UMSI Fun Size
The world of information — in Fun Size!
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Fun Size for for 8/4/23: Flip phones make a comeback
Free photo-to-painting apps, 100+ text acronyms, how the world’s population will age and testing Hardee’s new AI chatbot
Fun Size for 7/7/23: Beware the Shoggoth with Smiley Face
Backstory on the feud between Musk and Zuckerberg, codebreaking for the 21st century, and the secret to getting a good response from an AI chatbot
Fun Size for 6/2/23: How to spot fake job ads
Buzzfeed’s recipe-recommending chatbot, Illinois’s stand against book banning, and Netflix’s crackdown on password sharing
Fun Size for 5/5/23: Walk the bridge of the Starship Enterprise
Best free games of 2023, picnicking in space, Wordle for math nerds and a new web portal for Trekkies
Fun Size for 4/11/21: Google Glass, dead at last
Analyzing pigs’ grunts with AI, a digital archive of old computer games, and evidence that plants “cry”
Fun Size for 3/3/23: I have been a good chatbot
Bizarre conversations with AI chatbots, a love letter to libraries, and why you shouldn’t re-use usernames
Fun Size for 2/3/23: Mittens, the chess bot
How to cartoon yourself on Zoom, why nightstands are trending on TikTok, and the first online master’s degree in artificial intelligence
Fun Size for 1/6/23: Google’s top local searches for 2022
Video games for dogs, Public Domain Day, 100 best traditional dishes and the promise and perils of data science
Fun Size for 12/2/22: Meet the real Winnie-the-Pooh
AI that can write its own code, Mastodon 101, Netflix DVD retirement and tips for testing suspicious links
Fun Size for 11/7/22: Library holds a treasure trove of Disney lore
"Pre-bunking" misinformation, 10,000+ digitized vintage recipe books, implants to treat anosmia and how to see fewer Facebook Reels
Fun Size for 10/7/22: Fastest past tense in the West
Dating via Google Docs, artists versus AI, phone phreaks and the race to keep Wikipedia up to date
Fun Size for 9/9/22: The amazing tech behind Google Maps
An update on Wordle clones, deep fake video callers, Twitter’s plans for an edit button and how to turn your smartphone into a distress signal
Fun Size for 8/5/22: New life for your Lego set
Machine learning for Lego inspiration, Facebook’s sponsored content avalanche, a new game for geography geeks and how to spot lurkers on your WiFi network
7/8/22: Google chatbot wants employee status
Libraries in laundromats, seven free apps to stream local news for free, new uses for old Android phones, and how not to fall for some new online scams
6/3/22: Pudding fit for a queen
The advent of drone delivery, copy and paste on Google Drive, favorite online cooking resources and how Spotify uses listeners' data
5/6/22: Wikipedia's weirdest entries
Wordle clones for pop culture fans, electric chopsticks, Senior Planet Community and a Game Boy that survived the Gulf War
4/8/22: Nine useful hidden Gmail features
A subscription service for iPhones, virtual sight-seeing, the best tech gadgets for pet owners and how to make a touchscreen feel like a keyboard
3/4/22: Wordle wars: Is it meter or metre?
Voice clones, speedier internet browsers, a secret stash of useful sites and the story of how a frustrated French father accidentally knocked out an entire town's internet
2/2/22: The Metaverse explained
The oral histories of the giants of southern barbecue, Amazon’s first clothing store and a new use for AI
1/7/22: How a queen locked her last letter
A lickable TV screen that can reproduce tastes, robotic pizza makers and how gaming is influencing other fields
12/3/21: “Hey, Disney,” Echo’s new voice assistant
The 20 best tech gadgets of 2021, the return of Clippy and a devious game about interactive design
11/3/21: Robot dog upstages Mick Jagger
3-D printed houses, dream jobs for the next decade and a visual podcast for audiences with hearing loss
10/5/21: 3 ways to protect your privacy online
A crypto-trading hamster, the world’s most popular kiddie lit mapped, elder-friendly technology and one cute bot
9/3/21: Vintage video game sells for $411K
Painting with pixels, views from the Curiosity rover and why you should be turning your phone off at least once a week
8/5/21: The great book rescue
Algorithmic typography, tips for self(ie) preservation and an inside look at the Olympic Village
7/1/21: Amazon Prime Day's 10 Best-Sellers
Today in Black history, Project Squash and smart thermostats with a mind of their own
6/4/21: Take better photos with your phone
Facebook's answer to Nextdoor, nine new Emoji and the data-backed Netflix feature helping users decide what to watch next
5/1/21: Creamy or crunchy?
Creamy vs crunchy PB personalities, interviewing Kermit the Frog, Amazon's AR-powered hair salon and lucky Taiwanese corn crisps
4/2/21: "Hamilton" performed by Animal Crossing
Air turbulence predictor, a year without libraries, how to crack passwords, typing tests and a Google Bake Off
3/1/21: Ready Porker One
March Mammal Madness, Australia vs. Google and Facebook, pigs that play video games, a ride in a truly driverless taxi
2/8/21: The Big Short squeeze
Library of Congress receives social justice grant to encourage librarian diversity, sea shanties are back and the GameStop crash course
1/5/21: Will a robot do your job in 2025?
Top tech trends for 2021, browsing virtual library shelves, nine Black women you should know in data science
12/1/20: 200 Worst Passwords of 2020
2020 tech fails, popular kidvids and flattening the infodemic curve
11/1/20: The Madman's Library
Presidential Plinko, the Japanese Bob Ross, a collection of weird books from around the world and how to speed up your at-home wi-fi
10/1/20: Curly, the curling robot
A human library, the return of the Ultimate Typing Championship, improving air quality with AI
9/1/20: Up your Zoom game
Tech bigwigs in the hot seat, Amazon box crafts, IKEAS's museum site and a way to emulate the sounds of your office
8/1/20: What not to say around Alexa
Comet Neowise seen from space, sushi graders lose ground to AI, armchair traveling for agoraphobes, accidental summoning of home assistants
7/1/20: "Don't click this link"
Why top tech companies are dropping facial recognition software, a library for the birds, a graphic demonstration of the rapid rise of COVID-19 deaths worldwide, and a sexy meat pie
6/2/20: Bill Gates’s summer reading list
Smartphone art, weather disasters state-by-state, a day in the life of a COVID contact tracer, and a Zoom meeting goes to the dogs
5/1/20: Beautiful buildings and blobs of dough
Taco Bell cares, sourdough starter goes viral, a data science do-over, librarians as second-responders
4/1/20: Smartphone tricks you don’t know
A health weather map, anonymous search engines, free books and music galore
3/2/20: A bracelet that baffles Alexa
Americans love libraries, virtual humans and dog robots, the mighty Amazon empire, a new tech watchdog
2/3/20: How to find spy cams in your Airbnb
Your name in color, librarian humor, a Jeopardy! fan-site
1/8/20: Decade in review: Tech flops of 2010s
Singles Sundays, snackable TV, new in the public domain
12/6/19: Dirty tricks of fake reviewers
Making memes accessible, VR-wearing cows, AI finds new Nazca lines
11/1/19: Twitter nixes political ads
Milk won’t scan, Google finishes your sentences, library fines get shelved
10/2/19: This issue rocks asdfasdfasdf!
Alexa can explain, AI generates cartoon captions, a library tries universal lending, elders befriend their Home assistants
9/4/19: What your mobile number reveals about you
Tricks for better searches, AI/VR Mandarin classrooms, an interactive map of celebrity hometowns.
8/13/19: Poker bot knows when to hold 'em
Live-streaming funerals, decision-making apps, a stingy publisher and your so-called "anonymous" data.
7/3/19: Mona Lisa moves her lips
Fake news gets harder to detect, a futuristic library, getting Alexa to erase the day’s recording, great sources for free photos and how to TikTok.
6/4/19: Librarian KO's Jeopardy! Champ
James Holzhauer's reign ends, weird things found in library books, gender stereotypes in voice assistants, Facebook’s uneven privacy settings, and using housing to predict car accidents.
5/6/19: Jeopardy! champion’s secret weapon
Let an algorithm plan your diet, Denmark’s all-night libraries, IG memers get feisty, and just how did the Jeopardy! Juggernaut get so smart?
4/3/19: Six scary things about AI
A $60 million facelift for the Library of Congress, a map that shows the world’s religions, McDonald’s gobbles up Big Data, and the internet might just save some dying languages.
3/6/19: Walk the mean streets of 14th century London
The secret history of women in coding, neural network Valentines, a medieval murder map of London.
2/4/19: Ding dong, doorbell snooping
Nazi-stolen books returned, Alexa’s eavesdropping, robot dog learns new tricks.
1/10/19: Job skills most in demand in 2019
Hong Kong kids nix esports, print books are coming back, ways to discreetly ditch chatty friends on social, and thousands of new (old) books now in the public domain.
12/5/18: Indie booksellers boycott Amazon
Video game mimics dementia, AI paints a pricey portrait, NYC book sorters flex their muscles, and a bookselling behemoth is brought to heel.
11/9/18: The origin of Ctrl+Alt+Del
Check your city’s rising temperature, virtual border guards, Silicon Valley kids go screenless.
10/17/18: Is Banned Book Week obsolete?
Google turns 20 and shares a timeline, Chrome wants URLS to disappear, a ghost librarian is the newest Avenger, and why “Log in with Facebook” isn’t such a good idea.
9/13/18: Salty librarian spouts off
Why you shouldn't reshelve books, ways to keep Amazon from tracking every darned thing about you, and a Facebook fake-spotting quiz.
8/1/18: What if Google paid you?
Unicorns at birth, protecting your car keyfob code from thieves, the value of your personal data to advertisers and more gorgeous library pinups.
7/9/18: Is your SmartTV watching you?
Get more from Gmail, discover which of your tech gadgets is most likely to be hacked, digital wellness, best education for future tech jobs, and a self-appointed censor stalks the stacks.
6/8/18: Tweet M for Murder
Cracking the Vatican code, the non-view from 30,000 feet, baby’s first word, and reclaiming your privacy.
5/9/18: Coders are cool - really!
Free money, top-paying tech fields, what Apple knows about you, mmm - bacon!
4/6/18: This rare book can kill you
Librarian wardrobes, career-boosting MOOCs, IoT for toddlers, Google ponies up millions for teen digital literacy but drops goo.gl.
3/1/18: 5 things AI is good for
Librarians on horseback, K-12 digital education, a stunning collection of photos depicting the lives of families around the world by income, and can Apple make a less addictive iPhone?
2/1/18: Best email opening lines
Educating future librarians, an anglerfish emoji, cooking shows for millennials, Amazon's new pay-as-you-go store and how to get people to respond to your emails.