Tech Workers Now Want to Know: What Are We Building This For?

Kate Conger and Cade Metz in the NY Times: Across the technology industry, rank-and-file employees are demanding greater insight into how their companies are deploying the technology that they built. At Google, Amazon, Microsoft and Salesforce, as well as at tech start-ups, engineers and technologists are increasingly asking whether the products they are working on are being used…

What’s that you say? Present with captions in Google Slides

Yet another reason to use Google Slides. Automated closed captions in Google Slides. The feature will gradually roll out to all Slides users starting this week. The closed captions feature is available when presenting in Google Slides. It uses your computer’s microphone to detect your spoken presentation, then transcribes—in real time—what you say as captions…

The Morality Wars

Wesley Morris in The New York Times Magazine. In 2018, culture is being evaluated for its moral correctness more than for its quality. Should art be a battleground for social justice? The real-world and social-media combat we’ve been in for the past two years over what kind of country this is — who gets to…

Alternative Influence – Broadcasting the Reactionary Right on YouTube

Rebecca Lewis in Data & Society research report. Full report here. Lewis looks at 65 political influencers across 81 YouTube channels, and identified what she calls an Alternative Influence Network or AIN. The AIN uses the same techniques that brands and other social-media influencers use to build followers and garner traffic, but uses them as a way…

‘Post-Truth’ and the Decline of Swedish Education

Magnus Henrekson and Johan Wennström with an overview of a recent study “‘Post-Truth’ Schooling and Marketized Education: Explaining the Decline in Sweden’s School Quality.” Full copy of study available here. Swedish school system suffers from profound problems with teacher recruitment and retention, knowledge decline, and grade inflation. Absenteeism is high, and psychiatric disorders have risen sharply among Swedish pupils…