Facebook Open-sourced its Web Tools

Facebook is sharing some of its technology. The company’s artificial intelligence research team today announced that it is open sourcing its deep-learning AI tools.

Facebook Logo
Facebook Logo

The software will be available on the Torch library, which serves as an open-source environment for machine learning development. Torch is widely used for research in academia, as well as by companies like Google, Twitter and Intel. The tools will allow developers to take advantage of some of Facebook’s deep learning algorithms and use them to create faster, smarter AI.

Facebook claims its deep-learning modules are significantly quicker than the default ones available through Torch, and allow the company to work on larger neural networks in less time. Notable improvements include a 23.5x speed-up over publicly available convolutional layer codes, and the ability to parallelize neural networks training over GPU cards.

You may not realize how much Facebook uses artificial intelligence in its day-to-day operation. Every time you see a recommended friend or are given suggestions for who to tag in a photo, you are seeing Facebook’s deep learning AI in action.

Mark Zuckerberg, the creator of facebook
Mark Zuckerberg, the creator of facebook

“Deep learning AI” is a phrase stuffed with buzzwords, but it is one of the current hot topics in computing. Traditional AI requires programmers to account for hundreds or thousands of different scenarios, but deep learning allows AIs to do most of the work. As the name suggests, deep learning AI learns from past experience and the data it analyzes to streamline the process in the future. The more data the AI  takes it, the better it becomes at recognizing patterns.

The company hopes sharing its tools will help optimize progress across the entire deep-learning research landscape.

Images from images.google.com

Google Webmaster Tools

Are you familiar with Google Webmaster tools? Have you tried using them for you web development?

Google Webmaster tools, first and foremost is a no-charge web service by Google for webmasters. It allows webmasters to check indexing status and optimize visibility of their websites. It has tools that let the webmasters submit and check a sitemap, check and set the crawl rate, and view statistics about how Googlebot accesses a particular site, and generate and check a robots.txt file. It also helps to discover pages that are blocked in robots.txt by chance.

Google Webmaster Tools
Google Webmaster Tools

Often, you see people claiming that since Google Webmaster Tools shows X, that web search much show the same thing. Or because there is a concern in Google Webmaster Tools, they are concerned about their rankings. Or that their rankings dropped down but Google Webmaster Tools shows no issues.

The big confusion out there is that Google Webmaster Tools and Google Web Search are independent. They may share some data but for the most part, they don’t share algorithms, they don’t share all the knowledge and they don’t share a lot of details.

Google’s John Mueller said so in a Google Webmaster Help thread:

Just to clarify what others have said — adding the alternate versions of your sites helps us to show the right data in Webmaster Tools, but it doesn’t change how your site is shown in search. Web-Search functions independently of Webmaster Tools, Webmaster Tools just displays the data from there.

Google Logo
Google Logo

At the same time, Google Webmaster Tools is an invaluable aid for webmasters and SEOs to diagnosis issues with web search. But it is fundamental to understand there is an underlining difference between the two. When you understand that, then using Google Webmaster Tools can be incredibly powerful.

Images from images.google.com

Newspaper Web Tools

Perhaps, you are an educator who wants to relay information to your students, or an online journalist, or just a blogger and just want to share news with anyone in this age of social media.  This will teach you tools creating digital newspapers.

To boost your sense of achievement and to showcase what you have been working on diligently with your students, a digital newspaper would be your perfect solution. This paper can include different contributions from your students and from you as well. Encourage students to share their writing pieces, create videos and share the links or any other multi-modal activity. There is nothing as rewarding for students as seeing their work published and shared with others. Perhaps you need to learn or know more about Japanese comfort women, which is a huge issue nowadays.

To help you create digital newspapers for your class, here is a list of some of our favorite web tools for this purpose.

Issu is one of the favorites. To create a newspaper using Issuu , all you need to do is upload the content of your news paper into Issuu and choose the template you like and there you go. The tool is free and requires a sign up.

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Scribd is another popular web tool to use for publishing your class digital magazine. It works the same way as  Issuu and  it also requires a sign-up.

Zinepal tools lets you create an ebook or magazine from posts and articles of a blog. Just paste in the url of the story and Zinepal does the rest.

Fodey is very simple and easy to use. Just type in the content of your newspaper and Fodey automatically generates it into a newspaper like format.

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Paper.li is only good if you use Twitter in your teaching. It is a fantastic site to turn Twitter into an online readable magazine.

Google Now

Google Now is Google’s personal assistant for Android, counterpart to Apple’s Siri. It is a smart, virtual, voice-enabled personal assistant developed by the search giant and acts as a handy add-on to the pure Android experience. It integrates well with Google’s services to provide you with updates and other information as per your preferences.

Google Logo
Google Logo

All you need to do is say “Okay Google” to your device to open Google Now. Then, you say one of the magical voice commands to Google Now just as you were Aladdin making a wish. The microphone icon starts pulsing – giving you an indication that your phone (powered by Google Now) is listening. You give a command, and it does the required actions to complete the given task. Here are just a few of the cool commands you can ask Google Now:

Applications

  • “Open [Calendar]”
  • “Launch [Hangouts]”
  • “Take a [picture / photo / selfie]”
  • “Record a video”

Notes & Reminders

  • “Remind me to [buy groceries] at [6 PM]”
  • “Remind me [when I get / next time I’m at] [home / work / other location] [to call John]”
  • “Note to self: [My password for Google.com is 123456]”

Alarms & Calendar

  • “Set an alarm for [6 AM]”
  • “Set a timer for [30 minutes]”
  • “Wake me up in [2 hours]”
  • “Create a calendar event: [Party with Colleagues] [Sunday at 9 PM]”
  • “When’s my [next meeting]?”
  • “What is my schedule for [tomorrow]?”
Google Now
Google Now

Communication

  • “Call [Sara]”
  • “Call [the Asian Art Museum]”
  • “Call [mom / dad / wife / uncle / aunt …]” (Relationship must be added for your contacts)
  • “Send [email] to [Storm], [Subject:Meeting], [Message: Re-scheduled to 5PM]”
  • “Send [SMS] to [Sam mobile], [don’t forget to buy movie tickets]”
  • “[Contact name]”
  • “Find [Sam’s] [phone number / email / address]”

Images from images.google.com

2014’s Most Useful Web Tools

Here is a list of the most useful web tools of 2014 covers everything from creating charts to making your computer screen a little easier on the eyes. Of course this is not a comprehensive list, but these may be useful for you in the future so give them a try:

Infogram — useful for: great visuals

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The easiest way to generate sharp, modern and responsive graphs, charts and infographics. The learning curve is minimal, with almost everything you’re going to want presented in simple, user-friendly menus. It’s free to use, but a pro account allows you to hook up real-time data and share privately.

YouTube Music Key — useful for: easy music discovery

YouTube has long been a great platform for discovering new music and listening to rare and obscure recordings. Now that the company is branching out into the subscription service market, it has organized its deep libraries of music like never before. And since you’ve already probably enjoyed some music on YouTube, it has a personal mix ready to go from the jump. You don’t even really need Music Key, as the “music” tab on YouTube’s homepage is already showing improvements.

Inbox — useful for: messy emailers

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Google’s Inbox isn’t the most innovative thing of 2014 (plenty of people have pointed out that it uses a lot of features developed by other sites), but Google does it as good as anyone. If you’re already a Gmail user and can snag an invite, this new version of the email inbox can help even the laziest emailer organize their digital correspondence quickly.

Images from creativepro.com and computerworld.com