Texas Overdoses, An Garda Síochána Photography, Alien Forest Pest Explorer, More: Thursday ResearchBuzz, July 14, 2022


Texas Tribune: With national data on drug overdoses lacking, University of Texas project looks to help provide a solution. “The University of Texas project, known as TxCOPE, is one attempt to solve a problem exasperating officials nationwide who are trying to lower the record number of drug deaths: getting an instant, accurate picture of both nonfatal and fatal drug overdoses.”

Derry Now: Fascinating Garda Photographic Archive captures some of the major events from past 100 years. “Hundreds of historical photos captured by An Garda Síochána from some of the most significant historic Irish events during the last 100 years will be made available to the public for the first time. An Garda Síochána has launched its Garda Centenary Online Photographic Archive 1922 – 2022 as part of its current centenary celebrations.” An Garda Síochána is the national police force of Ireland.

Phys .org: Research partnership launches new, improved Alien Forest Pest Explorer. “Purdue University and the U.S. Forest Service on Tuesday (July 12) announced the new and improved Alien Forest Pest Explorer interactive web tool. The user-friendly dashboard combines information from multiple sources to show the impact of different forest insects and diseases, and the potential for further damage. The interactive and customizable dashboards are the first to overlay this pest data with related data about the status and health of the host tree species in the forest…”


TechCrunch: TikTok to roll out content filters and maturity ratings in pledge to make app safer. “Earlier this year, TikTok said it was developing a new system that would restrict certain types of mature content from being viewed by teen users. Today, the company is introducing the first version of this system, called ‘Content Levels,’ due to launch in a matter of weeks. It’s also preparing the rollout of a new tool that will allow users to filter videos with certain words or hashtags from showing up in their feeds.”

The Verge: New emoji for iOS and Android include a high five and shaking face. “The Unicode Consortium only has 31 draft emoji this year that will likely be rolled out in 2022 and 2023. While the draft emoji can change between now and finalization in September, most (if not all) will make it through. Contenders include a shaking face and much-needed high five and wireless emojis.”


Hackaday: Automate Internet Life With Python. “FreeCodeCamp has a 3-hour course from [Frank Andrade] that dives into the gory details of automating web tasks using Python and a variety of libraries like Path, Xpath, and Selenium. You can watch the course, below.”


TIME: Inside the War on Fake Consumer Reviews. “As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to supercharge global e-commerce, this kind of fraud has emerged as one of the most significant factors contributing to an erosion of consumer confidence in the online marketplace. Fake reviews influenced around $152 billion in global spending on lackluster products and services last year, according to a report from the World Economic Forum.”


CNET: Google Reportedly Offers to Split Ad Tech Business to Fend Off US Antitrust Suit. “Google has reportedly offered to make concessions to thwart a possible antitrust lawsuit by the Department of Justice that takes aim at the search giant’s ad technology business.”

Associated Press: LGBTQ harassment, slurs abound on social media, report says. “Social media platforms including Facebook and TikTok are failing to stop hate and threats against LGBTQ users, a report issued Wednesday from advocacy group GLAAD found.”


University of Maryland: Who Owns the Sounds and Images of Native People’s Pasts?. “The last known fluent speaker of the tribe’s native Western dialect died in 2010, and the remaining tribal citizens–who traditionally don’t count their members but are estimated to number about 350 speak an amalgam of Ahtna’s Western and Central dialects. Audio recordings of Western Ahtna exist, but many are kept in mainstream archives that don’t belong to the Chickaloon tribe. Now, two University of Maryland faculty members are part of a new effort to bring those recordings, and other pieces of history, back to the Native people who lived the stories within them.”

Boing Boing: SALT is an AI-generated, community-narrated adventure game taking place on Twitter . “SALT is a cooperative choose-your-own-adventure game that uses AI-generated images (from MidJourney) and Twitter polls to create a 1970s-style cinematic adventure. It’s a cool idea and the results so far are fantastic. There’s still time to get in on the action!”

Campaign for Accountability: TTP Investigation: Google Allowing Student Loan Relief Scam Ads. “Today, Campaign for Accountability (CfA) a nonprofit watchdog group that runs the Tech Transparency Project (TTP), released a report revealing that more than one in 10 ads served to Google users searching for information about student loan relief direct the user to websites that violate Google’s policies or have characteristics of a financial scam.” Good morning, Internet…

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