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.