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Is Social Media Keeping Science Trustworthy?

Is Social Media Keeping Science Trustworthy? | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Online discussions and post-publication analyses are catching mistakes that sneak past editorial review.
Artur Alves's insight:

Who is afraid of wide-open public visibility for science?

 

"Evaluating research after it’s been published has, of course, always been a crucial element of science. Scientists will challenge published results in letters to journals and arguments at conferences. But those are typically solo efforts by established scientists. Social media and online discussion forums are changing that: they make it easier for junior scientists to participate, let readers compare notes, and, most importantly, provide a public space that is not under the control of journal editors and conference organizers.

 

(...)

 

Peer-review is based on trust, but as the international scientific community grows, scientists won’t spend their careers in the small, trusted networks of known colleagues that earlier generations of researchers were used to. Journals and reviewers need to step up their efforts to check for misconduct, but inevitably, papers with major problems will get through. Crowd-sourced, post-publication review through social media is an effective, publicly open way for science to stay trustworthy"

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Gentlemachines
What's new at the crossroads of culture, technology and science
Curated by Artur Alves
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Is the staggeringly profitable business of scientific publishing bad for science?

Is the staggeringly profitable business of scientific publishing bad for science? | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
The long read: It is an industry like no other, with profit margins to rival Google – and it was created by one of Britain’s most notorious tycoons: Robert Maxwell
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New Report Highlights Dangers of Hacked Factory Robots

New Report Highlights Dangers of Hacked Factory Robots | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Cybersecurity firm describes how malevolent hackers might compromise various kinds of industrial robots
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How to Call B.S. on Big Data: A Practical Guide

How to Call B.S. on Big Data: A Practical Guide | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Michelle Nijhuis reports on a course at the University of Washington, in Seattle, that teaches students to approach data-backed claims with skepticism.
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Valve is not your friend, and Steam is not healthy for gaming

Valve is not your friend, and Steam is not healthy for gaming | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
The illusion behind the "Good Guy Valve" reputation
Artur Alves's insight:
"This, then, is Good Guy Valve — a corporation which employs precision-engineered psychological tools to trick people into giving them money in exchange for goods they don't legally own and may never actually use while profiting from a whole lot of unpaid labor and speculative work ... but isn't “evil.” This is the Good Guy everyone seems too afraid to call out, the toxic friend who is so popular that upsetting him will just make things worse for you, so you convince yourself he's really not that bad and that everyone else is over-reacting. Once the Good Guy illusion has disappeared, we're left with the uncomfortable truth: Valve is nothing more than one of the new breed of digital rentiers, an unapologetic platform monopolist growing rich on its 30 percent cut of every purchase — and all the while abrogating every shred of corporate or moral responsibility under the Uber-esque pretense of simply being a "platform that connects gamers to creators.” 
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Scholars' open debate paper on the World Health Organization ICD-11 Gaming Disorder proposal

Scholars' open debate paper on the World Health Organization ICD-11 Gaming Disorder proposal | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Scholars' open debate paper on the World Health Organization ICD-11 Gaming Disorder proposal on ResearchGate.
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The Deep Space of Digital Reading - Issue 47: Consciousness - Nautilus

The Deep Space of Digital Reading - Issue 47: Consciousness - Nautilus | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
In A History of Reading, the Canadian novelist and essayist Alberto Manguel describes a remarkable transformation of human consciousness,…
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First They Got Sick, Then They Moved Into a Virtual Utopia

First They Got Sick, Then They Moved Into a Virtual Utopia | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
One afternoon in November, Fran Serenade led me and her daughter Barbie down a steep section of the Appalachian trail. The sun was high and Fran hiked briskly, ducking the blue-green diagonals of fir…
Artur Alves's insight:
«
Today, Second Life is mostly forgotten by the broader public. An estimated 800,000 users are active on a monthly basis, according to Second Life parent company Linden Lab. That’s tiny compared to the 1.86 billion users who are active on Facebook each month. Yet some communities have quietly continued to thrive in the virtual world. One of these is the disability community, a sundry group whose members include people who are blind or deaf, people with emotional handicaps such as autism and PTSD, and people with conditions that limit their mobility, such as Parkinson’s, cerebral palsy, and multiple sclerosis. There are no official tallies of their numbers, but Wagner James Au, who has written extensively about Second Life, estimates they may account for roughly 20 percent of users. Some active members estimate the number higher — at as much as 50 percent
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World Energy Hits a Turning Point: Solar That's Cheaper Than Wind

World Energy Hits a Turning Point: Solar That's Cheaper Than Wind | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Emerging markets are leapfrogging the developed world thanks to cheap panels.
Artur Alves's insight:
«[U]nsubsidized solar is beginning to outcompete coal and natural gas on a larger scale, and notably, new solar projects in emerging markets are costing less to build than wind projects, according to fresh data from Bloomberg New Energy Finance. «
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The high-tech war on science fraud

The high-tech war on science fraud | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
The Long Read: The problem of fake data may go far deeper than scientists admit. Now a team of researchers has a controversial plan to root out the perpetrators
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The Data That Turned the World Upside Down

Psychologist Michal Kosinski developed a method to analyze people in minute detail based on their Facebook activity. Did a similar tool help propel Donald Trump to victory?
Artur Alves's insight:
The trivial assertion that correlation does not equate causation breaks down when it becomes possible to establish hundreds, or even thousands, of correlations pertaining to a single subject or group. The political consequences are yet to be fully seen.

«The approach that Kosinski and his colleagues developed over the next few years was actually quite simple. First, they provided test subjects with a questionnaire in the form of an online quiz. From their responses, the psychologists calculated the personal Big Five values of respondents. Kosinski’s team then compared the results with all sorts of other online data from the subjects: what they “liked," shared or posted on Facebook, or what gender, age, place of residence they specified, for example. This enabled the researchers to connect the dots and make correlations. Remarkably reliable deductions could be drawn from simple online actions. For example, men who “liked” the cosmetics brand MAC were slightly more likely to be gay; one of the best indicators for heterosexuality was “liking” Wu-Tang Clan. Followers of Lady Gaga were most probably extroverts, while those who “liked” philosophy tended to be introverts. While each piece of such information is too weak to produce a reliable prediction, when tens, hundreds, or thousands of individual data points are combined, the resulting predictions become really accurate. «
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Students Have 'Dismaying' Inability To Tell Fake News From Real, Study Finds

Students Have 'Dismaying' Inability To Tell Fake News From Real, Study Finds | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Stanford researchers assessed students from middle school to college and found they struggled to distinguish ads from articles, neutral sources from biased ones and fake accounts from real ones.
Artur Alves's insight:
«Middle school, high school and college students in 12 states were asked to evaluate the information presented in tweets, comments and articles. More than 7,800 student responses were collected. In exercise after exercise, the researchers were "shocked" — their word, not ours — by how many students failed to effectively evaluate the credibility of that information. The students displayed a "stunning and dismaying consistency" in their responses, the researchers wrote, getting duped again and again. They weren't looking for high-level analysis of data but just a "reasonable bar" of, for instance, telling fake accounts from real ones, activist groups from neutral sources and ads from articles.«
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CRISPR gene-editing tested in a person for the first time

CRISPR gene-editing tested in a person for the first time | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
The move by Chinese scientists could spark a biomedical duel between China and the United States.
Artur Alves's insight:
«Lu’s trial received ethical approval from a hospital review board in July. Injections into participants were supposed to begin in August but the date was pushed back, Lu says, because culturing and amplifying the cells took longer than expected and then the team ran into China’s October holidays.
The researchers removed immune cells from the recipient’s blood and then disabled a gene in them using CRISPR–Cas9, which combines a DNA-cutting enzyme with a molecular guide that can be programmed to tell the enzyme precisely where to cut. The disabled gene codes for the protein PD-1, which normally puts the brakes on a cell’s immune response: cancers take advantage of that function to proliferate. Lu’s team then cultured the edited cells, increasing their number, and injected them back into the patient, who has metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer. The hope is that, without PD-1, the edited cells will attack and defeat the cancer.»
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Sea Level Rise Isn't Just Happening, It's Getting Faster

Sea Level Rise Isn't Just Happening, It's Getting Faster | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
In at least the third such study published in the past year, scientists have confirmed seas are rising, and the rate of sea level rise is increasing as time passes - a sobering punchline for coastal communities that are only now beginning to prepare for a troubling future.

What was a 2.2 millimetre per year rise in 1993 was a 3.3 millimetre rise in 2014, based on estimates of the mass changes of a number of key components of sea level rise, such as the melting of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, the study in Nature Climate Change found.

That's the difference between 0.86 and 1.29 inches per decade - and the researchers suggest further sea level acceleration could be in store.

The chief cause of the acceleration was the melting of the Greenland ice sheet, which went from contributing less than 5 percent of all sea level rise in 1993 to contributing more than 25 percent in 2014, the study found. The loss of ice in Antarctica and smaller glaciers over the same time period also contributed to quicker sea level rise.

The increase in the rate of sea level rise "highlights the importance and urgency of mitigating climate change and formulating coastal adaptation plans to mitigate the impacts of ongoing sea level rise," write Xianyao Chen of the Ocean University of China and Qingdao National Laboratory of Marine Science and Technology, and colleagues. Chen's co-authors hailed from institutions in China, Australia and the United States.

Via Wildcat2030
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prgnewshawaii's curator insight, June 29, 2:10 AM

A sobering report says sea level rise is more than expected...a clear warning for all coastal communities. Time is running out to mitigate the worst effects of this process.

Russell Roberts

Hawaii Intelligence Digest

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It Took the Bicycle 200 Years to Find Its Way in the World

It Took the Bicycle 200 Years to Find Its Way in the World | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Some inventions come ahead of their time. This one came along well after it
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The blockchain paradox: Why distributed ledger technologies may do little to transform the economy — Oxford Internet Institute

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The Myth of a Superhuman AI – Backchannel

The Myth of a Superhuman AI – Backchannel | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Debunking the myth of a superhuman artificial intelligence: Hyper-intelligent algorithms are not going to take over the world for these five reasons.
Artur Alves's insight:
"The most common misconception about artificial intelligence begins with the common misconception about natural intelligence. This misconception is that intelligence is a single dimension. "
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Live and death: Facebook sorely needs a reality check about video

Live and death: Facebook sorely needs a reality check about video | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Facebook Live was meant to be part of the social network’s optimistic vision. But in the wake of two violent crimes, its response has been woefully inadequate
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Even good bots fight: The case of Wikipedia

Even good bots fight: The case of Wikipedia | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
In recent years, there has been a huge increase in the number of bots online, varying from Web crawlers for search engines, to chatbots for online customer service, spambots on social media, and content-editing bots in online collaboration communities. The online world has turned into an ecosystem of bots. However, our knowledge of how these automated agents are interacting with each other is rather poor. Bots are predictable automatons that do not have the capacity for emotions, meaning-making, creativity, and sociality and it is hence natural to expect interactions between bots to be relatively predictable and uneventful. In this article, we analyze the interactions between bots that edit articles on Wikipedia. We track the extent to which bots undid each other’s edits over the period 2001–2010, model how pairs of bots interact over time, and identify different types of interaction trajectories. We find that, although Wikipedia bots are intended to support the encyclopedia, they often undo each other’s edits and these sterile “fights” may sometimes continue for years. Unlike humans on Wikipedia, bots’ interactions tend to occur over longer periods of time and to be more reciprocated. Yet, just like humans, bots in different cultural environments may behave differently. Our research suggests that even relatively “dumb” bots may give rise to complex interactions, and this carries important implications for Artificial Intelligence research. Understanding what affects bot-bot interactions is crucial for managing social media well, providing adequate cyber-security, and designing well functioning autonomous vehicles.
Artur Alves's insight:
«[B]ots interact over time, and identify different types of interaction trajectories. We find that, although Wikipedia bots are intended to support the encyclopedia, they often undo each other’s edits and these sterile “fights” may sometimes continue for years. Unlike humans on Wikipedia, bots’ interactions tend to occur over longer periods of time and to be more reciprocated. Yet, just like humans, bots in different cultural environments may behave differently. Our research suggests that even relatively “dumb” bots may give rise to complex interactions, and this carries important implications for Artificial Intelligence research. Understanding what affects bot-bot interactions is crucial for managing social media well, providing adequate cyber-security, and designing well functioning autonomous vehicles.»
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Migrants with mobiles: Phones are now indispensable for refugees | The Economist

Migrants with mobiles: Phones are now indispensable for refugees | The Economist | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
SOMETIMES Hekmatullah, a 32-year-old Afghan, has to choose between food and connectivity. “I need to stay in touch with my wife back home,” he says, sitting in a grubby tent in the Oinofyta migrant camp, near Athens. Because Wi-Fi rarely works there, he has to buy mobile-phone credit.
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Symbolic dots, style link 38,000-year-old engraving to other famous cave art finds

Symbolic dots, style link 38,000-year-old engraving to other famous cave art finds | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Stone Age engraving helps to illuminate European travels of an ancient human culture.
Artur Alves's insight:
«The rock art is similar to some engravings and drawings found at other French and German sites, including the famous Chauvet Cave (SN: 6/30/12, p. 12), and attributed to the Aurignacian culture, which dates to between 43,000 and 33,000 years ago. Like the new find, that art includes rows of dots, depictions of aurochs and various animals shown in profile with a single horn and a long, thin muzzle. Within a few thousand years of arriving in Europe from Africa, Aurignacian groups developed regional styles of artwork based on images that had deep meaning for all of them, proposes anthropologist and study coauthor Randall White of New York University, who directed the excavation.«
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Hybrid zoo: Introducing pig–human embryos and a rat–mouse

Hybrid zoo: Introducing pig–human embryos and a rat–mouse | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
Chimaeras could pave the way for growing human organs in other animals.
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What is Facebook’s mission? It’s time to decide.

What is Facebook’s mission? It’s time to decide. | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
At this point, it's more than a social network.
Artur Alves's insight:
In all fairness, the real question seems to be: how much of its vision of itself as a clearing-house for targeted advertising and its strategy of centralization of media content would Facebook be willing to forgo in order to reinforce its useful image as a company that focuses on human networking?

«In the current kerfuffle over whether the fake news and misinformation that proliferated on the site might have influenced the outcome of the 2016 election, Facebook’s difficulty in acknowledging whether it’s simply a provider of pleasant connections or a public utility with real obligations has come to the fore. The criticisms have illuminated Facebook’s crisis of mission: profitable lifestyle platform or force for common good? More than a decade after its launch, its creator is still trying to figure out what it’s supposed to be — but it’s frankly irresponsible to remain undecided for much longer.«
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Former Trending News Writer Slams Facebook: 'They Treated Us Like Garbage'

Former Trending News Writer Slams Facebook: 'They Treated Us Like Garbage' | Gentlemachines | Scoop.it
On Monday, a woman identifying herself as a former writer for Facebook’s trending section took to Twitter to criticize the social media giant, saying the solution to the site’s current fake news problem is the editorial team it fired with “no...
Artur Alves's insight:
« Sampathkumar had similarly harsh words for Gizmodo, which she blamed for the “hack job” that led, in part, to Facebook firing the entire trending news team. In May, Gizmodo published a story revealing that the trending section was operated by human curators (not an algorithm, as the company had previously claimed) with one worker claiming that they saw colleagues regularly suppressing conservative news. “Instead of fact checking and letting the news team full of real reporters do our job, they cowed to right-wing pressure and advertisers,” wrote Sampathkumar. “They believed the hack job, false Gizmodo stories instead of their own reporters and their own algorithm which tracked everything we did. Result was rampant proliferation of fake news. It could have easily been avoided had they treated their human team of writers...as humans.” »
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