Walter Williams, 78, was declared dead in February. The news about how he started to move while on an embalming table in Mississippi went viral. Now, authorities say they're sure he really has died.
One of the ongoing conversations at the 2014 SXSW Interactive Festival involves questions and concerns around data and data collection.
How are we trying to use data to live a better life with the help of wearable devices?
How is the government is collecting data and what does that mean about our privacy?
The topic even manifested itself in real-time data from Twitter input into a machine that made custom Oreo cookies. SXSW attendees may be more savvy than the average social media-ite, but they still ask themselves the same questions of when to share data on their activities, and when it's best to keep it to themselves.
VJ Tucker, from a startup called Curious Science, thinks very carefully about what content he adds to the Facebook universe:
"I have a group of friends that can't go to SXSW Interactive and enjoy seeing the panels that I see, so I usually aggregate together all my quotes from the day and put them up... I only try to only put content out there that I feel is compelling to other people. So I don't live tweet everywhere I'm at or anything like that just because it feels like noise in the world instead of anything that's concentrated and compelling."
Southby volunteer Leslie Hales says she uses the typical social media platforms -- Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter -- but she deliberately avoids tagging her location:
"I'm not really on the location grid just because I feel like it's just too much...I don't know if I want everyone knowing where I am every second of the day."
In fact, location sharing came up with visitors and locals alike, as evidenced by SXSW volunteer and Austin-ite Alan Navarro, who says he does not see the benefits of tagging where you are on social media:
"I just don't see that there's a reason for me to put out where my location is online. There's not a real insentive to do that, so I just leave it alone."
Luciana Caletti of the Brazilian startup Love Mondays does not mind adding her location to tweets, as it makes sense to her to highlight the fact that she is at SXSW. She adds, however, that attending Edward Snowden's skyped-in appearance is giving her second thoughts on where her data is going:
"All this data being collected...so far it's fine, but if it falls into the wrong hands in the future, you never know who is going to be in charge of the country. So I am starting to be a bit more concerned."
UBS, which was fined for manipulating the Libor rate in 2012, was censured by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the territory's de facto central bank.
In 2007, oil was discovered off the coast of Ghana.
The follow up questions -- what happens next to the Ghanaians who live there, and the Texas oil company that first put a drill in the ground -- is the subject of a new documentary from Rachel Boynton called “Big Men.”
Filmmaker Rachel Boynton.Courtesy of Rachel Boynton
Ghana had never had oil before. Kosmos Energy, the oil company that made the discovery, was a start-up – this was their first well.
"It was this crazy important moment for the company and also for the country as a whole," says Boynton.
She documents the scramble for all parties involved to make a profit from the oil. She has an amazing amount of access to the oil company’s CEO and Ghanaian government officials.
“The thing that’s holding it together is really this idea of everyone out for himself,” Boynton says.
Boynton also films in Nigeria where oil has been a part of the economy for decades.
“When you’re telling a story about new oil in a country, a lot of people are going to want to know well, what happens to the country?”
She talks to Nigerian rebels who intentionally damage the pipelines to protest misappropriation of oil profits.
“I was really fascinated by how freely people would talk about ‘wanting to be big’” she says, about the title of the documentary. “They were giving voice to something that I see all the time in America, but that people don’t talk really talk about quite so freely.”
The negative side effects of an oil boom are easy to see in Nigeria. Boynton recounts wading through burning oil sludge there. The fires are sent intentionally by two men who were paid to do it – Boynton finds them and speaks to them.
“I realize over the course of this interview that they live in this town, where they’ve set these fires. And you gotta understand, this town has been destroyed by these fires. There’s smoke everywhere, it’s absolutely toxic to live there. The land is destroyed. And I say to these guys you know, you live here, did it ever occur to you that you might be shooting yourselves in the foot?”
One of the men answers,
“I don’t really think I’m shooting myself in the foot because, you know, if I shot myself in the foot and somebody paid me money for it, and I didn’t die, that’s alright with me."