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Vermont Campaign Finance, Black Lives Matter Protests, Indie Game Festival, More: Wednesday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, July 29, 2020

NEW RESOURCES

VTDigger (Vermont): VTDigger launches campaign finance database. “Our campaign finance portal shows readers the top contributors to each campaign, how candidates rank over time and how they compare to each other, along with the raw data that powers the state’s database. This is only the beginning of the tool. Candidates must file new campaign reports on a monthly basis, and we’ll keep adding them along with new insights and features for our readers.”

Winston-Salem Journal: The Syllabus: UNCG’s new Black Lives Matter protests archive. “The latest addition to UNCG’s collections is an archive of materials from area Black Lives Matter protests. The university is now seeking photos, videos, flyers, posters, protest signs, clothing and anything else from the beginning of the BLM movement in 2013 or from the recent local protests over the death of George Floyd. These items will be part of the library’s new Triad Black Lives Matter Protest Collection.”

TWEAKS AND UPDATES

Google Blog: The Indie Game Festival announces its nine winners. “The talent of independent and small game developers shines this year at Google Play’s Indie Games Festival, a celebration of the creativity of game developers. We received hundreds of submissions for the three competitions in Europe, Japan and South Korea. This year’s winning games have something for everyone, from a food-themed puzzle game with cats to a Mars Survival Project.”

CNET: Amazon, Facebook, Apple, Google CEOs lay out their antitrust defenses in remarks to Congress . “The CEOs of Amazon, Facebook, Apple and Google on Tuesday evening released opening remarks that cast their companies as icons of American ingenuity as they gear up for a highly anticipated antitrust hearing with legislators on Wednesday.”

USEFUL STUFF

PCWorld: How to back up your Google Photos library and keep your metadata. “Google Photos is one of the best ways to sync and store the picture you take on your phone, but getting them out of your library is another story—especially if you want to keep your metadata (date, time, caption, etc.). Since Photos no longer includes an option to sync with Google Drive, keeping a rolling backup of your photos is going to take some work. Here and your options are for creating a backup that keeps your photos and metadata intact.”

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

The Guardian: Yaël Eisenstat: ‘Facebook is ripe for manipulation and viral misinformation’. “Yaël Eisenstat was a CIA officer for 13 years and a national security adviser to vice president Joe Biden. Between June and November 2018, she was Facebook’s global head of elections integrity operations, business integrity.”

San Diego Jewish World: Museum of the Hebrew Language planned in Jerusalem. “The museum will supplement the [Academy of the Hebrew Language]’s ongoing activities of writing a historical dictionary of Hebrew, covering the language’s development from approximately the 12th Century BCE, and also serving as an Internet resource for people who want to know how a word from a foreign language can be translated into Hebrew. Questions may be asked of the Academy’s volunteer experts via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.”

SECURITY & LEGAL

BetaNews: New Chrome extension provides security check on open source code. “Developers frequently make use of open source components in order to speed up projects and save them having to reinvent tasks. But this can lead to the introduction of hidden security risks. Now though open source marketplace xs:code is launching a new, free Chrome extension, xs:code Insights, which provides users with intuitive, in-depth analytics on open source repositories, including repository score, security analysis, maintenance and activity status, reviews, ratings and more.”

TechCrunch: New York legislature votes to halt facial recognition tech in schools for two years. “The state of New York voted this week to pause for two years any implementation of facial recognition technology in schools. The moratorium, approved by the New York Assembly and Senate Wednesday, comes after an upstate school district adopted the technology earlier this year, prompting a lawsuit in June from the New York Civil Liberties Union on behalf of parents. If New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signs the legislation into law, the moratorium would freeze the use of any facial recognition in school systems in the state until July 1, 2022.”

RESEARCH & OPINION

Engadget: DeepMind and Oxford University researchers on how to ‘decolonize’ AI. “In a moment where society is collectively reckoning with just how deep the roots of racism reach, a new paper from researchers at DeepMind — the AI lab and sister company to Google — and the University of Oxford presents a vision to ‘decolonize’ artificial intelligence. The aim is to keep society’s ugly prejudices from being reproduced and amplified by today’s powerful machine learning systems.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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