Business Review Asia: Alphabet’s Google to launch AI research centre in China. “Alphabet Inc’s Google has stated it will open a new AI research centre in China even though its main web platform offerings remain blocked in the country. The centre will be the first in Asia and will include a small team operating out of Google’s existing location in Beijing.”
Nieman Lab: Fortifying Social Media From Automated Inauthenticity. “In the arms race to secure the authenticity of online media, platforms will need to step up their internal protocols for both purging inauthentic accounts as well as identifying influence campaigns. They should be as transparent as possible about this without undermining their efforts. They should also recognize that this is too important an issue to take up solely on their own.”
Notre Dame: Major life events shared on social media revive dormant connections, study shows. “Online social networking has revolutionized the way people communicate and interact with one another, despite idiosyncrasies we all love to hate — think top-10 lists of the most annoying people and habits on social media. However, there are specific advantages to using social media, beyond the simple joys — and occasional annoyances — of reconnecting and gossiping with old friends about babies, birthdays and baptisms.”
TechZim: Government, you need social media!. “Just a little over a week ago, Techzim wrote about how the army boss had expressed some concerns over how our Zimbabwean culture was being eroded by social media and all. I know this is not a new story, we’ve heard it all before. And of course, I totally get it, if you’re not a millennial your interpretation of social media would be a bunch of sexually perverted people doing nothing but hit on each other, being vocal on things that don’t matter and probably spreading fake news. However, because we (the millennials) know what social media is really about, we’re not too bothered by this, but here’s the problem…”
Phys.org: Scientists pioneer new way to analyze ancient artwork . “Scientists from UCLA and the National Gallery of Art have used a combination of three advanced imaging techniques to produce a highly detailed analysis of a second century Egyptian painting. They are the first to use the specific combination—which they termed “macroscale multimodal chemical imaging”—to examine an ancient work of art. The new technique enabled them to learn about the raw materials the artist used, and the order in which they were applied to the painting, and it uncovered insights about the painting’s connections to other work from the same era.”
Demographic Research: Using Twitter data for demographic research. “Social media data is a promising source of social science data. However, deriving the demographic characteristics of users and dealing with the nonrandom, nonrepresentative populations from which they are drawn represent challenges for social scientists. Given the growing use of social media data in social science research, this paper asks two questions: 1) To what extent are findings obtained with social media data generalizable to broader populations, and 2) what is the best practice for estimating demographic information from Twitter data?” The paper itself is a freely-available PDF.
CBC: Researchers predict ‘vaccine scares’ using Google and Twitter trends. “What do Google searches and tweets tell us about disease outbreaks? As it turns out, analyzing search and tweet trends could give warning signs for when a disease outbreak may happen due to reduced vaccinations. An international team of researchers analyzed searches and tweets related to measles and the measles-mumps-rubella vaccine using artificial intelligence and a mathematical model, and detected warning signs of a ‘tipping point’ two years before the Disneyland outbreak happened.”