AI-Powered Audio Processing, Google, Mastodon, More: Tuesday ResearchBuzz, December 27, 2022


Ars Technica: Make your noisy recording sound like pro audio with Adobe’s free AI tool. “Recently, Adobe released a free AI-powered audio processing tool that can enhance some poor-quality voice recordings by removing background noise and making the voice sound stronger. When it works, the result sounds like a recording made in a professional sound booth with a high-quality microphone.”


Search Engine Roundtable: Calmer Christmas Weekend For The Google Search Results. “It seemed a lot calmer this past weekend, Christmas weekend, than we had it a while in the world of Google search volatility. This is a good thing since we really want to see the two Google ranking algorithm updates wind down before year-end.”


Graham Macphee: Using Mastodon to power my blog comments. “Since my article earlier this year about integrating my blog’s comments with Twitter, I’ve now switched to power my blog comments with discussions happening on Mastodon.”

WIRED: What Music Did You Stream in 2022? Here’s How to Find Your Recaps. “THE END OF the year traditionally brings with it a flurry of recaps and year-in-reviews from music streaming services. After all, whichever service you use, it’s been carefully logging all your listening habits over the past 12 months. Not only does that mean apps can serve up music you like and might like, they’re also able to tell you, in forensic detail, the tunes that you played over the year. However, each streaming service approaches this end-of-year summary slightly differently.”


Wall Street Journal: YouTube Stars Cash In Video Rights for Millions of Dollars. “Justin Watkins for more than a decade has made YouTube videos of himself playing and commenting on games such as Roblox, for an audience of mostly young children. His YouTube channel called Thinknoodles is a hit, with millions of subscribers, but he was surprised by the pitch he received from a startup: Would he accept more than $2 million in exchange for the advertising revenues from his thousands of old videos?”

News24: Tutu infinity and beyond: Mourning period ends, but Arch’s legacy to live on in ‘Heirloom Project’. “The [Archbishop Tutu IP Trust and the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation] plan to move forward in protecting his work and legacy through a new global digital journey called the Heirloom Project. It will be a single-site, accessible and usable global digital archive called ‘The Heirloom Project’, which will eulogise Tutu in collaboration with South African and international universities associated with him.”


Bank Info Security: Hacker Claims to Have Scraped 400M Twitter User Records. “A member of a criminal data breach forum claims to have obtained the emails and phone numbers of 400 million Twitter users in a posting that urges social media CEO Elon Musk to buy the data set for an unspecified price.”

Reuters: Chinese academic database fined by antitrust watchdog. “China’s State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) has fined China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI) 87.6 million yuan ($12.6 million) for abusing a ‘dominant market position’, the watchdog said on its website on Monday.”

Los Angeles Times: Emails reveal Sam Bankman-Fried’s courtship of federal regulators. “Before his mid-December arrest, cryptocurrency billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried repeatedly claimed that he was a responsible business leader who sought more regulation of cryptocurrency and wanted his industry to be part of the mainstream financial system. But now that the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Justice Department are prosecuting the 30-year-old for fraud, the extensive professional relationships he cultivated with current and former federal regulators risk embarrassment for all involved.”


NiemanLab: The AI content flood . “Here are just three examples: automatically post ChatGPT-powered summaries of news stories moments after they’re published by major news brands, divided by region. Or pick a topic like cooking, and use ChatGPT to populate a recipe site from scratch. Or pick a city, and have the AI argue in favor or against a political position in context of the local community.” There is already so much shallow, low-effort stuff online that I’m discouraged from the get.

The Register: Study finds AI assistants help developers produce code that’s more likely to be buggy. “Computer scientists from Stanford University have found that programmers who accept help from AI tools like Github Copilot produce less secure code than those who fly solo.” I have used ChatGPT for things like generating JavaScript code snippets. It will cheerfully and confidently produce code that is so wrong even I can look at it and know it’s not right.

PsyPost: Study finds parasocial relationships on YouTube can help reduce prejudice towards people with mental health issues. “After watching a video meant for participants to build a relationship with the video creator and a video where the creator talked about his/her mental health issues, experimental groups scored lower on explicit prejudice assessments compared to controls who only watched the relationship-building video. Implicit prejudice levels were not affected. The study was published in Scientific Reports.” Good morning, Internet…

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