Historic Artists’ Sites of Long Island, TikTok, Google Maps, More: Saturday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, July 16, 2022


Heckscher Museum of Art: Historic Artists’ Sites of Long Island Website Launched. “The website is an online guide to discover the living and working environments of some of America’s most influential artists. Visitors to the site can explore these homes and studios, experience the surroundings that inspired the artists, and gain insights into their creative processes. Many of these locations are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.”


Engadget: TikTok’s global security chief is stepping down amid US user data controversy. “TikTok’s global chief security officer (CSO) will step down from that position and shift into a strategic advisory role. Roland Cloutier’s change in duties follows concerns about how the company is handling US user data.”

9to5Google: Google Maps to offer energy-efficient routes tailored to electric vehicles, hybrids, more. “While gas-powered vehicles are still all too common in the United States, there’s a growing number of hybrids and electric vehicles on the road, and quite a few diesel-powered ones as well. Suffice it to say the most efficient route for a traditional ICE car will not be the same as one for an electric. To that end, the latest beta update to Google Maps, version 11.39, includes preparations to specify the engine type of the vehicle you’re currently driving.”


WIRED: Meet the Lobbyist Next Door . “Launched in 2020 by a pair of former Trump administration staffers, Urban Legend pledges on its website to ‘help brands run accountable and impactful influencer campaigns.’ Its more comprehensive mission, one rarely articulated in public, is slightly more ambitious. Staffed by a plucky 14-person team, Urban Legend keeps its largest asset carefully hidden away inside its servers: an army of 700 social media influencers who command varying degrees of allegiance from audiences that collectively number in the tens of millions.”


The Register: Thousands of websites run buggy WordPress plugin that allows complete takeover. “Miscreants have reportedly scanned almost 1.6 million websites in attempts to exploit an arbitrary file upload vulnerability in a previously disclosed buggy WordPress plugin. Traced as CVE-2021-24284, the vuln targets Kaswara Modern WPBakery Page Builder Addons and, if exploited, it would allow criminals to upload malicious JavaScript files and even completely take over an organization’s website.”

Ars Technica: Hackers are targeting industrial systems with malware. “From the what-could-possibly-go-wrong files comes this: An industrial control engineer recently made a workstation part of a botnet after inadvertently installing malware advertising itself as a means for recovering lost passwords.”

Reuters: Google hit with $971,000 sanction for litigation misconduct in privacy suit. “A U.S. judge on Friday ordered Alphabet Inc’s Google to pay more than $971,000 in legal fees and costs as a penalty for litigation misconduct in a privacy lawsuit in California federal court.”


Poynter: Opinion | Democracy dies behind a paywall. “Big Tech giants like Facebook and Google are gorging on the advertising revenue that once sustained news organizations, so the publications have tightened access to their products to get people to pay for it through subscriptions. While that strategy has helped bolster news organizations’ bottom lines at a time when a healthy free press is sorely needed, it has also had the dangerous side effect of leaving the vast majority of Americans in the dark.”

TechCrunch: Kids and teens now spend more time watching TikTok than YouTube, new data shows. “Kids and teens are now spending more time watching videos on TikTok than on YouTube. In fact, that’s been the case since June 2020 — the month when TikTok began to outrank YouTube in terms of the average minutes per day people ages 4 through 18 spent accessing these two competitive video platforms. That month, TikTok overtook YouTube for the first time, as this younger demographic began averaging 82 minutes per day on TikTok versus an average of 75 minutes per day on YouTube.”


Hackaday: It’s A Bird! It’s A Plane! It’s… A Live Air Traffic Plane Spotting Simulation . “By using publicly available information, software, and some ingenuity, [Information Zulu] has created a live simulation of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) for your simulated plane spotting pleasure.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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