Franz Kafka, Vulnerable Marshes, Vaporwave Music, More: Thursday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, May 27, 2021


BBC: Franz Kafka: Manuscripts, drawings and personal letters go online. “A collection of documents by the acclaimed Czech author Franz Kafka is now publicly available online, following intensive restoration, cataloguing and digitisation. The digitised collection includes three draft versions of Kafka’s story Wedding Preparations in the Country, a notebook in which he practiced Hebrew, and hundreds of personal letters, sketches and travel journals.”

USGS: USGS Releases Nationwide Marsh Vulnerability Maps. “U.S. Geological Survey scientists have developed and made available a new mapping resource that can identify the most vulnerable marshes across the contiguous U.S. through a combination of remote-sensing and satellite technologies. These maps provide critical information to land managers and help inform marsh conservation and restoration strategies without costly site-specific or labor-intensive assessments.”

National Library of New Zealand: Download Now… Free!. “Today we are very excited to cut the ribbon on a new born-digital collection donated by Luke Rowell, one of New Zealand’s foremost computer musicians. Over the last 20 years, Luke has performed hundreds of gigs around the world and released over 15 albums of popular electronic music, either as Disasteradio or Eyeliner. Among Luke’s best-known tracks is the synthpop hit ‘Gravy Rainbow’, while his Eyeliner albums are considered among the essential works of the vaporwave movement.”


BetaNews: Foxit PDF Reader 11 unveils major facelift and new 3D tools to accompany minor name change . “Foxit Software has taken the opportunity to rebrand its popular PDF viewing and editing products with its latest major release. Foxit Reader is now Foxit PDF Reader 11.0, while PDF-editing tool Foxit PhantomPDF is reclassified Foxit PDF Editor 11.0. Both newly renamed tools unveil revamped user interfaces with the promise of being leaner, simpler, and more intuitive to use. They both also gain support for more 3D functions and digital signature enhancements.”


Joplin Globe: Joplin Hope Center for Disaster Recovery being established. “A digital library will be established to collect and store records related to the 2011 tornado that could provide information for other communities preparing for or recovering from a disaster. Called the Joplin Hope Center for Disaster Recovery, it is a joint project of Missouri Southern State University, the city of Joplin, the Joplin School District, The Joplin Globe, and area organizations and volunteers. It is being launched to mark the 10th anniversary of the storm.”

BBC: Appeal for tales of Hull airship crash which killed 44. “An appeal has been launched for stories and memorabilia ahead of the 100th anniversary of an airship disaster which killed 44 people. The R.38/ZR-2 exploded mid-flight in front of onlookers in Hull on 24 August 1921, before crashing into the River Humber, killing most of the crew. The airship, called the ‘Titanic of the skies’, was on a test flight before being handed over to the US Navy.”

Quartz: Hong Kongers are using blockchain archives to fight government censorship. “Using blockchain to bypass censorship is not new. In 2018, for example, #MeToo activists in China used the Ethereum blockchain to preserve an open letter by a Peking University student who said she was being pressured by the administration to cease her activism on a sexual assault case.”


WTVD: Instagram scammers copycat popular accounts to access followers, money during giveaways. “As you are scrolling through your social media feed, you need to watch out for scammers impersonating popular businesses and influencers social media pages to try and get access to their followers and even their money. It happened to a popular triangle food and travel blogger, and when her account got shut down, she turned to out Troubleshooter Diane Wilson for help.”


Eos: A New Tool May Make Geological Microscopy Data More Accessible. “Alex Steiner, a doctoral student at Michigan State University, had research to do working on thin sections—slivers of geological materials that are usually analyzed under a microscope. But he and the two undergraduate students on the project were not allowed to access the lab or the geological samples they were working on. Because, well, pandemic. It was out of this necessity that Steiner helped develop a new tool that could automatically take pictures of entire thin sections and stitch them into digital panoramic microscope images that could be analyzed anywhere.”

Northern Arizona University: NAU archaeologists teach computers to sort ancient pottery . “Archaeologists at Northern Arizona University are hoping a new technology they helped pioneer will change the way scientists study the broken pieces left behind by ancient societies. The team from NAU’s Department of Anthropology have succeeded in teaching computers to perform a complex task many scientists who study ancient societies have long dreamt of: rapidly and consistently sorting thousands of pottery designs into multiple stylistic categories. By using a form of machine learning known as Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs), the archaeologists created a computerized method that roughly emulates the thought processes of the human mind in analyzing visual information.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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