Smithsonian Magazine: Explore the Newly Digitized Archive of Alexander Calder, Famed ‘Sculptor of Air’. “During his lifetime, Alexander Calder’s whimsical ‘mobiles,’ or moving abstract sculptures that balance on thin wires and appear to float in the air, ensured his status as one of America’s most beloved sculptors. Forty-five years after the artist’s death in 1976 at age 78, admirers can explore materials linked to his life and work through a newly debuted digital archive from the Calder Foundation. Per a statement, the regularly updated site currently features 1,377 works of art, 1,000 historical photographs and archival documents, and 48 historic and contemporary scholarly texts.”
Open Culture: The Internet Archive Hosts 20,000 VHS Recordings of Pop Culture from the 1980s & 1990s: Enter the VHS Vault. “My neighborhood thrift store has a very large VHS wall, filled with Hollywood movies, endless children’s videos, instructional tapes, and best of all a box of unknown vids. Maybe they’re blank. Maybe they contain 6 episodes of Matlock. And maybe, just maybe, they have something completely nuts. But who has time or the old technology for that, especially when the Internet Archive has recently expanded its VHS Vault section to 20,000 digitized tapes under the (non) curation of archivist Jason Scott. We make no claims for the quality of the videos contained therein, because that’s really up to you.”
TWEAKS AND UPDATES
VR Focus: Let Your Google Poly 3D Models Live On At Sketchfab. “In December 2020 Google continued its run of abandoning support for its virtual reality (VR) initiatives by announcing that its 3D object library Poly would be shutting down in June. Which obviously made a lot of content creators who used the service since 2017 rather unhappy. Today, rival service Sketchfab has announced a new tool to transfer Poly models onto its platform.”
The Verge: Apple and nonprofit Common Sense Media team up to provide kid podcast recs. “Apple is making it easier for parents to find podcasts to listen to with their kids. The company is teaming up with nonprofit Common Sense Media, which specializes in age-based content reviews, to curate various collections that’ll appear in the Apple Podcasts app in the US and online. The initial four themes focus on narrative storytelling, shows that kids themselves recommend, mysteries and dramas, and Common Sense’s ‘all-time’ picks.”
TechCrunch: After similar moves for Shopping and Flights, Google makes hotel listings free. “Last year, Google made a significant change to its Google Shopping destination by making it free for e-commerce retailers to sell on Google, when before the Shopping tab had been dominated by paid product listings. It also made it free for partners to participate in Google Flights. Today, the company announced it’s now doing the same thing for hotel booking links on the Google.com/travel vertical.”
EurekAlert: New tool makes students better at detecting fake imagery and videos. “Researchers at Uppsala University have developed a digital self-test that trains users to assess news items, images and videos presented on social media. The self-test has also been evaluated in a scientific study, which confirmed the researchers’ hypothesis that the tool genuinely improved the students’ ability to apply critical thinking to digital sources.” The self-test is free and available to the public.
Gizmodo AU: 21 Tips To Make Google Docs, Sheets And Slides Work For You. “Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides have evolved to become very component online productivity tools, enabling you to churn out documents, spreadsheets and presentations from any computer (with other collaborators, if necessary). But are you taking full advantage of everything these web apps have to offer? These 21 tips will save you time, improve your work, and help you do more with these apps.”
How-To Geek: How to Use Excel’s “Quick Analysis” to Visualize Data. “Creating a chart in Excel is neither easy nor intuitive for inexperienced users. Luckily, there’s a feature called Quick Analysis that can create charts, tables, and more with just a click.”
AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD
Silicon Valley Business Journal: Startups, investors are increasingly connecting via Clubhouse app. “In pre-pandemic times, Boston startup founders and investors could be found mingling at a few hotspots in town, like MassChallenge’s annual startup showcase on Drydock Avenue or any Thursday night event at Venture Café in Cambridge. But now, in the age of virtual meetings, the Boston innovation community has transitioned to a new hangout that is used to expand networks, get insider knowledge about topics related to the startup hustle, and even find new funding opportunities: The app called Clubhouse.”
New York Times: Google and Facebook Killed Free. “The big music companies once hoped that Pandora, YouTube or other methods of online listening sponsored by ads could replace the money that people once spent on CDs. Nope. Now record labels have gone full-bore into subscription streaming. YouTube and Instagram stars nudge people to follow them to subscription services like Patreon and OnlyFans, where they can generate more income.” Or not. Lol.
RESEARCH & OPINION
Engadget: NVIDIA and Harvard researchers use AI to make genome analysis faster and cheaper. “Scientists from NVIDIA and Harvard have made a huge breakthrough in genetic research. They developed a deep-learning toolkit that is able to significantly cut down the time and cost needed to run rare and single-cell experiments. According to a study published in Nature Communications, the AtacWorks toolkit can run inference on a whole genome, a process that normally takes a little over two days, in just half an hour. It’s able to do so thanks to NVIDIA’s Tensor Core GPUs.”
Harvard Business Review: 4 Ways to Democratize Data Science in Your Organization. “Many organizations have begun their data science journeys by starting ‘centers of excellence,’ hiring the best data scientists they can and focusing their efforts where there is lots of data. In some respects, this makes good sense — after all, they don’t want to be late to the artificial intelligence or machine learning party. Plus, data scientists want to show off their latest tools. But is this the best way to deploy this rare resource? For most companies, we think it unlikely. Rather, we advise companies to see data science both more strategically and broadly.” Good morning, Internet…
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