Fighting Evil AI, IBM Opens Watson IoT HQ: Big Data Roundup - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Data Management // Big Data Analytics
News
12/20/2015
11:06 AM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Fighting Evil AI, IBM Opens Watson IoT HQ: Big Data Roundup

Elon Musk invests in AI to benefit humanity. Microsoft is acquiring SQL queries for all data by all users. IBM is connecting Watson with IoT via APIs. All of those and more in our Big Data Roundup for the week ending Dec. 20.

14 Ways IoT Will Change Big Data And Business Forever
14 Ways IoT Will Change Big Data And Business Forever
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Microsoft made a data analytics acquisition. IBM expanded its IoT Watson efforts with new APIs. Apple shut down its Twitter analytics acquisition. For this week's big data roundup, let's start with the threat of evil algorithms and robot overlords.

Well, maybe it's not that drastic, but if that dystopian future is coming, we may be better prepared now, thanks in part to Tesla founder Elon Musk.

Musk, together with several other tech firms and entrepreneurs, are pooling their fortunes to launch OpenAI, a nonprofit artificial intelligence research company. The aim is to advance digital intelligence in a way that is most likely to benefit humanity as a whole, unconstrained by the drive for financial return.

[Hiring top data talent isn't easy. Here's some help. Hiring Top Analytics Talent: How Leading Companies Do It.]

Musk has invested previously in organizations whose stated mission is to use AI to drive good in the world (instead of using human beings as energy cells to power the Matrix).

Earlier this year, a group of scientists, researchers, and academics, including Musk and Stephen Hawking, warned that the development of artificial intelligence could spark a new global arms race. This new organization is an effort to balance that possible threat.

"Because of AI's surprising history, it's hard to predict when human-level AI might come within reach," according to a blog post penned by the organization. "When it does, it'll be important to have a leading research institution, which can prioritize a good outcome for all over its own self-interest."

In other news, Microsoft announced Friday it has acquired Metanautix, a startup focused on unlocking the data potential that exists in every company by creating software-defined data marts that can be queried with SQL.

(Image: PonyWang/iStockphoto)

(Image: PonyWang/iStockphoto)

Metanautix was formed by ex-Google engineer Theo Vassilakis, who created a similar project at Google, and ex-Facebook engineer Apostolos Lerios, who was in charge of analytics around photographs and videos at Facebook. The idea is to enable users to query data in this virtual data mart, regardless of whether it is in the public cloud, private cloud, or anywhere else, in order to gain business insights.

Over at IBM, executives were setting the stage for a bigger IoT (Internet of Things) effort around the company's cognitive computing platform, Watson. IBM is opening a new global headquarters effort in Munich for its Watson IoT, to be supplemented by eight customer experience centers around the world. The company is also adding several APIs in a number of categories to unlock the potential of using IoT and Watson together.

The new API services to connect IoT to Watson will cover natural language processing, machine learning, video and image analytics, and text analytics, the company said. The goal is to spur third-party development of industry-specific Watson apps.

IoT is poised to explode. Gartner has recently said that it expects 6.4 billion things to be connected to the Internet in 2016, up 30% from 2015. That's the tip of the iceberg. We took a high-level overview of the ways IoT will be changing big data forever.

While some companies were acquiring and ramping up analytics efforts this week, Apple was unplugging and shutting down an analytics acquisition from 2013. Back then, the company acquired Topsy Labs for about $200 million. Topsy's mission had been to tame the fire hose of big data issuing forth from Twitter. But just two years later, Apple is shutting it down. Topsy sent out its last tweet from its @Topsy account Dec. 15, "We've searched our last tweet."

**Elite 100 2016: DEADLINE EXTENDED TO JAN. 15, 2016** There's still time to be a part of the prestigious InformationWeek Elite 100! Submit your company's application by Jan. 15, 2016. You'll find instructions and a submission form here: InformationWeek's Elite 100 2016.

Jessica Davis has spent a career covering the intersection of business and technology at titles including IDG's Infoworld, Ziff Davis Enterprise's eWeek and Channel Insider, and Penton Technology's MSPmentor. She's passionate about the practical use of business intelligence, ... View Full Bio

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Slideshows
Top-Paying U.S. Cities for Data Scientists and Data Analysts
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  11/5/2019
Slideshows
10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2020
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  11/1/2019
Commentary
Study Proposes 5 Primary Traits of Innovation Leaders
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  11/8/2019
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Getting Started With Emerging Technologies
Looking to help your enterprise IT team ease the stress of putting new/emerging technologies such as AI, machine learning and IoT to work for their organizations? There are a few ways to get off on the right foot. In this report we share some expert advice on how to approach some of these seemingly daunting tech challenges.
Slideshows
Flash Poll