R2D2 on God, 42, the Universe and everything else


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While the gears of research are turning fast developing new methods of machine intelligence, another, perhaps more impactful, trend is brewing in the field. Open source frameworks like Apache Spark are hitting their stride at the ideal time to put data analytics in the hands of the business development analyst without forgetting about the needs of the data scientist.

IBM’s new Project DataWorks is built with both Spark and IBM Watson at its core to prioritize speed and usability without sacrificing robust analytics. The best way to think about DataWorks is as a sort… Continue reading

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Microsoft today announced a first preview of Project Springfield at its Ignite conference in Atlanta. The cloud-based tool aims to help developers find bugs in their applications by combining fuzz testing, an automated way of testing code by throwing semi-random input at it, with artificial intelligence tools that allow the tool to ask smarter what-if questions when it looks at potential security issues.

“Think of a car crash,” Microsoft researcher David Molnar told me. If you only see the result, you don’t know why the crash happened. A regular fuzzer may tell you when… Continue reading

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apple-wwdc-20150343 After months and months of beta, iOS 10 is finally here — and it’s a huge update. In particular, Apple has tucked away many little features that you won’t see right away. If you want to impress all your friends with your mad iOS skills, here is a list of some of these features. I also wrote a short and sweet review of iOS 10 if you want to learn more about all the changes… Read More

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One of the startups that caught my eye at TechCrunch Disrupt’s Startup Alley was MobileIrisID, a company that combines the convenience of the mobile phone with the power of the cloud. Aiming to be a drop-in service for high-value transaction authentication, the service puts hyper-secure identification at the fingertips of developers.

The company uses the front-facing camera to capture a high-resolution photo of the iris. As the photo is taken, the phone’s screen shows a randomly generated barcode. The idea is that the barcode is reflected on the pupil, so it can be read again later to… Continue reading

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Whether you’re working out of a dorm room or running a billion dollar company, a little pivot can go a long way. At their worst, pivots can derail a company’s success, but at their best, they demonstrate a company is still attuned to its user base — no matter how big it gets.

Digit, a fintech service that helps people save, launched a year and a half ago with the hypothesis that the key to incentivizing savings was simplicity. The company dropped a nifty SMS tool to proactively inform users of their spending… Continue reading