Internet Archive Web Datasets, Pocket, Roblox, More: Monday Evening ResearchBuzz, March 15, 2021


Internet Archive Blog: Early Web Datasets & Researcher Opportunities. “In July, we announced our partnership with the Archives Unleashed project as part of our ongoing effort to make new services available for scholars and students to study the archived web…. As part of our partnership, we are releasing a series of publicly available datasets created from archived web collections. Alongside these efforts, the project is also launching a Cohort Program providing funding and technical support for research teams interested in studying web archive collections.”


The Verge: Pocket’s sort by time to read feature seems designed for the return of commutes. “Pocket, an app for saving articles to read later, is rolling out a sorting option to Android users over the next few weeks that could solve my paralysis when choosing something to read. The new sort by time-to-read feature, spotted by The Verge’s Dan Seifert, means articles can be organized where they fit best, whether it’s the five minutes it takes to microwave lunch, or a 20-minute wait for the late bus.”


How-To Geek: What Is Roblox? Meet the Game Over Half of U.S. Kids Play. “With more players than Fortnite, you have probably heard about Roblox—the game half the kids in the U.S. are playing. But what makes this online video game so popular? Here’s what you need to know about Roblox.”

Smashing Magazine: The Guide To Ethical Scraping Of Dynamic Websites With Node.js And Puppeteer. “For a lot of web scraping tasks, an HTTP client is enough to extract a page’s data. However, when it comes to dynamic websites, a headless browser sometimes becomes indispensable. In this tutorial, we will build a web scraper that can scrape dynamic websites based on Node.js and Puppeteer.”

Wired: How You Can Use Google Maps Like a Social Network . “From configuring your Google Maps profile to helping other travelers, these are all the social networking features now available in the app. It’s not quite Facebook or Snapchat, but Google Maps is more social than you might have realized.”


Weirton Daily Times: Grant to bring WSX Bulletins on line. “The Weirton Steel Employees Bulletin Archives — more than 10,000 pages of historical images and information from the mid-1930s to the late 1980s — are set to go online this year, thanks in part to a grant awarded to the Weirton Area Museum and Cultural Center at 3149 Main St.”

The Press Democrat: Santa Rosa family finds ideal home for baseball fan’s autograph collection . “When retired Superior Court Judge Joseph P. Murphy Jr. died at age 89 in his Santa Rosa home nine years ago he was, his obituary tells us, watching a Sunday afternoon San Francisco Giants baseball game from spring training in Scottsdale, Arizona…. We are pleased to tell Joe’s ‘baseball story.’ The happy ending comes first. In late November the Murphy family donated the Joseph Murphy Autograph Collection to the Sullivan Family Research Center, located at the San Diego Public Library.”


National Security Archive: “Still Interested” Letters Add Insult to Injury of Long-Ignored FOIA Requests. “The National Security Archive’s 2021 Sunshine Week Audit has found that many agencies still abuse ‘still interested’ letters – out of the 84 ‘still interested’ letters we received between November 2019 and the present, 17 provided fewer than 30 days to respond. Put another way, more than one in five, or 20 percent, of all ‘still interested’ letters the Archive received in the last year and a half did not follow OIP guidance.” I didn’t know much about “still interested” letters, but MuckRock filled me in.


The Next Web: Adventures with AI: Here’s what happened when I ate a three course meal designed by artificial intelligence. “I first sought culinary inspiration from GPT-3, a text generator that’s destined to either Take Over The World or burn out in a blaze of bigotry and pseudophilosophy. The model’s been trained on a gobsmacking quantity of data, including the entire English-language Wikipedia, two vast corpora of books, and a filtered version of the Common Crawl. With so many recipes now online, GPT-3 must have learned its way around the kitchen. Right I put my stomach on the line to find out.”

Apollo Magazine: It’s deepfake karaoke, Old Master style. “A new tool goes a step further than those AI animations of portrait paintings that have been doing the rounds: the recently launched Wombo.Ai app, which transforms still images into singing videos. By the end of last week, some 15 million Wombo videos had been created – among them, of course, some delightfully expressive footage of historical artworks serenading the internet.” Good evening, Internet…

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