Microsoft and Team Gleason, the nonprofit organization founded by NFL player Steve Gleason, today launched Project Insight to create an open dataset of facial imagery of people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The organizations hope to foster innovation in computer vision and broaden the potential for connectivity and communication for people with accessibility challenges.
Microsoft and Team Gleason assert that existing machine learning datasets don’t represent the diversity of people with ALS, a condition that affects as many as 30,000 people in the U.S. This results in issues accurately identifying people, due to breathing masks, droopy eyelids, watery eyes, and dry eyes from medications that control excessive saliva.
Project Insight will investigate how to use data and AI with the front-facing camera already present in many assistive devices to predict where a person is looking on a screen. Team Gleason will work with Microsoft’s Health Next Enable team to gather images of people with ALS looking at their computer so it can train AI models more inclusively. (Microsoft’s Health Next team, which is within its Health AI division, focuses on AI and cloud-based services to improve health outcomes.) Participants will be given a brief medical history questionnaire and be prompted through an app to submit images of themselves using their computer.
“ALS progression can be as diverse as the individuals themselves,” Team Gleason chief impact officer Blair Casey said. “So accessing computers and communication devices should not be a one-size-fits-all. We will capture as much information as possible from 100 people living with ALS so we can develop tools for all to effectively use.”
Microsoft and Team Gleason estimate that the project will collect and share 5TB of anonymized data with researchers on data science platforms like Kaggle and GitHub.
“There is a significant lack of disability-specific data that is
Internet2, Cisco Team Up To Deliver Advanced Networking Technology in Support of Research and Academic Collaboration
WASHINGTON, Oct. 7, 2020
Cisco’s Internet for the Future routers and software will deliver key services for the Internet2 nationwide research and education network
WASHINGTON, Oct. 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Internet2 today announced a strategic alliance with Cisco to deliver next-generation capabilities and software solutions across the U.S. research and education (R&E) infrastructure that enables scientific collaboration at a global scale. The new agreement between the two organizations focuses on delivering a national R&E network with increased capacity incrementing at 400 gigabits per second, on-demand cloud-connectivity, and a reduced carbon footprint that will remove 6681 metric tons a year of carbon from the environment. The agreement also includes collaborative opportunities for Internet2 and Cisco to support research activities and multi-domain service orchestration with campus and regional partners.
Cisco’s selection was the result of a rigorous proposal process that was reviewed by networking experts from the Internet2 community and organization, and was part of the Internet2 Next Generation Infrastructure (NGI) program, which focuses on supporting the data intensive researcher, enabling campuses to connect to the cloud, delivering edge-to-edge performance, and creating a software enabled environment.
“Research and education networks have never been more critical than they are today, and the selection of Cisco is a very exciting and critical milestone for the R&E community,” said Howard Pfeffer, President and CEO, Internet2. “Cisco is supporting the delivery of a software-driven infrastructure that enables rapid deployment of new services and tight integration with applications and scientific workflows on the campus and in the cloud, both of which are essential to our nation’s future. Cisco has also made substantial commitments not only to Internet2, but to the broader R&E community, by pledging
Cloud database company adopts its first distributed workforce model.
Theorem, LLC, a digital innovation and engineering company, recently partnered with the NoSQL cloud database company Couchbase to help it launch its new database as a service (DBaaS) product. Couchbase publicly announced Couchbase Cloud DBaaS, its fully managed beta DBaaS offering, in February of 2020.
This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201006005379/en/
Couchbase’s DBaaS product was developed with a remote team. (Graphic: Business Wire)
View the case study of Theorem’s work with Couchbase here: theorem.co/couchbase
Couchbase originally approached Theorem for help designing and developing a new DBaaS that leveraged Couchbase’s server and operator. The DBaaS would allow customers to easily deploy and manage Couchbase on cloud service providers such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform. While working with Theorem, Couchbase experienced firsthand the power of Theorem’s distributed model for collaboration. As a result Couchbase decided to structure its new workforce for the DBaaS project as a remote team.
Theorem helped Couchbase make hiring decisions while expanding its globally distributed team of eight to more than 30 contributors. Theorem also implemented new sprint cadences, reporting, and review processes for Couchbase’s new service. It prototyped the Alpha version of the DBaaS software, testing core dependencies and developing towards Beta and GA releases.
Theorem’s experience and insight helped Couchbase overcome challenges with its DBaaS development, including managing complex software design while building a remote team and strong culture, which ultimately would help them in maintaining consistent workflow during a global pandemic. Couchbase realized impressive wins amid extraordinary circumstances thanks to its partnership with Theorem.
Theorem, LLC is an innovation and engineering firm that builds custom software for companies making bold bets to stay ahead. Through research, lean design, and agile delivery, we make great user experiences
Yoshinoya Japanese Kitchen Rewards Team Members and Guests for Making Their Voice Heard During the 2020 Election
TORRANCE, Calif., Oct. 5, 2020
Company will Offer FREE Donut Dippers on Election Day for Voters
TORRANCE, Calif., Oct. 5, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Yoshinoya Japanese Kitchen, known for its artisanal Japanese-inspired rice bowls, today announced it is empowering team members, and rewarding guests, who make their voice heard this election year. Specifically, the company is encouraging all employees to vote, by providing voter registration resources and an extra hour of pay for team members, which they encourage be used to educate themselves on the voting process, candidates and issues.
Along with team member support and incentives, the brand is also offering guests:
A free order of Donut Dippers with purchase of any bowl on Election Day, November 3rd, for any guest who shows their “I Voted” sticker in restaurant, or uses code “IVOTED” on the Yoshinoya App or YoshinoyaAmerica.com*
Free Delivery on the Yoshinoya App and YoshinoyaAmerica.com all November long
“We believe in the importance of individual expression and providing freedom of choice, whether it be in customizing your favorite bowl, or selecting the future leaders of this country,” said Dar Vasseghi, CEO. “Now more than ever, it’s vital that everyone has the time and resources needed to make informed decisions and cast their vote.”
*One free order of Donut Dippers per person, while supplies last.
Fresh, wholesome Japanese-style cuisine is the essence of the Yoshinoya Japanese Kitchen menu. Dating back to 1899 with the opening of its first restaurant in Tokyo, Japan, Yoshinoya is among the oldest quick-service restaurant chains in operation. Throughout its century of experience, Yoshinoya continues to grow aggressively while operating or franchising more than 2,000 restaurants in Japan,
More and more development teams are turning toward an Agile approach and for a good reason. Recent studies suggest that organizations adopting an Agile approach experienced a 71% increase in project cost reduction. Development teams are finding they can speed up software development without sacrificing quality.
The Agile approach is thought to have started in the mid-90s. Software developers mixed old ideas with inventive, new ideas and combined them into new methodologies. They found the new methodologies to be impactful, so they created a framework to spread their ideas to other teams. Their frameworks—Scrum, Extreme Programming, Feature-Driven Development (FDD), and the Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM)—began to appear. From there, teams all over started to tweak this approach to fit their unique needs.
The Agile approach can help software development teams embrace the power of collaboration and self-organization. In this post, we’ll explain how it can benefit distributed teams, in particular.
Agile software development basics
Many industries have adopted Agile. With more than 50% of hiring managers using independent professionals for more strategic work, it’s no surprise that the Agile approach is regularly applied to software development.
With this in mind, we’ll jump into some of the basic principles of Agile.
The Agile Manifesto
The values of Agile Manifesto as applied to software development include:
- Individuals and interactions
- Working software
- Customer collaboration
- Responding to change
These four values of the Agile Manifesto have expanded into the 12 Principles. These principles elaborate on the most fundamental truths of an Agile approach. The highest priority of this approach is customer satisfaction with consistent software delivery.
For your hybrid team, this means you can adapt to ever-changing environments by embracing collaboration, promoting sustainable development, and paying attention to detail.
The Agile approach vs. the “Waterfall” process
The “waterfall” approach is the more