Bronisław Piłsudski, Milan Cathedral, Africa Food Security, More: Monday ResearchBuzz, May 23, 2022


The First News: Extraordinary life of Józef Piłsudski’s older brother told in new website. “The extraordinary life of Józef Piłsudski’s older brother Bronisław is showcased in the first website dedicated to the man many regarded as a real king…. After being exiled to Sakhalin Island in the far east of the Russian Empire, Bronisław soon learned the language of one of the most mysterious peoples in the world, the Ainu, and set about documenting the life and culture of the island’s people.”

Google Blog: Milan Cathedral, up close and beautiful. “Milan Cathedral Remixed was made possible by Google Arts & Culture technology, in partnership with the Veneranda Fabbrica. This ambitious digitization project led to the capture of more than 50 stained glass windows in high resolution, bringing the Google Art Camera to a dizzying height of 30 meters. This captured the details of more than 2,000 stained glass window panels, many of which can’t be seen from ground level.”

PR Newswire: New Agricultural Data Tool Can Help Fight the Growing Food Crisis in Africa (PRESS RELEASE). “The Food Security Tracker for Africa provides free access to real-time data about the supply and demand of major crops, including corn, soy, wheat, and rice for African countries. By combining data on drought, crop conditions, prices, supply and demand all in one place, users will be able to develop more effective solutions and emergency response plans to the growing shortages of key agricultural commodities across the continent.”

The Verge: DeviantArt is expanding its system for flagging stolen NFT art. “DeviantArt is expanding its tool for detecting ripped-off crypto art, offering it to artists outside the platform. DeviantArt Protect, which launched last year for art posted on the site, will now be available for work that isn’t hosted there as well. Users can upload copies of art to Protect and have it matched against non-fungible token (or NFT) images minted to one of several public blockchains. If an identical or near-identical match is detected, they’ll receive an alert and can send takedown requests to major NFT markets like OpenSea.”


NBC News: Celebrity-endorsed NFTs leave some investors ‘financially crippled’. “It’s a pattern that crypto critics, watchdogs and even some influencers point to as an ongoing problem: digital investments riding a wave of NFT enthusiasm and backed by high-profile endorsements that quickly lose value. In some cases, in the crypto world, it’s what’s known as a ‘rug pull.’ But more broadly, ad transparency experts warn, public figures are promoting NFTs often without having done due diligence or warning their fans about the serious financial risks.”

CNET: Google Maps’ New Feature Lets You Visit Restaurants From Home. “Google has a new feature for its Maps app that it’s rolling out this year called Immersive View — and it takes Street View to a new level. It works by using billions of photos to model buildings and trees in 3D using machine learning. Once it becomes available, you’ll be able to experience what a restaurant, neighborhood, landmark or popular venue is like, as if you’re already there.”


New York Times Magazine: The ‘E-Pimps’ of OnlyFans . “Spend enough time on social media, and you’ll encounter young people engaged in all sorts of schemes: running drop-shipping companies, minting NFTs, pumping crypto, selling real estate in the metaverse. Many are based in Miami. It’s a place where young marketing types have embraced a vision of what the internet is actually for that is at odds with Silicon Valley’s: less a utopian escape from reality than an infinite expansion of its strip malls.”

Resnicow and Associates: Howard University Acquires Extensive Collection of Gordon Parks Photographs Spanning Five Decades. “Howard University and The Gordon Parks Foundation today announced a historic acquisition of 252 photographs representing the arc of Gordon Parks’s career over five decades…. The Gordon Parks Legacy Collection, a combined gift and purchase, will be housed in the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center.”


The Canadian Press: Glut of social media posts, political divisiveness a challenge for content moderators. “Leigh Adams has seen a steady rise of material for review since she began moderating user comments on websites roughly 14 years ago, but she says the volume only exploded in the last few years as the content’s nature became so divisive there’s only one word for it: ‘Bonkers.’ Misinformation, trolling and worse has always existed online, but Adams says she saw a shift after the U.S. elected Donald Trump president in 2016 that reached a new height when George Floyd, a Black man in Minneapolis, was killed in police custody in May 2020, fuelling racial tensions just as the world was locked down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.”


Vox EU: Using historical newspaper data to deal with measurement error. “Researchers typically collect newspaper-based data for use as outcome, treatment, or control variables in statistical analysis. This column argues that data generated from historical newspaper articles can also be used as a low-cost alternative for resolving measurement errors. The authors illustrate their framework by replicating two recent studies of how the boll weevil – a beetle that infests cotton crops – affected economic outcomes in the US South from 1892 to 1922.”

This Day Live (Nigeria): TETFund Targets Two Billion Pages of Research Materials. “The Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) has begun a two-billion pages drive to accelerate the ongoing digitisation of thesis across 100 least digitised institutions. Inaugurating the committee on yesterday in Abuja, the executive secretary, Sonny Echono, said the need for a National Academic Research Repository (NARR) necessitated the project, given that numerous research outputs were lying dormant in libraries across tertiary institutions in the country.”

VentureBeat: Can AI write an episode of Stargate? Google AI took on the challenge. “For the cult classic Stargate science fiction franchise, which spanned three series (SG-1, Stargate Atlantis and Stargate Universe), character and plot development was helmed by Stargate co-creator Brad Wright. In 2021, Wright publicly posted a message on Twitter asking if it was possible for AI to write an episode of Stargate that would appear on SciFi insider site The Companion. None other than Laurence Moroney, AI lead at Google, responded by picking up the gauntlet to try and prove what AI could do.– though he wasn’t initially worried that AI would replace him or other writers.” Good morning, Internet…

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