YouTube’s ‘Sort by date’ filter for keyword search appears to have stopped working. Multiple different Web browsers, with or totally without addons, all show the same thing. Search seems to be stuck on ‘Relevance’.
Access to academic libraries: an indicator of openness? (March 2019)…
academic library policies can place restrictions on public access to [such] libraries. […] This paper reports on a preliminary study [and finds that] physical entry and access to print and electronic resources in academic libraries is contracting. […] Most affected is the general, unaffiliated public.
initial sample for the study was fourteen medium to large research universities in Australia, Brazil, China, Hong Kong, Mexico, Singapore, South Africa, Taiwan, the United Kingdom and the United States.
“Missing documents in Scopus” (March 2019)…
“their study revealed an unusual high number of citations for the documents published by the journal” [Enfermeria Nefrologica, but] “only 50.2% of the documents published by the journal between 2006 and 2017 were registered by Scopus.”
There’s a new substantial source of CC0 images, Collections at the Musee de Bretagne (Museum of Brittany, northern France). A test search for “Paris” pictures with images and under CC0 gave 1,298 results. Downloads were initiated by a simple mouse-click, with no hoops to jump through.
In the first tests, image size results were variable, with some being low-res and fuzzy and others being crisp medium-res 3Mb images. Obviously searches will require a passing knowledge of French, as there appears to be no English language interface or tagging. Thus a search for “cat” needs one to know that “chat” is the French word for a cat, and that chromolithograph is “chromolithographie”. Changing the search term from “Paris” to “chat” demonstrated that the site’s search filters/facets are retained across searches. Loading and download speeds are excellent.
A search of the site via Google Images returned no CC results at all, for site:www.collections.musee-bretagne.fr/ “Paris” — under any CC licence. This suggests that Google may be having problems detecting the licences. Google does however offer a useful 2Mb size filter.
Now on Archive.org in a handy open .torrent form, the Corpus for 45 million OA papers in 46Gb and dated January 2019. Gathered by Semantic Scholar in Computer Science, Neuroscience, and Biomedical. I get the impression that there’s been some bycatch with Semantic Scholar, but it’ll be overwhelmingly in those areas.
Archive.org has also recently placed online a whole bundle of similar bibliographic datasets from disparate sources, with torrents. This seems to be part of their FatCat project, to ingest and preserve all available records and metadata from mainstream scholarly journal publishing. Open snapshots of the resulting combined (and presumably cleaned and aligned) FatCat mega-base are also available, the last one dated 30th January 2019 and under CC0. It weighs in at a modest 80Gb, so have a spare hard-drive ready.
Not content with trashing the trusty old Skype desktop interface, and replacing it with shiny app-ized blah, Microsoft’s latest Skype update has now completely locked many people out of using Skype. Including me…
Microsoft seems to have developed a knack for blowing up their updates. In this case the interface, such as it is, is “frozen” and unusable.
Thus, time for a downgrade. The latest Skype Classic no longer works as a fallback, as Microsoft started blocking it from service in early 2019. Instead, I find that one can still downgrade to the Skype Classic 7.36.01 standalone installer. It works fine under Windows 8.1.x as long as you turn off its automatic updates. As a bonus, you get the old user interface back again.
There’s a new type of Creative Commons / GPL -like content licence. The General Asset License Information (GAL) is specifically for… “digital assets, shared or sold with the intent of being used within larger works”. Think low-poly 3D models for building new videogames with, that sort of thing.
As I read it (and I’m not a lawyer), GAL is not for final works. Rather it permits use of what the digital entertainment production industries often call ‘assets’, ‘content’, ‘merchant resources’, ‘stock’, and similar terms. A videogame partly made with GAL assets could be sold commercially and protected as a commercial product in the market. Even while the GAL parts of the game remained free for others to re-use again under GAL. The GAL seems to be aimed at allowing a creative maker to be generous with their free content, without forcing them to go to CC-BY or CC0. Presumably GAL content would not be purloined, aggregated and sold on by the Alamy-like companies, since GAL would only permit re-use as a part of a larger indivisible whole product.
Looks good to me.
Qresp, an open source tool for the automated collection, bundling and distribution of all supporting data and data-sets for a journal paper. Apparently it also auto-adds the required metadata and public discovery enhancements.
The Japan Times profiles Jim Breen and his 180,000-entry freeware Japanese dictionary…
If it wasn’t for Jim’s data, and I think to a certain extent how helpful he is as a person, we wouldn’t have the plethora of Japanese language learning apps we do,” notes Kim Ahlstrom of Jisho.org. “It’s had a profound impact.”