Chrome, LinkedIn, Podcastle, More: Thursday Evening ResearchBuzz, October 1, 2020


Android Headlines: Google Chrome Link To Text Native Feature Steps Closer To Release. “Google Chrome has had the ability to link forward to specific on-page text since the company released its “Link to Text Fragment” extension. Now, the company is integrating the feature directly into Chrome itself. That’s based on a recently-discovered flag setting, reported by TechDows. The experimental feature effectively places the capability behind a right-click action.”

LinkedIn: A New Look and Feel for LinkedIn. “This new LinkedIn experience is warmer and embodies our diverse, inclusive and trusted community. It is also simpler, more modern, and more intuitive, allowing for easier navigation and discovery. A new, streamlined search experience will make it much easier to surface the people, events, groups and content you want, while helping you reach beyond your immediate network — when there is value in doing so. And we continue to prioritize inclusion and accessibility as core design principles, including a dark mode coming soon.”


The Next Web: This Chrome extensions turns articles into audio playlists. “As a reporter, I have to read a lot of articles every day, and I often can’t get around to all the tabs I open by the time I clock out. It’s frustrating as hell, and I’ve been looking for a solution to clear my reading queue. Thankfully, I came across Podcastle, a Chrome extension that solved all my problems. On the surface, it’s just a text-to-speech converter — and there are many of them out there — but it comes with extra bells and whistles that are actually useful. And unlike other text-to-speech tools, it works across tabs so you can control your listening queue and playback for several articles in one place.”


NBC News: Jewish teens say life on TikTok comes with anti-Semitism. “A half-dozen Jewish teens on TikTok said they experience anti-Semitism nearly every time they post content to the platform, regardless of whether or not the content is about their Judaism. Sometimes it takes the form of denying the existence or the severity of the Holocaust; at other moments, it takes the shape of equating Jews as a people with the actions of the government of Israel.”

BBC: US election 2020: Twitter removes Iranian accounts disrupting debate. “Twitter says it has removed nearly 130 accounts linked to Iran that attempted to ‘disrupt the public conversation’ during the US presidential debate. It said it had become aware of the accounts, which ‘appeared to originate in Iran’, as a result of intelligence provided by the US authorities.”

TIME: The Inside Story of How Signal Became the Private Messaging App for an Age of Fear and Distrust. “Signal is an end-to-end encrypted messaging service, similar to WhatsApp or iMessage, but owned and operated by a non-profit foundation rather than a corporation, and with more wide-ranging security protections. One of the first things you see when you visit its website is a 2015 quote from the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden: ‘I use Signal every day.’ Now, it’s clear that increasing numbers of ordinary people are using it too.”


Reuters: Exclusive: China preparing an antitrust investigation into Google – sources. “The case was proposed by telecommunications equipment giant Huawei Technologies Co Ltd last year and has been submitted by the country’s top market regulator to the State Council’s antitrust committee for review, they added. A decision on whether to proceed with a formal investigation may come as soon as October and could be affected by the state of China’s relationship with the United States, one of the people said.”

New York Times: Alphabet Settles Shareholder Suits Over Sexual Harassment Claims. “Google’s parent company, Alphabet, has settled a series of shareholder lawsuits over its handling of sexual harassment claims, agreeing to greater oversight by its board of directors in future cases of sexual misconduct and committing to spend $310 million over the next decade on corporate diversity programs.”


Slate: Language-Generating A.I. Is a Free Speech Nightmare. “In addition to targeted harassment, those looking to control public debate use a technique called ‘flooding’ to drown out speech they object to and distort the information environment. Flooding involves producing a significant amount of content to distract, confuse, and discredit. Take the creation and dissemination of ‘fake news’ in the United States: People both abroad and at home churn out stories that combine fact and fiction, undermining mainstream news organizations while distracting and confusing the public. By automating much of the writing process, sophisticated language models such as GPT-3 could significantly increase the effectiveness of flooding operations.”

MIT Technology Review: These weird, unsettling photos show that AI is getting smarter. “…researchers believe that the techniques used to create GPT-3 could contain the secret to more advanced AI. GPT-3 trained on an enormous amount of text data. What if the same methods were trained on both text and images? Now new research from the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence, AI2, has taken this idea to the next level. The researchers have developed a new text-and-image model, otherwise known as a visual-language model, that can generate images given a caption.” Good evening, Internet…

Do you like ResearchBuzz? Does it help you out? Please consider supporting it on Patreon. Not interested in commitment? Perhaps you’d buy me an iced tea. I love your comments, I love your site suggestions, and I love you. Feel free to comment on the blog, or @ResearchBuzz on Twitter. Thanks!

Categories: afternoonbuzz

Leave a Reply