Vertebrate-Virus Associations, Sea Level Changes, Iowa Social Services, More: Wednesday ResearchBuzz, August 11, 2021


bioRxiv: The Global Virome in One Network (VIRION): an atlas of vertebrate-virus associations. “Data cataloguing viral diversity on Earth have been fragmented across sources, disciplines, formats, and various degrees of open collation, posing challenges for research on macroecology, evolution, and public health. Here, we solve this problem by establishing a dynamically-maintained database of vertebrate-virus associations, called The Global Virome in One Network (VIRION). The VIRION database has been assembled through both reconciliation of static datasets and integration of dynamically-updated databases.”

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory: NASA, International Panel Provide a New Window on Rising Seas. “Pull up the tool’s layers of maps, click anywhere on the global ocean and coastlines, and pick any decade between 2020 and 2150: The tool, hosted on NASA’s Sea Level Portal, will deliver a detailed report for the location based on the projections in the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report, released on Aug. 9, which addresses the most updated physical understanding of the climate system and climate change.”

KCCI: New tool connects Iowans with social services. “On the new ‘Together We Care’ website, Iowans can search for services by ZIP code or category. It then gives you who to reach out to for help. The goal is to address the economic and social needs of patients.”


TechCrunch: Wix launches a no-code app builder for $200 per month. “This morning, Wix announced a new product for business owners called Branded App by Wix, which allows users to develop native apps without writing code. The publicly traded company provides tools for people and businesses to manage their online presence, but it’s most well-known for its drag-and-drop website builder. Now, the platform is expanding its user-friendly approach by making it possible for anyone to build an app without learning how to code.”

Reuters: Google restricts ad targeting of people under 18. “Alphabet Inc’s GOOGL-Q +0.07%increase
Google is blocking ad targeting based on the age, gender or interests of people under 18, the company said on Tuesday It also said it would turn off its ‘location history’ feature, which tracks location data, for users under 18 globally.”


Make Tech Easier: How to Create and Manage a WhatsApp Group. “Over 700 million people use WhatsApp daily for messaging and for Internet and video calls. Chances are that you are one of them. Perhaps, you also belong to one or two WhatsApp groups. Here are useful tips on creating and managing a WhatsApp group.”


InfoWorld: The long, long reigns of popular databases. “As Gartner’s Merv Adrian once said, ‘The greatest force in legacy databases is inertia.’ Hence, although it takes a long time to establish a new database, it takes even longer for a once-loved database to finally get dumped. Even when developers move on, their employers don’t. In short, it’s hard to make accurate technology predictions, but here’s one you can bank on: The databases developers love today will be the ones that permeate enterprises 10 years from now.”

Country Living: Beloved “Cheap Old Houses” Instagram Account is Now an HGTV Show. “With the real estate market hotter than ever, it may be hard for prospective buyers to imagine finding a house with good bones, history, and character—all for under $150,000. But these affordable, diamond-in-the-rough residences are just the sort featured on @CheapOldHouses, an Instagram account and subscription newsletter created by husband-and-wife Elizabeth and Ethan Finkelstein.”


CNET: Amazon makes it easier to file complaints about faulty marketplace products. “Amazon is updating its returns policy to make filing complaints about faulty products from third-party sellers easier. From Sept. 1, you’ll be able to contact Amazon directly with property damage or personal injury claims, and the company will connect you with the seller. Right now, the e-commerce giant encourages customers to contact sellers directly about problems with their products.”


Nature: ‘Tortured phrases’ give away fabricated research papers. “In April 2021, a series of strange phrases in journal articles piqued the interest of a group of computer scientists. The researchers could not understand why researchers would use the terms ‘counterfeit consciousness’, ‘profound neural organization’ and ‘colossal information’ in place of the more widely recognized terms ‘artificial intelligence’, ‘deep neural network’ and ‘big data’. Further investigation revealed that these strange terms — which they dub ‘tortured phrases’ — are probably the result of automated translation or software that attempts to disguise plagiarism.”

Harvard Business Review: How AI Could Help Doctors Reduce Maternal Mortality. “The United States has the highest maternal mortality rate of all high-income countries. Compared to women in Canada and France, women in the United States are twice as likely to die from childbirth complications. This crisis is especially pronounced in ethnic and racial minority populations: Black and Native American women in the United States are much more likely to perish from pregnancy-related complications than their white counterparts and are more likely to suffer severe maternal morbidity due to postpartum hemorrhage, hypertensive disorders, and sepsis.”

University of Colorado Denver: CU Denver Professor Powers Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Work in Education Through AI Technology. “CU Denver STEM Education Professor Geeta Verma has been empowering women and minorities in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields through her National Science Foundation grant and other research activities. Verma has embarked on a new journey and founded a new online platform called LivedXTM. The platform leverages machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to accelerate opportunities for minoritized and marginalized youth.” Good morning, Internet…

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