Politics and Governance
- N.S.A. Gets Less Web Data Than Believed, Report Suggests-Charlie Savage, The New York Times (@charlie_savage)
The N.S.A.’s inspector general has released a report that indicates the government is collecting less data from American’s Internet communications than previously presumed. The report was commissioned in response to the Snowden leaks in 2010, yet it is still unclear whether filtering the raw Internet data is done by the government or telecommunication companies.
- FTC Report Provides Recommendations to Business on Growing Use of Big Data -Federal Trade Commission (@FTC)
The FTC has outlined a new considerations for businesses to avoid exclusion and discrimination as a result of their use of Big Data analytics. The document highlights how Big Data is used at the end of its lifecycle, after it is collected and analyzed. It notes the potential benefits and risks that could result from utilizing Big Data as a tool.
- Apple’s Stance Highlights a More Confrontational Tech Industry -Farhad Manjoo, The New York Times (@fmanjoo)
Apple has publicly refused the US government’s request to unlock an iPhone used by one of the deceased murderers in the December 2015 San Bernardino attacks. The opposition will lead to a legal battle, the results of which could pose many implications for the privacy world.
- La Justice Rivalise D’astuces Pour Ne Pas Enquêter Sur La Surveillance De Masse -Fabrice Arfi, Mediapart (@fabricearfi)
[Article in French] The author describes the challenges faced by the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the Human Rights League of France (LDH) in bringing complaints against US mass surveillance to the French courts.
Climate Change and Resilience
- Louisiana Tribe is Now Officially a Community of Climate Refugees -Chris D’Angelo, Huffington Post (@c_m_dangelo)
The Isle de Jean Charles, 80 miles southwest of New Orleans, which used to be home to a Native American community, is almost completely vanished due to rising sea levels, coastal erosion and flooding (98% of the land is gone). The community is the first official community of climate refugees in the US, and a federal grant from the US HUD will resettle the community to higher ground.
- Rapid and Near Real-Time Assessments of Population Displacement Using Mobile Phone Data Following Disasters: The 2015 Nepal Earthquake -Robin Wilson et al., Plos: Current Disasters (@plosc_disasters)
This research article describes the analysis of the evolution of population mobility patterns following the 2015 Nepal earthquake from using call detail records. The rapid analysis and method described could prove extremely beneficial for humanitarian agencies.
- Unveiling Hidden Migration and Mobility Patterns in Climate Stressed Regions: A Longitudinal Study of Six Million Anonymous Mobile Phone Users in Bangladesh -Xin Lu et al., Global Environmental Change Journal
Using mobile network data collected from Bangladesh in May 2013 during the Cyclone Mahasen, researchers were able analyze human mobility during and after extreme weather events. The study demonstrates that changes in the onset of migration are correlated with changes in the duration of the migration, adding an important framework and methodology for studies of migration and climate change.
Funder and Partner News
- SensorTape- 3D Aware Dense Sensor Network on a Tape– Filip Visnjic, Creative Applications Network (@filipvisnjic) (@creativeapps) (@medialab)
MIT Media Lab’s Responsive Environments Group has created a sensor network in a form factor of a tape called SensorTape. The product allows for a wide set of users to create and program large sensor network arrays, and is opening up avenues for applications outside of the current discrete electronics platforms.