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Exploring software, hardware, everywhere

Last week, Tim O’Reilly and I sat down in San Francisco and had a conversation about the collision of hardware and software. The fact that digital entrepreneurs see hardware as part of their available palette now is really interesting, as is the way many companies with traditional manufacturing roots are seeing digitization and software as key parts of their businesses in the near future. Software plus more...

Open data can drive partnerships with government

As governments and businesses — and increasingly, all of us who are Internet-connected — release data out in the open, we come closer to resolving the tiresomely famous and perplexing quote from Stewart Brand: “Information wants to be free. Information also wants to be expensive.” Open data brings home to us how much free information is available and how productive it is in its free state, but one subterranean...

Why deep belief matters so much

If you’re a programmer who reads the Internet, you’ll have heard of deep belief networks. Google loves them, Facebook just hired one of the pioneers to lead a new group, and they win Kaggle competitions. I’ve been using deep belief networks extensively for image recognition at Jetpac across hundreds of millions of Instagram photos, and the reports are true: the results really are great. If you’re like...

Wearing the future

In an interview at SXSW, Google’s Sundar Pichai said something about wearables that I’ve been waiting to hear. Wearables aren’t about Google Glass; they aren’t about smart watches; they’re much, much more, and these technologies are only scratching the surface. I’ve tweaked Apple a couple of times for their inability to deliver a watch, despite years of leaks and rumors. I suspect that products...

Code Red_: “They have no use for someone who looks and dresses like me”

I published a long piece on LinkedIn yesterday, reflecting on Steven Brill’s excellent Time Magazine cover story, “Code Red_“, about the rescue of healthcare.gov by a small team of volunteer techies from Silicon Valley. The title of my piece took off from a comment by Google Site Reliability Engineer Mikey Dickerson, who is quoted in Brill’s article as saying: “It was only when they were desperate...

iBeacon basics

As any programmer knows, writing the “hello, world” program is the canonical elementary exercise in any new programming language. Getting devices to interact with the world is the foundation of the Internet of Things, and enabling devices to learn about their surroundings is the “hello world” of mobility. On a recent trip to Washington D.C., I attended the first DC iBeacon Meetup. iBeacons are exciting....

Disrupting health care with Google Glass

Editor’s note: this article originally appeared on Advanced Health Information Exchange Resources; this lightly edited version is published here with permission. I joined the Glass Explorer Program and have started using Google Glass with a focus on finding medical uses for this type of wearable computing technology. While I believe it’s the analytics capabilities that will allow us to realize the value...