Four short links: 27 August 2019

Personal Information, Research Data, Massive Lamba Scale, and The Moral Character of Cryptographic Work

By Nat Torkington
August 27, 2019
Four Short Links
  1. Presidio — recognizers for personally identifiable information, assembled into a pipeline that helps you scrub sensitive text such as credit card numbers, names, locations, social security numbers, bitcoin wallets, US phone numbers, and financial data.
  2. Microsoft’s Academic Knowledge Grapha large RDF data set with over eight billion triples with information about scientific publications and related entities, such as authors, institutions, journals, and fields of study. The data set is based on the Microsoft Academic Graph and licensed under the Open Data Attributions license. Furthermore, we provide entity embeddings for all 210M represented scientific papers.
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  4. GG — code from the paper From Laptop to Lambda: Outsourcing Everyday Jobs to Thousands of Transient Functional Containers, describing a framework and a set of command-line tools that helps people execute everyday applications—e.g., software compilation, unit tests, video encoding, or object recognition—using thousands of parallel threads on a cloud functions service to achieve near-interactive completion times. In the future, instead of running these tasks on a laptop, or keeping a warm cluster running in the cloud, users might push a button that spawns 10,000 parallel cloud functions to execute a large job in a few seconds from start. gg is designed to make this practical and easy. (via Hacker News)
  5. The Moral Character of Cryptographic WorkCryptography rearranges power: it configures who can do what, from what. This makes cryptography an inherently political tool, and it confers on the field an intrinsically moral dimension. The Snowden revelations motivate a reassessment of the political and moral positioning of cryptography. They lead one to ask if our inability to effectively address mass surveillance constitutes a failure of our field. I believe that it does. I call for a community-wide effort to develop more effective means to resist mass surveillance. I plead for a reinvention of our disciplinary culture to attend not only to puzzles and math, but, also, to the societal implications of our work.
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