The University of Massachusetts Amherst is doubling down its effort to become a top-tier university for “Big Data” research. On Thursday, the flagship school in the commonwealth’s university system will announce the launch of a new center for data science. Over the next decade, the school plans to hire 40 new faculty positions and raise $100 million through industry investments to expand the school’s presence in the burgeoning field.
Read MoreInnerCity Weightlifting to open outpost in Kendall Square
In this weekend's Boston Globe Magazine, business columnist Shirley Leung writes about InnerCity Weightlifting, the Dorchester gym that has provided a source of support and job opportunities to formerly incarcerated men by helping them become personal trainers. For the past two years, founder Jon Feinman has been pairing members of the gym with employees at Microsoft's New England headquarters for training sessions. Now he plans to take the idea one step further and open a gym in the heart of the Cambridge tech community. As Leung writes:
Come February or so, his theory will face the ultimate test when he opens a gym in Kendall Square, the playground of computer geniuses, scientists, venture capitalists, and entrepreneurs. It’s an expensive proposition for a nonprofit — a $1.5 million lease over five years, for which InnerCity Weightlifting is still fund-raising. But Feinman, InnerCity’s founder and executive director, feels certain this is exactly where his program needs to be if the goal is to get men on a path out of their dangerous world and into one with possibilities. “We felt it was a greater risk not to make this investment,” says 31-year-old Feinman, who himself worked as a personal trainer and earned an MBA from Babson College before launching InnerCity.
The concept is so starkly simple you can’t help but wonder if it could succeed. Can we lift people up from the bottom by exposing them to the people at the top?
This morning, the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences announced that Steve Ballmer, the former CEO of Microsoft and '77 alum, will be committing support to the expansion of the computer science program, a move that will increase the number of faculty by 50 percent.
It's been about 17 months since Edward Snowden leaked details about the National Security Agency's tracking practices, information that triggered a firestorm of investigations into the US government's access to private data and the way technology companies secured and shared consumer information.
On Tuesday, Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith spoke at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society, facing an audience that included some of the loudest critics of the NSA's activities in the US.
Read Moreon the horizonMicrosoft cloud event will take place Oct. 20 in San Francisco
Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella tweeted earlier today there's an event in the works for this month. On October 20, he'll be talking Microsoft Cloud. Read MoreMining for Future TalentBig week for Big Data in Boston
I've watched this video a few times, and it still blows my mind: Using high-speed video of nearby items, such as a plant or stray chip wrapper, MIT, Microsoft, and Adobe researchers found a way to analyze vibrations and algorithmically recreate roughly what sounds were in the room, down to actual words being spoken or a tune being played — without any recorded audio cues.
Read MoreAccelerating Hardware and Civic InnovationMassChallenge partners with Lightspeed, adds Microsoft/City of Boston civic prize
I met a promising young app developer at Microsoft in Cambridge the other day, which wouldn't be unusual except for one key fact: He's 8 years old.
Mohamed Tariq Jaffar Ali (he goes by Tariq) is the author of a Windows Phone app called Kids Zone that aggregates online videos from popular cartoons, like "Tom and Jerry" and "SpongeBob SquarePants." It culls YouTube for relevant clips and sorts them into channels.
"That's the data source," Tariq told me.
Typical third-grade stuff, right?
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