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Survey on Data Fusion & Analytics for Investigation

Survey on Data Fusion & Analytics for Investigation

To get greater insight into the technological challenges of fusing data for investigation purposes, and to learn from the CIO’s perspective what their wants and needs are in the market – our friends over at Cognyte went straight to the source. By speaking to 200 CIOs, CTOs, IT Directors, Directors of Technology and Heads of Artificial Intelligence, this new report Survey on Data Fusion & Analytics for Investigation takes the pulse of the industry in vital areas from investment priorities to cloud adoption, painting a clear picture of the state of data fusion for investigation purposes today.

How this engineer got the career boost she needed

How this engineer got the career boost she needed

Saskia Bobinska was excited when she came across the application for the Women Developers Academy (WDA) program in Europe. After spending two years in isolation, thanks to the pandemic and having multiple back surgeries, she was looking for a way to advance her career in tech. She thought the WDA — a global program run by Women Techmakers to help technical women become better speakers and bring more diversity to tech stages — would be a great first step towards this goal.One of the first assignments was to write her own speaker bio. As a self-taught frontend developer who uses JavaScript, NextJS and React, she felt a bit hesitant to share her story. “To be honest, I thought that my story was not important enough,” she tells us. But after a few WDA training sessions and encouragement from her mentors, business strategist Kamila Wosińska, Dart and Flutter Google Developer Expert (GDE) Majid Hajian and Web Technologies GDE Anuradha Kumarii, Saskia’s confidence was boosted. She excitedly set out to write a LinkedIn post about a mobile app on which she had been working.Not long after the post went live, Saskia was approached by one of the companies she had mentioned. A few meetings lead to interviews and within a few months, Saskia was offered a job on their team. “I never would’ve thought that this was possible when I started coding three years ago,” Saskia says.Looking back on the experience, Saskia is positively surprised by the speed with which she was able to transition her career from social media to engineering. “I’d have given myself two years before applying to Sanity, but WDA accelerated that,” she says. “I found my voice within the tech industry because of the community and WDA, which gave me a push toward it.”Going through the WDA also helped Saskia realize that her “soft” skills — communication, leadership and confidence — are just as important as her hard skills for excelling in tech. “Having the ability to go out and speak gave me an approach to finding a more intermediate-level engineering role,” she says. “I have hard skills, but my soft skills are what brought me to this company that shares my priorities, because they knew who I was.”She also recognized the importance of having a supportive community. During the WDA, she was excited to see women supporting each other so enthusiastically within the male-dominated tech industry. “Emotional support and empathy, especially in a professional environment, help you stay in balance and enable you to do your best,” she says. “Always help and support others, because safe communities are not just found, they are made.”Learn more about Women Techmakersand become a member to stay up to date on all our initiatives including the Women Developers Academy.

How to Navigate AI Change Management Like a Boss

How to Navigate AI Change Management Like a Boss

In this contributed article, Katie Wrenn and Ernest Sohn from Booz Allen, discusses five key steps in getting a change management plan started for AI solutions in an enterprise. When your organization faces large-scale change, the only way forward is to manage it, and this is particularly true in an evolving and complex area like AI.

Bad Data Costs U.S. Companies Trillions – How Data-Quality Audits Can Help

Bad Data Costs U.S. Companies Trillions – How Data-Quality Audits Can Help

In this special guest feature, Timur Yarnall, CEO of Neutronian, believes the costs of faulty data are many: inaccurate insights, wasteful investments, lost productivity, ineffective marketing campaigns. Bad data hits businesses with a double whammy, affecting both the bottom line by narrowing margins and the top line by lowering sales. A data quality audit will in turn lead to reduced costs, less wasted effort, and — most important — better business results.

Optimizing Data Integration to Enable Cloud Data Warehouse Success

Optimizing Data Integration to Enable Cloud Data Warehouse Success

In this contributed article, Mark Gibbs, Vice President of Products at SnapLogic, looks at best practices for data integration success, shares advice on how to optimize your CDW investments, and reviews common issues to avoid during the process. Data integration comes enables the CDW by mobilizing your data and automating the business processes that drive your business to deliver deep data insights and increase time to value.

Helping farmers with cloud technology, up close and global

Helping farmers with cloud technology, up close and global

Global warming brings humankind a host of challenges, from forest fires to heavy storms and desertification. Perhaps none matters more than maintaining and increasing food production. Unseasonal heat and cold snaps, new pest infestations and diseases at unexpected times, or extraordinary drought, wildfire and heavy rain, are just some of the challenges the world’s food producers face today and in coming years.Solutions to the challenges posed by climate change will likely require a two-fold approach. First, we should seek to limit the damage, through more sustainable, less carbon-intensive practices, along with carbon capturing and regenerative agriculture. Second, is to create new ways for farmers to gather and apply information about their crops, to better deal with the challenging new realities of growing food.Paradoxically, this global challenge calls for better focus on local farming conditions. Farmers worldwide know the particulars of their soil, crops, and rainfall. Farmers can benefit from a better read on how unexpected conditions are affecting their specific farms, so they can take the right steps of prevention and remediation for their farms.This is why Google Cloud is proud and excited to be working with companies like Agrology, a Virginia-based public benefit company who developed a predictive agriculture system that uses machine learning models, IoT sensors and Artificial Intelligence to deliver farmers timely predictions and insights on everything from temperature, rainfall, and soil conditions, to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from nutrient and fertilizer applications.Agrology was founded in 2019 with a National Science Foundation SBIR Award, and has gone on to service a number of specialty farms across the country from California to Virginia. The present focus is in wine grape growing and specialty crops, where local soil and climate conditions are particularly important and are under extreme threat. Over time, Agrology will roll out their custom data-driven platform and localized approach to many more farms.”Early on, we met an apple grower who told us that a weather report from 75 miles away wasn’t helping him anymore with figuring out how to apply pesticides, there was too much variation,” says Adam Koeppel, Agrology’s chief executive. “No farmer wants to overspray pesticides. We started thinking about how holistic agriculture is, and how site-specific it should be.”Agrology developed a custom platform with agricultural sensors which continuously gather a range of data above and below ground. This data is combined with other information, including highly local weather forecasts and macro information like baseline satellite data Agrology then makes sense of all the influences and interactions with TensorFlow, our Machine Learning platform. Google Earth helps the team figure out where to lay out their hardware and wireless gateways so that the team has the necessary tools to deliver data from remote locations to the cloud. “That’s a big deal”, says Tyler Locke, Agrology’s Chief Technology Officer. “Rural agriculture areas tend to be underserved in technology and infrastructure most of the time,” he says. “Farmers want technology to help solve their climate change challenges, but they’ve had a hard time getting it.”We’re also pleased to play a role in helping Agrology develop its first data models. Kevin Kelly, Agrology’s head of Engineering and Machine Learning, taught himself on Google Colab, a dynamic tool for learning and building and sharing Machine Learning solutions. “Like most engineers, I’m a hands-on learner,” Kelly says. “With Colab I was able to step through and execute every line of code, change it, and run it again to see how it affected the output.”Using TensorFlow, Kelly adds, was likewise an easy choice, since “studying model architectures and reading blogs, I found that AI researchers, applications engineers and even hobbyists interested in problems like ours – lots of quality data, lots of interactions among seemingly disparate data sets – overwhelmingly used Tensorflow and Keras to develop their models.”Agrology’s cutting-edge approach to agriculture is already showing benefits to its clients, and the team is confident its approach and learnings can scale to an even bigger impact.”We believe we can help maintain and improve yields, but even more,” says Adam. “We are finding ways to help farmers with regenerative agriculture, understanding their ability to enhance soil carbon sequestration with the right crops, better water use, or fertilizer applications that avoid releasing excessive greenhouse gasses. The rate at which the climate is changing is driving growers to alter how they farm and do business. There simply aren’t enough farmers and agronomists, and technology can help growers thrive in spite of the growing challenges.”

Helping people impacted by the justice system

Helping people impacted by the justice system

On a visit to Indiana Women’s Prison in 2018, I joined a ceremony for graduates of The Last Mile, an organization preparing people for successful reentry through business and technology training. It was my first time attending a graduation inside, and I listened and was inspired as each graduate shared their determination to succeed in spite of the many challenges they might face after release.Each year, 640,000 people are released from prison only to be met with an unemployment rate that is five times the national average. This rate is even higher for Black, Latino, and low income individuals, who are disproportionately impacted by mass incarceration. Devastatingly, more than half of those released from US prisons don’t land a job in the first year of returning home, in part because they don’t have the necessary digital skills to compete in an ever-changing job market.Since 2015, Google has supported many aspects of criminal justice reform with over $48 million in grant funding and 50,000 pro-bono hours. But there’s more work to be done. Today, we’re committing more than $8 million in new funding that will support job seekers impacted by the justice system with digital skills training and automatic record clearance.The Grow with Google Fund for Justice-Impacted Communities will make more than $4 million available for nonprofits to lead Grow with Google workshops and trainings. Using a curriculum co-curated with five justice-reform-focused partners, our goal is to help 100,000 people impacted by the justice system build career skills–ranging from fundamental skills like finding and applying for jobs online, making a resume using web-based tools, or building a professional brand, to more advanced topics like using spreadsheets to budget for a business.To accelerate jobs access for formerly incarcerated people, Google.org is providing a $3 million grant and a full-time team of Google.org Fellows who will work pro-bono to support Code for America. Code for America works with community organizations and government to build digital tools and services, change policies, and improve programs. Fellows will work alongside Code for America to help transform the process of automatically clearing criminal records; creating a replicable model to better identify and expunge past records through CFA’s Clear My Record initiative. Google.org is also granting $1.25 million to the National Urban League and Justice through Code, two organizations focused on providing skills training to formerly incarcerated job seekers beginning their careers in tech.Three years after The Last Mile graduation I attended, it was an honor to sit down with Molly, a graduate who learned digital skills using Grow with Google’s curriculum. She is now employed as a Returned Citizen Advocate at The Last Mile.Here’s what Molly had to say about her involvement with the program:When you started learning digital skills at The Last Mile, where were you at in life?I had just been released from Indiana Women’s Prison and was on a mission to find a new career. I was applying for multiple jobs while also looking for educational opportunities that would help build my skills and knowledge.How comfortable were you with tech before and after you went inside?I was incarcerated for three years. When I went in, I felt like I was very tech fluent, but when I was released, it seemed as though the entire tech world had changed. There were new norms and even how email was done felt unfamiliar. Different platforms and software were being used and I felt overwhelmed.What was a highlight of the program?The most important class that I took was a learning path called “Basic Digital Skills.” It helped me learn how to use documents and email efficiently. This was reinforced by The Last Mile because we regularly use both of these when communicating and collaborating.What’s next for you?Since participating, I secured a job as a Returned Citizen Advocate at The Last Mile. I went from using what I learned (like how to) write a resume, cover letter, apply for a job and interview, to securing a role that allows me to help other members of the community.I’ve had the opportunity to pay it forward. Alumni are encouraged to participate in the program once they are released from prison. Because I have first-hand experience with the program, I can assist them with any questions and talk about the value and importance of each lesson or learning path from personal experience.In the future, I plan to continue to support people that are returning to society, and to help people learn digital skills and expand their knowledge. My passion is to help those coming after me to be able to create and build the best future for themselves that is possible.

Cindy Adem – Product Manager

Cindy Adem – Product Manager

Cindy Adem is a Product Manager at Instil Education and she’s from Nairobi, Kenya.She started as a lawyer, and even though it was not the top choice of interest for her, she however did claim that she enjoyed having a 360-degree view of any event and preparing for the twists and turns along the way.Cindy narrates her experience of how she had to “disappoint” her parents, who expected her to be a lawyer to pursue what was in line with her passion.Although Cindy doesn’t attribute a moment to be her “aha” moment to transition into tech, she remarked that she has always been driven by the need and passion to be impactful.The way she does the impact has changed over the years, she still retains the same drive of doing things that matter in the world.She’s currently on a team that is trying to build a virtual learning institution for teachers and students across Africa.

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