Albert Einstein, Dropbox, Google Bookmarks, More: Saturday Evening ResearchBuzz, July 24, 2021


Caltech: Albert Einstein at 50 . “The Einstein Papers Project at Caltech has released the 16th volume of its massive scholarly collection of Albert Einstein’s scientific and nonscientific writings and correspondence. The volume covers the period from June 1927 to May 1929 and contains 1,600 letters by and to Einstein, many more than contained in previous volumes. This is due in part to the fact that Einstein turned 50 on March 14, 1929 and received a flood of congratulatory wishes.”


Engadget: Dropbox makes automatic camera uploads available to all free users. “Dropbox is introducing a variety of new features across its product stack. Of all the tweaks the company announced today, the most intriguing ones involve its automatic backup utility for photos you take with your phone. Most notably, starting today that functionality is now available to all Basic users — that is, those who don’t pay for the service.”

9to5 Google: Google will shut down ‘Bookmarks’ in September, won’t affect Maps ‘starred’ locations [U]. “After 16 years of service, Google is about to shut down a service that isn’t very well known. On September 30, 2021 ‘Google Bookmarks’ will be closed off for all users. The announcement has been fairly quiet, but as was spotted this week, a banner now appears on Google Bookmarks explaining that the service will ‘no longer be supported’ later this year.”


New York Times: Using Computer Vision to Create A More Accurate Digital Archive. “This video series from R&D features team members describing their roles, processes and the specific technical challenges they encounter while building and shipping projects. Along with each episode, we’ll share relevant background, resources, references and advice for anyone interested in creating something similar or learning more…. In this episode, R&D Intern Lasse Nordahl explains the process of converting over 10 million scanned images of articles from The Times’s archive into machine-readable text.”

The Register: Even Facebook struggles: Zuck’s titanic database upgrade hits numerous legacy software bergs . “Facebook has had all sorts of no fun trying to migrate from MySQL 5.6 to version 8.0. A post from the social network’s engineering team reveals that Facebook’s last MySQL upgrade – to version 5.6 – took ‘more than a year’. Moving to version 8.0 has taken ‘a few years so far’.”


IANS: 4 mn phone numbers of Clubhouse users ‘up for sale’ on Darkb Web. “‘A database of 3.8 billion phone numbers of #Clubhouse users is up for sale on the #Darknet,’ leading cybersecurity expert Jiten Jain wrote on Twitter. ‘It also contains numbers of people in user’s phonebooks that were synced. So chances are high that you are listed even if you haven’t had a Clubhouse login,’ Jain added.”

Motherboard: Amazon Shuts Down NSO Group Infrastructure. “Amazon Web Services (AWS) has shut down infrastructure and accounts linked to Israeli surveillance vendor NSO Group, Amazon said in a statement. The move comes as a group of media outlets and activist organizations published new research into NSO’s malware and phone numbers potentially selected for targeting by NSO’s government clients.”

CBS News: The world’s top ransomware gangs have created a cybercrime “cartel”. “Several of the largest Russian ransomware cybercriminal gangs have partnered up and are sharing hacking techniques, purloined data-breach information, malware code and technology infrastructure.”


EurekAlert: On the internet, nobody knows you’re a dog — or a fake Russian Twitter account. “Many legacy media outlets played an unwitting role in the growth of the four most successful fake Twitter accounts hosted by the Russian Internet Research Agency (IRA) that were created to spread disinformation during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, according to a study led by a University at Buffalo communication researcher.”

Mashable: Book clubs should always meet on Zoom. “I read a lot, and I love the low pressure engagement of a virtual book club. I was bad at attending book clubs in real life before the pandemic, because my book club friends and I all have very busy schedules, so finding a time for us all to meet up was difficult. Scheduling online hangouts is easier because you can do them from anywhere — at your family’s house, with your partner, or even from your own bed. Now that the meetups are returning to apartments and bars, scheduling is once again more difficult and, honestly, I don’t want to participate in them anymore.” Good evening, Internet…

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