AlphaFold, Birds for Kids, The Ebony and Jet Photo Archives, More: Friday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, July 29, 2022


DeepMind: AlphaFold reveals the structure of the protein universe. “In partnership with EMBL’s European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI), we’re now releasing predicted structures for nearly all catalogued proteins known to science, which will expand the AlphaFold DB by over 200x – from nearly 1 million structures to over 200 million structures – with the potential to dramatically increase our understanding of biology.”

Newswise: New Course Helps Awaken Curiosity About Nature. “Adults who want to connect kids with nature now have some expert guidance, thanks to a new online course from Bird Academy, the e-learning arm of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. ‘Let’s Go Outside: How to Connect Kids with Birds and Nature,’ contains six lessons with dozens of field-tested activities to reduce screen time for kids and boost their curiosity about the natural world.”


Ford Foundation: Ford, Mellon and MacArthur Foundations Transfer Sole Ownership of Historic Ebony and Jet Photo Archive to Getty and NMAAHC . “A consortium comprising the Ford Foundation, the J. Paul Getty Trust, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, and the Smithsonian Institution, announced today the official transfer of ownership of the acclaimed Johnson Publishing Company (JPC) archive to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) and to the Getty Research Institute, a program of the Getty Trust.”

TechCrunch: TikTok begins pilot testing HTML5 mini-games with a handful of partners. “TechCrunch learned and has now confirmed TikTok’s new gaming pilot quietly launched just weeks ago with a variety of new partners, including game developers Vodoo, Nitro Games, FRVR, Aim Lab and Lotem.”

Search Engine Journal: Twitter Transparency Report Shows Dark Side Of Social Media. “Twitter’s transparency report showed decreases in the number of suspended accounts or had content removed due to violating Twitter’s rules. The report also details increasing government requests for information and how often Twitter complies with those requests. Of particular note is an increase in governments targeting journalists with legal demands.”


New York Times: The Default Tech Settings You Should Turn Off Right Away. “…with every tech product we use, it’s important to take time to peruse the many menus, buttons and switches to pare down the data we share. Here’s a streamlined guide to many of the default settings that I and other tech writers always change.”


Axios: Gen Z shapes new social media era. “The social hierarchies created by decades of public ‘like’ counts, and the noise level generated by clickbait posts and engagement lures, have worn on Gen Z. And constant pivots by social media giants have eroded younger users’ trust.”

Politico: Arabic social media remains an unchecked Wild West. “Suspected Kremlin agents peddle falsehoods masquerading as Instagram models. The terrorist organization Hezbollah posts propaganda updates as if it were a news organization. More than 2 million Iraqis join Facebook groups where guns are bought and sold without checks. Welcome to the world of Arabic-language social media — a Wild West where content moderation is minimal, foreign governments act with abandon, and jihadists foster online hate in arguably some of the world’s most war-torn countries.”


Politico: Justice Department investigating data breach of federal court system. “The Justice Department is investigating a data breach of the U.S. federal courts system dating to early 2020, a top official testified on Capitol Hill Thursday.”


UMBC: UMBC-led team generates first global map of cargo ship pollution, revealing effects of fuel regulations. “A new study in Science Advances led by UMBC’s Tianle Yuan used satellite data from 2003 – 2020 to determine the effect of fuel regulations on pollution from cargo ships. The research team’s data revealed significant changes in sulfur pollution after regulations went into effect in 2015 and 2020. Their extensive data set can also contribute to answering a bigger question: How do pollutants and other particles interact with clouds to affect global temperatures overall?” Good afternoon, Internet…

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