US Prison Deaths, Cherokee Nation Jobs, Midjourney, More: Tuesday ResearchBuzz, February 28, 2023


UCLA Law: UCLA Law Releases New Database To Monitor Deaths In U.s. Prisons With Funding From Arnold Ventures . “…the UCLA Law Behind Bars Data Project is releasing a comprehensive public resource documenting prison deaths nationwide. Relying on each state’s public records law and publicly available reports, our team requested and gathered information on each death in U.S. prisons covering at least 2019-2020; for a few states, like Louisiana and Texas, we have relied on exceptional colleagues who had already collected the data in their states.”

Cherokee Phoenix: CN creates new online resource for job seekers. “Finding Cherokee Nation jobs and applying for them is easier than ever thanks to a new website… the tribe’s HR boss said Feb. 23. Samantha Hendricks, the CN Human Resources executive director, touted the online career site during the Tribal Council’s monthly Rules Committee meeting. She said the site went live earlier in the month.”


MIT Technology Review: AI image generator Midjourney blocks porn by banning words about the human reproductive system . “The popular AI image generator Midjourney bans a wide range of words about the human reproductive system from being used as prompts, MIT Technology Review has discovered.”


Make Tech Easier: Gmail Automation: 8 Useful Google Scripts to Automate Your Gmail. “Gmail, by itself, is already a very powerful email client. With the help of filters, you can set up automation to better organize your inbox. However, for power users, the filter feature is not sufficient compared to writing custom scripts. These eight Google scripts can further automate your Gmail.”

MakeUseOf: 8 Recipe Generator Tools to Eat Well and Avoid Food Waste. “These easy-to-use websites have the tools to help you come up with yummy recipes, so you never have to waste ingredients and money again.”


Washington Post: Tech’s hottest new job: AI whisperer. No coding required.. “[Riley] Goodside, a 36-year-old employee of the San Francisco start-up Scale AI, works in one of the AI field’s newest and strangest jobs: prompt engineer. His role involves creating and refining the text prompts people type into the AI in hopes of coaxing from it the optimal result. Unlike traditional coders, prompt engineers program in prose, sending commands written in plain text to the AI systems, which then do the actual work.”

The Verge: Microsoft accidentally offers Windows 11 upgrades to unsupported PCs again. “Microsoft has once again accidentally offered the Windows 11 upgrade to PCs with unsupported hardware. Twitter user PhantomOcean3 spotted the mistake earlier this week, where Microsoft was showing fullscreen prompts on unsupported hardware.”

SURF Netherlands: Mastodon pilot for research and education . “SURF and Universities of the Netherlands are jointly exploring Mastodon as an open source platform for education and research in the Netherlands. In which public values are paramount. We launched a pilot in February 2023. Join us and discover how students, researchers, staff and institutions can experiment with Mastodon in a low-threshold way.”


Wall Street Journal: A Basic iPhone Feature Helps Criminals Steal Your Entire Digital Life. “In the early hours of Thanksgiving weekend, Reyhan Ayas was leaving a bar in Midtown Manhattan when a man she had just met snatched her iPhone 13 Pro Max. Within a few minutes, the 31-year-old, a senior economist at a workforce intelligence startup, could no longer get into her Apple account and all the stuff attached to it, including photos, contacts and notes. Over the next 24 hours, she said, about $10,000 vanished from her bank account.”


WIRED: How One Guy’s AI Tracked the Chinese Spy Balloon Across the US. “EARLIER THIS MONTH, entrepreneur Corey Jaskolski pulled out a pen and drew his best guess at what the surveillance balloon shot down by a US jet would have looked like from space. Then he fed the sketch and ‘a gob’ of recent satellite images from the area where the balloon was taken down into algorithms developed by his image and video detection startup Synthetatic, and waited. Within two minutes, he says, the algorithms found the 200-foot-tall balloon off the coast of South Carolina.”

New York Times: Why Do A.I. Chatbots Tell Lies and Act Weird? Look in the Mirror.. “In the days since the Bing bot’s behavior became a worldwide sensation, people have struggled to understand the oddity of this new creation. More often than not, scientists have said humans deserve much of the blame. But there is still a bit of mystery about what the new chatbot can do — and why it would do it.”


Hackaday: This Camera Produces A Picture, Using The Scene Before It. “It’s the most basic of functions for a camera, that when you point it at a scene, it produces a photograph of what it sees. [Jasper van Loenen] has created a camera that does just that, but not perhaps in the way we might expect. Instead of committing pixels to memory it takes a picture, uses AI to generate a text description of what is in the picture, and then uses another AI to generate an image from that picture.”

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