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    By Research Cooperative, 2022-04-10

    For background, see:

    1. Michael Eisenstein (2022) "In pursuit of data immortality" - https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-022-00929-3

    Summary Quote: "Data sharing can save important scientific work from extinction, but only if researchers take care to ensure that resources are easy to find and reuse". 

    2. Bryn Nelson (2009) "Data sharing: Empty Archives" - https://www.nature.com/articles/461160a

    For educational resources, and more, see:

    GO FAIR International Support and Coordination Office (GFISCO) . https://www.go-fair.org/

    "In 2016, the ‘ FAIR Guiding Principles for scientific data management and stewardship’ were published in the journal Scientific Data with the aim of improving the Findability , Accessibility , Interoperability , and Reuse of digital assets.

    Society of American Archivists ( https://archivists.org ) - "North America's oldest and largest national professional association dedicated to the needs and interests of archives and archivists." Has a useful dictionary of terms often used in relation to archives and their contents.

    Reading in 2022

    By Research Cooperative, 2022-04-07

    Enjoyed reading:

    John Berendt (2006) The City of Falling Angels. Penguin Books, London, 420 pp.

    Non-fiction. A wonderful social history of modern Venice, based on the author's experiences and investigations in the city over many years. The author made patient efforts to meet many different kinds of people, and gain diverse perspectives on many aspects of city life and history. I admire his ability to follow many threads of study and bring them all together. Despite taking up some (locally) very controversial topics, he is able to state at the beginning: "All the people in [this book] are real, and are identified by their real names. There are no composite characters".

    Geerat Vermeij (1997) Privileged Hands: A Remarkable Scientific Life. W. H. Freeman and Company: New York.

    Non-fiction. The author is a biologist who became blind in childhood, in the Netherlands. After migrating to the USA with his family, at a young age, he became fascinated with seashells, ecology, palaeobiology, and the evolution of molluscs. His vivid descriptions of field work in many different countries transported me far from Kyoto at a time when travel for my own fieldwork has been greatly limited. I enjoyed this beautifully written book as much for the author's personal story as for the broad view of 20th century biology and evolutionary theory.

    Posted in: Books | 0 comments

    Papagao by Naver

    By Research Cooperative, 2022-03-23

    Naver Corporation, a Korean company, describes its online translation service as follows:

    "Papago is an automated interpretation application that is useful for traveling overseas and communicating in foreign languages. It was developed with NAVER's own technology, which integrates speech recognition, speech synthesis, machine translation, and character recognition.

    The underlying core NMT (Neural Machine Translation) technology has been uniquely applied to translate sentences as a whole instead of splitting into phrases in order to provide more accurate and contextualized translation services."

    My Japanese wife prefers this machine-translation service for Japanese/Korean, and the tool offers a wider range of Asian languages than similar tools provided by European companies:

    Chinese (simplified and traditional), Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese

    (alongside English and a few European languages)

    The online service can translate text snippets or website pages (scroll down to enter the URL). There is also an app that can be downloaded onto a computer or phone, for most common systems.

    See: https://papago.naver.com/

    The service has a nice parrot image as logo.


    Internet (23rd March 2022): https://www.navercorp.com/en/service/featured


    By Research Cooperative, 2022-02-27

    There are many writing style guides guides published by universities, academic journals, governments, publishers and others.

    1Password is an internet service that has a useful guide for website developers. This may help the Research Cooperative (for example) to communicate more clearly with site users in its technical documentation, and in automatically generated messages. See: https://support.1password.com/style-guide/

    Posted in: Writing | 0 comments

    The Universal Internet and text to speech services

    By Research Cooperative, 2022-02-05

    Recently the museum where I work recently held an exhibition called "UNIVERSAL MUSEUM" (National Museum of Ethnology, Japan). Th exhibition emphasized the role of touch as a sense that can be used and enjoyed by all people, not just people with sight disabilities.

    The Internet, like most museums, depends mainly on visual representation. Nevertheless, IT designers have developed many ways to make the internet more accessible for all people - working towards a universal internet that of course will never be completely universal (just as I wish for a rewilding of the world, with the " Half-Earth Project " for example, I would like at least half of my life to be Internet-free!).

    For example there are now many ways to convert text to speech. Here are three examples.

    DeepL - a high-quality online translation tool, for many language pairs, that can read aloud both the source text and the translation.

    ReadAloud - a text to speech (TTS) service that supports 40+ languages, and multiple kinds of voice.  It works on many kinds of website and document, including university course materials. For example, it can read PDFs, Google Docs, and various online book formats.

    TTS Reader - This supports plain text, pdf & epub (ebooks) files, and auto saves between sessions, so we can stop and continue any time. It claims to use natural-sounding voices, which is nice.

    Personally, I am most interested in using TTS to read back my own written drafts when I am writing papers. Having an always-available reader and speaker to help with writing, revision and proofreading will be useful.

    Posted in: IT toolkit | 0 comments
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