Stanford: Digital archive of antique wax figures becomes a teaching tool

Stanford: Digital archive of antique wax figures becomes a teaching tool. “Huddled over a virtual dissection table, Stanford medical students zoomed in on glistening muscles and nerves in the neck by swiping their fingers across the giant touchscreen designed to visualize an entire body in three dimensions. What they were looking at, however, were not virtual renderings of human anatomy, or even images of the real thing; rather, they were examining high-resolution photographs of wax models made between the mid-17th and mid-19th centuries.” Warning: these wax models could be deeply disturbing.

Stanford: Stanford students praise new hands-on approach to archival research

Stanford: Stanford students praise new hands-on approach to archival research. “On a recent Wednesday morning, students read and studied for exams in the usual quiet sections inside Stanford’s Green Library. The library’s Barchas Room, however, buzzed with activity. There, about a dozen students gathered for History of Modern China, one of the undergraduate classes at Stanford that now provides hands-on opportunities to work with historical documents and artifacts. Students were confronted with six gray boxes containing hand-written letters, diaries, official documents, black-and-white photographs and other items from around the 1960s related to China.”

A photo of every protest: Stanford archivists memorialize activism as it unfolds (Stanford Daily)

Stanford Daily: A photo of every protest: Stanford archivists memorialize activism as it unfolds. “…every year, the graduating class Wacky Walks its way to Commencement — and risks exiting Stanford without leaving a trace. The University Archives address these questions of legacy and memory for students by piecing together the tangible items each class leaves behind, documenting student life across time. From Vietnam-era anti-war posters to photographs of the Fossil Free Stanford protest, the Archives aim to actively transcribe history as it unfolds in the present.”

Stanford: An interdisciplinary solution to sound recording preservation

For those of you into the preservation of audio media, check out this blog post from Stanford: An interdisciplinary solution to sound recording preservation. “Earlier this year the Stanford Media Preservation Lab and Conservation Lab were tasked with figuring out how to playback severely warped paper based disc sound recordings. The recordings in question are from a three disc set titled Man-Talk by Three Great Western Stars and each one-sided disc in the set features a single monologue by John Wayne, Bill Elliott, or Johnny Mack Brown.”

Stanford: Digital forensics rescues retro video games and software

Stanford: Digital forensics rescues retro video games and software. “Starting in the mid-1980’s, a young man named Stephen Cabrinety filled his home with video games and software…. Cabrinety did not live to see what would become of his efforts—he died of Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 1995 at the age of 29—but his collection has achieved a sort of digital immortality. The Stanford University Libraries, which acquired the collection in 2009, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have just completed a multi-year effort to rescue the collection’s digital content from the Atari game cartridges, 5-1/4 inch floppy discs, magnetic tape and other deteriorating storage media that held it.”

Stanford Engineering: How will driverless cars and other applications of AI affect society?

Stanford Engineering: How will driverless cars and other applications of AI affect society? “A panel of academic and industrial thinkers has looked ahead to 2030 to forecast how advances in artificial intelligence (AI) might affect life in a typical North American city – in areas as diverse as transportation, health care and education ­– and to spur discussion about how to ensure the safe, fair and beneficial development of these rapidly emerging technologies.” The report is available as a free, 52-page PDF.

Research: Can Google Glass Help Autistic Children Read Faces?

Stanford University is conducting a study to see if Google Glass can help autistic children read emotions. “Like many autistic children, Julian Brown has trouble reading emotions in people’s faces, one of the biggest challenges for people with the neurological disorder. Now the 10-year-old San Jose boy is getting help from ‘autism glass’ — an experimental device that records and analyzes faces in real time and alerts him to the emotions they’re expressing.” I hope the research eventually includes other wearables besides Google Glass.

Expanding Wikipedia With Articles in Less-Widespread Languages

Computer scientists at Stanford have designed a tool to help create Wikipedia articles in a wider variety of languages. “…computer scientists at Stanford and the Wikimedia Foundation have created a recommendation tool that identifies the most important articles not yet available in a given language. Editors can use these recommendations and, if they are multilingual, find an article in a second language familiar to them and get other help in order to translate the article for local Wikipedia readers.”

Richard Diebenkorn Sketchbooks Digitized

Stanford University has created a digital archive of Richard Diebenkorn’s sketchbooks. “The Cantor Arts Center recently launched a new website that gives access to the museum’s collection of 29 sketchbooks by Richard Diebenkorn (1922–1993), a renowned artist celebrated as both a central figure in the Bay Area figurative movement and a key figure in the nationwide development of abstract expressionism and color-field painting.”

Stanford’s Cantor Arts Center Digitizes Its Collection

Stanford University’s Cantor Arts Center has digitized its collection. “Students, faculty, scholars and the general public can now visit the museum’s website, type in a title, artist, theme or other search criteria, and see high-quality digital images of the majority of the 45,000-plus objects in the collection. Partial inventories of the museum’s collection have been made since it opened in 1894, but this was the first complete inventory since 1916.”

Stanford / Facebook / Research

Stanford: Will Facebook Replace Traditional Research Methods? “The breadth of Facebook data allows for discovering patterns that would be impossible to detect using traditional approaches. By analyzing Facebook Likes of millions of users, for example, we can reveal subtle patterns that would be difficult to identify using traditional surveys. For example, if someone likes The Matrix, a human analyst would have trouble translating it into a prediction of the given person’s character, but a computer model can put it into the context of millions of other users and would conclude, in this case, that the individual is likely to be intelligent and introverted.”

QZ On the SEP

QZ has a nice writeup on the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. “The internet is an information landfill. Somewhere in it—buried under piles of opinion, speculation, and misinformation—is virtually all of human knowledge. But sorting through the trash is difficult work. Even when you have something you think is valuable, it often turns out to be a cheap knock-off. The story of how the SEP is run, and how it came to be, shows that it is possible to create a less trashy internet—or at least a less trashy corner of it.”