The Human Face of Big Data: The Documentary

first_img“Big Data” was not yet a household term when EMC sponsored The Human Face of Big Data more than three years ago. To help the general public understand how technology’s ability to gather, store and analyze massive amounts of information will change our lives, EMC underwrote production of the book by Rick Smolan, creator of the wildly popular “Day in the Life” series of photography books. Three years later, talk of Big Data has moved on to Data Lakes that can now bring data, analytics and applications together seamlessly, enabling organizations to run analytics across all of their data, acting on insights and building new capabilities that were unimaginable before.To see how The Human Face of Data project has evolved, tune in to the hour-long documentary set to air tonight on PBS stations at 10pm ET (check local listings for viewing details).last_img read more

IT Architecture Building Blocks for Artificial Intelligence Prototypes

first_imgAbout a year ago I wrote a blog on the emergence of Artificial Intelligence in the enterprise. Since then we’ve seen a steady increase in the numbers and types of organizations starting to use AI to unlock the value in their data. Indeed, we are in the midst of a continuing deluge of data so it’s no surprise that AI/DL initiatives are kicking off across all sectors of our economy.This is great news, as the technology has matured immensely and the costs to entry have lowered. However, there are a number of steps to be considered as you look to start your AI journey in a sandbox environment. And because it can be a complex undertaking there are lots of questions too. The most important one being “where to start?”The first step is the planning phase. A couple months back I was talking with a customer from the manufacturing sector who wanted to bring a more data-driven approach to their business. The business leaders were concerned that they were falling behind industry competitors in the digital transformation race. The business needed to quickly build and accelerate a data first strategy and he was eager to get going. So, they setup an AI focus group to consider ways to incorporate Machine Learning and Deep Learning into their business lines. The group had executive sponsorship and met monthly over a year however the effort stalled before moving to production. Although the project began with a plan and intent the teams were stymied by the sheer number of available use cases and technology options. At this point they were reaching out to Dell Technologies as an experienced partner, one with a broad and deep solutions portfolio, to move the Proof of Concept (POC) along. Artificial Intelligence Center of Excellence  The customer had the right idea with an internal cross functional team focused on AI, aka an AI Center of Excellence. To be successful the team should be comprised of lines of business leaders, developers, engineers, data architects, data scientists and IT staff. In my experience having a diversity of skills and perspectives from different areas of the business, along with executive sponsorship, is key to success. The executive sponsorship is extremely important because you need someone with budget and the authority to make decisions along the way. Once the foundation is laid the team must consider the use cases. They should be both quantifiable and time bound, perhaps reachable in three to six months. As an example, for manufacturing the team might identify a use case to reduce unscheduled machine maintenance by 15 percent. Reducing unscheduled maintenance would save millions by lowering machine down times and reducing energy costs. Another use case might be to reduce defects on the assembly line by 3 percent, which would also have a positive revenue impact.Focused Deep Learning Proof of ConceptNow that our AI Center of Excellence team has their use case it’s time to scope out a proof of concept. To level set expectations, moving from AI idea to production can be intimidating but that’s why experiments are conducted. Just as scientists build experiments to test their hypotheses the business uses prototypes or POCs to test their AI ideas and algorithms. However just because the prototype phase is seen as an experiment doesn’t mean that IT Architecture best practices should not be followed. In fact, it’s just the opposite. By focusing the prototype build-out with production in mind organizations can more quickly transition from sandbox to monetization. Many successful organizations use their POCs to deploy critical foundational elements that will scale. It makes no sense running a POC that takes years to successfully implement. More so, if you’ve deployed a solid IT foundation it’s easier to replicate another one when new use cases and models arise.In the prototype phase architecture plays a critical role. By building a prototype environment with the same building blocks as the scaled-out production environment you will accelerate the time to monetization for each model. However, AI workloads can be tricky. Here are a couple rules they tend to follow. First, our digital world provides an unlimited amount of data points so much so that AI applications must scale with the demand for unstructured data (Petabyte Scale). Second time is an essential factor necessary to answer your AI question so accelerated compute is a must. Therefore, while your solution may start small you need an architecture that can process unstructured data quickly and scale to keep up with the growing unstructured datasets.Entry Level AI Solution Beginning an AI journey is challenging from a business perspective, but the technology doesn’t have to be so. As a proof point we just published a reference architecture for an entry-level AI solution. It includes the world’s most powerful workstation, the Dell Precision 7920 Data Science Workstation, which provides ultimate performance and scalability to grow alongside your AI initiatives and data. It’s coupled with Dell EMC Isilon scale-out NAS  to give data science teams the ability to share massive amounts of data while providing high performance, reliability and seamless access from multiple operating systems. And without the need for costly and time-consuming data migration as you move to production. Dell EMC Isilon hybrid storage platforms, powered by the OneFS operating system, use a highly versatile yet simple scale-out storage architecture to speed access to massive amounts of data, while dramatically reducing cost and complexity. The hybrid storage platforms, such as the H400 used here, are highly flexible and strike the balance between large capacity and high-performance storage to provide support for a broad range of enterprise file workloads. The H400 delivers up to 3 GB/s bandwidth per chassis and provides capacity options ranging from 120 TB to 720 TB per chassis.Your journey to AI can take many paths. Choosing the one that begins with a solid plan, use cases and an affordable yet scalable AI prototype is the best route to success. Let Dell Technologies help you navigate: the Entry Level AI Solution referenced here is a great way to get started and to grow.If you want to learn more then please see the Dell Precision Data Science Workstation with Isilon H400 whitepaper. You’ll find the complete reference architecture with reproducible benchmark methodology, hardware and software configuration, sizing guidance and performance measurement tools.last_img read more

Swiss envoy, Lebanese FM holds talks amid central bank probe

first_imgBEIRUT (AP) — Lebanon’s foreign minister has held talks with the Swiss ambassador to Beirut after Switzerland started a probe into possible money laundering and embezzlement at the Mideast country’s central bank. The minister and the ambassador did not offer comments following their meeting in Beirut on Monday, saying only that the probe is a matter that judicial authorities are dealing with. Switzerland’s attorney general said last week he has asked Lebanon for cooperation into the probe. It’s not clear what prompted the Swiss investigation. Lebanon is facing its worst economic and financial crisis in its modern history.last_img

City halts housing construction

first_imgConstruction on the Legacy Square townhouse development at the corner of Notre Dame Avenue and Sorin Street has come to a halt over zoning issues. Developer Robert Cimala, who was also one of the developers of off-campus student housing development Legacy Village, said his property was set to receive final permits from the South Bend Building Commission. But at the beginning of November, the Building Commission said his plans would have to go to a public hearing before the Area Plan Commission (APC) on Dec. 21 to determine if they are in accordance with PUD zoning provisions.  Cimala said plans for the Legacy Square development began in July 2007. That month, Cimala went to the APC and requested PUD zoning for his property on Notre Dame Ave. and Sorin St. to build 36 units. The APC asked him to reduce the number of units to 32 to be split between two buildings. The APC later asked him to split the two buildings into four. Cimala agreed. Cimala said he had a local architect create the final architecture plan and a civil engineer create the final site plan, which he brought to the Building Commission.  The community meeting could have significant implications for the students who signed leases to live in Legacy Square during the 2011-12 academic year. “The NNRO is interested in this because they don’t believe the plan does conform [to PUD zoning],” Nesbaum said.  “The intent of the law is to encourage owner-occupied, single family residences. This is not an anti-student situation.” Bill Stenz, president of the Northeast Neighborhood Council and resident of the Northeast Neighborhood, said he doesn’t generally mind students living in the neighborhoods close to campus. But when pockets of student housing develop problems tend to arise, he said. Cimala said the object of controversy related to Legacy Square is the local prejudice against Notre Dame students. This process of review could derail the housing project.  After another round of changes, Cimala said Byorni told him he would get final approval for his final building permit when Bulot sent over initialed site plans to the APC. Instead of final approval, Byorni said he was sending the plans back to a public hearing with the City Council in order to see if the Legacy Square plans are still in accordance with the PUD code in their current state.   “Notre Dame students have been given a bad rap by a lot of people,” he said.  “They’re trying to stop me from exercising my legal right to rent each condo to two students until I sell them,” he said.  PUD zoning allows for flexibility in building, and they normally contain private residences and common areas. Cimala said that because of the slow economy and a bad housing market, he has decided to rent some of the condominiums to students until he can sell them.  He said he worked with Chuck Bulot, the building commissioner for the City of South Bend, and APC executive director John Byorni, to make changes to the site plans. He received foundation permits in October. “This year, I was able to obtain construction financing, so I could go on with the project,” he said. Stenz said when pockets of student houses spring up, they can bring down the value of neighboring non-student houses.  “I’m not doing anything that anyone else isn’t doing,” Cimala said. “This is a very nice development, and all I’m doing is what I’m allowed to do under the law.” If the building plans are found to be within guidelines, Cimala will receive his final building permit, and he said he could get the buildings constructed by June 2011, when students could move in on time for the school year.  Cimala said he had to delay the plans until this year because of the general financial downturn.  Attorney Dick Nesbaum said provisions in South Bend zoning codes prohibit more than two unrelated occupants in one home unless the unit is zoned for such occupancy. Legacy Square is zoned to allow no more than two unrelated occupants per condominium. “We showed them our plans,” he said. “We don’t want to go forward with the project with these plans unless they fit the zoning codes.” Nesbaum is the attorney for the Northeast Neighborhood Revitalization Organization (NNRO), a non-profit corporation created for “planning, discussing and coordinating the social, physical and economic revitalization of the Northeast Neighborhood,” according to the Northeast Neighborhood website. The Legacy Square development falls in the Northeast Neighborhood. “Historically, we didn’t have this high of a concentration of students [in the Northeast Neighborhood],” he said. “Students lived throughout the city. Ten to 15 years ago, landlords bought single family house pockets.” “They think it’s a student housing development and that’s all it’s ever going to be,” Cimala said. “I am building a high-end condominium development.” Legacy Square is zoned as a planned unit development (PUD), composed of 32 condominiums in four buildings. The condominiums were developed as high-end housing geared toward single-family, owner-occupied living situations, as opposed to rentals.  He said there is nothing in the South Bend zoning law preventing students from living anywhere in town. If the plans are not approved, however, the end result remains unclear.last_img read more

SMC Tostal features new activities and treats

first_imgAfter a Sammy Adams concert highlighted Tostal Part One in March, Saint Mary’s students celebrated Tostal Part Two on Thursday with stunner shades, YOLO tanks and Dippin’ Dots. The Saint Mary’s Student Activities Board (SAB) hosted Saint Mary’s Tostal and worked to make this year’s event unique. SAB president Liz Kraig said SAB prepared for Saint Mary’s Tostal with a conference to discuss ideas and connect with vendors. Though Tostal has featured lawn inflatables in past years, Kraig said members of SAB focused on other activities this year. “We decided to do something instead of the inflatables because although inflatables are fun, we think Saint Mary’s girls really enjoy the giveaways,” Kraig said. “Photos are a great way for students to keepsake their Tostal memories.” Kraig said this year’s activities also let students shake off stress with treats from The Sweet Ride Cupcake truck, photos from a wild-west photo shoot and a movie screening of “The Vow.” Senior Liz Busam said Tostal provides a study break for students as the semester ends and finals approach. “I like the break in the day that Tostal offers, especially as we approach finals,” she said. “It’s a great way to relax and enjoy a beautiful day on campus.” Junior Caitlin Paulsen said the free giveaways were her favorite part of Tostal. “I love Tostal because I got to make a lion balloon animal and tye-dye stunner shades,” Phelan. Students like senior Torrie Thompson said they most enjoyed the sweets. “I was most excited about the cupcake truck,” Thompson said. This was the final Tostal for Saint Mary’s seniors. Senior Katelynd Park said she would miss Tostal after graduation. “I love Tostal because it’s a great way to have fun with your friends and celebrate a Saint Mary’s tradition,” Park said. Kraig said Tostal was a perfect way to end the year and spend time with friends before exams. She said the positive responses from students made planning for Tostal worthwhile. “I just love seeing everyone come out and having a good time. It’s a great way to end the year, take a picture with friends and enjoy the free snacks,” Kraig said. “We like to put on big events that the student body really enjoys.”last_img read more

Child author plans sequel to ND football book

first_imgJacob Keyes, the boy who published a book about Notre Dame football at age 10, has plans for a sequel, this time co-written by his sisters Grace, 10, and Tess, 8. The siblings from Spokane, Wash. have begun working on a new project called “The Little Gipper Spirit,” a follow-up to Jake’s book, “The Little Gipper’s Welcome to Notre Dame Football.”  “Little Gipper Spirit” is a youth movement meant to encourage kids to find their passion and use that to help people down the street or across the globe, Grace Keyes said.   “Jake wrote his book and we wanted to do something more and get more involved,” Grace Keyes said. “[It’s] a joint effort.” Jake Keyes, now 12, said the movement also stemmed from adult responses after publishing his first book and its 2012-2013 season supplement, “Echoes Awake!” Many people reached out to congratulate him and asked him the nature of his next project, he said. Mike Keyes, the father of the Keyes siblings, said his family realized Jake Keyes’ accomplishment might inspire other young people to positively impact the community with their passions, just as it inspired his sisters.  The Keyes children not only formed the movement, but have also launched the “What’s Your Passion?” essay writing and art submission contest, Grace Keyes said. “Kids are going to write about what their passion is [or submit artwork] and say how they’re going to use it to help other people, and the best essays are going to be put in a book,” Grace Keyes said. The contest, which is open to all first through eight graders, launched Nov. 1 and will close Jan. 15, 2014. Essays should contain a maximum of 500 words, and art submissions must be scanned.  Entries are accepted through littlegipper.com. The Keyes siblings will act as judges of the submitted works. Each one will oversee the works of a specific age range, Grace Keyes said. “We will pick the entries that best show how kids are using their passions to help others,” Grace Keyes said. Selected submissions will be featured in a book scheduled to be published in late spring 2014. The book will be officially licensed through the University and sold in the Notre Dame Hammes Bookstore, Jake Keyes said.  “We want kids to help others,” Jake Keyes said  “By entering the contest, they’ll probably discover more about what their passionate about and use that passion in new way..” For more information, visit littlegipper.com. Contact Joanna Lagedrost at jlagedro@nd.edulast_img read more

Humans vs. Vampires celebrates ‘Dracula’ translations

first_imgThe Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures (CSLC) kicked off a campus-wide Humans vs. Vampires competition Tuesday, which will revamp the popular Humans vs. Zombies game by incorporating foreign language elements. The CSLC version celebrates Bram Stoker’s Dracula, one of literature’s most widely translated texts.Similar to a game of tag, Humans vs. Vampires pits two teams against each other. The humans and vampires, each designated by bandanas, compete as they walk from class to class. Vampires try to tag humans with the ultimate goal of turning every human into a vampire by the end of five days. Humans can defend themselves using Nerf guns or balled up socks to stun vampires.An advertisement for the game invited students to “celebrate the Dracula story and legend, solve riddles in foreign languages and survive a vampire invasion.”Denise Ayo, assistant director for academic programs for the CSLC, said she first had the idea to link the popular game with foreign language studies during a conversation with a fellow faculty member about the many translations of Dracula.“Humans vs. Zombies is a game played at college campuses across the country,” Ayo said. “I knew it was played here on Notre Dame’s campus. I figured [the CSLC] could sponsor this event and shift it a little to suit our language purposes. After all, vampires and zombies aren’t all that different.”Junior Erik Mendoza, one of the moderators for this fall’s game, said he was excited about the new relationship between the CSLC and Humans vs. Vampires and the hope it provides for the game’s future on campus.“Humans vs. Zombies has been around for almost four years now,” Mendoza said. “Through our cooperation with the CSLC, we have access to new resources and a more stable base for the future of the event.”According to the CSLC website, the Humans vs. Vampires game at Notre Dame will last from Tuesday through Sunday. Additionally, there will be games or missions held every night, providing chances for players to win rewards and advantages for their team.According to Ayo, the eight student moderators added foreign language elements to the nightly missions in order to raise awareness of the 13 foreign language majors and minors offered at Notre Dame.“We’re really excited about this event,” Ayo said. “It’s helping to bring attention to the importance of language learning. The College of Arts and Letters is highly committed to making this language learning more central to a student’s education.”The event will conclude with a public reading of Dracula in multiple languages Monday in the LaFortune Ballroom at 5.pm. Awards will be given to the player with the most tags, MVPs from the missions and the players with the best costumes.Mendoza said that he expects there to be about 150 students participating in Humans vs. Vampires.“Humans vs. Vampires is a fun and exhilarating game,” Mendoza said.  “I’ve met some of my best friends through it, and I know plenty of people who look forward to this single week for an entire semester.  It’s a great time, the community is nice, and we’re always looking for more people to join the undead legion.”Tags: CSLC, Dracula, humans, vampireslast_img read more

Campus Dining unveils renovated side of North Dining Hall

first_imgSarah Olson | The Observer North Dining Hall hosts a test lunch Friday in its newly renovated north wing.“A lot of that is part of when you work with the University’s interior designer,” he said. “What’s interesting — and they were actually planning it — a lot of the style is what you’re going to see in the [Campus Crossroads] project. They’re like, ‘You guys are going to get to show it off first.’”Kachmarik said he is happy with the new contemporary look of the dining hall, which combines modern interior design with a practical layout.“I think [one] thing we’re hearing is it’s clean, it’s bright and people like the newness of it,” he said. “ … I think, though, in terms of what we’re hearing — what we wanted was, we wanted some feedback on the kind of overall things, but then we also wanted the feedback on making sure that we ensure that speed of service.”Campus Dining tested the efficiency of the new setup by hosting multiple test lunches throughout the semester and asking for feedback from those who attended, Kachmarik said.“The number one item that I think we’re going to have to figure out is we’re going to have to prepare students for the fact that there is no fro-yo,” he said. “ … As we live in this space for the next six weeks, even though it’s temporary, they’re going to give us, I think, some great feedback that we’ll then, hopefully, be able to incorporate in when we open in August.”Chris Abayasinghe, the senior director of Campus Dining, said he is happy with the way the project has progressed so far.“The NDH team, along with our committee composed of dedicated students, faculty and staff, worked closely on the various phases of the project,” he said in an email. “I’m pleased with the progress of the renovation and the investments being made in creating a dining experience that highlights the latest culinary trends and techniques.”Kachmarik said his main goal is to keep students moving through the dining hall quickly before focusing on improving the menu’s variety.“Right now, we’re actually in only one third of the serving [area], and we’ve maintained most of the menu,” he said. “So it’s really consolidated right now. And when you think about when we have the whole thing, it’s going to be really cool because we’ll have the different stations and a lot more options available. … So I will admit there’s less variety, there’s less choice, but I want to make sure we keep it speedy for the next six weeks. Because then, when we open up the whole thing, there will be lots of variety, and you’ll be able to get in and out pretty quickly.”Kachmarik emphasized that despite the fact that services are moving into the renovated side, it is still not fully complete.“On Monday, they’ll start the demolition and everything on [the south] side, and then we’ll go through finals, and then the entire dining hall will shut down,” he said. “And then, they’ll go back and they’ll start doing all this other stuff and work and everything that we have intended. It’s a lot of the detail stuff.”The next step in the renovations, Kachmarik said, will be turning most of the south side of the dining hall into a lobby and building a new entrance on the east side of the building.“There will be seating out there, lounge space, there [are] new restrooms that are going in and then we’ll actually have a marketplace,” he said. “So think about the current Grab ‘N’ Go — it will be in that corner, and we’ll have hot food and other things in there, as well. That whole lobby area will be something you’ll walk through, and we’re actually putting a new entrance in on the east side. … So you’ll start to see some work outside now, because they’ll start knocking out the wall in that corner to put the new entrance in.”Kachmarik said the athlete-specific dining area will be discontinued next year.“Training table, after this semester, will no longer be,” he said. “We are actually working with athletics and their dieticians, and what we’ll do is we will take their menus that they’ve been providing athletes, and put them out on the lines. Athletes and anybody [else] will now be able to eat those menus.”Any hiccups in adjusting to the renovated side of the dining hall will be worth it when the entire project is finished, Kachmarik said.“We just have to get through the next six weeks,” he said. “And then, in August, this place is going to be awesome.”Tags: Campus Crossroads, Campus DIning, Construction, Food Services, North Dining Hall, renovation, renovations Students flocked to North Dining Hall (NDH) at mealtimes after Campus Dining unveiled the renovated north side of the facility Sunday morning.Director of student dining and residences Scott Kachmarik said the revamped look of the dining hall — which includes booths, high top tables and several other varieties of seating options — serves as a preview of the Campus Crossroads project.last_img read more

Heritage Ministries Names New Interim CEO

first_imgShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) GERRY – The Heritage Ministries Board of Directors announced Tuesday that Lisa Haglund has been named as the interim CEO for the company, replacing the previous CEO David Smeltzer.Officials with the company were not at liberty to explain specifically why Smeltzer left his position. WNYNewsNow has reached out to set up an interview with Haglund in the near future.Haglund began her career with Northwest Bank where she worked for over twenty years, prior to joining the Heritage organization. Haglund attended Alfred State College as well as the Pennsylvania Bankers Association Advanced School of Banking at Penn State. She has also been an active member of her community, with involvement ranging from Chautauqua Leadership Network to the St. Susan Center.“It is this combination of business acumen, integrity, and Christian values that made her the obvious selection as we take next steps in an exciting future for Heritage,” Heritage Board of Directors shared.Heritage Ministries was founded in 1886 and has grown from its original campus in Gerry, to six locations in New York with additional affiliations across the United States.last_img read more

Inmate Accused Of Damaging Chautauqua County Jail Kiosk

first_imgShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) Image by Justin Gould/WNYNewsNow.MAYVILLE – A Jamestown man currently in Chautauqua County Jail is accused of intentionally damaging a kiosk located in a cell block at the jail, according to the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office. Tony J. Stebbins, 33, was charged on April 28 with third-degree criminal mischief by the Criminal Investigations Division of the Sheriff’s Office.Stebbins was arraigned at the jail using centralized arraignment and held due to him facing separate charges from another case.last_img