John Bradburne, 2020 Census, Fake Wildlife Photos, More: Tuesday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, March 23, 2021


Independent Catholic News: Celebrating the life and poetry of John Bradburne. “Earlier this month the John Bradburne Memorial Society (JBMS) launched its 100-day Poetry Project, in honour of the life and work for his Centenary Year in 2021. For the following 100 days, leading up to John’s 100th Birthday on 14 June 2021, prominent figures and supporters will read out one of John’s poems on the Society’s YouTube channel. (See link below) You can also visit the JBMS poetry website where Professor David Crystal has compiled all of John Bradburne’s poetry to an online database.”


WRAL: Watchdog: Routes given to census takers were often confusing. “When asked by GAO investigators, only 21.6% of area census office managers were satisfied with the accuracy and efficiency of how cases were assigned, according to the report, a broad review of what worked and didn’t work during data collection for the release 2020 census….The report also noted that nearly 8,000 census takers who had failed their training tests were given assignments anyway, and that almost 1.2 million households were reached by census takers by telephone, a new option given to census managers.”


Audubon: Here’s How to Spot a Faked Wildlife Photo—and When to Be Skeptical. “The phony-image debunker behind a popular Twitter account shares tips for telling when the perfect shot is too good to be true.”

A little outside the ResearchBuzz lane, but tax season is so weird this year I thought it would be worth it. Apologies to non-US readers. ProPublica: Where Is My Tax Refund?. “For many Americans, hitting ‘submit’ isn’t the last step in the tax-filing process. Here’s what you need to know about checking your return’s status, reasons it may be delayed and the truth about companies that promise quick cash during tax season.”


BBC: Scotland’s little-known fourth “language”. ” Colourful yet guttural, the rural north-east dialect is a subset of vernacular Scots, officially protected by the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages…. But it turns out the Doric-speaking community currently have plenty to shout about. For the dialect, maligned for so long, is undergoing a revival. The green shoots to empower Doric speakers are plentiful. There is a new online TV station. A new undergraduate university degree course. A North-East Scots language board. And an interactive cultural map to help visitors discover Doric’s living oral, cultural and social history.” Whenever I learn about a language I want to hear it. Check out this YouTube video about Doric TV. Do not turn on the CC though or you’ll think she’s talking about DirectTV.


Motherboard: Amazon Delivery Drivers Forced to Sign ‘Biometric Consent’ Form or Lose Job. “Amazon delivery drivers nationwide have to sign a ‘biometric consent’ form this week that grants the tech behemoth permission to use AI-powered cameras to access drivers’ location, movement, and biometric data. If the company’s delivery drivers, who number around 75,000 in the United States, refuse to sign these forms, they lose their jobs. The form requires drivers to agree to facial recognition and other biometric data collection within the trucks they drive.”


INSEAD Knowledge: What Yelp Reviews Can Tell Us About the State of the Economy. “In a paper forthcoming in Big Data for Twenty-First Century Economic Statistics published by the US National Bureau of Economic Research, we show that Yelp’s crowdsourced data can help measure economic activity at the local level in close to real time, in contrast with official data that is often published years after. Changes in the number of businesses and restaurants reviewed on Yelp can help ‘nowcast’ changes in the corresponding official statistics before they are released. In short, sources like Yelp could complement official data in business and policymaking.”

Brown Daily Herald: The HerbUX Project works on making Herbarium data more accessible. “When a student visits the Brown University Herbarium, they’re greeted by countless plants meticulously climate-controlled in storage. Rebecca Kartzinel, director of the Herbarium and assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, defines herbaria as ‘collections of dried, pressed plants, historically … used for people studying taxonomy, the study of classifying and naming new plants and identifying plants.’… Kartzinel, along with students and other researchers, is working to develop the HerbUX Project, which aims to make the wealth of information within the Herbarium easily accessible online.”


My Modern Met: Artist Uses AI To Recreate How Famous Historical Figures Would Look Like in Real Life. “Have you ever wondered what famous figures from the distant past really looked like? San Francisco-based artist Nathan Shipley answers the question with his series of AI-generated portraits. He uses historical paintings and illustrations as the framework for AI technology to create realistic renditions of notable leaders, musicians, and writers who all existed before the advent of photography.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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