Tuesday, June 30, 2015

IoT: Tessel 2

Tessel 2
"...is a development platform you can embed in a product. Build fast with Node.js/io.js, then optimize the hardware and build thousands."


Sunday, June 28, 2015

State of the Art in Microservices by Adrian Cockcroft

presentation State of the Art in Microservices @ InfoQ
by Adrian Cockcroft on Jun 17, 2015

"Adrian Cockcroft summarizes the differences and commonalities across some of the largest microservices deployments in production, showing how they are evolving."

"As a Cloud Architect at Netflix, Adrian Cockcroft led the Netflix Open Source program from 2007-2013. Now he is working at VC firm Battery Ventures helping portfolio companies to scale and speed up their product development cycles using microservices and continuous delivery. Previous positions included being Distinguished Engineer at Sun Microsystems and eBay."

Friday, June 26, 2015

Big Data: MapD with GPU & LLVM

MapD: Massive Throughput Database Queries with LLVM and GPUs (nvidia) — The most powerful GPU currently available is the NVIDIA Tesla K80 Accelerator, with up to 8.74 teraflops of compute performance and nearly 500 GB/sec of memory bandwidth. By supporting up to eight of these cards per server, we see orders-of-magnitude better performance on standard data analytics tasks, enabling a user to visually filter and aggregate billions of rows in tens of milliseconds, all without indexing.
mapd_logoFigure 2: MapD performance compared to leading in-memory database on 2-socket, 8-GPU system (group-by and filter query)

Figure 1: The MapD dashboard showing airline data using the Crossfilter interface.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Microsoft mission, mobile first cloud first

Microsoft chief rallies employees around mission of empowerment | TechRadar

In an email sent internally, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella laid out the mission of Microsoft: 
"To empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more."

"Today, we live in a mobile-first, cloud-first world, and the transformation we are driving across our businesses is designed to enable Microsoft and our customers to thrive in this world," Nadella said, emphasizing that mobile-first means the "mobility of experiences" that are "orchestrated by the cloud," and not just about mobile devices.

smart device: Amazon Alexa voice control, $100m fund for innovation

​Amazon throws in $100 million, developer tools to open Echo's Alexa ecosystem | ZDNet
"The technology behind Amazon's Echo is being opened up to developers and third party hardware vendors as the e-commerce giant moves to expand the Alexa ecosystem."alexa-sdk.png

Amazon Media Room: Press Releases
"Amazon Introduces the Alexa Fund: $100 Million in Investments to Fuel Voice Technology Innovation"

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Azure architecture & performance, from Microsoft patterns & practices

mspnp/azure-guidance @ GitHub

mspnp/performance-optimization @ GitHub

links from .NET Rocks!

one hint: don't use direct XML export from SQL Azure, to avoid 10x less performance.
Instead use .NET to generate XML if this is what is needed as output.

Tesla Model S: 1 billion miles

Excellent marketing!

Billion Miles | Tesla Motors
"In just three years, Model S owners around the world have driven over one billion electric miles."


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Windows 10: free upgrade or not?

Upcoming changes to Windows 10 Insider Preview builds [UPDATED 6/22] @ Windows.com

It is a free upgrade for current users of Windows 7 or 8.
Those who just installed "preview" can keep using free preview versions, no limit, or purchase.

Windows 10: Is it free or not?

"The good news is anyone in the Windows Insider program (the official name for Microsoft's public beta of Windows 10) can stay on it indefinitely. Those users will continue to get preview builds as Microsoft keeps updating Windows, including one that Aul described as "for all intents and purposes the same build as what other customers will get" on July 29, the official launch date for Windows 10.

If you want real-deal Windows 10, and don't want to deal with all the bugs that accompany preview software, you'll need to break down and buy a Windows license. Of course, for anyone running Windows 7, 8 or 8.1, you're entitled to a free copy of Windows 10. Anyone else will have to pay, starting at $119."

Monday, June 22, 2015

iot ideas: transparent trucks

Samsung attaches screen to semi-truck to show the road ahead
a camera in front, and 4 monitors on the back, to help safe passing of trucks

another "purpose": advertising :)

data, future, person: Michael Stonebraker, No Map-Reduce, NoSQL merges with SQL

The future of data at scale - O'Reilly Radar
The O'Reilly Radar Podcast: Turing Award winner Michael Stonebraker on the future of data science.

("There is no Nobel's prize for Computer Science, so Turing's Award is the highest recognition")

In March 2015, database pioneer Michael Stonebraker was awarded the 2014 ACM Turing Award “for fundamental contributions to the concepts and practices underlying modern database systems.

"It’s all going to move to data science as soon as enough data scientists get trained by our universities to do this stuff. It’s fairly clear to me that you’re probably not going to retread a business analyst to be a data scientist because you’ve got to know statistics, you’ve got to know machine learning. You’ve got to know what regression means, what Naïve Bayes means, what k-Nearest Neighbors means. It’s all statistics.

All of that stuff turns out to be defined on arrays. It’s not defined on tables. The tools of future data scientists are going to be array-based tools. Those may live on top of relational database systems. They may live on top of an array database system, or perhaps something else. It’s completely open."

"Stonebraker discusses the problem of curating data at scale in more detail in his contributed chapter in a new free ebook, Getting Data Right."

He claims that Google, who created Map-Reduce 10 years ago, stopped using Map-Reduce 5 years ago... Will Hadoop adjust and transform itself?
JSON is apparently his data format of choice for semi-structured data,
and SQL preferred high-level interface. ACID is required, so HDFS is not good enough. 

free ebook
"preview edition of the O'Reilly ebook "Getting Data Right: Tackling the Challenges of Big Data Volume and Variety" (available Fall 2015) and get early access to Dr. Michael Stonebraker's chapter on "Data Curation at Scale".
Google Re-Imagines MapReduce, Launches DataFlow
"Google Cloud Dataflow is a managed service for creating data pipelines that ingest, transform, and analyze massive amounts of data, up into the exabyte range."

"It was known for decades that generalised dataflow engines adequately capture the map-reduce model as a fairly trivial special case. However, there was real doubt over whether such engines could be efficiently implemented on large-scale cluster computers."

"The Syncfusion Big Data Platform is the first and the only complete Hadoop distribution designed for Windows. 100% free for everyone"

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Summer Solstice, API

First Day of Summer 2015 Solstice Dates Times Photos

"The summer solstice heralds the beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. The timing of the summer solstice depends on when the Sun reaches its northernmost point of the equator.

This summer solstice is the day with the most hours of sunlight during the whole year. 

...Sunrise and sunset calculator  for how many hours of sunlight you get in your location."

Summer solstice - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

mourner/suncalc @ GitHub

"SunCalc is a tiny BSD-licensed JavaScript library for calculating sun position, sunlight phases (times for sunrise, sunset, dusk, etc.), moon position and lunar phase for the given location and time, created by Vladimir Agafonkin (@mourner) as a part of the SunCalc.net project.

Most calculations are based on the formulas given in the excellent Astronomy Answers articles aboutposition of the sun and the planets. You can read about different twilight phases calculated by SunCalc in the Twilight article on Wikipedia."

ESRL Global Monitoring Division - GRAD Group @NOAA

ML: Amazon Machine Learning, Reviews

As usual, Amazon is both using and selling its new service, "Machine Learning"

Amazon looks to improve customer-reviews system with machine learning - CNET
"Amazon is rolling out a big change to its customer reviews system in the US, introducing a new machine-learning platform it developed in-house to surface newer and more helpful reviews."
Amazon dumbs down machine learning for the rest of us | InfoWorld
"It was only a matter of time. What with Google, IBM, and Microsoft now offering cloud-based machine learning services of various kinds, Amazon's been obliged to step up with its own such product.

Amazon's just-unveiled service, Amazon Machine Learning (or AML for short), offers simplified ways to make both batch- and real-time predictions from data stored in Amazon."

Click to Enlarge

It would be interesting to compare results of multiple ML platforms now available online... 

Visualization: Time-Series Data

mozilla/metrics-graphics @ GitHub
"MetricsGraphics.js is a library optimized for visualizing and laying out time-series data. At under 60KB (minified), it provides a simple way to produce common types of graphics in a principled and consistent way. The library currently supports line charts, scatterplots, histograms, bar charts and data tables, as well as features like rug plots and basic linear regression."

Saturday, June 20, 2015

free ebook: Manager's Guide to Design Patterns

An Engineering Manager's Guide to Design Patterns - O'Reilly Media

"Instead of algorithms or code, design patterns are all about reusing the experience of developers who have devised well thought-out, time-tested solutions to object-oriented programming problems. Using O'Reilly's unique Head First methodology, this report details how a particular design pattern can solve a non-obvious design problem."

WebAssembly & asm.js (!)

w3c community group logo

WebAssembly Community Group

WebAssembly | Luke Wagner's Blog
"Mozilla have started working with ChromiumEdge and WebKit engineers on creating a new standard, WebAssembly, that defines a portable, size- and load-time-efficient format and execution model specifically designed to serve as a compilation target for the Web."

WebAssembly @ GitHub (with V8 engine)

Brendan Eich » Blog Archive » From ASM.JS to WebAssembly

Solar System of JS (ClojureScript => JavaScript)

【Modern Web 2015】JavaScript at 20 Years - Brendan Eich - YouTube

The Web is getting its bytecode: WebAssembly | Ars Technica
"The people behind wasm have not forgotten that JavaScript is supported everywhere and wasm is currently not supported anywhere. Their plan is to fill the gap with a polyfill; a JavaScript script that will convert wasm to asm.js for those browsers that don't have native wasm support. Either the browser will interpret the wasm directly, or it will load the polyfill and execute the resulting asm.js. Native handling should be faster, but the polyfill means that a developer can be sure that a wasm program will always work."

From Asm.js to WebAssembly | Hacker News

This may even be applicable even for Apple's next gen platforms:
Apple’s Bitcode Telegraphs Future CPU Plans — Medium
Bitcode is an encoding of LLVM compiler’s Intermediate Representation(IR).

Friday, June 19, 2015

web: TypeScript resources

Building Web Apps using TypeScript with Steve Ognibene @ .NET Rocks!


web: Source Maps

Source Maps 101 - Tuts+ Code Tutorial
"In today's modern (web dev) workflow, the code that we author in our development environments is considerably different from the production code, after running it through compilation, minification, concatenation, or various other optimization processes.

This is where source maps come into play, by pointing out the exact mapping in our production code to the original authored code. In this introductory tutorial, we'll take a simple project, and run it through various JavaScript compilers for the purposes of playing with source maps in the browser."

Chrome (Version 23 and up) supports JavaScript Source Maps, and even SASS Source Maps.
  • Open Chrome Developer Tools: View -> Developer -> Developer Tools
  • Click the "Settings" cog in the bottom-right corner
  • Choose "General," and select "Enable source maps"

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Oceans - Street View - Google Maps

Oceans - Street View - Google Maps

Street View Treks: Great Barrier Reef – About – Google Maps

Views - Google Maps

Google Releases Stunning Underwater Street View For World Oceans Day | IFLScience

JavaScript / ECMAScript 6 / 2015 approved, books, tools (!)

ECMAScript 2015 Has Been Approved @ InfoQ
"... approval of ECMA-262 6th edition, which is the Language Specification of ECMAScript 6 (ES6), also known as ECMAScript 2015."

"Exploring ES6: Book Introduction and Author Interview @ InfoQ
a review of Axel Rauschmayer’s book providing an in-depth view of all the new features in ES 6"
"Dr. Axel Rauschmayer’s book, Exploring ES6: Upgrade to the next version of JavaScript, is a comprehensive guide to the new features introduced by ECMAScript 2015, being accompanied by code samples. The author relies on the fact that his readers are either familiar or can get up to speed on JavaScript by studying his other book, Speaking JavaScript, which covers the language in depth up to ES5."

the book is viewable online for free, and it could also be purchased from LeanPub

Exploring ES6

Cover of “Speaking JavaScript”


Babel is a compiler for writing next generation JavaScript.

Traceur is a JavaScript.next-to-JavaScript-of-today compiler

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Forgetting & Remembering

Discover the science behind forgetting and conquer it @ Pluralsight


"20 minutes: you will forget 42% of what you learned.
60 minutes: 56%
9 hours: 64%
a week: 75%
  • QUICK REVIEW: Within a few hours of first learning something new, read your notes
  • SKIP A DAY: Each subsequent review should take place at a longer interval than the previous one.
  • REVIEW AGAIN: Review everything 
  • TAKE A TEST: Testing your memory improves retention by 20-50%

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

IoT: Think Big, Start Small, Move Fast (!)

presentation: Best Practices for Creating IoT Solutions with Azure | Build 2015 | Channel 9

slides: 2-611.pptx
  • "Build to an architecture that will scale, but start prototyping with a small number of devices.
  • It’s hard to predict what data provides value -- which impacts which sensors and devices are necessary -- until you build something.
  • It’s much easier to work through through device identity, management/update and security at small scale."

    Pattern: Telemetry first
Three Ways to Think Big and Start Small @ Forbes

  • "Get in the Right Frame of Mind
  • Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment
  • Brush Up on Your History Lessons"
Start Small, Think Big, Move Fast

free e-book mix: Building an Optimized Business - O'Reilly Media

"disruption is driving business and changing entire industries. IT isn't just moving beyond its supporting role in business operations, it's becoming inseparable from it. Every business is becoming a digital business and "innovate or die" is the business mantra of the day."

Monday, June 15, 2015

Elon Musk: book, internet satellites, science fiction

Sci-Fi Helped Inspire Elon Musk to Save the World | WIRED
"... Musk surveyed a wide range of religious and philosophical texts, but ultimately found the most inspiration in a humorous science fiction novel, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. “He always points to Hitchhiker’s Guide as his guiding principle for deciding that you should find out what the big questions are, and once you do, that’s what you go tackle,” 

Elon Musk's SpaceX Plans To Launch 4,000 Satellites, Broadcasting Internet To Entire World

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Elon Musk - Ashlee Vance - E-book

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future: Ashlee Vance: 9780062301239: Amazon.com: Books

RDMA network cards: Remote Direct Memory Access

Remote direct memory access - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"In computing, remote direct memory access (RDMA) is a direct memory access from the memory of one computer into that of another without involving either one'soperating system. This permits high-throughput, low-latency networking, which is especially useful in massively parallel computer clusters.

RDMA supports zero-copy networking by enabling the network adapter to transfer data directly to or from application memory, eliminating the need to copy data between application memory and the data buffers in the operating system. Such transfers require no work to be done by CPUs, caches, or context switches, and transfers continue in parallel with other system operations. When an application performs an RDMA Read or Write request, the application data is delivered directly to the network, reducing latency and enabling fast message transfer.

However, this strategy presents several problems related to the fact that the target node is not notified of the completion of the request (1-sided communications)."


Azure cloud: F# MBrace vs. Hadoop

MBrace - Scripting Compute and Data Jobs in the Cloud Made Simple

"MBrace.Core is a simple programming model for scalable cloud data scripting and programming with F# and C#. With MBrace.Azure, you can script Azure for large-scale compute and data processing, directly from Visual Studio."

"MBrace.Core is an open source software framework, initiated by experts, for developing big data algorithms that will execute on a private or public cloud. It is similar to Hadoop but simpler, explorative and not confined to the map-reduce paradigm."

F# Software Foundation

F# and MBrace with Lena Dzenisenka | .NET Fringe 2015 | Channel 9

Sunday, June 14, 2015

ML: Azure Machine Learning

Azure Machine Learning for Software Engineers | Cloud and Enterprise Premium | Channel 9

"...end-to-end example that he builds during the session and that encompasses:
  • Problem detection
  • Algorithm selection
  • Machine learning model creation and deployment as a RESTful web service
  • Consumption of the machine learning model

The session is intended for engineers ... so he does not delve into a deep understanding of complex mathematical models behind machine learning, but instead focuses on the concepts of machine learning to demystify cloud machine learning."

Bing Solutions (APIs), Microsoft Project Oxford AI API, OCR (!)

Bing Solutions helps businesses and developers succeed

Bing Developer Center (APIs)

Cortana intergration

Microsoft Project Oxford Computer Vision APIs

including OCR, thumbnail creation, analyzing image, etc.

Microsoft Project Oxford Speech2Text Demo

Microsoft Project Oxford Text2Speech Demo

Stop Windows 8.1 waking up from sleep

Windows 8.1 computer wakes up from sleep. How to stop it. | AI




Saturday, June 13, 2015

Big Data event processing: Spark, Storm, Twitter Heron (!)

Infographic: The Four V's of Big Data | The Big Data Hub
The Four V's of Big Data

Choose your real-time weapon: Storm or Spark? @ InfoWorld
this is for Velocity: steaming data

bigdata - Apache Spark vs. Apache Storm - Stack Overflow

Spark, Storm and Real Time Analytics @ InfoQ

Twitter Has Replaced Storm with Heron @ InfoQ

"Twitter has replaced Storm with Heron which provides up to 14 times more throughput and up to 10 times less latency on a word count topology, and helped them reduce the needed hardware to a third.

Twitter used Storm to analyze large amounts of data in real time for years, and open sourced it back in 2011. The project was later incubated at Apache, becoming a top level project last fall. Having a quarterly release cycle, Storm has reached version 0.9.5 and is approaching the stable and desired version 1.0. But all this time, Twitter has been working on a replacement called Heron because Storm is no longer up to the task for their real-time processing needs.

Twitter’s new real-time requirements are: “billions of events per minute; have sub-second latency and predictable behavior at scale;"

"Compatibility with Storm: Heron provides full backward compatibility with Storm,"

"overall 3x reduction in hardware"

Removing the 140 character limit from Direct Messages - Announcements - Twitter Developers

History of Apache Storm and lessons learned - thoughts from the red planet - thoughts from the red planet (by Nathan Marz, creator of Storm)

Twitter Heron: Stream Processing at Scale | the morning paper

cover story: What is Code?

Paul Ford: What is Code? | Bloomberg BusinessWeek by Paul Ford

112 pages, 38000 words, with nice and accurate illustrations

What Is Code? An Essay in 38,000 Words by Paul Ford - Bloomberg Business

BloombergMedia/whatiscode · GitHub

abbreviated version
I Read This Mammoth Essay on Code To Make You 38 Thousand Times Smarter

Microsoft Surface Hub

Microsoft Surface Hub

The Untold Story Of Microsoft's Surface Hub | Fast Company | Business + Innovation



"Microsoft will begin taking Surface Hub orders on July 1—globally, in 24 markets—and expects the first units to reach customers in September. The 84-inch model, with a 4K screen and an Intel Core i7 processor, will have a suggested price of $19,999. It's designed for conference rooms that accommodate seven to 10 people. A 55-inch version with a 1080p screen and Core i5 chip, meant for smaller "huddle spaces," will go for $6999."

Plan to learn faster: Optimized Business @ O'Reilly

Plan to learn faster - O'Reilly Radar
"...illustrates a broken release strategy where at every release I get something I can’t use, until the last release when I get something I can."like_this
"...this way, in each release I deliver something people can actually use"


Friday, June 12, 2015

Uber for Everything: On Demand Economy

Uber, But For Everything | On Point with Tom Ashbrook
"Uber just closed another funding round — this time it scored another $1 billion, bringing its total raise to $4 billion and its overall valuation to $40 billion. That is more than double where it was just six months ago, making it worth a little bit more than Fiat Chrysler and The Gap combined.”
In this Wednesday, March 18, 2015, file photo, the Uber app displays cars available to make a pickup in downtown Manhattan on a smart phone, in New York.  (AP)

With SmartPhones, Apps, GPS & Cloud,
the game is quickly changing for many businesses and services.

It's Already Over And Uber Has Won - BuzzFeed News

There’s an Uber for Everything Now - WSJ

There’s an app for that | The Economist

Thursday, June 11, 2015

computers and networks (in)security

Kaspersky Lab cybersecurity firm is hacked - BBC News
"One of the leading anti-virus software providers has revealed that its own systems were recently compromised by hackers...
Kaspersky Lab said that it had detected the breach in the "early spring", and described it as "one of the most sophisticated campaigns ever seen".

The malware does not write any files to disk, but instead resides in affected computers' memory, making it relatively hard to detect.
Kaspersky linked the attack to the unidentified creators of an earlier Trojan named Duqu, which made headlines in 2011 after being used in attacks on Iran, India, France and Ukraine.

As before, the hackers are said to have exploited Microsoft software to achieve their goal.
Last time they made use of a flaw in Word.
This time, Kaspersky said, the malware was spread using Microsoft Software Installer files, which are commonly used by IT staff to install programs on remote computers.

"This highly sophisticated attack used up to three zero-day [previously unknown] exploits, which is very impressive..."

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

modern architecture: Leaning Towers

Leaning Tower of Pisa - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Leaning Tower of Pisa SB.jpeg

Hudson Yards Redevelopment Project - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (New York City)
"...MTA leased the air rights over the railyard for 99 years to a joint venture of Related Companies and Oxford Properties Group, which will build a platform above both the eastern and western portions of the yard on which to construct the buildings..."
"Cost US $20 billion"

"The new construction is supposedly the largest ever of its kind... Hudson Yards is expected to consist of 16 skyscrapers containing more than 12,700,000 square feet (1,180,000 m2) of new office, residential, and retail space."

many photos of modern architecture buildings:

Turning Torso Malmö, Sweden

This is the Capital Gate Tower- the most inclined in the world- located in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Abu Dhabi is less commercialized and more authentic than its sister emirate, Dubai.
Capital Gate Tower- the most inclined in the world- located in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

in nagoya, Japan
in nagoya, Japan