Matt Bencke's heartbreaking, scary and inspiring battle with cancer

I'm going to keep the introduction remarkably brief today because, honestly, I don't have a lot to sa
Matt Bencke's heartbreaking, scary and inspiring battle with cancer
By ARCHITECHT • Issue #128
I’m going to keep the introduction remarkably brief today because, honestly, I don’t have a lot to say other than that you should read this:
I don’t know the author, Matt Bencke, nor do I know a whole lot about his startup, Mighty AI (which provides training data for autonomous cars). But his story about battling a very bad cancer diagnosis—something he’s just getting started on, by the way—shook me pretty hard. 
It takes a certain kind of bravery to write an essay like this and then share it publicly. It touches on things that every parent thinks about—but hopes more than anything they’ll never have to actually face. 
All I really can say is that I wish only the best for Matt and his family.

Sponsor: DigitalOcean
Sponsor: DigitalOcean
Artificial intelligence
If you’re one of those people who really believes that fashion is art, then this has to upset you. Plus, it will be very difficult to tell each other apart as we’re all walking around Whole Foods wearing the same outfits that Amazon recommended for us.
The work described here—gig work and Mechanical Turking, essentially—sounds pretty crappy as a tradeoff for not having to stand in line at the grocery store or handle a steering wheel. 
Microsoft unveiled its FPGA-based Brainwave chip on Tuesday, with a promise to make it available on Azure. If you like geeking out on chip specs, this post is for you.
As part of a partnership with Canada’s Creative Destruction Lab accelerator. Rigetti, if you’re unfamiliar, is a startup in its own right, but one that’s doing some pretty impressive work.
This is a good, in-depth look at emerging practices for improving the water supply using machine learning. For all the negative press about AI, the truth is there will also be some very positive effects if we are willing to invest in them.  •  Share
This is really for folks who want to get started experimenting with speech recognition. So if that’s you, then this might of use.
Sponsor: Bonsai
Sponsor: Bonsai
Cloud and infrastructure
There are a couple of interesting things about this: (1) it sounds like another whole-hog migration to the Google Cloud, and (2) there’s a symbiosis here because marketing teams already engage so heavily with Google products (e.g., Analytics). Check out Barb Darrow’s story in Fortune for more details on this
Also, viewed in the light of yesterday’s announced Google-Walmart alliance, you might see a trend forming of Google getting a lot better at strategic partnerships in the name of taking on Amazon. It’s fascinating to watch these rivalries expand into retail, cloud, and everywhere but search and book sales.
1. And this is where the headline points, it detailed its custom Titan chip for ensuring security at the hardware level inside data centers. Gee, do you think there’s a battle going on among cloud providers to out-innovate each other at the chip level?
2. It announced a firewall option for App Engine. Self-explanatory, I think, but noteworthy.
At this point, companies building mega data centers in small towns is really nothing new. What is worth discussing, however, is its $208 million in tax breaks. There are fine arguments on both sides of these agreements, but cities and states need to ensure they’re able (and willing) to make companies hold up their ends of the bargain.
If this is commercialized, everyone will thank them as microservices and containers take over data center networks. 
Here’s a short interview with Brendan Burns, who helped create Kubernetes while at Google. He’s now at Microsoft and, if you want a more in-depth interview with him, click here.
Yesterday, it was data storage at the molecular level. Earlier this year, it was data storage in DNA. Makes you wonder what the technological, financial and cultural hurdles are to actually productize all this research.
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All things data
This is a very big and growing field, and I think one of the coolest uses of big data and cloud computing power around.
To be honest, I don’t care too much about the BI space, but it is interesting to see Tableau—a few years ago flying high with massive revenue gains and soaring share prices—playing catch-up a bit. True data democratization might never happen, but usable NLP is a big step in the right direction.
It’s possible the author is missing some significant details here, but it is kind of amusing to think about how many case studies presented as unbridled successes might looks less shiny if you examined them closely or dug a little deeper.  •  Share
So, you know, put some real effort into finding (or creating) good data sources before jumping into all the great ways you’ll model it.
New ARCHITECHT Show every Thursday; new AI & Robot Show every Friday!
New ARCHITECHT Show every Thursday; new AI & Robot Show every Friday!
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