California, with an economy large enough to be the seventh-largest in the world, is putting its clout behind its own version of net neutrality (David Reed, San Francisco, May 2016; Vint Cerf, Philadelphia, Apr 2006).
Just days after member firm BMW described plans to increase production in China, Tesla (field trip, San Francisco, May 2016) announced an agreement with Chinese authorities to produce as many as 500,000 vehicles per year.
At our member panel in June, Rohini Rewari told us about Intel’s MobilEye unit. Last week, Baidu announced it will be adopting Mobileye’s Responsibility-Sensitive Safety in its Apollo self-driving car program.
Sure, AI is taking on more and more white-collar work (Tom Mitchell, Pittsburgh, Oct 2012). But replacing merchandisers at fashion houses? (Anouk Wipprecht, Atlanta, Feb 2014) Apparently, yes, and some of it’s being done by Generative Adversarial Networks (Irmak Sirak, Los Angeles, Mar 2018).
And, sure, AI is besting the champs of Texas Hold’em poker (Noam Brown, Brooklyn, Jun 2018), but winning takes more than clever betting; it also relies on good hands. In the last hand of the penultimate day of play in the 2018 World Series of Poker, player Nicholas Manion prevailed with pocket aces against two competitors each with their own spectacular hands: pocket kings.
Is a two-year community college degree enough for a tech career? Increasingly, yes. (Zach Sims, Washington, D.C., May 2012)
Even less is necessary to learn Morse code. Google’s Gboard now supports this binary input modality (Andries van Dam, Seattle, Dec 2006), which should revolutionize life for people with limited communication skills (Mick Ebeling, Charlotte, Dec 2010).
Eight percent of Portand’s roadways account for half of all the city’s traffic accidents. So now they’re getting 200 sensor nodes so traffic engineers can figure out how to improve their safety. (John Tolva, San Francisco, May 2016)
The blockchain story might be at the if-you-build-it-they-will-come stage, but you need some warm bodies to build it. Hence, a booming job market in blockchain.
Exactly one subway line in New York City has an on-time performance above 90%, and exactly one has communications-based train control, so it’s not hard to do the math here, but extending CBTC to the other 26 lines is just one of many problems of an antiquated and neglected system. (Adam Drobot, McLean, Va., Sep 2017; Veronika Haunold, Vienna, July 2013; Ben Wellington, Philadelphia, Jul 2015)
“t ought to be plain how little you gain by getting excited and vexed. You'll always be late for the previous train, and always on time for the next.”
The TTI/Vanguard Team