Best of the Blogs 25 November 2014

By on 25 November, 2014

SkyNet drone delivery

Science Alert does its job and alerts readers to an Australian company that looks to create a drone delivery service (nothing new), that also comes with a self-locking mailbox that can catch the deliveries as they fall from the sky. Good thinking, people! Also of note is that the system is called SkyNet.


The BBC has reports of an Antarctic submarine’s recent expedition to create the first detailed, high-resolution 3D maps of Antarctic sea ice.


LiDAR News tells us of the use of LiDAR to discover the extent of gold mining undertaken by Romans in Las Médulas in León. I love it when technology and history meet.


IEEE Spectrum has a short review (of sorts) of Parrot’s upcoming consumer-targeted Bebop drone – which includes the ability to do first-person flying via some virtual reality glasses. Really neat stuff.


O’Reilly radar has a post that highlights some of the dangers of pumping open data into data models – doing so will just become a self-fulfilling prophecy. I quote: “You can have all the crime data you want, all the real estate data you want, all the student performance data you want, all the medical data you want, but if you don’t know what models are being used to generate results, you don’t have much. You’re going to be showing black people homes in predominantly black neighborhoods not because you want to keep white neighborhoods pure, but because that’s where the model says they’re most likely to buy. You’re going to be stopping and searching more minority drivers without cause not because you’re prejudiced, but because the model says they’re more likely to be arrested for crimes. And if you stop more minority drivers, you almost certainly will arrest more minority drivers, so the model becomes self-fulfilling.”


Maps Mania features a cool service that allows you type in a word, and generate a heat map of the frequency of appearance of that word in Wikipedia articles and online travel blogs.

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