PFAS Toxicity Studies, Global Trade Barriers, Ontario Newspapers, More: Wednesday ResearchBuzz, May 5, 2021

I had my second shot Monday and spent Monday night, Tuesday, and last night absolutely flattened out. Feeling pretty good today. Have I told you lately that I love you?


Chemical & Engineering News: New database amasses toxicity studies on PFAS. “A first-of-its-kind database assembles hundreds of toxicology studies on 29 per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The database is aimed at assisting communities exposed to PFAS contamination and helping policy makers access scientific literature on these substances, says Katherine E. Pelch, a professor at the University of North Texas School of Public Health.”

World Trade Organization: New WTO database details impact of regulatory barriers, other factors on costs to trade. “Trade policy barriers such as tariffs and regulations account for at least 14 per cent of trade costs according to estimates from the WTO Trade Cost Index launched on 30 April. The index measures the cost of trading internationally relative to trading domestically, finding that the costs to export are higher for women, smaller businesses and unskilled workers.”

Toronto Star: SDG Counties digital newspaper archives launched. “It was an apropos launch for a digital newspaper archive, to host an online launch event. That was the case as the SDG Newspaper Digitization Project, with over 200,000 pages of history, hit the internet with a celebratory online launch held May 3rd.” SDG stands for United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry, a municipality in Ontario Canada.

Daily Sabah: WikiLala, ‘Google’ of Ottoman-Turkish documents, launches in full. “The online digital library project, ‘WikiLala,’ which brings together and aims to digitize all the printed texts from the Ottoman Empire since the introduction of the printing press, has recently launched a full version of its website which had been in beta for a while. Since its launch, the website has attracted more than 200,000 visitors from 107 countries.”

Moving History: Ronald J Sullivan Photography Collection. “Ronald J. Sullivan, an amateur photographer and avid railfan and bus enthusiast, documented Chicago-area transportation and the city’s changing streetscapes over the course of more than five decades in this collection comprising over 1100 photographs and slides, dating from 1946-2000. He supplemented hundreds of original photographs, the bulk of the collection, with slides and photos that he collected, creating a record of Chicago’s transit history.”


NPR: Facebook Ban On Donald Trump Will Hold, Social Network’s Oversight Board Rules. “Facebook was justified in its decision to suspend then-President Donald Trump after the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, the company’s Oversight Board said on Wednesday. That means the company does not have to reinstate Trump’s access to Facebook and Instagram immediately. But the panel said the company was wrong to impose an indefinite ban and said Facebook has six months to either restore Trump’s account, make his suspension permanent, or suspend him for a specific period of time.”

CNET: Twitter expands Spaces to all users with at least 600 followers. “Twitter Spaces has graduated from a beta test to a full-fledged feature. On Monday the social media platform announced that starting today it will allow anyone with 600 or more followers to start a new Space.”


Hyperallergic: Argentina’s Military Government May Have Stolen from Its Own Museum to Fund Falklands War. “At 1am on December 25, 1980, four burglars entered the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Buenos Aires, Argentina, through a gap in the roof, and took 16 Impressionist works and seven early Chinese sculptures. The heist was peculiar for its seamlessness: ladders presumably left by construction workers made it easier for the thieves to break in. Two night guards keeping watch that night were tortured and arrested by state police, but no one has ever been charged with the crime to this day. And according to anecdotal accounts by witnesses, an army truck was seen parked outside the museum.”


ThreatPost: Deepfake Attacks Are About to Surge, Experts Warn. “A drastic uptick in deepfake technology and service offerings across the Dark Web is the first sign a new wave of fraud is just about to crash in, according to a new report from Recorded Future, which ominously predicted that deepfakes are on the rise among threat actors with an enormous range of goals and interests.”

South China Morning Post: Hong Kong protests: former RTHK journalist Bao Choy to appeal conviction over database search, fearing lifelong regret if she gives up ‘pursuit of justice’. “A former journalist at Hong Kong’s public broadcaster is appealing against her conviction for improperly accessing public records during the making of a documentary critical of how police handled a 2019 mob attack, saying letting the case go now would be a source of lifelong regret.”


EurekAlert: Personalised medications possible with 3D printing. “Customised medicines could one day be manufactured to patients’ individual needs, with University of East Anglia (UEA) researchers investigating technology to 3D ‘print’ pills. The team, including Dr Andy Gleadall and Prof Richard Bibb at Loughborough University, identified a new additive manufacturing method to allow the 3D printing of medicine in highly porous structures, which can be used to regulate the rate of drug release from the medicine to the body when taken orally.”

The Vintage News: The Project That Could Turn Ancient Mayan Hieroglyphs into Emojis. “Writing on their website last year, Unicode announced a National Endowment for the Humanities grant enabling the Maya Hieroglyph Project. Its goal is to make historical communications ‘accessible to both expert and non-expert user communities through creating an annotated digital archive.’ Dr. Gabrielle Vail is in charge of the team, which focuses on the Classic period of 250–900 CE.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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