Malta Independent: Through virtual reality, the general public can now visit underwater cultural heritage sites. “The project features 10 sites, where each site is given a detailed description and videos which show the sites in great detail. The project is in collaboration with the Malta Tourism Authority (MTA), the University of Malta and Heritage Malta, with an investment of €100,000 over three years.” I can’t find a link to the actual site in the article! It’s at https://underwatermalta.org/ . Also, the headline kind of makes it sound like you need a VR headset to use the site. You don’t, it’s a great explore even without.
Malta Today: Can our cultural sector survive the pandemic?. “Government’s revised covid-19 economic recovery package did offer some relief to self-employed artists by even acknowledging them as members of Malta’s workforce, but in speaking to stakeholders in the industry TEODOR RELJIC finds that the onset of the virus may have brought to the fore some already existing challenges for creative professionals on the island.”
Times of Malta: 112 court sentences ‘vanish’ from public database. “A total of 112 court sentences were, so far, withdrawn by the government from the public online database of the courts and other requests are being considered in view of the ‘right’ to be forgotten, the Times of Malta is informed.”
Malta Today: Drones will map out 2,500 kilometres of Malta’s roads for new database. “Aerial photos of over 2,500 kilometres of roads in Malta and Gozo will be captured by specialised drones during the next few weeks, starting from the northern parts of Malta. These images will then be processed to develop a new Geographic Information System (GIS) containing orthophoto maps of Malta’s road network as well as digital road surface models, road condition and damage data that can be used to establish reconstruction prioritisation levels.” I had never heard the term “orthophoto” before, but GIS Lounge enlightened me.
Times of Malta: 86 court judgments removed from public database since 2013. “Eighty-six judgments have been removed from the court’s online public database since 2013, it has emerged. The Times of Malta had reported earlier this year that since taking up office in 2013, Justice Minister Owen Bonnici had privately made the decision to introduce ‘the right to be forgotten’ and which discovered by coincidence during an investigation.”
Harvey Mudd College: Intelligent Shipwreck Search in Malta. “For the third and final year of a National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded project, Harvey Mudd College students Makoto Nara, Russell Bingham, Samantha Ting and Nandeeka Nara have traveled to Malta with engineering professor Christopher Clark and literature professor Ambereen Dadabhoy. This work, a collaboration with research teams led by Professor Zoe Wood from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and Professor Timmy Gambin from University of Malta, aims to develop new technology for finding undiscovered shipwrecks, mapping them and visualizing them with 3-D reconstructions. Much of the work stems from researching new machine learning algorithms to identify wrecks from sonar data collected by an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), as well AUV path planning algorithms for capturing the best camera images for generating 3-D digital reconstructions.”
Malta Independent: IT Law Association extremely concerned over court judgements being deleted from online database. “The Malta IT Law Association (MITLA) has said that it is ‘extremely concerned’ about recent reports that private individuals have successfully requested that court cases decided against them be deleted from online court databases, ‘without having in place clear rules as to how the right to be forgotten is being exercised with respect to public registers.'”
Lovin Malta: It’s Official: You Can Now Get Your Online Court Judgments Deleted [Malta]. “Pandora’s Box risks getting opened now that Justice Minister Owen Bonnici has confirmed people are allowed to request the deletion of their court records from the online database. This tool only became public today after it was successfully applied by a newly minted lawyer to delete a 2010 criminal sentence that conditionally discharged her for stealing a credit card. However, Bonnici said the tool has actually been in place since he was appointed minister 2014 and has been successfully applied around 12 times.” Just to be clear: this is MALTA, not the US.
Times of Malta: Malta company registry data to be revealed by ICIJ. “The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists will add data from Malta’s corporate registry to their offshore leaks database on Wednesday. Although the Malta Financial Services Authority runs its own searchable database, which is available upon registration, it does not allow for specific searches of company directors and shareholders.”
LovinMalta: Prime Minister Petitions Google To End Discrimination Of Maltese Youtubers. “Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has personally signed an online petition to Google, urging the internet giant to allow Maltese people to get paid for making YouTube videos. ‘I emailed him my online petition and he responded within 15 minutes to tell me had signed it,’ Fabian Borg, an ethical hacker, told LovinMalta. ‘Apart from my close circle of friends, the Prime Minister was the first person to sign it.'”
Times of Malta: Malta becomes first country to explore blockchain education certificates. “The government has launched a pilot project to explore the possibility of issuing educational certificates on the blockchain. The project will see diplomas at MCAST, training certificates at ITS, and equivalence statements, accreditation and licensure from the NCFHE, all issued on the emerging technology this year.”
Malta Today: Inked in history . “Rel-Ink promises to explore tattoos and their significance in the day to day life of elderly Maltese males, aged 75 and over, who worked as labourers, seafarers and the like, at a time when the maritime sector was the mainstay in Malta’s colonial economy – which means, from the 1900s all the way up to the Second World War. It will feature in-depth personal oral history accounts, straight from the mouths of tattooed participants as well as documentation and images of their tattoo designs, with the main motivation being to cast a light on Maltese tattoo artists and their handiwork…. But that’s not all! The project aims to build a digital archive, which will be made available as an open-source platform via partner the Department of Library Information and Archives Study at the University of Malta, ensuring that all information will be made available online, for all to see and admire.”
New-to-me: the country of Malta has an online elections database. “Over the coming days, a dedicated team at the University of Malta will be updating the Malta Elections database with the outcome of the general election but Josef Lauri, a maths professor, is keen to add even more functions to the site. The database is a goldmine of information which was started by an American professor of political science, John Lane, who came to Malta around 30 years ago for a sabbatical and was intrigued by the very rare ‘single transferable vote’ system.” The headline makes it look like this is a video-only story but it isn’t.
Times of Malta: 3D map tools of Maltese islands launched. “The 3D map tools cover the whole of the Maltese islands and up to one nautical mile offshore. Users of the tools can fly around the data and view their zone of interest in new ways, including newly-published marine zones, such as underwater artefacts. For example, they can see sea-level rises and ancient coasts around the Maltese islands. The tools can also be used to measure and calculate heights, distances and areas.”
Malta’s Digital Library is up and running. “A digital archive of the documents at the National Library in Valletta is up and running and readers can now download a copy of the first printed books dating back to the 15th century, known as incunabula, to read them at their leisure on their mobile or computer….There are over 60,000 pages accessible online so far, but the digitisation process will be ongoing as the library is always receiving new material. So far, 700,000 pages have been captured and are going through the digitisation process.”