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January 24, 2017

IoT AI :: AI IoT

In the land of self-fulfilling anomalies you learn to see through those high on the possibility, to focus on those exhausted from the probability. The probability they are going to build something valuable, of worth, something that people and companies want, that they HAVE to have. Something that stands out no matter what, literally at the speed of light as it transcends thru those fiber-optic lines as fast as the web masses can authenticate and download. That type of data don’t lie. Doesn’t it?

It doesn’t. It seems to work pretty well in this current state of software, an unmistaken feedback loop that many have experienced if not figured out. Nothing wrong [...]

 
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December 22, 2016

[re]CodeCommerce & #InclusionSV: time to team up

As we near the end of this god-forsaken year entitled 2016, there is certainly a lot to reflect on (or retract from depending on your disposition). This month has felt pretty surreal if not 100% in-conflict coming off last. I mean how is one supposed to feel merry with cheer given the defacement that is now set to be in control of America, not to mention all the other horrible developments around the globe? Santa is 100% happy he lives in the non-nationalized North Pole, except of course all his polar bear friends are dying from starvation due to climate change. There is that. Nonetheless (or perhaps despite the lessening), the two events in about as many weeks that caught my [...]

 
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November 10, 2016

Oh [#LeanStartup], Where Art Thou?

TAKE NOTICE: build-test-learn

So once upon a time a guy named Eric started a movement. Truth be told, like most of us he was probably trying to start something that would decrease his probability of financial hardship in the future, and in the process possibly make a bit of a name for himself. It would appear it worked and his insights have been well received, by BOTH startups starting out AND mega-corporations interested in a given decade’s operational ‘botox’. But whatever the path that leads you to Lean, it can be an incredible learning experience. So yea, build-[test+]measure-learn is EXACTLY it, and the take-home is that [...]

 
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November 4, 2016

Tech Inclusion: the Diversity of an Open Mind

Palace of Fine Arts

The Palace of Fine Arts was born out of an Exhibition intent on demonstrating that San Francisco had rebuilt itself. So the fact this year’s Tech Inclusion conference was held in the neighboring Innovation Hangar (previously the Exploratorium) is quite appropriate. In a sense, the goal here is to rebuild SF’s crown jewel: Tech. Young and not so young white guys hold a majority stake at present, but in the years to come, it seems to me that the tech sector is going to incur some well-deserved growing pains of a different variety. We’re not talking 4-5x the national GDP growth rate, no, this is something more like [...]

 
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November 3, 2016

Biometrics – the good the bad and the ugly

A biometric is a form of identity based on a physiological (fingerprint, face, eye iris or retina) or behavioural (speech or signature) characteristic. There’s no special training required for a consumer to use them, they can’t be lost unlike conventional access methods and are unique to every individual.

If you’ve ever experienced airport retina scanning or have a fingerprint identity on your smartphone, you’re already part of the world of biometrics. Apple, closely followed by Samsung, brought touch ID to the consumer market place and demonstrated how user friendly biometrics can be. Once, this was all considered the stuff of science fiction films but biometrics is now [...]

 
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October 31, 2016

The future of mobile banking – engaging customers through mobile phones

Last month, the CMA released a new set of rules that are set to transform the finance industry. Managing director of agency Sonin, Paul Jarrett, explains how the new banking regulations are going to impact small service providers.

The latest announcement from the Competition and Marketing Authority (CMA) states that all banks must offer all of their services via a single mobile phone app by 2018. It’s not news that we live in a connected world, or that our mobiles have become a vital tool for everyday life. In fact we’ve seen many businesses and entire industries evolve and mobilise their offering to improve the customer experience. So really, it was only a matter of time [...]

 
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September 23, 2016

Foundational Capital: #SOCAP16

[DISCLAIMER: this post is in no way associated w/ the VC firm Foundational Capital.]

Vodafone Nations

My first SOCAP was illuminating to say the least, and not just because I was excited to see what the world of Impact [Investing] was all about, but also because I got to hear firsthand what young companies in countries with little to no venture capital do to get off the ground. What do they do? What they have to. It turns out a big piece of that equation is working with private foundations and government entities, and so perhaps appropriately, I was keenly interested when the World’s second largest Telco invited me to their startup pitch [...]

 
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September 20, 2016

Comfy Robotics, a Wholehearted CRM, and the [VR] Space of Sound

   Sometimes we’re so set on finding a theme, that the most important ones evade our recognition. Well, I decided to do one on people in our age of ‘underlying tech’, more specifically, those at Disrupt this year and [un]knowingly at the heart of the underlying-business therein. The following 3 companies have people that caught my attention, not because they’re arrogantly aware of their SeriesA from TopVCx, or even because they’re beyond confident their particular value-add is going to cause a HUGE shift in their industry/sector, but because it was easy for me to see they’re happy-beings doing good. It is the happiness that we seek. In seed- and [...]
 
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September 19, 2016

If I lose you at ‘Devops’ … you’re missing the point.

 [But then again, the Title drew you this far, so perhaps you’re onto something.]    Disrupt SF did not disappoint this year. Yes, the Secretary of Defense, both Marc’s (Benioff & Andreessen), and Steph Curry all made headline appearances, in the same day no less; but I would like to take a moment to highlight the lesser-sung heroes of the conference [and our industry and World for that matter]: DEVOPS. Let’s break IT down: Development Operations, as in Software Development and IT Operations. A match made in tech.haven no doubt, and that’s even before you drop some of that crazy QA into the mix. DEVOPS deserves more respect. I intend to convince you. Who [...]
 
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August 31, 2016

Krzana to the rescue

When a fire broke out at Motiva Enterprises’ oil refinery in Convent, Louisiana, there was more at stake than the safety of the 300 workers located there. Within seconds, oil traders anticipating a prolonged halt in production drove the price of motor fuel products soaring. But the first news of the blaze didn’t come from the established business wires like Bloomberg, Dow Jones or Reuters. Instead, it was a South Louisiana and Baton Rouge based newspaper, The Advocate, that tweeted about the flames. Four thousand miles away in London, that tweet was flagged up on a new search tool using advanced information processing techniques to scan social media called Krzana – a Sanskrit word [...]

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