The General Index, Belarusian Political Prisoners, Dobbs County NC, More: Thursday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, October 14, 2021


Motherboard: Archivists Create a Searchable Index of 107 Million Science Articles. “The General Index is here to serve as your map to human knowledge. Pulled from 107,233,728 journal articles, The General Index is a searchable collection of keywords and short sentences from published papers that can serve as a map to the paywalled domains of scientific knowledge. In full, The General Index is a massive 38 terabyte archive of searchable terms. Compressed, it comes to 8.5 terabytes.”

Belsat: Ten inspirational quotes from political prisoners. “An online museum of letters from Belarusian political prisoners recently appeared in Belarus. Belsat read the exhibits and decided to publish lines from some of the letters.”

State Archives of North Carolina: Dobbs County Record Discovery!. “Dobbs County was created in 1758 from Johnston County, named in honor of Arthur Dobbs, the Royal Governor of the colony of North Carolina. In 1791, not wanting to be reminded of the colonial past, Dobbs County was abolished and divided into Lenoir and Glasgow counties, named after current political figures. Very few series of historical documents are kept in the Archives from Dobbs since the Lenoir County courthouse burned in 1878 and 1880, destroying almost all the Dobbs County records. Land records and wills make up the bulk of our holdings for the defunct county. Now we are proud to say we also have a court docket for Dobbs County!”


CNBC: Microsoft to shut down LinkedIn in China. “Microsoft announced Thursday it will shut down its local version of LinkedIn in China. LinkedIn was the last major U.S.-operated social network still operating in China.”


Ars Technica: “Hacker X”—the American who built a pro-Trump fake news empire—unmasks himself. “For two years, he ran websites and Facebook groups that spread bogus stories, conspiracy theories, and propaganda. Under him was a dedicated team of writers and editors paid to produce deceptive content—from outright hoaxes to political propaganda—with the supreme goal of tipping the 2016 election to Donald Trump. Through extensive efforts, he built a secret network of self-reinforcing sites from the ground up. He devised a strategy that got prominent personalities—including Trump—to retweet misleading claims to their followers. And he fooled unwary American citizens, including the hacker’s own father, into regarding fake news sources more highly than the mainstream media.”

Hawaii Public Radio: Oʻahu’s oldest Christian church has begun digitizing over 200 years of documents. “Kawaiahaʻo Church in Honolulu received a $98,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services to digitize these records and make them available to the public online. Kawaiahaʻo was established in 1820 and soon became the primary place of worship for Hawaiian royalty. But many of the church’s records remained in filing cabinets in the basement.”


Washington Post: Top Democrats unveil bill to rein in tech companies’ ‘malicious algorithms’. “Top Democratic lawmakers unveiled a major proposal Thursday that could hold digital platforms like Facebook and Twitter legally responsible for making personalized recommendations to users that lead to their physical or emotional harm.”

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Missouri teachers’ Social Security numbers at risk on state agency’s website. “The Social Security numbers of school teachers, administrators and counselors across Missouri were vulnerable to public exposure due to flaws on a website maintained by the state’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The Post-Dispatch discovered the vulnerability in a web application that allowed the public to search teacher certifications and credentials. The department removed the affected pages from its website Tuesday after being notified of the problem by the Post-Dispatch.”


The Guardian: The latest revelations mark the beginning of the end for the House of Zuckerberg. “There are existential threats to Facebook’s business model, not the least of which is the FTC’s suit to break the company up. State attorney generals, many with cases already proceeding, are scenting blood. A Texas lawsuit names Sandberg for possible market rigging. And perhaps most toxic of all is the radioactive waste left by the Cambridge Analytica scandal.”

Columbia Journalism Review: The Metric Media network runs more than 1,200 local news sites. Here are some of the non-profits funding them.. “The Tow Center has previously reported on Metric Media, but until now, little was known about the finances or partners of this network that claims to give ‘every citizen a voice in their community’ and publishes ‘over 5 million news articles every month.’ A new investigation by the Tow Center has discovered that this network has ties to founders of the Tea Party movement, to a non-profit described by Mother Jones as ‘the dark-money ATM of the conservative movement,’ and to a Catholic political advocacy group that launched a $9.7 million campaign in swing states against the Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden six weeks before the 2020 election.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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1 reply »

  1. Damn — that Ars Technica “Hacker X” piece was riveting. It does, though, challenge my fanciful notions of remorse as a mitigating factor…

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