Vietnam-Morocco Diplomacy, CrateDB, Flickr Commons, More: Sunday ResearchBuzz, March 28, 2021


Vietnam+: Photo exhibition marks 60 years of Vietnam – Morocco diplomatic ties. “In celebration of the 60th anniversary of diplomatic ties between Vietnam and the Kingdom of Morocco (March 27, 1961 – March 27, 2021), the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) and the Embassy of the Kingdom of Morocco in Vietnam have coordinated to organise an online exhibition featuring 20 photos of high-level diplomatic activities between the two countries, selected from VNA’s photo archive.”


GlobeNewswire: Open Sources the Entire Codebase of CrateDB – the Database Purpose Built for Machine Data (PRESS RELEASE). “, developer and supplier of CrateDB, the purpose-built database optimized for machine data use cases, today announced that CrateDB is now a fully open source database solution. With today’s release of CrateDB 4.5, all enterprise features of the database are available under the Apache 2.0 open source license for the self-deploy Community edition.”

Flickr Blog: George Oates Returns to Revitalize the Flickr Commons. “I used to work here, at the very beginning when we first switched Flickr on back in the naughties. I created and launched the Commons in 2008, and left at the end of that same year. What a strange, unexpected delight to be asked to return with the express goal of researching what the Commons has become and understanding how cultural institutions around the world have evolved through being a part of it. We want to design a stronger future for the program, with enduring longevity at its heart.”

Business of Fashion: Ted Baker Becomes First Fashion Brand With a ‘Club’ on Clubhouse. “The British label is launching a branded-content series on the audio-only platform hosted by Abraxas Higgins, an active Clubhouse user with 370,000 followers on the app. Ted Baker has six talks scheduled with Higgins, where the hour-long conversations will discuss the intersection of British culture and fashion. Guests like artists Greta Bellamacina and Kojey Radical, both of whom appeared in Ted Baker’s most recent campaign, will participate in the discussions.


Shine: Weaving new life into Dunhuang’s ancient artwork. “Along with renowned murals, a number of silk paintings and textiles were buried in the grottoes throughout history. These fragile textiles were gradually brought to light in recent decades but required professional restoration. This month, the Dunhuang Academy signed an agreement with the China National Silk Museum, the nation’s largest silk history research organization, to participate in the restoration process and conduct research on unearthed silk antiques.”

New York Times: On Google Podcasts, a Buffet of Hate. “…even in the world of podcasting, Google Podcasts — whose app has been downloaded more than 19 million times, according to Apptopia — stands alone among major platforms in its tolerance of hate speech and other extremist content. A recent nonexhaustive search turned up more than two dozen podcasts from white supremacists and pro-Nazi groups, offering a buffet of slurs and conspiracy theories. None of the podcasts appeared on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or Stitcher.”

Coingeek: Token-based social media BitClout raising lots of money—and eyebrows. “A new digital currency project has recently hit the market, launching out of private beta on March 24. Known as BitClout, it has managed to raise hundreds of millions in funding from some of the most prominent venture capital firms. However, it’s also raising eyebrows, and now, faces a cease and desist order.”


Bleeping Computer: Google removes privacy-focused ClearURLs Chrome extension. “Google has mysteriously removed the popular browser extension ClearURLs from the Chrome Web Store. ClearURLs is a privacy-preserving browser add-on which automatically removes tracking elements from URLs. According to its developer, this can help protect your privacy when browsing the internet.”

NOLA: Louisiana doesn’t count people who die behind bars, so Loyola Law School will fill the void. “There’s been no shortage of needless deaths in New Orleans-area lock-ups, but until now there’s been no count. That will change thanks to an effort by Loyola University law school to create the database that Louisiana officials have not: a full list of everyone who dies in the state’s prisons, jails and detention centers. Professor Andrea Armstrong’s project aims to restore dignity to people who die behind bars while giving jailors in the world’s incarceration capital the tools to prevent more deaths.”

Arab News: Online privacy fears mount as India sets tougher social media controls. “Indian journalists and digital rights advocates have warned that new social media rules announced on Thursday will further undercut online privacy and freedom of expression in the country. The new controls give the government more power to police content shared on social media and digital streaming platforms.”


BBC: AI: Ghost workers demand to be seen and heard. “Artificial intelligence and machine learning exist on the back of a lot of hard work from humans. Alongside the scientists, there are thousands of low-paid workers whose job it is to classify and label data – the lifeblood of such systems. But increasingly there are questions about whether these so-called ghost workers are being exploited. As we train the machines to become more human, are we actually making the humans work more like machines?”

The Hindu: Thanjavur art plates: More than just curios. “In 2018, a team of researchers went from Chennai to Thanjavur to learn more about the art plates of the temple city. Soon they realised that not many residents knew about this unique heritage, even though as a popular gift item, it had kept its few surviving makers busy in cottage-industry units. The craft blending two cultures — Dravidian and Maratha — seemed very much on the wane. From 200 artisan families, there were now only 50 left. The researchers’ study tour metamorphosed into a grassroots project aimed at reviving the indigenous industry, with the Chennai-based Rajalakshmi Group of Institutions offering support.” Good evening, Internet…

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