Photo Editing, Broadband Mapping, TikTok, More: Tuesday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, January 4, 2022


MakeUseOf: 2 Easy Ways to Combine Photos on an iPhone . “Performing basic photo editing tasks has always been easy on the iPhone, and this includes combining your photos. As it turns out, there are actually multiple ways to combine photos on an iPhone. Below, we’ll show you some of the ways to put two pictures together on your iPhone or iPad.”


Techdirt: Telecom Monopolies Are Exploiting Crappy U.S. Broadband Maps To Block Community Broadband Grant Requests. “Shoddy broadband mapping has generally been a good thing for regional U.S. telecom monopolies, who not only have been allowed to obscure competition gaps (and the high prices and poor service that result), but hoover up an endless gravy train of subsidies and tax breaks for networks that…mysteriously…always wind up half deployed. Our failure to measure deployment success has been painfully, repeatedly exploited.”

Wired: The Creepy TikTok Algorithm Doesn’t Know You. “Like any algorithm, TikTok’s divinatory properties are just the end result of a series of repeated steps. When someone creates a new account, the algorithm targets them with a variety of popular videos designed to test their response to broad categories of content, from viral dances to home repairs, according to a recent Wall Street Journal investigation. When the newspaper set 100-plus bots loose on TikTok, the platform’s ‘rabbit holing’ keyed in on every bot’s preprogrammed interests in less than two hours.”

Chicago Sun-Times: Grants to local community groups will help archive untold history. “[Ahmed Flex] Omar’s story is just one of countless stories about Black Muslims that have gone untold or unnoticed – something he has been working to amplify for the past six years through his Muslim American Leadership Alliance. A new $25,000 grant from the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation is hoping to help the group – and others like it – to move forward.”


Bloomberg: No Action Against Google Till Jan. 5, CCI Assures Court. “The Competition Commission of India last week assured the Karnataka High Court that no action will be taken against Google India Pvt. till the next hearing on Jan. 5 regarding a probe initiated by the regulator into the tech giant’s Play store rules.”

City A.M.: Google launches hacker crack down as it snaps up Israeli cybersecurity firm Siemplify for £371m. “Google, also known as Alphabet, has acquired Israeli cybersecurity startup Siemplify for an estimated $500m (£371m), as the giant gears up for the rise in cyber attacks and data breaches. Siemplify has raised $58m (£43m) over four rounds to date, with Israeli VC G20 Ventures the company’s largest shareholder.”

Associated Press: Broward Health hit with data breach on patients, staff. “The Broward Health hospital system on Saturday said it suffered a data breach in October where a hacker accessed personal and medical information of patients and staff. A statement from the hospital said the intruder accessed names, birthdays, addresses, banking information, social security numbers, drivers’ license numbers, patient histories and treatment and diagnosis records, among other information.”


CNET: The misinformation pandemic is out of control, but there’s a fix. “Conspiracy theories and misinformation about QAnon, COVID-19 and 2020 election fraud took a deadly turn in 2021. As bad as things were last year, experts worry it’ll get worse in 2022.”

BBC: Can fitness apps be as effective as a personal trainer?. “As we start 2022, lots of us will be resuming the battle to lose weight and get fit. A wealth of high-tech fitness apps are now available to help, but are they anywhere near as good as hiring a human personal trainer?”

The Daily Barometer: Regional Class Research Vessel introduces new tool for increasing data science literacy. “The Regional Class Research Vessel program, funded by the National Science Foundation, will enhance public marine and data science literacy by adapting ocean science data for the development of educational programs and exhibits.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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