September 29, 2015
NTENT is a leading natural language processing and semantic search company, that owns the Convera technology, and according to Business Wire Dan Stickel was hired as the new CEO, says “NTENT Appoints Dan Stickel As New CEO.” NTENT is focused on expanding the company with AltaVista and Google. Using Stickel’s experience, NTENT has big plans and is sure that Stickel will lead the company to success.
“CEO, Stickel’s first objective will be to prioritize NTENT’s planned expansion along geographic, market and technology dimensions. ‘After spending significant time with NTENT’s Board, management team and front-line employees, I’m excited by the company’s opportunities and by the foundation that’s already been laid in both traditional web and newer mobile capabilities. NTENT has clearly built some world-class technology, and is now scaling that out with customers and partners.’”
In his past positions as CEO at Metaforic and Webtrends s well as head of the enterprise business at AltaVista and software business at Macrovision, Stickel has transitioned companies to become the leaders in their respective industries.
The demand for natural language processing software and incorporating it into semantic search is one of the biggest IT trends at the moment. The field is demanding innovation and NTENT believes Stickel will guide them.
Whitney Grace, September 29, 2015
September 28, 2015
A new, indispensable position for companies is the chief technology officer or the chief information officer. Their primary responsibilities are to manage the IT department, implement new ways to manage information, and/or develop software as needed. There is a new position that companies will be creating in the future and the title is chief marketing technology officer, says Live Mint in “Make Way CIOS, CMOS: Here Comes The CMTO.”
Formerly the marketing and IT departments never mixed, except for the occasional social media collaboration. Marketers are increasing their reliance on technology to understand their customers and it goes far beyond social media. Marketers need to be aware of the growing trends in mobile shopping and search, digital analytics, gamification, online communities, and the power of user-generated content.
“The CMO’s role will graduate to CMTO, a marketer with considerable knowledge of technology. The CMTO, according to Nasscom, will not only conceptualize but also build solutions and lay down the technical and commercial specifications while working alongside the IT team on vendor selection.”
It is not enough to know how to market a product or promote an organization. Marketers need to be able to engage with technology and understand how to implement to attract modern customers and increase sales. In other words, evolving the current marketing position with a new buzzword.
Whitney Grace, September 28, 2015
September 23, 2015
Here’s an interesting project: we received an announcement about funding for Pop Up Archive: Search Your Sound. A joint effort of the WGBH Educational Foundation and the American Archive of Public Broadcasting, the venture’s goal is nothing less than to make almost 40,000 hours of Public Broadcasting media content easily accessible. The American Archive, now under the care of WGBH and the Library of Congress, has digitized that wealth of sound and video. Now, the details are in the metadata. The announcement reveals:
“As we’ve written before, metadata creation for media at scale benefits from both machine analysis and human correction. Pop Up Archive and WGBH are combining forces to do just that. Innovative features of the project include:
*Speech-to-text and audio analysis tools to transcribe and analyze almost 40,000 hours of digital audio from the American Archive of Public Broadcasting
*Open source web-based tools to improve transcripts and descriptive data by engaging the public in a crowdsourced, participatory cataloging project
*Creating and distributing data sets to provide a public database of audiovisual metadata for use by other projects.
“In addition to Pop Up Archive’s machine transcripts and automatic entity extraction (tagging), we’ll be conducting research in partnership with the HiPSTAS center at University of Texas at Austin to identify characteristics in audio beyond the words themselves. That could include emotional reactions like laughter and crying, speaker identities, and transitions between moods or segments.”
The project just received almost $900,000 in funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. This loot is on top of the grant received in 2013, from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, that got the project started. But will it be enough money to develop a system that delivers on-point results? If not, we may be stuck with something clunky, something that resembles the old Autonomy Virage, Blinkxx, Exalead video search, or Google YouTube search. Let us hope this worthy endeavor continues to attract funding so that, someday, anyone can reliably (and intuitively) find valuable Public Broadcasting content.
Cynthia Murrell, September 23, 2015
September 21, 2015
Have you heard the one about how dark data hides within an organization’s servers and holds potential business insights? Wait, you did not? Then where have you been for the past three years? Datameer posted an SEO heavy post on its blog called, “Shine Light On Dark Data.” The post features the same redundant song and dance about how dark data retained on server has valuable customer trend and business patterns that can put them bring them out ahead of the competition.
One new fact is presented: IDC reports that 90% of digital data is dark. That is a very interesting fact and spurs information specialists to action to get a big data plan in place, but then we are fed this tired explanation:
“This dark data may come in the form of machine or sensor logs that when analyzed help predict vacated real estate or customer time zones that may help businesses pinpoint when customers in a specific region prefer to engage with brands. While the value of these insights are very significant, setting foot into the world of dark data that is unstructured, untagged and untapped is daunting for both IT and business users.”
The post ends on some less than thorough advice to create an implementation plan. There are other guides on the Internet that better prepare a person to create a big data action guide. The post’s only purpose is to serve as a search engine bumper for Datameer. While Datameer is one of the leading big data software providers, one would think they wouldn’t post a “dark data definition” post this late in the game.
September 21, 2015
The article on TechCrunch titled Google Partners with Cloudflare, Fastly, Level 3 and Highwinds to Help Developers Push Google Cloud Content to Users Faster discusses Google’s recent switch from it’s own content delivery network (CDN) (formerly PageSpeed service) to partner services. This has been advanced by the CDN Interconnect launch, purportedly aimed at providing simplified and less costly space for developers who use the cloud service for running applications. The article elucidates,
“Developers who use a CDN Interconnect partner to serve their content — and that’s mostly static assets like photos, music and video — are now eligible to pay a reduced rate for egress traffic to these CDN locations. Google says the idea here is to “encourage the best practice of regularly distributing content originating from Cloud Platform out to the edge close to your end-users. Google provides a private, high-performance link between Cloud Platform and the CDN providers we work with..”
So we see Google doing the partner thing. Going it alone may be lonely and expensive. The article mentions that the importance of CDNs will only grow with the weight of web pages, which are so often plied with high-res images and HD video. So long as Google can’t solve this problem itself, they are happy to partner up with providers.
Chelsea Kerwin, September 21, 2015
September 18, 2015
We’ve learned of an interesting alliance from this announcement at OpenPR, “Strategic Partnership Between Wabion and Twigkit in the Enterprise Search Sector.” We predict that more and fancier interfaces will arise from this deal. Wabion works closely with Google, and was named “top Google for Work Partner” in the DACH (Germany, Austria, and Switzerland) region. Now the company will bring TwigKit’s user-experience prowess to their enterprise search offerings. The press release notes:
“By providing simple building blocks for traditionally complex problems, Twigkit strikes the perfect balance between out of the box experience and fine-grained control for GSA applications. Twigkit delivers customised, elegant, search-based applications that can be delivered in a fraction of the time when compared to bespoke development. The resulting applications delivers demonstrably better results and have been proven in the most demanding scenarios. The outcome is not just a better and more efficient experience for both administrators and users alike but the opportunity to allow businesses to realise the value of their information outside of the standard keyword search and list of results approach.”
Twigkit is excited for this chance to expand into the German-speaking market, while Wabion looks forward to providing a richer UI within the Google Search Appliance.
Founded in 2009, Twigkit splits its operations between Cambridge, UK, and Milpitas, California. As of this writing, they are looking to hire some developers and engineers. The Wabion Group maintains offices in Germany and Austria, and was founded in 2011. They are currently seeking one developer to fill a vacancy in Switzerland.
Cynthia Murrell, September 18, 2015
September 15, 2015
French semantic tech firm Mondeca has their own research arm, Mondeca Labs. Their website seems to be going for a playful, curiosity-fueled vibe. The intro states:
“Mondeca Labs is our sandbox: we try things out to illustrate the potential of Semantic Web technologies and get feedback from the Semantic Web community. Our credibility in the Semantic Web space is built on our contribution to international standards. Here we are always looking for new challenges.”
The page links to details on several interesting projects. One entry we noticed right away is for an inference engine; they say it is “coming soon,” but a mouse click reveals that no info is available past that hopeful declaration. The site does supply specifics about other projects; some notable examples include linked open vocabularies, a SKOS reader, and a temporal search engine. See their home page, above, for more.
Established in 1999, Mondeca has delivered pragmatic semantic solutions to clients in Europe and North America for over 15 years. The firm is based in Paris, France.
Cynthia Murrell, September 15, 2015
September 4, 2015
The Ashley Madison data breach has understandably been getting a lot of press, but what does it portend for the future of the Internet? Computerworld’s Tech Decoder predicts far-reaching consequences in, “Here’s Why the Dark Web Just Got a Lot Darker.” Security experts predict a boom in phishing scams connected to this data breach, as well as copycat hackers poised to attack other (more legit) companies.
Reporter John Brandon suspects such activity will lead to the government stepping in to create two separate Internet channels: one “wild and unprotected” side and a “commercial” side, perhaps sponsored by big-name communications companies, that comes with an expectation of privacy. Great, one might think, we won’t have to worry if we’re not up to anything shady! But there’s more to it. Brandon explains:
“The problem is that I’m a big proponent of entrepreneurship. I won’t comment on whether I think Ashley Madison is a legitimate business. … However, I do want to defend the rights of some random dude in Omaha who wants to sell smartphone cables. He won’t have a chance to compete on the ‘commercial’ side of the Internet, so he’ll probably have to create a site on the unprotected second-tier channel, the one that is ‘free and open’ for everyone. Good luck with that.
“Is it fair? Is it even (shudder) moral? The commercial side will likely be well funded, fast, reliable, government-sanctioned, and possibly heavily taxed. The free side will be like drinking water at the local cesspool. In the end, the free and open Internet is that way for a reason. It’s not so you can cheat on your wife. Frankly, people will do that with or without the Internet. The ‘free and open’ bit is intended to foster ideas. It’s meant to level the playing field. It’s meant to help that one guy in Omaha.”
Yes, security is important, but so is opportunity. Can our society strike a balance, or will fear reign? Stay tuned.
Cynthia Murrell, September 4, 2015
September 1, 2015
The article titled Semantic Technology: Building the HAL 9000 Computer on Forbes runs with the gossip from the Smart Data Conference this year. Namely, that semantic technology has finally landed. The article examines several leaders of the field including Maana, Loop AI Labs and Blazegraph. The article mentions,
“Computers still can’t truly understand human language, but they can make sense out of certain aspects of textual content. For example, Lexalytics (www.lexalytics.com) is able to perform sentiment analysis, entity extraction, and ambiguity resolution. Sentiment analysis can determine whether some text – a tweet, say, expresses a positive or negative opinion, and how strong that opinion is. Entity extraction identifies what a paragraph is actually talking about, while ambiguity resolution solves problems like the Paris Hilton one above.”
(The “Paris Hilton problem” referred to is distinguishing between the hotel and the person in semantic search.) In spite of the excitable tone of the article’s title, its conclusion is much more measured. HAL, the sentient computer from 2001: A Space Odyssey, remains in our imaginations. In spite of the exciting work being done, the article reminds us that even Watson, IBM’s supercomputer, is still without the “curiosity or reasoning skills of any two-year-old human.” For the more paranoid among us, this might be good news.
Chelsea Kerwin, September 1, 2015
August 24, 2015
Centripetal Networks offers a fully integrated security network specializing in threat-based intelligence. Threat intelligence is being informed about potential attacks, who creates the attacks, and how to prevent them. Think of it as the digital version of “stranger danger.” Centripetal Networks offers combative software using threat intelligence to prevent hacking with real-time results and tailoring for individual systems.
While Centripetal Networks peddles its software, they also share information sources that expand on threat intelligence, how it pertains to specific industries, and new developments in digital security. Not to brag or anything, but our very own CyberOSINT: Next Generation Information Access made the news page! Take a gander at its description:
“The RuleGate technology continues to remain the leader in speed and performance as an appliance, and its visualization and analytics tools are easy-to-use. Because of federal use and interest, its threat intelligence resources will continue to rank at the top. Cyber defense, done in this manner, is the most useful for its real time capacity and sheer speed in computing.”
CyberOSINT was written for law enforcement officials to gain and understanding of threat intelligence as well as tools they can use to arm themselves against cyber theft and track potential attacks. It profiles companies that specialize in threat intelligence and evaluates them. Centripetal Networks is proudly featured in the book.
Whitney Grace, August 24, 2015