It goes without saying that the Covid-19 pandemic has battered the assisted living industry. A report by the Associated Press documents how staffing in nursing homes has dwindled to skeletal levels. According to the article, “Even before COVID-19 bared the truth of a profit-driven industry with too few caring for society’s most vulnerable, thin staffing was a hallmark of nursing homes around the country. Now, staffing is even thinner, with about one-third of U.S. nursing homes reporting lower levels of nurses and aides than before the pandemic began ravaging their facilities, an Associated Press analysis of federal data finds.” Some workers left, fearing exposure. Others found easier work. Some were laid off by homes as occupancy fell. https://bit.ly/3BhFAsN
Think humans are the only animals that act shady when they aren’t being watched? Think again. You can add frisky fish to the list which also includes other primates. Per The Scientist, “Now, in a study published on September 30 in Communications Biology, researchers have found that fish known as cleaner wrasse (Labroides dimidiatus) also behave differently when watched. Females were more likely to cheat, eating forbidden foods for which their male partners would normally punish them, when they knew the males could not see them. These insights support the notion of complex cognition occurring in the tiny brains of these fish, the study authors say.” Who knew? https://bit.ly/3aoqlCl
While we’re on the topic of ocean shadiness, there’s some fakery going on in the seafood business. It’s called Vrimp and it’s faux-shrimp. Yep. That’s right. Per the Guardian, “Nestlé describes Vrimp, made out of seaweed and peas, as an exciting innovation, with the alt-seafood having the ‘authentic texture and flavour of succulent shrimps’. The company has even managed to mimic the distinctive shape using special moulds, meaning they can replace the real thing in a salad or poké bowl. The orange sweep of colour on the body has been replicated using paprika and carrot.” No comment. https://bit.ly/3uRltiy
Lastly, ever have the feeling that the music recommendations being thrown your way by Spotify or Amazon or Apple Music are just a wee bit off? Or a wee bit too literal? Well a paper in FrontiersIn Big Data proposes a new and improved method. Per the FrontiersIn Blog, “In our recently published paper Sequence-based explainable hybrid song recommendation in Frontiers in Big Data, we proposed a hybrid recommender system for song recommendation that relies on user interactions with songs as well as the sequential content of these songs, to generate personalized song recommendations. Even more fascinating, our proposed recommender system was able to identify the 10-second melodial snippet, from a recommended song, that represents the part of the song that the user would likely enjoy the most from the recommended song. The melody snippet, which can serve as an explanation for the recommendation, is in the same format as the input data that was used to train the machine learning model, which is Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) data. This personalized musical snippet is unique to each user and promotes transparency in AI, as the user will have a clearer idea as to why a song was recommended.” No comment (again). https://bit.ly/2YwG2VO
Thanks for reading. Let’s be careful out there.
IMAGE CREDIT: Brian Gratwicke.