Ok Whatever: Visiting Dead Relatives on Google Street View. “When looking up her mother’s address last year, a Taiwanese woman found snapshots of her mother, who died in 2014, tending to her potted plants. During a bout of nostalgia, a British expat lurked on her childhood home through Street View and discovered old photos of her deceased mom walking down the driveway, carrying a blue watering can. And, for years, a Kentucky man named Bill Frankel frequently visited his dead father online, scrolling back in time to see the images a Google Street View car captured three years before his father’s death, back when he was still healthy and happy.”
Economic Times: No please, no thank you: Are Siri, Alexa making humans less polite?. “For the study, the researchers asked 274 people if the way they talk to digital assistants is making them less polite. After surveying and observing those people, they found that artificially-intelligent digital assistants are not making adult humans ruder to other people.” Let me raise my hand and out myself as one of those people who says “thank you” when using Siri.
Bates College: Bates Announces $3.97 Million National Science Foundation Grant For Visual Database Project. “Bates College has received a National Science Foundation grant of $3.97 million to create a groundbreaking Visual Experience Database to support research in fields that rely on the analysis and recognition of images, such as neuroscience, cognitive science, and artificial intelligence. The largest-ever federal grant awarded to Bates, the four-year award will fuel the creation of a vast gallery of videos that depict what, and how, people see as they go about daily activities.”
The Daily Dot: Some influencers are upset over Instagram’s ‘like count ban’ . “A new Instagram “like count ban” is supposed to make the platform a healthier space, but it is drawing criticism from influencers who are fearful the change could negatively impact their bottom line. The feature–which is currently being tested in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Italy, Ireland, and Brazil–hides the number of likes a post receives from everyone except the original poster. The move is likely in response to studies that found photo-sharing apps, like Instagram and Snapchat, have harmful effects on users’ self-esteem and mental health.”
Ubergizmo: Your Smartphone’s Accelerometer Could Be Used To Predict Personality Traits. “This is based on data like how far we walk, when we walk, how often we pick up our phones during the night, and so on.”
EurekAlert: Emotion-detection applications built on outdated science, report warns. “The authors note that the general public and some scientists believe that there are unique facial expressions that reliably indicate six emotion categories: anger, sadness, happiness, disgust, fear, and surprise. But in reviewing more than 1,000 published findings about facial movements and emotions, they found that typical study designs don’t capture the real-life differences in the way people convey and interpret emotions on faces. A scowl or a smile can express more than one emotion depending on the situation, the individual or the culture, they say.”
Purdue University: Twitter ‘fingerprint’ helps decode how individuals respond to crises. “Often in the case of a disaster, there are too few resources available to the community. A new algorithm analyzes individuals’ tweets to better understand how they respond to crises, offering a new way to inform decisions on disaster management.”