The Register: Social media notifications of the future: Ranger tagged you in a photo with Tessadora, Wrenlow, Faelina and Graylen. “Choosing a name for one’s offspring can be incredibly difficult. You don’t want them to be the ninth Jaxon in class, but you also don’t want them to be bullied mercilessly for the rest of their lives. Even so, parents are increasingly pulling appellations out of their arses, in some cases to give their child a ‘unique’ identity on social media.”
For a given value of useful, but I thought it was neat. Also, apparently my name is visually boring. Boing Boing: Online generator answers “What color is your name?”. “‘What Color is Your Name?’ is a website that associates your name, or any name, with blocks of colors.” The creator of the site has Grapheme–color synesthesia.
Boing Boing: Very fun algorithm guesses your name with surprising accuracy. “Nathan Yau created this fun and fascinating name guessing algorithm. You select ‘male’ or ‘female,’ the decade you were born, and then type in the first letter of your name. “
Government News Australia: Dictionary builds place nicknames data base. “Brisvegas, Shagger’s Ridge, Osty, Mullum, Freo, The Gong. If it’s a place and it’s in Australia, you can bet it’s got a nickname. The Australian National Dictionary Centre has launched an appeal for place nicknames as it builds the nation’s first database of the unique monikers Aussies have bestowed on the places they live in, drive past, or visit for holidays.”
New York Daily News: After protests from LGBTQ groups, IMDb will allow removal of birth names from database. “On Monday, IMDb — the world’s largest online database of information related to movies, television, cast and crew — announced that it’d finally start allowing transgender individuals to remove their birth names from the site, when requested.”
Search Engine Roundtable: Google Algorithms Cannot Judge The Realness Of An Author Name?. “With all the E-A-T discussion, a lot of SEOs are into building up the authority of the authors that write on their sites. But what if your authors don’t want their names out there? Asaf Bernstein asked John Mueller of Google about using the authors real name versus a pseudonym and John said ‘I doubt Google’s algorithms would judge the “real-ness” of author names that you use.'”
CNET: Whiskeridoo! AI named these adorable, adoptable kittens. “Sparky Buttons has eye damage from a infection he caught when he was a stray baby, but he’s still a powerhouse when it comes to cuddling and playing. And don’t be fooled by Mr. Sinister’s name. He’s a cuddler, too. These adoptable kittens, along with their friends Tom Glitter, Pompompur and Whiskeridoo, were all named by an artificial intelligence neural network.” I officially feel 100% less bad for naming my cat Eggo.
Search Marketing Daily: Google Presses Court To Throw Out ‘Vanity Searchers’ Privacy Suit. “Google is pressing the Supreme Court to rule that ‘vanity searchers’ — people who enter their own names into the search query box — can’t sue the company for allegedly leaking the names to outside sites. Google argues in papers filed late last week that people who sued the company over the alleged data leaks ‘cannot plausibly demonstrate concrete harm.'”
CNBC: A boy called Google and a girl named Vista: Why parents name their kids after tech. “When a little baby boy came wailing into the world on Sept. 12, 2005, his birth made headlines far from his home in Sweden. Oliver Christian Google Kai’s quirky techno name caught the attention of blogs across Europe and in the United States, and the search giant itself even published its own post, writing ‘we wish him long life and good health, and hope his schoolmates aren’t too hard on him.'”
Some fun from AI Weirdness: D&D character names – generated by a neural network. “I’ve trained neural networks to invent new Dungeons & Dragons spells (part 1, part 2) and also trained them to name new D&D creatures. It worked very well (Shield of Farts, anyone?), thanks to the spellbooks and monster manuals I could use as datasets. But there weren’t any datasets for another big aspect of Dungeons & Dragons: all the characters who populate these worlds. So, over the past few months, readers have been helping me to build a dataset – which has now reached a staggering 20,908 entries.” I think my favorite is The Cowben, whose race and D&D class is noted as “Human Opera”.
New-to-me, and it’s the weekend, so what the heck: a database of Garbage Pail Kids names. Do you remember the Garbage Pail Kids? Trading stickers with garish illustrations and often punny names? “Because there are thousands of different Garbage Pail Kids stickers in existence, it would take quite a long time to flip through the stickers looking for the ones that contain your name…. The ‘Find Your Name’ section contains 3099 total names, and 1141 different first names.”
Lifehacker: Need to Name a Lot of Something? Use This Site. “Life’s more fun with nicknames. That’s why we name our wireless networks ‘Julia Louis-Wifus’ or ‘9-inch tops come to Apt. 3B.’ But say you need to name a whole set of things, like software versions, conference rooms, or just placeholders in an example. At that point you can’t just make up random names one by one. You need a system.” At one point I had a set of networked computers all named after Match Game panelists. Don’t @ me.
Turns out that forcing people to use their real names online might not be a great idea. “People often say that online behavior would improve if every comment system forced people to use their real names. It sounds like it should be true – surely nobody would say mean things if they faced consequences for their actions? Yet the balance of experimental evidence over the past thirty years suggests that this is not the case. Not only would removing anonymity fail to consistently improve online community behavior – forcing real names in online communities could also increase discrimination and worsen harassment.”
Once again, Facebook’s crack security team is keeping its site safe for all of us, by banning the account of a woman who happens to be named Isis. “Facebook, much to the dismay of a 27-year-old British woman, still hasn’t gotten it through its social media noggin that somebody by the name of Isis who takes out an account is not necessarily a bloodthirsty jihadist looking to promote the Islamic State. Yes, that’s right: Facebook’s real-name policy, or maybe its report abuse function, has struck again.” This actually happened to another lady named Isis back in November, and apparently a Facebook rep said that the company was “working on fixing it”. KEEP WORKING.
LinkedIn users exercising the nine-year-old boy element of their senses of humor (and I got one too, so I’m not criticizing) have done odd things to the LinkedIn “also viewed” algorithm. “A set of disconnected LinkedIn surfers, connected only by our collective sense of humor, have unwittingly trained the service’s algorithm to package a group based on their names. The algorithm reflects how people perceive the group, rather than who they actually are.”