Researchers from Allen Institute for AI have built a computer system capable of teaching itself many facets of broad concepts by scouring and analyzing search engines using natural language processing and computer vision techniques. Read more »
Large web companies such as Facebook, Google and Amazon have been pushing the boundaries of IT for years, and now their problems — and solutions — are making their ways into the mainstream. Read more »
Expect Labs has revamped its MindMeld artificial intelligence API to support new languages, more devices and better speech recognition. The company is trying to power a new generation of apps that build on what Siri started. Read more »
A Palo Alto startup called Wit.AI wants to enable a world of intelligent dialog with the devices around us, but conquering voice commands is the first step on its mission. Read more »
Context Relevant, a Seattle-based startup that promises to create accurate predictive models in a hurry, even across large datasets, has raised a $21 million series B round of venture capital. Formation 8 led the round, which also included existing investors Madrona Venture Group, Bloomberg Beta and Vulcan Capital, and several angels and strategic investors. Context Relevant’s technology includes specialized algorithms for functions such as fraud detection and behavioral analysis, then automatically analyzes data against them and generates models that can added to applications without recoding.
Analytics startup DataPad emerged from stealth mode on Tuesday, along with $1.7 million in funding from a list of prominent investors. Its trying to provide simple, attractive analytics for the little guy, which is a promising but difficult space. Read more »
Facebook artificial intelligence director and NYU researcher Yann LeCun delved into the future of AI last week in an Ask Me Anything session on Reddit. Here are his thoughts on why Her is a long way off, but is on the right path. Read more »
Big data vendor Cloudera is no Google when it comes to data center footprint, but the cost and complexity of its infrastructure are growing with each passing year. Cloudera VP of engineering Peter Cooper-Ellis explains how better data centers and cloud computing help ease the burden. Read more »
6Sense, a startup using machine learning to help companies predict who’ll buy their products, launched on Monday along with $12 million in venture capital from Battery Ventures and Venrock. The company claims it uses behavioral data to predict when customers are in the market to buy, and it focuses on each part of the sales cycle. Sales and marketing have become major use cases for machine learning, with a growing numbers of startups trying to help business know which customers to target, when and how.
Heroku has been at the platform-as-a-service game for a long time now, and it’s still trying to bridge the gap between its web-application-centric roots and the enterprise developers it desires. CEO Tod Nielsen explains how it’s going about that and why he thinks it will succeed. Read more »
Coursera co-founder and Stanford researcher Andrew Ng is leaving his day-to-day role at Coursera and joining Chinese search engine provider Baidu as its chief scientist. Ng is among a handful of high-profile artificial intelligence researcher to be hired by web companies int he past year. Read more »
Artificial intelligence techniques such as natural-language processing and computer vision will someday revolutionize our world. First, they’ll probably help retailers sell us more stuff. Read more »
Hortonworks has bought a startup called XA Secure that’s focused on securing the entire Hadoop cluster and enforcing compliance with company-wide policies. The technology should be open sourced as an Apache project by the year’s end. Read more »
MIT researchers have developed an algorithm that learns what’s happening in videos by piecing together the things it sees into a complete picture. It could prove meaningful as more companies look to images and video to analyze everything from consumer behavior to health care. Read more »
Eric Baldeschwieler, the founding CEO of Hortonworks and former Yahoo VP who led the company’s Hadoop development efforts, is now a strategic adviser to Hadoop startup DataTorrent. The company, which won the Structure Data Readers’ Choice award for infrastructure startups, sells stream-processing software designed to run in Hadoop environments (on top of YARN). Baldeschwieler also advises the white-hot Apache Spark startup Databricks. He left Hortonworks, where he was most recently CTO, in August 2013.
A new open-source project called Postgres-XL is pushing scale-out and MPP capabilities for the popular database. Postgres-XL is the product of a database vendor called TransLattice and is based on technology it acquired from StormDB in October. Read more »
Deep learning startup AlchemyAPI is expanding its scope from text analysis to computer vision with a new API-based service called AlchemyVision. The company’s neural network system is continuously scanning images on the web and getting smarter by the day. Read more »
Twitter recently detailed its Manhattan database that’s supposed to be the default system for most new applications within the company. Here, the engineers behind Manhattan explain why they built it like they did. Read more »
An Australian company called Aerospace Concepts is partnering with Lockheed Martin to perform research on its quantum computer that could result in the world’s first quantum computing software company. Aerospace Concepts specializes in complex system design, a presumably strong use case for quantum computing. Read more »
Big data has been a buzzword for years, but it’s a lot more than just buzz. There are now so many tools and technologies for creating, collecting and analyzing data that almost anything is possible if you know where to look. Read more »
Data analytics and visualization specialist Tableau Software announced its first-quarter financial results on Monday, touting $74.6 million in revenue and an 86 percent increase over the same period a year earlier. Tableau isn’t the biggest player in the business intelligence and data analysis world, but it’s probably the fastest growing one — especially among public companies. In 2013, Tableau’s revenues grew 82 percent to $232 million; an 82 percent increase for 2014 would put Tableau’s annual revenue at more than $422 million.
On our Structure Show podcast, CenturyLink’s VP of cloud explains why he thinks the company be the first telco to really make a dent in the cloud computing market by leveraging its network assets and offering an enterprise cloud that also caters to developers. Read more »
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, is building a set of technologies to help it better understand human language so it can analyze speech and text sources and alert analysts of potentially useful information. Read more »
A White House committee released a report on Thursday highlighting the promises and perils of big data, and recommending several courses of action. It’s a good background report on big data, but it sidesteps certain tough problems, including domestic spying. Read more »
Data Elite launched in October promising office space, advice and funding to data-focused startups founded by experienced teams. On Thursday, the firm announced its first seven portfolio companies, which span a wide range of products. Read more »
Aviso, a startup from Zuora co-founder K.V. Rao and former JPMorgan Chase head quant Andrew Abrahams, launched on Wednesday with a new service for applying risk-analysis methods to corporate revenue. The company has raised $8 million in series A venture capital from Shasta Ventures, First Round Capital, Cowboy Ventures and Bloomberg Beta. In an interview, Rao explained that companies — like investment banks — should use machine learning to constantly analyze their corporate data and external data in order to spot potential shortfalls. That some people still use Excel as their primary tool for this, Rao said, “is a little appalling.”
Researchers from the University of California, Riverside, say they’ve developed a cheap yet remarkably accurate method for classifying insects as they fly by a sensor. They explain their setup and the machine learning models that interpret the data in a very informative paper. Read more »
A startup called Pepperdata launched on Tuesday along with $5 million in series A venture capital from Signia Venture Partners and Webb Investment Network. The company, which was co-founded by two Yahoo and Microsoft veterans, says its technology sits above the Hadoop cluster and monitors the resource usage of each running task. Cluster management is very important, but Pepperdata’s challenge will be proving its approach is good enough to justify paying a third party rather than using existing vendor software (including from Cloudera) or open source projects such as Apache Ambari and Apache Mesos.
Cloudera and MongoDB have formed a partnership that could potentially span everything from integrations to new products. It’s a big bet by MongoDB that Cloudera will be the Hadoop distribution of choice for its users, and another way for Cloudera to distinguish itself from Hadoop peers. Read more »
TIBCO has acquired Jaspersoft in a move that could signal further consolidation in the business intelligence space. Vendors such as Tableau and Microsoft dominate in terms mindshare and capabilities, leaving other big players playing catch up by opening their wallets. Read more »
As a new brain-like computing architecture out of Stanford demonstrates, we’re on the cusp of powerful, but fundamentally different ways of doing computing. However, whether they’re embedded in devices or packed together in supercomputers, programming these new types of systems will take some re-education. Read more »
Canonical founder and space traveler Mark Shuttleworth came on the Structure Show this week to discuss Ubuntu’s role as the operating system of choice for cloud computing. As OpenStack takes precedence over the operating system, he argues, Red Hat’s licensing can’t last. Read more »
Publishing analytics startup Parse.ly just switched its entire IT footprint to Amazon Web Services, saving money and improving performance in the process. As clouds keep getting cheaper and better, resistance to them is becoming futile. Read more »
Here are some highlights from a Reddit Ask Me Anything featuring members of Twitter’s open source engineering team. It’s a pretty informative look at Twitter’s open source culture, the statuses of its various projects and its high hiring standards. Read more »
This is a good explainer from MIT Technology Review of how Microsoft’s Cortana works. As we noted yesterday, and last year, Bing has strategic value to beyond just search revenue. It’s a great place to gather data that can help train other machine learning systems, and a great testbed for new types of features.
Computer vision startup Jetpac, which specialized in categorizing Instagram images from vacation destinations, has released an iOS software development kit and app based on a popular deep learning architecture. Read more »
Microsoft keeps rolling out new features in Bing that it claims make it superior to, or at least more interesting, than Google’s dominant search engine. They’re not the sexiest applications of artificial intelligence, but they are easy, practical and tied to big money. Read more »
Personal learning startup Declara has raised a $16 million series A round of venture capital for its platform that connects large networks of professionals to the people and content that will help them learn. Read more »
A startup called BaseHealth launched on Tuesday with a mission to deliver personalized wellness plans while keeping doctors very much in the picture. The company’s platform combines genetic data, lifestyle data and medical records to determine patients’ risks and how they can mitigate them. Read more »
Carnegie Mellon researchers have created an application that visualizes tabular data and lets users analyze it using hand gestures. It’s not the first attempt to rethink analytics for a mobile world, but it’s interesting and a sign of things to come. Read more »