Stolen Drones, 19th Century Encyclopedias, Pennsylvania Bridges, More: Friday ResearchBuzz, April 22, 2022


DP Review: Stolen Drone Info is a one-stop shop to search for lost or stolen drones. “Drones go missing every single day. Whether they’re stolen or end up lost as the result of a crash or flyaway, a tool to help track them down was needed. Enter Stolen Drone Info (SDI). Powered by DroneSec’s internal intelligence platform, SDI scans popular open marketplaces, where drones are likely to turn up, including Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist and eBay.”

Smithsonian Magazine: A 19th-Century Encyclopedia Gets a Modern Makeover . “‘Iconographic Encyclopaedia of Science, Literature, and Art’ was translated and updated by Spencer Baird, a man who would become the Smithsonian’s second Secretary. Much like our very own Institution, it covered topics from art to zoology. Today, a new digital edition helps brings its knowledge to 21st-century viewers.”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Post-Gazette Searchable Bridge Database. “The Post-Gazette has created a database that allows readers to search the conditions of more than 22,000 bridges across the state — the first such database of its kind in Pennsylvania — to better inform the public about the spans in their communities and where millions of drivers cross each day. Though the state Department of Transportation no longer makes public the notes written by inspectors, citing an exemption to Pennsylvania’s open records law, the Post-Gazette downloaded the communications before they were removed and believes the public has a right to know more about the bridges in their communities.”

Coconuts Manila: Non-profit launches digital library of Marcos-era independent publications to fight historical disinformation. “In order to combat the disinformation networks that are working hard to rewrite the Philippines’ history, the non-profit organization Bantayog ng mga Bayani (Monument to the Heroes) has launched a digital library that features an archive of independent and alternative publications that were in circulation during the years that President Ferdinand Marcos kept the country under martial law.”

CBC: Photographer digitizes hundreds of never-seen images of Inuit communities. “Photographer Jake Ootes is looking to connect Nunavummiut with more than 300 images he took while on tours with former [Northwest Territories] commissioner Stuart Hodgson between 1960 and the 1980s…. In 1964, with a 35 mm Pentax SLR in tow, Ootes had traveled to every Nunavut community with the territorial government as part of his work to spread information about government programs.”


Ghacks: Brave Search introduces Discussions to add real-human conversations to search results. “The new Discussions section is added as a block to the search results. A search for ‘how to upgrade to Windows 11’ returns articles, video content, and also the new discussions section. The returned results were not matching the search query for this particular result. Instead of providing answers to the question, all four visible results asked whether it was worth upgrading to Windows 11. Discussions needs finetuning to return better results in Discussions.”

Chrome Unboxed: Next month, Google will no longer allow third-party call recording apps in the Play Store. “Starting next month on May 11, 2022, the Google Play Store will begin killing off ‘remote’ call recording apps. Remote refers to the fact that the person on the other end of the call is unaware that you’re recording the conversation. Obviously, the implications of this are far-reaching when you consider each individual state or country’s policy regarding a one or two-person consent for recordings like this as they vary.”


New York Times: How a Dollar General Employee Went Viral on TikTok. “Before March 28, [Mary] Gundel’s TikTok page was a mix of posts about hair extensions and her recent dental surgery. Now it is a daily digest dedicated to fomenting revolt at a major American company. She’s trying to build what she calls a ‘movement’ of workers who feel overworked and disrespected and is encouraging Dollar General employees to form a union.”

Commercial Appeal: ‘There’s more here than we even imagined’: Historic Beale Street store Abe Schwab’s being ‘digitized’. “Established in 1876 and located at its current home since 1911, the A. Schwab dry goods store, souvenir shop, soda fountain, haberdashery and hoodoo emporium in the heart of the Beale Street entertainment district might be considered a museum of history and culture even if it did not, in fact, contain exhibits of antique artifacts and vintage photographs within the hoarder’s heaven of its cluttered, colorful, multi-level interior.”


South China Morning Post: Chinese social media to display user locations based on IP address, including platforms from ByteDance and Zhihu. “Several Chinese social platforms, including Quora-like Zhihu and the domestic version of TikTok, Douyin, announced on Friday that they will soon display user locations based on internet protocol (IP) addresses, a feature that users cannot disable.”

AFP: Google makes cookie opt-out easier after France fine. “Google announced on Thursday it was starting to roll out an option for European users to reject ‘cookies’ with a single click, months after it was slapped with a massive fine. Google, along with Facebook, has faced an onslaught of legal cases and punishments over its use of web-tracking technology, which breaches EU privacy legislation.”


Atlas Obscura: Saving the Sounds of the Early 20th Century. “Sound restoration engineer Nicholas Bergh spent two decades designing the revolutionary new machine, known as the Endpoint Audio Labs cylinder playback machine. To date, seven exist around the world, including one purchased by a private collector who has made his vast collection publicly available online. Bergh’s machine, which looks a bit like an old-school phonograph attached to a high-tech computer, uses a laser to read the grooves on a wax cylinder.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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