Even though Chromebooks are simple to use, that doesn’t mean everyone will become an expert on day one. Through experience and education, Chrome OS users can always improve their knowledge of the platform. Today, Google launches a new app for Chromebooks called ‘Explore’ aimed at helping users get the most from the Chromebook experience. For instance, as part of the onboarding process, it can teach you how to change your wallpaper or lock your screen.”

CNET: Google Map revamps its bike routes for easy riding. “To help people get around this summer in an eco-friendly — and healthy — way, Google Maps has added new features to its offerings for cyclists. Users can now access the most up-to-date bike routes generated by machine learning algorithms, as well as data from government authorities and community contributions.”


How-To Geek: The Web Before the Web: A Look Back at Gopher. “Before the rapid growth of the World Wide Web in the 1990s, a protocol called Gopher briefly made the internet easy to use by combining the world’s online resources. Here’s what made it special, and why it was quickly eclipsed by the web.”

The Next Web: Companies made millions building unemployment websites that didn’t work. “States continue to spend millions of dollars hiring Deloitte, IBM, and other contractors to build and fix unemployment websites, even amid growing concerns about the quality of their work. And the crush of unemployment applications flooding in around the country since the pandemic hit have only made the situation worse.”

WFAA: Dallas teachers use Instagram to help voters with down-ballot decisions. “The non-partisan page features several quick, easy-to-digest posts on the candidates, the offices and other pieces of information voters need to make an informed vote from the top of the ballot all the way to the bottom.”


Balkan Insight: Turkish Ruling Party Announces Strict Controls on Social Media. “The Justice and Development Party, AKP announced on Tuesday that it will bring in a long-awaited new law to regulate social media more strictly and potentially impose large fines and bandwidth reductions on companies that do not comply with government demands.”


SiliconAngle: OpenAI’s latest AI text generator GPT-3 amazes early adopters. “Artificial intelligence research outfit OpenAI Inc. recently made the latest version of its GPT-3 general-purpose natural language processing model available in private beta, and its capabilities are astounding early testers.”

Regina Leader-Post: Canadian researchers to develop first national database on effectiveness of medical cannabis. “Canadian researchers are hoping to fill in the gaps regarding how effective medicinal marijuana is in treating adults with chronic pain, sleep, anxiety and depression issues as part of a new six-month study. There’s been plenty of anecdotal evidence on what cannabis can do, but the idea is to flesh out the details and develop what is being touted as the first national database for medical cannabis products.”

Axios: Hate speech has soared online since George Floyd’s death. “On June 3, at the height of nationwide protests, DoubleVerify, which uses its own technology to scan pages online so advertisers can avoid objectionable content, says instances of hate speech were more than 4.5 times higher than usual — the highest-ever rate it has measured to date.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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