3 Illuminating Case Studies of A.I Web Scraping at Work

With ingenious capacities to analyze vast amounts of data and deduce patterns, A.I is poised to disrupt one of the world’s data-hungriest industries. The shortfall of data recognition proficiency of traditional web scraping bots is one of its major drawbacks.

This shortfall is critical, especially when scraping a vast range of websites with unique layouts and content architectures. This problem becomes more pronounced when the websites used as data sources undergo upgrades that alter their layouts significantly.

To get around this problem, a business might need to limit its web scraping campaigns to websites with identical layouts. And even such a list gets pared down whenever any site undergoes layout changes.

Besides helping extract data from myriads of dynamic websites, A.I promises to revolutionize how developers execute each step of the web scraping process, from choosing the right data pipelines to cleaning the data, and then categorizing them.

With A.I

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Shop Ridgefield Social Media campaign: $50 gift certificates

Less jingle-turkey this year, but the holidays are still coming.

So, the “Shop Ridgefield Social Media Challenge” — offering $10,000 worth of $50 gift certificates — has been created even as in-person activities, events and even family gatherings are scuttled in the face relentlessly rising COVID-19 numbers.

It’s a shop local campaign designed to help fill in for what the coronavirus pandemic has ruled out.

The traditional ceremonial switch-filpping ceremony that turns on Main Street’s holiday lights — and usually draws hundreds of people to town — will be a “virtual event” this year, on the Friday after Thanksgiving this year.

And the Ridgefield Holiday Village — planned as a four-weekend series of attractions in Ridgefield’s commercial village, between Thanksgiving and Christmas — has been called off.

“Most of the activities of the Ridgefield Holiday Village had to be canceled because of the uptick in COVID cases in town,” said

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Autodesk Completes Acquisition of Spacemaker, Provider of AI and Generative Design-enabled Urban Design Platform

SAN RAFAEL, Calif., Nov. 24, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Autodesk, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADSK) today announced the completion of its acquisition of Oslo, Norway-based Spacemaker for $240 million net of cash, representing Autodesk’s thirteenth investment in design and construction solutions providers in three years, including five acquisitions.

Spacemaker helps architects and urban designers maximize developers’ long-term property investments and realize the full potential of the site by enabling them to quickly generate, optimize and iterate on design options taking into consideration design criteria and data like terrain, maps, wind, lighting, traffic, zoning, etc. Further, supporting the effort to combat climate change, Spacemaker offers designers and developers the ability to consider sustainability options from the start.

The acquisition of Spacemaker provides Autodesk with a powerful platform to drive modern, user-centric automation and accelerate outcome-based design capabilities for architects, and urban designers and planners.

Customers of Spacemaker have seen remarkable results decreasing project

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2FA bypass discovered in web hosting software cPanel

cPanel login

Security researchers have discovered a major security flaw in cPanel, a popular software suite used by web hosting companies to manage websites for their customers.

The bug, discovered by security researchers from Digital Defense, allows attackers to bypass two-factor authentication (2FA) for cPanel accounts.

These accounts are used by website owners to access and manage their websites and underlying server settings. Access to these accounts is critical, as once compromised, they grant threat actors full control over a victim’s site.

On its website, cPanel boasts that its software is currently used by hundreds of web hosting companies to manage more than 70 million domains across the world.

But in a press release today, Digital Defense says that the 2FA implementation on older cPanel & WebHost Manager (WHM) software was vulnerable to brute-force attacks that allowed threat actors to guess URL parameters and bypass 2FA — if 2FA was enabled for

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Pure Expands Its As-A-Service Playbook

The push by established datacenter tech vendors to get into the as-a-service game has accelerated in recent months, fueled in part by the COVID-19 pandemic and the need by organizations to more quickly embrace cloud services to help them adapt to the suddenly shifted business model that features a more widely distributed workforce, which brings a truckload of security and management issues.

There also has been the ongoing migration into the cloud by organizations even before the public health crisis hit and growing understanding that for most businesses, the future will be rich with hybrid clouds, with a share of on-premises and private clouds as well as multiple public clouds, all of which will demand simpler and streamlined management.

The as-a-service drive is a way for these vendors to have a foot in both the traditional core datacenters and in cloud environments, similar to how the big public cloud providers

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Elon Musk is now tied with Bill Gates as world’s second richest man

By Michelle Toh | CNN Business

Elon Musk’s rocket-like climb up the ranking of the world’s richest men continues.

The Tesla CEO’s net worth soared on Monday as shares of his electric automaker hit a record high, boosting his net worth to $127.9 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires index, which tracks the world’s 500 wealthiest people.

For a couple of hours that put him slightly above Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft and world’s second-richest person, who was estimated to be worth $127.7 billion. The latest readout from the Bloomberg index has the men tied on $128 billion each.

Musk’s fortunes are directly linked to those of Tesla. His biggest asset is the company’s stock, of which he last owned about 20%, according to Bloomberg.

This year has been very good for the entrepreneur. So far in 2020, Tesla’s stock has shot up almost 524%, helping Musk add more

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Twitter verification will return early next year

On Tuesday, Twitter announced that it would relaunch its verification process early next year along with brand-new guidelines for users seeking out that small, blue badge.

Twitter’s announcement confirms earlier reporting in June from app researcher Jane Manchun Wong suggesting that the company was creating a new verification system. In Twitter’s Tuesday blog post, the company confirmed that this new system would roll out in “early 2021.” Twitter is also asking for feedback on a draft proposal for verification.

If no changes to this proposal are made, the accounts that would be eligible for verification would include government accounts, companies, brands, nonprofits, news media accounts, entertainment, sports, activists, organizers, and what Twitter refers to as “other influential individuals.” Each type of account must meet specific requirements, like being profiled in a media outlet, in order to receive verification. The entirety of Twitter’s draft policy can be viewed here. After

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Porn Bots Are Taking Over Film Social Networking Website Letterboxd

With social media platforms cracking down and website comments sections requiring logins and captcha tests, it’s becoming increasingly hard (err, let’s say “difficult”) for porn bots to swoop in on unsuspecting internet users. Chalk it up to necessity being the mother of invention or what have you, but perhaps this is why porn bots are making the leap to Letterboxd, of all places.

Yes, Letterboxd—the social networking platform that allows users to review and keep track of films they’ve seen, as well as interact with other cinephiles—has fallen prey to the scourge of the porn bot.

In either case, it seems to be a relatively recent phenomenon, as Film Twitter only began reporting sightings of bots around Nov. 20-21. In the days that have since passed, those reports have increased exponentially.

“Letterboxd needs to take care of their porn bot problem,” shared one user, while another perplexingly asked,

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