New York Military Affairs Symposium

New York Military Affairs Symposium

There is an 37-year old organization called the New York Military Affair Symposium that regular hosts speakers. Their website and speaker schedule is here: http://www.nymas.org/

This Friday (Jan 18), Max Boot will be presenting about his book The Road Not Taken: Edward Lansdale and the American Tragedy in Vietnam.

I will be presenting on 26 April based upon my book War by Numbers: Understanding Conventional Combat.

The presentations are at the Soldier Sailors Club, 283 Lexington Avenue, New York City at 7 PM.

Can Data Determine How Learning Happens

Can Data Determine How Learning Happens

Today’s classroom isn’t just a place for education – it’s also a laboratory, and teachers are expected to collect huge amounts of data, with the goal of improving learning outcomes. Despite the best...

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10 Best Data Science Platforms

10 Best Data Science Platforms

Data science is a developing reaction to the exceptional volumes of information that are accessible to organizations for decision-making purposes. The longing to determine social and economic value...

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Ditch Google and Use a Bot Instead: Startup Says the Golden Era for Search Apps Is Over

Ditch Google and Use a Bot Instead: Startup Says the Golden Era for Search Apps Is Over

Finding your way around a new city, or even discovering exciting things to do in areas you know well, is hard. Meanwhile, local economies have been struggling to prosper — with small businesses...

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China’s Huawei unveils chip for global big data market

China’s Huawei unveils chip for global big data market

BEIJING (AP) — Huawei Technologies Ltd. unveiled a processor chip Monday for data centers and cloud computing in a bid by the biggest global maker of telecom equipment to expand into new markets...

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MicroStrategy 2019 introduces “HyperIntelligence� contextual BI

MicroStrategy 2019 introduces “HyperIntelligence� contextual BI

MicroStrategy, the long-standing Enterprise BI pure-play is — literally — ringing in the new year with a new version of its platform. To celebrate the new release, appropriately dubbed...

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3 Ways Affiliate Marketers Can Use Big Data To Adapt To Competition

3 Ways Affiliate Marketers Can Use Big Data To Adapt To Competition

The affiliate marketing industry has exploded since the Amazon first started it its Associates program. Some experts estimate that the affiliate marketing industry will be valued at $6.8 billion by...

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Building a Business Intelligence Strategy That Works

Building a Business Intelligence Strategy That Works

What is a Business Intelligence (BI) strategy? A BI strategy comprises a collection of tools, designs and workstreams that put data into the service of an overall business strategy. In one sense, all...

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Active Defense, Forward Defense, and A2/AD in Eastern Europe

Active Defense, Forward Defense, and A2/AD in Eastern Europe

The current military and anti-access/area denial situation in Eastern Europe. [Map and overlay derived from situation map by Thomas C. Thielen (@noclador) https://twitter.com/noclador/status/1079999716333703168; and Ian Williams, “The Russia – NATO A2AD Environment,” Missile Threat, Center for Strategic and International Studies, published January 3, 2017, last modified November 29, 2018, https://missilethreat.csis.org/russia-nato-a2ad-environment/]

In an article published by West Point’s Modern War Institute last month, “The US Army is Wrong on Future War,� Nathan Jennings, Amos Fox and Adam Taliaferro laid out a detailed argument that current and near-future political, strategic, and operational realities augur against the Army’s current doctrinal conceptualization for Multi-Domain Operations (MDO).

[T]he US Army is mistakenly structuring for offensive clashes of mass and scale reminiscent of 1944 while competitors like Russia and China have adapted to twenty-first-century reality. This new paradigm—which favors fait accompli acquisitions, projection from sovereign sanctuary, and indirect proxy wars—combines incremental military actions with weaponized political, informational, and economic agendas under the protection of nuclear-fires complexes to advance territorial influence…

These factors suggest, cumulatively, that the advantage in military confrontation between great powers has decisively shifted to those that combine strategic offense with tactical defense.

As a consequence, the authors suggested that “the US Army should recognize the evolved character of modern warfare and embrace strategies that establish forward positions of advantage in contested areas like Eastern Europe and the South China Sea. This means reorganizing its current maneuver-centric structure into a fires-dominant force with robust capacity to defend in depth.�

Forward Defense, Active Defense, and AirLand Battle

To illustrate their thinking, Jennings, Fox, and Taliaferro invoked a specific historical example:

This strategic realignment should begin with adopting an approach more reminiscent of the US Army’s Active Defense doctrine of the 1970s than the vaunted AirLand Battle concept of the 1980s. While many distain (sic) Active Defense for running counter to institutional culture, it clearly recognized the primacy of the combined-arms defense in depth with supporting joint fires in the nuclear era. The concept’s elevation of the sciences of terrain and weaponry at scale—rather than today’s cult of the offense—is better suited to the current strategic environment. More importantly, this methodology would enable stated political aims to prevent adversary aggression rather than to invade their home territory.

In the article’s comments, many pushed back against reviving Active Defense thinking, which has apparently become indelibly tarred with the derisive criticism that led to its replacement by AirLand Battle in the 1980s. As the authors gently noted, much of this resistance stemmed from the perceptions of Army critics that Active Defense was passive and defensively-oriented, overly focused on firepower, and suspicions that it derived from operations research analysts reducing warfare and combat to a mathematical “battle calculus.�

While AirLand Battle has been justly lauded for enabling U.S. military success against Iraq in 1990-91 and 2003 (a third-rank, non-nuclear power it should be noted), it always elided the fundamental question of whether conventional deep strikes and operational maneuver into the territory of the Soviet Union’s Eastern European Warsaw Pact allies—and potentially the Soviet Union itself—would have triggered a nuclear response. The criticism of Active Defense similarly overlooked the basic political problem that led to the doctrine in the first place, namely, the need to provide a credible conventional forward defense of West Germany. Keeping the Germans actively integrated into NATO depended upon assurances that a Soviet invasion could be resisted effectively without resorting to nuclear weapons. Indeed, the political cohesion of the NATO alliance itself rested on the contradiction between the credibility of U.S. assurances that it would defend Western Europe with nuclear weapons if necessary and the fears of alliance members that losing a battle for West Germany would make that necessity a reality.

Forward Defense in Eastern Europe

A cursory look at the current military situation in Eastern Europe along with Russia’s increasingly robust anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) capabilities (see map) should clearly illustrate the logic behind a doctrine of forward defense. U.S. and NATO troops based in Western Europe would have to run a gauntlet of well protected long-range fires systems just to get into battle in Ukraine or the Baltics. Attempting operational maneuver at the end of lengthy and exposed logistical supply lines would seem to be dauntingly challenging. The U.S. 2nd U.S. Cavalry ABCT based in southwest Germany appears very much “lone and lonely.� It should also illustrate the difficulties in attacking the Russian A2/AD complex; an act, which Jennings, Fox, and Taliaferro remind, that would actively court a nuclear response.

In this light, Active Defense—or better—a MDO doctrine of forward defense oriented on “a fires-dominant force with robust capacity to defend in depth,� intended to “enable stated political aims to prevent adversary aggression rather than to invade their home territory,� does not really seem foolishly retrograde after all.

Five incoming changes in data management

Five incoming changes in data management

We have seen massive growth in the use of data and analytics these past few years as they become a significant part of day-to-day business operations. To put this into perspective, the worldwide Big...

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The Fascinating Intersection of Social Media, Big Data And Forex Trading

The Fascinating Intersection of Social Media, Big Data And Forex Trading

Big data is changing the future of financial markets in fascinating ways. Most experts discuss the impact it has had on the stock market, but it is changing forex in even bigger ways. This is most...

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How Cybersecurity Is Creating Opportunities For Young People

How Cybersecurity Is Creating Opportunities For Young People

Data-centric and computer-centric job positions have seen an exponential rise over the past few years. Because of this, we’re quickly seeing these kinds of positions becoming some of the most...

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Big Data Is Changing the Game for Recruiters

Big Data Is Changing the Game for Recruiters

This is a guest post by Charles Ebert. Charles is a career mentor, motivational speaker & human resources consultant with over 10 years of experience in HR sector.  Find him...

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Want to create better experiences and brand loyalty? Lean on your data

Want to create better experiences and brand loyalty? Lean on your data

Marketing leaders are in the throes of 2019 planning and there’s no doubt improving consumer experiences is among the top priorities for the new year. Data shows consumer expectations (and...

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Six IoT predictions for 2019

Six IoT predictions for 2019

This time of year, it can seem like the world is swimming in predictions for the new year, and the Internet of Things (IoT) is no exception. In fact, in fast-evolving areas like IoT, multitudes of...

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Digital transformation projects will continue to disrupt customer experience

Digital transformation projects will continue to disrupt customer experience

Customer experience expert, Aspect Software, provides predictions of changes to the contact centre and customer service landscape for the year ahead Digital transformation, or digitisation of...

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Data Quality Predictions for 2019

Data Quality Predictions for 2019

If you’re serious about data quality, pay attention to these four key trends in 2019 and beyond. It was an exciting year to be in the data quality business. In terms of both new capabilities,...

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Digital transformation with purpose: Making the shift towards balanced business models

Digital transformation with purpose: Making the shift towards balanced business models

While many companies are well into their digital transformation journey, it’s been widely reported that relatively few organizations are truly thriving or succeeding. Consultancy Inc.Digital, for...

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Digital Economy and Blockchain: How to Grasp The Full Potential of The Internet?

Digital Economy and Blockchain: How to Grasp The Full Potential of The Internet?

In 1971, Intel built the first microprocessor, the 4004. It was the birth of what Don Tapscott called in 1995 the ‘Digital Economy’, and it has transformed the world irrevocably. The digital economy...

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Wargaming Multi-Domain Battle: The Base Of Sand Problem

Wargaming Multi-Domain Battle: The Base Of Sand Problem

“JTLS Overview Movie by Rolands & Associates” [YouTube]

[This piece was originally posted on 10 April 2017.]

As the U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps work together to develop their joint Multi-Domain Battle concept, wargaming and simulation will play a significant role. Aspects of the construct have already been explored through the Army’s Unified Challenge, Joint Warfighting Assessment, and Austere Challenge exercises, and upcoming Unified Quest and U.S. Army, Pacific war games and exercises. U.S. Pacific Command and U.S. European Command also have simulations and exercises scheduled.

A great deal of importance has been placed on the knowledge derived from these activities. As the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command recently stated,

Concept analysis informed by joint and multinational learning events…will yield the capabilities required of multi-domain battle. Resulting doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership, personnel and facilities solutions will increase the capacity and capability of the future force while incorporating new formations and organizations.

There is, however, a problem afflicting the Defense Department’s wargames, of which the military operations research and models and simulations communities have long been aware, but have been slow to address: their models are built on a thin foundation of empirical knowledge about the phenomenon of combat. None have proven the ability to replicate real-world battle experience. This is known as the “base of sand� problem.

A Brief History of The Base of Sand

All combat models and simulations are abstracted theories of how combat works. Combat modeling in the United States began in the early 1950s as an extension of military operations research that began during World War II. Early model designers did not have large base of empirical combat data from which to derive their models. Although a start had been made during World War II and the Korean War to collect real-world battlefield data from observation and military unit records, an effort that provided useful initial insights, no systematic effort has ever been made to identify and assemble such information. In the absence of extensive empirical combat data, model designers turned instead to concepts of combat drawn from official military doctrine (usually of uncertain provenance), subject matter expertise, historians and theorists, the physical sciences, or their own best guesses.

As the U.S. government’s interest in scientific management methods blossomed in the late 1950s and 1960s, the Defense Department’s support for operations research and use of combat modeling in planning and analysis grew as well. By the early 1970s, it became evident that basic research on combat had not kept pace. A survey of existing combat models by Gary Shubik and Martin Brewer for RAND in 1972 concluded that

Basic research and knowledge is lacking. The majority of the MSGs [models, simulations and games] sampled are living off a very slender intellectual investment in fundamental knowledge…. [T]he need for basic research is so critical that if no other funding were available we would favor a plan to reduce by a significant proportion all current expenditures for MSGs and to use the saving for basic research.

In 1975, John Stockfish took a direct look at the use of data and combat models for managing decisions regarding conventional military forces for RAND. He emphatically stated that “[T]he need for better and more empirical work, including operational testing, is of such a magnitude that a major reallocating of talent from model building to fundamental empirical work is called for.�

In 1991, Paul K. Davis, an analyst for RAND, and Donald Blumenthal, a consultant to the Livermore National Laboratory, published an assessment of the state of Defense Department combat modeling. It began as a discussion between senior scientists and analysts from RAND, Livermore, and the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) sponsored an ensuing report, The Base of Sand Problem: A White Paper on the State of Military Combat Modeling.

Davis and Blumenthal contended

The [Defense Department] is becoming critically dependent on combat models (including simulations and war games)—even more dependent than in the past. There is considerable activity to improve model interoperability and capabilities for distributed war gaming. In contrast to this interest in model-related technology, there has been far too little interest in the substance of the models and the validity of the lessons learned from using them. In our view, the DoD does not appreciate that in many cases the models are built on a base of sand…

[T]he DoD’s approach in developing and using combat models, including simulations and war games, is fatally flawed—so flawed that it cannot be corrected with anything less than structural changes in management and concept. [Original emphasis]

As a remedy, the authors recommended that the Defense Department create an office to stimulate a national military science program. This Office of Military Science would promote and sponsor basic research on war and warfare while still relying on the military services and other agencies for most research and analysis.

Davis and Blumenthal initially drafted their white paper before the 1991 Gulf War, but the performance of the Defense Department’s models and simulations in that conflict underscored the very problems they described. Defense Department wargames during initial planning for the conflict reportedly predicted tens of thousands of U.S. combat casualties. These simulations were said to have led to major changes in U.S. Central Command’s operational plan. When the casualty estimates leaked, they caused great public consternation and inevitable Congressional hearings.

While all pre-conflict estimates of U.S. casualties in the Gulf War turned out to be too high, the Defense Department’s predictions were the most inaccurate, by several orders of magnitude. This performance, along with Davis and Blumenthal’s scathing critique, should have called the Defense Department’s entire modeling and simulation effort into question. But it did not.

The Problem Persists

The Defense Department’s current generation of models and simulations harbor the same weaknesses as the ones in use in the 1990s. Some are new iterations of old models with updated graphics and code, but using the same theoretical assumptions about combat. In most cases, no one other than the designers knows exactly what data and concepts the models are based upon. This practice is known in the technology world as black boxing. While black boxing may be an essential business practice in the competitive world of government consulting, it makes independently evaluating the validity of combat models and simulations nearly impossible. This should be of major concern because many models and simulations in use today contain known flaws.

Some, such as  Joint Theater Level Simulation (JTLS), use the Lanchester equations for calculating attrition in ground combat. However, multiple studies have shown that these equations are incapable of replicating real-world combat. British engineer Frederick W. Lanchester developed and published them in 1916 as an abstract conceptualization of aerial combat, stating himself that he did not believe they were applicable to ground combat. If Lanchester-based models cannot accurately represent historical combat, how can there be any confidence that they are realistically predicting future combat?

Others, such as the Joint Conflict And Tactical Simulation (JCATS), MAGTF Tactical Warfare System (MTWS), and Warfighters’ Simulation (WARSIM) adjudicate ground combat using probability of hit/probability of kill (pH/pK) algorithms. Corps Battle Simulation (CBS) uses pH/pK for direct fire attrition and a modified version of Lanchester for indirect fire. While these probabilities are developed from real-world weapon system proving ground data, their application in the models is combined with inputs from subjective sources, such as outputs from other combat models, which are likely not based on real-world data. Multiplying an empirically-derived figure by a judgement-based coefficient results in a judgement-based estimate, which might be accurate or it might not. No one really knows.

Potential Remedies

One way of assessing the accuracy of these models and simulations would be to test them against real-world combat data, which does exist. In theory, Defense Department models and simulations are supposed to be subjected to validation, verification, and accreditation, but in reality this is seldom, if ever, rigorously done. Combat modelers could also open the underlying theories and data behind their models and simulations for peer review.

The problem is not confined to government-sponsored research and development. In his award-winning 2004 book examining the bases for victory and defeat in battle, Military Power: Explaining Victory and Defeat in Modern Battle, analyst Stephen Biddle noted that the study of military science had been neglected in the academic world as well. “[F]or at least a generation, the study of war’s conduct has fallen between the stools of the institutional structure of modern academia and government,� he wrote.

This state of affairs seems remarkable given the enormous stakes that are being placed on the output of the Defense Department’s modeling and simulation activities. After decades of neglect, remedying this would require a dedicated commitment to sustained basic research on the military science of combat and warfare, with no promise of a tangible short-term return on investment. Yet, as Biddle pointed out, “With so much at stake, we surely must do better.�

[NOTE: The attrition methodologies used in CBS and WARSIM have been corrected since this post was originally published per comments provided by their developers.]

Top 10 Incubators in Artificial Intelligence

Top 10 Incubators in Artificial Intelligence

It would appear that anchoring financing from Artificial Intelligence (AI) startup accelerators is like a drop in the bucket nowadays. AI is a popular expression of the day among angel investors, VC...

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Strategies for a Successful IoT Predictive Maintenance Program

Strategies for a Successful IoT Predictive Maintenance Program

Now that the Big Data hype has slightly eased, data practitioners are realizing that while we can, or do, collect large volumes of data, it is more important to be tactical with the data we are...

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Simple Model to Leverage the Business Value of APIs and API products

Simple Model to Leverage the Business Value of APIs and API products

Everybody is talking about APIs, API products in particular, and its key role in digitalisation and digital transformation. Generally, we associate APIs with agility, rapid innovation, business...

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Data as a smart superstructure: a warning to the wise

Data as a smart superstructure: a warning to the wise

In “Identity and the smart city,� I wrote about how we need to build a smart identity for a smart city. The article, hopefully, pointed to building a perspective on what smart actually means. But,...

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Activating Persona Insights

Activating Persona Insights

As leaders, we do a lot of work to understand our audience. We talk to customers, we survey buyers, we watch and interpret traffic patterns. All of this research gives us insights into what messages and offers are most likely to resonate for a given audience segment.

However, the knowledge is only valuable if we can activate it.  One way we leverage these insights is to create personas – documented summaries that explore what will motivate a particular audience. We even go as far as training our teams on these personas.  However, many organizations fail to map these important learnings into their database. Without adding a persona field in your marketing automation and CRM systems there is no way for a salesperson to leverage the training to make an outbound voice mail script that’s going to wow. Or for marketers to segment nurture lists by persona.

As a result, we default to segmenting based on job function, geography or some other profile criteria. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Using simple techniques you can map contacts to a persona and fully activate the research you’ve worked so hard to develop.

(1) Use forms to collect insights not simply for routing. Most forms are used for lead routing. We ask a lot of questions that don’t provide insight into buyer motivations. The good news is you have complete control over what you ask. Don’t be afraid to drop some geographic fields and focus on motivators.

(2) Map content to persona attributes. Not every piece of content is going to give you a persona signal. However, if you are smart about your editorial calendar, you can derive a hypothesis about someone’s persona from the content they consume. Be careful not to use web traffic patterns as a proxy, as that can be very misleading. It may take a visitor a long time to navigate your site to the content that is of real interest to them.

(3) Build nurture streams to uncover preferences. Don’t worry if the first content download doesn’t give you sufficient insight to make a determination. Use nurture streams with a variety of offerings to detect patterns.

(4) Leverage the sales & customer support team to correct hypothesis your data analysis made by making the persona field something that can be edited, and teach the team how to make an assessment.

Don’t have personas yet, don’t worry. Our resource library is filled with everything you need to get started. Scroll towards the bottom of the list to find all things persona.

And of course, don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions about how to apply this advice to your own organization.

Predicting London Crime Rates Using Machine Learning

Predicting London Crime Rates Using Machine Learning

Predicting the number and even the type of crimes being committed in the Greater London area each month is no easy task, but here’s how I cracked it, with Dataiku Data Science Studio (DSS). This blog...

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Using Big Data to Improve Traffic Counts

Using Big Data to Improve Traffic Counts

For years, Gene Hicks thought there had to be a better way to count the number of vehicles traveling his state’s roadways. As director of the Minnesota Department of Transportation’s (MnDOT’s)...

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4 Smart Technologies That Save You Energy

4 Smart Technologies That Save You Energy

Hundreds of thousands of people all across the country are looking at their electric bills and thinking the number looks far too high to be reasonable. Because of this, these same consumers are seeking out a variety of ways to save energy in their homes. Many have found the answer to this problem to be smart technologies which can interact with your home and maximize efficient energy use and fully eliminate wasteful energy practices. This not only saves money for consumers, but it also does wonders for the environment by reducing the consumer’s carbon footprint. So, what are these smart technologies and just how exactly do they help consumers save energy in their homes?


Energy Efficient Appliances
A Smart Thermostat
Smart Blinds
Battery Storage


Energy Efficient Appliances

Energy efficient appliances are getting smarter every single year. They are able to run on power saving mode much like how a laptop or cell phone will when it is near the end of its current battery life. One great example of this is refrigerators. When the door to a refrigerator stays closed, it can maintain its internal temperature fairly well thanks to heavily insulated doors. Thanks to smart technology, this fridge can then greatly reduce its draw of ...


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The Right Data Culture is a Predictor of Data Governance Success

The Right Data Culture is a Predictor of Data Governance Success

Getting business and leadership support for data governance programs – and building a data culture on that buy-in – remains a significant challenge in many organizations. Yet, having this support is...

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In The Age of AI, Management Modeling Is Vital

In The Age of AI, Management Modeling Is Vital

It’s a bit of a misnomer to say digital transformation leads to new business models. In most cases, the business models are the same; the delivery models or execution of those models are all that...

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Why having a Chief Digital Officer holds the key to creating a smart city

Why having a Chief Digital Officer holds the key to creating a smart city

Smart cities were a hot topic in 2018 and this year, many countries will be looking to make them a reality. Felix Todd speaks to Todd Asher, of non-profit consultancy Bloomberg Associates, about why...

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5G Can Enable Smart Cities — If Policymakers Allow It

5G Can Enable Smart Cities — If Policymakers Allow It

Many cities are striving to become “smart� — communities at the forefront of using data, sensors and connected devices to improve government services and residents’ quality of life through analytics...

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A Force Ratio Model Applied to Afghanistan

A Force Ratio Model Applied to Afghanistan

As many people are aware, the one logit regression that we had confidence in from the 83 cases we tested was a force ratio versus outcome model. This is discussed in the following blog post and in Chapter 6 of my book America’s Modern Wars.

We probably need to keep talking about Afghanistan

The key was that we ended up with two very different curves. One if there insurgency was based upon a central idea (like nationalism). There was a lesser curve if the insurgency was based upon limited political concept (a regional or factional insurgency). Now, we never really determined which applied to Afghanistan, because we actually never had a contract to do any work or analysis on Afghanistan. I am hesitant to reach conclusions without some research.

But let us look at the force ratios there now. I estimate that the insurgency has at least 60,000 full-time and part-time insurgents. There may have more than that. But, working backwards from the incident count of 20,000+ a year, and comparing those incident counts with insurgent strengths in past insurgencies, leads me to conclude that it is at least 60,000 insurgents. This process is discussed in depth in Chapter 11 of my book. Lets work with that figure for a moment.

The counterinsurgent forces consist of supposedly almost 400,000 people. Except…in our model we only counted army and air force, and only counted police only if it was clear that counterinsurgent operations was their primary duty. Therefore our model did not count most police.

Parsing out the data in Wikipedia shows that the Afghan Army and Air Force total around 195,000 active in 2014. The Wikipedia source was this article: https://www.pajhwok.com/en/2015/03/10/mohammadi-asks-troops-stand-united. I have no idea how correct number is. It might be a little optimistic (see my comments about auditing the police force rolls).

The Afghan National Police (ANP) have 157,000 members in September 2013 (again Wikipedia). I note that the UNAMA report in December 2018 on the audit reduced the ANP payroll from 147,875 to 106,189. But, this is a national police force. It includes uniform police, border police, a criminal investigation division of 4,148 investigators, etc. Lets to say for convenience that half of them are doing traditional police work and half are doing counterinsurgent work. I have no idea if this is a good or reasonable split. So lets say 53,000 ANP police involved in the counterinsurgency effort. The Afghan Local Police (ALP) are 19,600 as of February 2013. As they are clearly part of the counterinsurgency effort, I will count them.

The 18,000 ISAF are mostly training, so not sure how they should be counted, but we will count them. No sure if we should count the 20,000 contractors, as quite simply, there were not a lot of contractors in our previous 83 cases. The use of private contractors to fight insurgencies is a relatively new approach. For now I will not count them.

So, lets count counterinsurgent strength at 195,000 + 53,000 ANP + 19,600 ALP + 18,000 ISAF. This gives a counterinsurgent strength of 285,600 compared to an insurgent strength of 60,000. This is a 4.76-to-1 force ratio. This is a very precise number created from some very fuzzy data.

Now, if I look at the curve for an insurgency based upon an limited political concept, and I see that an 4.76-to-1 force ratio means that the counterinsurgent won roughly 86% of the time (see page 65 of my book). This is favorable. But right now, it doesn’t really look like we have been winning in Afghanistan over the last eight years.

On the other hand, if I code this as an insurgency based upon a central idea I see that a 4.76-to-1 force ratio results in the counterinsurgent winning 19% of the time. This is much worse.

So……I have yet to make a determination as to which curve should apply in this case. Perhaps neither do, as Afghanistan is a unique and complex case. Properly analyzing this would require a level-of-effort beyond what I am willing to invest. Keep in mind that our Iraq estimate was funded in 2004 (see Chapter 1 of my book). It was also ignored.

3 basic steps to start-up your AI Business Strategy

3 basic steps to start-up your AI Business Strategy

Rapid advances in machine vision and language processing are pushing AI into the mainstream. Organizations that strike the right partnerships between people and machines can radically enhance their...

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How to Decide if You Need an On-Premise Cloud Service

How to Decide if You Need an On-Premise Cloud Service

Determining the most suitable ways to integrate cloud computing, if at all, can be an intricate process with multiple factors worth considering before coming to a conclusive decision. This can be mind-boggling and understandably so, due to various recommendations and options to choose from. To further add to the confusion, talk of incorporating a hybrid cloud platform may lead one to wonder where traditional IT storage ends, and where cloud computing begins.

In this article, I say where I believe an on-premises solution may work better in certain situations, perhaps an off-premises solution may be better suited for another scenario, or a combination of both may be necessary for greater flexibility.

In every sector, data is data. How data is categorised can commonly be applied in most business’ IT Infrastructure management. However, a healthy relationship between a client and their MSP is critical, and it is necessary that their IT solutions are tailored to the unique needs of the client.

4 Reasons why on-premises IT solutions are best suited

1. Security is of the highest priority

Data security is always important, but many industries like Government, Finance or Legal have an increased focus in this area. Therefore, the idea of their critical business information being ...


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5 Ways Data Science Tools can Help Businesses without Data Scientist

5 Ways Data Science Tools can Help Businesses without Data Scientist

The ever larger and more varied data sets generated from cognitive and IoT (Internet of Things) technologies have become a big challenge for businesses to find the value of that data without a data scientist. The failure of applying data science led to a competitive disadvantage. According to the Forbes report, Data scientist is one of the highest demand jobs today. In Order to get actionable business insights from their data, and not fall behind in the competition, companies should find new tools, staffing models, and training strategies.

Automation and employee training are giving organizations access to data science without having to wage war for talent. According to the Gartner report, more than 40% of data science tasks would be automated by 2020. Thus, the companies, who adopted data science automation tools early can get benefits in terms of cost and time savings along with revenue gains.

There are various tools available in the market to simplify the application of data science strategies. Meanwhile, The demand for low-code development platforms is rising significantly, and multiple training courses and boot camps have already started to help professionals from diverse backgrounds acquire relevant data science skills with basic coding and mathematics.

Though the demand for ...


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Ezekre a konferenciákra menj 2019-ben, ha érdekel a data science világa

Ezekre a konferenciákra menj 2019-ben, ha érdekel a data science világa

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Minden év elején megfogadjuk, hogy jó lenne valami hasznosat és érdekeset is tanulni az új évben, ehhez kitűnő kiindulási alapként szolgálnak a különféle konferenciák. Budapesten szerencsés helyzetben vagyunk, hiszen számos kiváló konferencia kerül megrendezésre, jó is lenne mindegyikre ellátogatni. Mi kiválogattuk azokat a konferenciákat, melyeken érdemes részt venni 2019-ben annak, akinek szakmai érdeklődése középpontjában a big data, a business intelligence, az artificial intelligence vagy a data science áll.

Reinforce AI Conference

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A REINFORCE egy új, kétnapos technológiai konferencia, amely az AI-ra összpontosít. 2019 tavaszán kerül megrendezésre Budapesten. Olyan vezető cégektől érkeznek előadók, mint a Google, az Uber, vagy az IBM. Andrea Pasqua, az Uber Data Science Managere beszélni fog arról, hogy a machine learning hogyan segít az Uber-nek az előrejelzésben. Ismertetni fogja a deep learning és más Machine Learning módszerek használatának előnyeit az előrejelzés területén, valamint leírja azokat a megközelítéseket, amelyekkel az Uber előrejelzéseket végez. A REINFORCE konferencia mellett a témához kapcsolódó workshopokat és meetupokat is találunk a konferenciát megelőző napon. A konferencia célja az Artificial Intelligence és a Machine Learning tudás behozatala a régióba, elérhetővé téve azt bárki számára.

Tervezett időpont: 2019 március 20-22
Weblap: http://reinforceconf.com

Budapest Data Forum

 

budapest_data_forum.pngA Budapest Data Fórum egy hazai adatmenedzsment és analitikai konferencia, amely idén már tizenegyedik alkalommal kerül megrendezésre. A rendezvény a Big Data, a Data science, és az adattárházak világába repíti el a résztvevőket. Különböző előadásokon vehetünk részt, megannyi változatos témában, többek között valós idejű adatfeldolgozásról, a mesterséges intelligencia alkalmazási lehetőségeiről és modern adatinfrastruktúrákról. A 3 napos rendezvény során számos workshop, esettanulmány, technikai előadás kap helyet a programban. 

Tervezett időpont: 2019 Június
Weblap: http://budapestdata.hu

 

Crunch - Data Engineering and Analytics Conference

 

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A Crunch legfőképp azoknak szól, akik a legfejlettebb adatvezérelt vállalkozást szeretnék felépíteni. Nem számít a vállalkozás mérete vagy a munkaköri leírásod, a Crunch konferencián pontosan meg fogod találni azt, amire szükséged van. Ha adatmérnök vagy, esetleg termékmenedzser, vagy egyszerűen csak érdekel, hogyan tudod felhasználni a rendelkezésedre álló adatokat úgy, hogy azt a vállalkozásod fejlesztésének javára fordítsd, akkor ez a konferencia neked szól. A céged méretétől vagy az adatok mennyiségétől függetlenül te is a Big Data jelenlegi legnagyobb szereplőitől tanulhatsz, inspirálódhatsz.

Tervezett időpont: 2019 október
Weblap: https://crunchconf.com

 

Impact - Termékmenedzsment konferencia

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Az Impact középpontjában a termékmenedzsment áll. A termékmenedzsment az ügyfél, az üzlet és a technológia közös pontja, ez az, ami lehetővé teszi számukra, hogy sikeresek legyenek. A konferencia kiemeli a szoftverfejlesztéshez kapcsolódó termékmenedzsmentet Agile-Adaptív alapelvek és gyakorlatok alkalmazásával, de a megosztott elvek és gyakorlatok úgy kerültek kiválasztásra, hogy más termékfejlesztésre is jól alkalmazhatók legyenek. Az Impact konferencia előadóit és témáit úgy válogatták össze, hogy hasznosak legyenek a már terméktudósként dolgozó emberek számára, de a kezdők, vagy érdeklődők is gyorsan megértsék és megtanulják.

 

Tervezett időpont: 2019 október
Weblap: https://impact-conf.com

 

Budapest BI Fórum

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A Budapest BI Fórum két nagy sikerű, eddig önálló rendezvény, az Open Source BI és az Innovatív BI konferenciák összeolvadásából született, létrehozva így a legnagyobb magyar, analitikával és üzleti intelligenciával foglalkozó szállítófüggetlen szakmai rendezvényt. A konferencia kiváló lehetőséget biztosít mind a fejlesztők, mind az elemzők, mind pedig a felhasználók számára a legújabb trendekkel, technológiai újdonságokkal való találkozásra, a hazai és külföldi BI tapasztalatok megismerésére és szakmai kapcsolatok építésére.

Tervezett időpont: 2019 november
Weblap: http://budapestbiforum.hu

 

Datarena

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Az IVSZ (Szövetség a digitális gazdaságért) adatközpont és felhő munkacsoportja által tartott éves rendezvény, ahol vállalatok mutatják be saját technológiájukat és annak piacra gyakorolt hatásait, egészen a mikro vállalkozásoktól a nagyvállalatokig. A Datarena-n körbejárják a jelenlegi startup ökoszisztéma kihívásait, továbbá sikeres piaci szereplők adnak betekintést a növekedéshez szükséges összetett világ sajátosságaiba. A rendezvényre olyan érdeklődők jelentkezését várják, akik szeretnének megoldást, vagy inspirációt találni a legújabb felhős és adatközponti technológiákhoz.

Tervezett időpont: 2019 november
Weblap: http://ivsz.hu/esemenyek

 

Stretch

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A Stretch egy vezetői és menedzsment konferencia, amely azért jött létre, hogy a résztvevők a legjobbaktól tanulhassanak és hogy megmutassák, hogyan feszegetheted a határaidat. A kétnapos konferencia során a világ minden tájáról érkeznek előadók, hogy a legújabb trendeket, ötleteket, érdekes case studykat és inspiráló történeteket osszanak meg a résztvevőkkel. Izgalmas, a vezetés és a menedzsment kihívásairól szóló előadásokkal, valamint workshopokkal várják az érdeklődőket. A konferencia célközönsége továbbá a CxO, Product manager, Tech lead, Engineering Manager, Software Engineer, Scrum Master, Agile Coach munkakörben dolgozó, vagy ezek iránt érdeklődő személyek.

Tervezett időpont: 2019 december
Weblap: http://www.stretchcon.com

 

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How Wi-Fi and Deep Learning Could Improve Transportation Safety and Efficiency

How Wi-Fi and Deep Learning Could Improve Transportation Safety and Efficiency

Each state is mandated by federal transportation authorities to use traffic management systems (TMS) to track the number of cars traveling on the road, the type of vehicle and its weight. That data collectively helps promote efficient travel and keep people safer.

However, the systems in place now are expensive, and depending on the type installed, not always possible to move.

The current options are intrusive sensors embedded into the pavement, nonintrusive sensors that sit on top of or over the roadways and off-roadway sensors, such as satellites. However, a research team at the University of Memphis proposes a different system using Wi-Fi signals and deep learning. They say the system they've developed is low-cost and portable, potentially making it an excellent TMS to use in the future.

How Does It Work?

The technology is a nonintrusive system called DeepWiTraffic that tracks and classifies vehicles based on the channel state information (CSI) of the automobiles that move past. CSI encompasses the properties of a wireless communication link.

The team figured out a method of determining how the vehicles that go past cause changes in specific CSI information, including spatial and time correlations. That data is used to classify the kinds of vehicles and how much ...


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Mastering MDM is mandatory for digital transformation success

Mastering MDM is mandatory for digital transformation success

Digital Transformation can mean a lot of different things to different people. But for everyone it means dealing with more data than ever before. Industry 4.0, cloud, robotics, “big data,� artificial...

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MySQL High Availability Framework Explained – Part II

MySQL High Availability Framework Explained – Part II

In Part I, we introduced a High Availability (HA) framework for MySQL hosting and discussed various components and their functionality. Now in Part II, we will discuss the details of MySQL semi-synchronous replication and the related configuration settings that help us ensure redundancy and consistency of the data in our HA setup. Make sure to check back in for Part III where we will review various failure scenarios that could arise and the way the framework responds and recovers from these conditions.

What is MySQL Semi-synchronous Replication?

Simply put, in a MySQL semi-synchronous replication configuration, the master commits transactions to the storage engine only after receiving an acknowledgement from at least one of the slaves. The slaves would provide acknowledgement only after the events are received and copied to the relay logs and also flushed to the disk. This guarantees that for all transactions committed and returned to the client, the data exists on at least 2 nodes. The term ‘semi’ in semi-synchronous (replication) is due to the fact that the master commits the transactions once the events are received and flushed to relay log, but not necessarily committed to the data files on the slave. This is in contrast to fully synchronous replication, where the transaction would have ...


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New Big Data Visualization Platforms Help You Optimize Decision Making

New Big Data Visualization Platforms Help You Optimize Decision Making

We have addressed a number of ways big data is changing industries across the economy. We have focused more heavily on some factors than others, but there are some universal changes that big data has...

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Data science and analytics is top priority for leaders in finance

Data science and analytics is top priority for leaders in finance

In finance, data is paramount to success. Six out of ten finance leaders place leveraging data science and analytics for strategic insights and tactical decision making as top priorities for the...

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Some Statistics on Afghanistan (Jan 2019)

Some Statistics on Afghanistan (Jan 2019)

Camp Lonestar, near Jalabad, 7 October 2010 (Photo by William A. Lawrence II)

The fighting in Afghanistan continues, with a major attack reported a day ago in west Afghanistan that resulted in the death of 21 police and militia and 9 wounded: https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2019-01-07/taliban-storm-security-posts-in-west-afghanistan-kill-21. This was a pretty significant fight, with the government claiming 15 Taliban militants killed and 10 wounded.

I do lean on the Secretary General reports quarterly reports on Afghanistan for my data, as it may be the most trusted source available. Those reports are here:

https://unama.unmissions.org/secretary-general-reports

So what are the current statistics?:

              Security           Incidences      Civilian

Year      Incidences       Per Month       Deaths

2008        8,893                  741

2009      11,524                  960

2010      19,403               1,617

2011      22,903               1,909

2012      18,441?             1,537?                             *

2013      20,093               1,674               2,959

2014      22,051               1,838               3,699

2015      22,634               1,886               3,545

2016      23,712               1,976               3,498

2017      23,744               1,979               3,438

2018      22,745               1,895               3,731      Estimated (see below)

 

At the start of 2013, we still had 66,000 troops in Afghanistan, although we were drawing them down. There were 251 U.S. troops killed in 2012 (310 killed from all causes) and 85 in 2013 (127 killed from all causes). Over the course of 2013, 34,000 troops were to be withdrawn and the U.S. involvement to end sometime in 2015. We did withdrawn the troops, but really have not ended our involvement. According to Wikipeida we have 18,000+ ISAF forces there (mostly American) and 20,000+ contractors. I have not checked these figures. The latest reports I have seen say around 14,000 American troops in Afghanistan. The Afghans have over 300,000 security forces (Army, Air Force, National Police, Local Police, etc.) to conduct the counterinsurgency.

The Secretary General 7 December 2018 report does note that “On 30 August, the Government complete the personnel asset inventory for existing Afghan National Police personnel…..Out of 147,875 records, 106,189 personnel were identified as legitimate for the payment of salaries. The remaining 41,686 records were removed from the payroll for such reasons as retirement, desertion and attrition.”

As we note in Chapter Twenty-One of my book America’s Modern Wars: “The 2013 figure of 20,093 incidents a year does argue for a significant insurgency force. If we use a conservative figure of 333 incidents per thousand insurgents, then we are looking at more than 60,000 full-time and part-time insurgents.â€�

This war does appear to be flat-lined, with no end in sight.

Camp Lonestar, near Jalabad, 7 October 2010 (Photo by William A. Lawrence II)

————————————————————————————————————-

Notes for 2018 estimates:

  1. 15 December 2017-15 February 2018: 3,521 security incidences (6% decrease from previous year).

  2. 15 February-15 May: 5,675 security incidences (7% decrease from previous year).

  3. 15 May – 15 August: 5,800 security incidences (10% decrease from previous year)

  4. 16 August – 15 November: 5,854 security incidences (2% decrease from previous year)
  5. 1 January – 30 September: 2,798 civilian deaths (highest number since 2014)

    1. UNAMA attributed 65% of all civilian casualties to anti-government elements
      1.  35% to Taliban
      2.  25% to ISIL-KP
      3. 5% other
    2. 22% to pro-government forces
      1. 16% to Afghan national security forces
      2. 5% to international military forces
      3. 1% to pro-government armed groups
    3. 10% unattributed crossfire during ground engagements
    4. 3% to other incidents, including explosive remnants of war and cross-border shelling
    5. Causes of civilian deaths
      1. 45% caused by improvised explosive devices.
      2. 29% caused by ground engagements
        1. More than half of those casualties (313 people killed and 336 injured) caused by aerial strikes by pro-government forces)

 * The 2012 stats are a little garbled. They are missing 1-15 August 2012, but include 1 January through 15 February 2013.

2019 will be the year of data

2019 will be the year of data

AI hype is at frenetic levels; will 2019 be the year such hype peaks and starts to fall? ‘Data and Analytics’ remains misunderstood as too many lay folks think it just is a new way to say, Business...

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New Year, New Threats: 4 Cybersecurity Predictions For 2019

New Year, New Threats: 4 Cybersecurity Predictions For 2019

The new year has always been an important marker for cybersecurity professionals – just think back to Y2K and the widespread concern that every piece of technology might stop working at midnight on January 1, 2000. After a tough 2018, marked by extensive spam communication via both email and telephone, tens of thousands of different internet scams, and substantial business losses related to online fraud, though, experts are predicting an even more tumultuous 2019.

Here are four threats that may be on the horizon, and what the cybersecurity professionals suggest you can do to stop them.

Cryptojacking Takes Over

Cryptocurrency made significant gains in popularity in 2018, as even some mainstream businesses began accepting these digital funds. In order to keep up with demands, though, users need to “mine� the funds, and they often do so by using other people’s computer power. In 2019, then, both personal and business computer users should watch out for cryptojacking – using another person’s CPU power to run cryptocurrency algorithms. Cryptojacking not only slows down computers but is a sign that your system is vulnerable and you need to increase network protections.

The Globe Embraces GDPR

The launch of GDPR, the regulations protecting data use and management in European ...


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What Is Digital Twin Technology and Where Is it Really Headed?

What Is Digital Twin Technology and Where Is it Really Headed?

Digital twins—virtual replicas of a physical product, process, or system—bridge physical and digital worlds. This article guides you through some of the most promising current and future use cases...

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3 Major Ways the Internet of Things is Revolutionizing E-Commerce

3 Major Ways the Internet of Things is Revolutionizing E-Commerce

Many e-commerce sites are pushing the limits when it comes to technology and digital adoption. As the global online market continues to climb and consumers’ shopping preferences continue to shift, it is becoming even more important for e-commerce companies to leverage digitalization and technology to provide better experiences and keep themselves ahead of their competition.

According to a Retail Vision Study from Zebra, 67% of retailers have already integrated IoT technology, and 70% of retailers plan to increase their investment and implementation by 2021. Certainly, online retailers have just as much (if not more) to gain from IoT as brick-and-mortar operations. And it has more to do than just some cool tech features – IoT is truly revolutionizing what e-commerce companies can do and how they operate.

Here are three of the most major improvements that online businesses can expect to see with IoT adoption.

1. Supporting Effective Dropshipping 

Starting a dropshipping store is a great low-investment business idea that allows e-commerce companies to operate more remotely. Many online stores operate this way to keep inventory costs low. However, many also run into the issue of poor inventory management by their dropshipper or third-party logistics provider (3PL).

IoT has the power to solve this issue for good. ...


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Why Data Sharing Is The Main Driver For IoT Development

Why Data Sharing Is The Main Driver For IoT Development

We’ve been so inundated with claims about the IoT that it’s hard to know what to take seriously and what to ignore, but one thing is growing increasingly clear to everyone across the market – if the IoT is to survive, data sharing must continue to become the norm. The ceaseless expansion of data sharing policies across the market has been one of the prime engines of the IoT’s growth thus far, and much of its future will be determined over whether the internet and data sharing is transparent or downright impossible.

Here’s why data sharing is the main driver for IoT development, and what companies and aspiring entrepreneurs need to know about the future of the internet.

Data sharing is becoming more profitable

The primary reason that the IoT has been propelled forward by a ceaseless trend of data sharing thus far is that sharing your information with others in the market is an immensely profitable gambit. While many companies were understandably hesitant to share their data with others at the start of the 21st century, believing they were giving away trade secrets, open data sharing and more transparent operations have become the norm in many spots around the globe. A culture ...


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Three Trends for Modernizing Analytics and Data Warehousing in 2019

Three Trends for Modernizing Analytics and Data Warehousing in 2019

Data analytics priorities have shifted this year. Growth factors and business priority are ever changing. Don’t blink or you might miss what leading organizations are doing to modernize their...

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What Multi-Domain Operations Wargames Are You Playing?

What Multi-Domain Operations Wargames Are You Playing?

Source: David A. Shlapak and Michael Johnson. Reinforcing Deterrence on NATO’s Eastern Flank: Wargaming the Defense of the Baltics. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 2016.

A Mystics & Statistic reader wants to know what wargames are being used to simulate and explore Multi-Domain Battle and Operations (MDB/MDO) concepts?

There is a lot of MDB/MDO wargaming going on in at all levels in the U.S. Department of Defense. Much of this appears to use existing models, simulations, and wargames, such as the U.S. Army Center for Army Analysis’s unclassified Wargaming Analysis Model (C-WAM).

Chris Lawrence recently looked at C-WAM and found that it uses a lot of traditional board wargaming elements, including methodologies for determining combat results, casualties, and breakpoints that have been found unable to replicate real-world outcomes (aka “The Base of Sand” problem).

C-WAM 1

C-WAM 2

C-WAM 3

C-WAM 4 (Breakpoints)

There is also the wargame used by RAND to look at possible scenarios for a potential Russian invasion of the Baltic States.

Wargaming the Defense of the Baltics

Wargaming at RAND

What other wargames, models, and simulations are there being used out there? Are there any commercial wargames incorporating MDB/MDO elements into their gameplay? What methodologies are being used to portray MDB/MDO effects?

Cloudera And Hortonworks Complete Their Merger, Creating Big Data Platform Powerhouse

Cloudera And Hortonworks Complete Their Merger, Creating Big Data Platform Powerhouse

Big data software developers Cloudera and Hortonworks completed their merger Thursday in a move the companies say creates a new enterprise data cloud provider powerhouse. Now the newly combined...

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Data transformation: The missing ingredient from edge computing strategies

Data transformation: The missing ingredient from edge computing strategies

It’s easy to get excited about the Things in the Internet of Things (IoT). Tiny computers, factory robots, devices with 3D cameras, devices with GPS units — everything from telemetry units on...

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Data science and AI predictions for 2019

Data science and AI predictions for 2019

Data science became the highest-paid IT profession in 2018, and the field is set for further growth in 2019 as the tools and techniques become more accessible and AI moves from hype to practical use...

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Deciphering Data to Uncover Hidden Insights: Data Modeling

Deciphering Data to Uncover Hidden Insights: Data Modeling

This multi-part article talks about how to collect data, wrangle the data, ingest the data, model the data, and visualize the data from three viewpoints (conceptual, practical, and best practice). In...

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5-Step Guide You Should Follow To Start A Career In Artificial Intelligence

5-Step Guide You Should Follow To Start A Career In Artificial Intelligence

As artificial intelligence (AI) continues to invade different verticals, it is getting obvious that the future of tech is already here. Also, there are talks that AI will soon eliminate human jobs...

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8 Analytics Trends That Will Shape Your Future

8 Analytics Trends That Will Shape Your Future

Analytics is a fundamental part of the future digital economy. To be successful, you must recognize growing trends that will impact your analytics program. CIOs around the world are increasingly...

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IoT Applications in Smart Cities

IoT Applications in Smart Cities

The Internet of Things is everywhere today, from industrial applications to emergency services, public transportation, public safety, city lighting and other smart city applications. Due to IoT...

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How IoT Can Improve Data Access for Remote Patient Monitoring Solutions

How IoT Can Improve Data Access for Remote Patient Monitoring Solutions

In addition to wearability and data quality, timely data access is a key determining factor in the success of Remote Patient Monitoring health care solutions. Robust IoT architecture can enhance data...

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HPE IoT Innovation Labs: get started with your IoT or Intelligent Edge proof of concept

HPE IoT Innovation Labs: get started with your IoT or Intelligent Edge proof of concept

It’s been almost 18 months since the grand opening of the HPE’s Americas IoT Innovation Lab in Houston, Texas. This center, along with its sister APJ facility in Singapore and two new online...

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How AI helps businesses enhance information security

How AI helps businesses enhance information security

Hong Kong has seen multiple data breaches and hacking incidents during the year, prompting worries that cybercrimes are posing a growing threat to businesses and organizations. The Hong Kong Economic...

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What’s Ahead for Health Data Privacy, Security in 2019?

What’s Ahead for Health Data Privacy, Security in 2019?

This was an eventful year for healthcare cybersecurity and privacy incidents and developments. But what’s ahead for 2019? Here are eight predictions. 1. The Department of Health and Human...

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Five Misconceptions about Data Science

Five Misconceptions about Data Science

Data science has made its way into practically all facets of society – from retail and marketing, to travel and hospitality, to finance and insurance, to sports and entertainment, to defense,...

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The Keys to Achieving Digital Transformation in Government

The Keys to Achieving Digital Transformation in Government

Undergirding the major trends of federal IT modernization is the government’s desire to move beyond legacy systems and ways of delivering services and doing business. Yet government often struggles...

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TDI Friday Read: Multi-Domain Battle/Operations Doctrine

TDI Friday Read: Multi-Domain Battle/Operations Doctrine

With the December 2018 update of the U.S. Army’s Multi-Domain Operations (MDO) concept, this seems like a good time to review the evolution of doctrinal thinking about it. We will start with the event that sparked the Army’s thinking about the subject: the 2014 rocket artillery barrage fired from Russian territory that devastated Ukrainian Army forces near the village of Zelenopillya. From there we will look at the evolution of Army thinking beginning with the initial draft of an operating concept for Multi-Domain Battle (MDB) in 2017. To conclude, we will re-up two articles expressing misgivings over the manner with which these doctrinal concepts are being developed, and the direction they are taking.

The Russian Artillery Strike That Spooked The U.S. Army

Army And Marine Corps Join Forces To Define Multi-Domain Battle Concept

Army/Marine Multi-Domain Battle White Paper Available

What Would An Army Optimized For Multi-Domain Battle Look Like?

Sketching Out Multi-Domain Battle Operational Doctrine

U.S. Army Updates Draft Multi-Domain Battle Operating Concept

U.S. Army Multi-Domain Operations Concept Continues Evolving

U.S. Army Doctrine and Future Warfare

 

Cloud Storage Services for Cloud Native Applications

Cloud Storage Services for Cloud Native Applications

Cloud storage is vital to the work of cloud native applications, so choosing from a large portfolio of cloud services can be difficult. Today’s end-to-end, or edge-to-cloud workloads are distributed...

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Pros and cons of combining Artificial Intelligence and Cloud Computing

Pros and cons of combining Artificial Intelligence and Cloud Computing

Over the last decade, cloud computing has stopped being a concept and has gradually turned into something that has completely “overrun� our digital lives. From mail services to storing intricate...

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The Role of AI and IoT in Future of Insurance Industry

The Role of AI and IoT in Future of Insurance Industry

IoT is often viewed as the new enormous modern upset after the Internet. Notwithstanding connecting machines with machines and with individuals, it is likewise promoting an upgraded feeling of...

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3 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Organisation in 2019

3 New Year’s Resolutions for Your Organisation in 2019

2019 promises to be the Year of Truth, with a lot of new exciting developments. Blockchain will become the gold standard for supply chains, and crypto currencies will slowly start to increase in value again (though not bitcoin). There will be significant developments in quantum computing and machine learning, creating new opportunities to advance research. However, not all will be positive this year, as we will see new major security breaches this year.

With so much happening in the coming year, it is important as an organisation to be prepared. Technology is developing faster and faster, and if you do not stay up-to-date, it is quite easy to miss the boat. Therefore, here are my three new year's resolutions to help you thrive in 2019:

1. Start incorporating ethics in your business

There is no excuse anymore. In the past years, there have been too many occurrences of data breaches, machine learning mistakes, fake news and fake video/audio files as well as the occasional discrediting of critics using PR firms. It is time to start doing business in an ethical way, especially now that data has become so crucial for organisations. With access to (unlimited) data, it has become quite easy to do ...


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How to Improve Blockchain Security

How to Improve Blockchain Security

In 2014, Mt. Gox, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges (managing approximately 70% of all transactions in Bitcoin) had been the victim of successful hacking attempts for a period of three years, and Mt. Gox’s customers lost 750,000 Bitcoins. Bitcoin lost over a third of its value when the full extent of the fraud was revealed. 

In 2016, Bitfinex, one of the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges in the world was hacked, and 120,000 Bitcoins were stolen, representing a market value (at the time) of nearly $72 million. In 2018, there has been a steady flow of news reports revealing all manners of cryptocurrency fraud and token theft, Coinrail, BitGrail, Coincheck are just a few of the hacks exposed this year.

Clearly, making blockchain as safe and secure as possible is the highest priority. When investing in the computing power necessary to utilize blockchain in an enterprise, it makes sense that companies want to ensure the highest level of security for their most sensitive data. There are a few theories about how to best accomplish this task.

1. Decentralize the blockchain. When the blockchain is spread out over a large network, it becomes more difficult to attack it. However, this theory has not been well-tested.

2. Requiring ...


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How Is AI Affecting Infrastructure Pros?

How Is AI Affecting Infrastructure Pros?

IT staffers are supporting AI initiatives, but they often don’t have the hardware resources those projects really need. A little over a year ago, Network Computing examined some of the...

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4 Ways IoT Will Transform Manufacturing

4 Ways IoT Will Transform Manufacturing

Classic manufacturing typically features a set of machines that must be managed by human workers. The equipment units are often loosely connected, but the data about how they interoperate isn’t...

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Quantifying the Holocaust

Quantifying the Holocaust

Odilo Globocnik, SS and Police Leader in the Lublin district of the General Government territory in German-occupied Poland, was placed in charge of Operation Reinhardt by SS Reichsführer Heinrich Himmler. [Wikipedia]

The devastation and horror of the Holocaust makes it difficult to truly wrap one’s head around its immense scale. Six million murdered Jews is a number so large that it is hard to comprehend, much less understand in detail. While there are many accounts of individual experiences, the wholesale destruction of the Nazi German documentation of their genocide has made it difficult to gauge the dynamics of their activities.

However, in a new study, Lewi Stone, Professor of Biomathematics at RMIT University in Australia, has used an obscure railroad dataset to reconstruct the size and scale of a specific action by the Germans in eastern Poland and western Ukraine in 1942. “Quantifying the Holocaust: Hyperintense kill rates during the Nazi genocide,� (Not paywalled. Yet.) published on 2 January in the journal Science Advances, uses train schedule data published in 1987 by historian Yitzhak Arad to track the geographical and temporal dimensions of some 1.7 Jews transported to the Treblinka, Belzec and Sobibor death camps in the late summer and early autumn of 1942.

This action, known as Operation Reinhardt, originated during the Wansee Conference in January 1942 as the plan to carry out Hitler’s Final Solution to exterminate Europe’s Jews. In July, Hitler “ordered all action speeded upâ€� which led to a frenzy of roundups by SS (Schutzstaffel) groups from over 400 Jewish communities in Poland and Ukraine, and transport via 500 trains to the three camps along the Polish-Soviet border. In just 100 days, 1.7 million people had been relocated and almost 1.5 million of them were murdered (“special treatment” (Sonderbehandlung)), most upon arrival at the camps. This phase of Reinhardt came to an end in November 1942 because the Nazis had run out of people to kill.

This three-month period was by far the most intensely murderous phase of the Holocaust, carried out simultaneously with the German summer military offensive that culminated in disastrous battlefield defeat at the hands of the Soviets at Stalingrad at year’s end. 500,000 Jews were killed per month, or an average of 15,000 per day. Even parsed from the overall totals, these numbers remain hard to grasp.

Stone’s research is innovative and sobering. His article can currently be downloaded in PDF format. His piece in The Conversation includes interactive online charts. He also produced a video the presents his findings chronologically and spatially:

Quantifying the Holocaust

Quantifying the Holocaust

Odilo Globocnik, SS and Police Leader in the Lublin district of the General Government territory in German-occupied Poland, was placed in charge of Operation Reinhardt by SS Reichsführer Heinrich Himmler. [Wikipedia]

The devastation and horror of the Holocaust makes it difficult to truly wrap one’s head around its immense scale. Six million murdered Jews is a number so large that it is hard to comprehend, much less understand in detail. While there are many accounts of individual experiences, the wholesale destruction of the Nazi German documentation of their genocide has made it difficult to gauge the dynamics of their activities.

However, in a new study, Lewi Stone, Professor of Biomathematics at RMIT University in Australia, has used an obscure railroad dataset to reconstruct the size and scale of a specific action by the Germans in eastern Poland and western Ukraine in 1942. “Quantifying the Holocaust: Hyperintense kill rates during the Nazi genocide,� (Not paywalled. Yet.) published on 2 January in the journal Science Advances, uses train schedule data published in 1987 by historian Yitzhak Arad to track the geographical and temporal dimensions of some 1.7 Jews transported to the Treblinka, Belzec and Sobibor death camps in the late summer and early autumn of 1942.

This action, known as Operation Reinhardt, originated during the Wansee Conference in January 1942 as the plan to carry out Hitler’s Final Solution to exterminate Europe’s Jews. In July, Hitler “ordered all action speeded upâ€� which led to a frenzy of roundups by SS (Schutzstaffel) groups from over 400 Jewish communities in Poland and Ukraine, and transport via 500 trains to the three camps along the Polish-Soviet border. In just 100 days, 1.7 million people had been relocated and almost 1.5 million of them were murdered (“special treatment” (Sonderbehandlung)), most upon arrival at the camps. This phase of Reinhardt came to an end in November 1942 because the Nazis had run out of people to kill.

This three-month period was by far the most intensely murderous phase of the Holocaust, carried out simultaneously with the German summer military offensive that culminated in disastrous battlefield defeat at the hands of the Soviets at Stalingrad at year’s end. 500,000 Jews were killed per month, or an average of 15,000 per day. Even parsed from the overall totals, these numbers remain hard to grasp.

Stone’s research is innovative and sobering. His article can currently be downloaded in PDF format. His piece in The Conversation includes interactive online charts. He also produced a video the presents his findings chronologically and spatially:

How Insurers Can Use IoT Data to Be Game-Changers

How Insurers Can Use IoT Data to Be Game-Changers

It’s been nearly a decade since the Internet of Things has been around, and though it has much to offer the most traditional of industries – Insurance, the sector has not made the most of using IoT...

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Electron CEO discusses if blockchain is all it’s cracked up to be

Electron CEO discusses if blockchain is all it’s cracked up to be

Smart Energy International spoke with Jo-Jo Hubbard, chief operating officer and co-founder of Electron, a start-up which utilises decentralised technology to advance the shared infrastructure of the...

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Why digital transformation is poised to make a dramatic impact

Why digital transformation is poised to make a dramatic impact

Digital transformation is sweeping across the enterprise landscape with billions of dollars being spent on moving organisations to be more customer-centric, thereby creating new business...

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What is a digital platform?

What is a digital platform?

Digital technologies present opportunities for enterprise leaders to rethink their business to create better experiences for customers, employees, and ecosystem partners, and to lower costs. When...

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AI & ML: A Sort of Revolution in the Mobile realm

AI & ML: A Sort of Revolution in the Mobile realm

Several companies are found investing in older technologies which sooner or later inevitably fade into the background, while the ones who undergo technological transformations to differentiate themselves can become quickly become industry pioneers. With the emergence of technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning, a severe transformation is witnessed in the way humans interact with machines.

Regardless of any industry- travel, entertainment, telecom, oil and gas, AI and ML have proved their worth over a past few years. Speaking of which enhancing smartphone experience turns out to be no exception for these techs. It may quite interest you to know that both Android and iOS platforms have started integrating well with AL and ML in their apps. For example, chatbots, self-driving cars, virtual assistants, etc. There was a time when these innovations were considered as a part of sci-fi movies but not anymore.

With the widespread adoption of these smart technologies, massive changes can be expected in the upcoming years. For those who aren’t much familiar with the tech must know that machine learning is a subset of the Artificial Intelligence research. Time has come where computers, gadgets, and other devices don`t require special programming to complete tasks anymore. In fact, ...


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Implementing Predictive Analytics Outside the Factory Floor

Implementing Predictive Analytics Outside the Factory Floor

A growing number of manufacturers, particularly those with large global footprints and complicated supply chains, have realized the power of predictive analytics. However, many are not taking...

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The Best Data Breach Tactics to Deploy Now

The Best Data Breach Tactics to Deploy Now

A top-of-mind question for business leaders across all industries is how to eliminate the risk of a data breach. In addition to removing sensitive data from your business process, there are two other...

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How Small Businesses Will Benefit from Analytics in 2019

How Small Businesses Will Benefit from Analytics in 2019

Typically, when you think “analytics� you think “big data,� and when you think “big data� you think enterprises and medium-sized businesses. The idea is that analytics software needs a great deal of data from which to derive insights on trends. However, small businesses can and should use automation and analytics tools. The reasons are simple: automation saves time, and analytics software can thrive on small datasets that are highly relevant. It’s better to have a limited amount of relevant, proprietary data regarding a single issue than it is to have a ton of data with irrelevant, bad data in the mix.

In 2019, startups will understand the value of their proprietary data and will use analytics and automation tools to compete at capturing niche audiences. If you’re a small business owner, you’ll discover that 2019 is the year to take your business to the next level in the following ways:

They’ll Use Inventory Management and Analytics to Drive Remote Sales

Small businesses can tackle inventory management in a brand new way: they can store inventory in a climate-controlled storage space wherever one is available in the country. Then, they can tag it, scan it into an inventory management software that tracks location, and ...


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How To Become A Cybersecurity Thought Leader

How To Become A Cybersecurity Thought Leader

Thought leaders are defined as informed leaders who are the go-to people in their fields of expertise. To me, they are leaders we aspire to be like, people we would like to emulate. It’s this...

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8 master data management certifications that will pay off

8 master data management certifications that will pay off

As data and analytics become the beating heart of the enterprise, it is increasingly critical for the business to have access to consistent, high-quality data assets. Master data management (MDM) is...

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Panzer Battalions in LSSAH in July 1943 – II

Panzer Battalions in LSSAH in July 1943 – II

This is a follow-up to this posting:

Panzer Battalions in LSSAH in July 1943

The LSSAH Panzer Grenadier Division usually had two panzer battalions. Before July the I Panzer Battalion had been sent back to Germany to arm up with Panther tanks. This had lead some authors to conclude that in July 1943, the LSSAH had only the II Panzer Battalion. Yet the unit’s tank strength is so high that this is hard to justify. Either the LSSAH Division in July 1943 had:

  1. Over-strength tank companies
  2. A 4th company in the II Panzer Battalion
  3. A temporary I Panzer Battalion

I have found nothing in the last four months to establish with certainly what was the case, but additional evidence does indicate that they had a temporary I Panzer Battalion.

The first piece of evidence is drawn from a division history book, called Liebstandarte III, by Rudolf Lehmann, who was the chief of staff of the Panzer Regiment. It states that they had around 33 tanks at hill 252.2 on the afternoon or evening of the 11th. It has been reported that the entire II Panzer Battalion moved up there on the 11th, and then pulled back their 5th and 7th companies, leaving the 6th company in the area of hill 252.2. The 6th Panzer Company was reported to have only 7 tanks operational on the morning of the 12th. So, II Panzer Battalion may have had three companies of 7-12 tanks each, and the battalion staff, and maybe some or all of the regimental staff there. The LSSAH Division according to the Kursk Data Base had as of the end of the day on 11 July 1943: 2 Panzer Is, 4 Panzer IIs, 1 Panzer III short, 4 Panzer III longs, 7 Panzer III Command tanks, 47 Panzer IV longs and 4 Panzer VIs for a total of 69 tanks in the panzer regiment. Ignoring the 4 Tiger tanks, this leaves 32 tanks unaccounted for. This could well be the complement of a temporary I Panzer Battalion.

The second unresolved issue is that the Soviet XVIIII Tank Corps is reported to have encountered dug-in tanks as they tried to push beyond Vasilyevka along the Psel River. They reported that their advance was halted by tank fire from the western outskirts of Vasilyevka. They also report at 1400 (Moscow time) repulsing a German counterattack by 50 tanks from the Bogoroditskoye area (just west of Vasilyevka, south of the Psel).

With the II Panzer Battalion being opposite the XXIX Tank Corps, then one wonders who and where those “dug-in tanks” were from. It is reported in some sources that the Tiger company, which was in the rear when the fighting started, moved to the left flank, but most likely there was another tank formation there. If the II Panzer Battalion was covering the right half of the LSSAH’s front, then it would appear that the rest of the front would have been covered by a temporary I Panzer Battalion of at least three companies.

This leads to me lean even more so to the conclusion that the LSSAH had a temporary I Panzer Battalion of at least three companies, the II Panzer Battalion of three companies, and the Tiger company, which was assigned to the II Panzer Battalion.

Artificial intelligence: What changed in 2018 and what to expect in 2019

Artificial intelligence: What changed in 2018 and what to expect in 2019

In the artificial intelligence and machine learning space, 2019 will see the rise of the intelligent application Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of those technologies that excites the public and...

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Job Role: Data Analyst

Job Role: Data Analyst

The job role of a data analyst in today’s tech market is broadly defined. In general, experts talk about data analysts as people who collect data and use that data to provide insights. They are...

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The Levels of Doing AI

The Levels of Doing AI

When it comes to new technologies like Artificial Intelligence, the pure technology is only a small aspect required to putting it to use. Still, given the hype that exists currently, one can easily...

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4 Ways to Overcome the Cyber Workforce Shortage

4 Ways to Overcome the Cyber Workforce Shortage

As 2018 draws to a close, the state of the cyber workforce can be summed up in two words: “Help Wanted!� The numbers prove it: In November, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)...

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Top 10 Data Predictions leading to zero-latency future in 2019

Top 10 Data Predictions leading to zero-latency future in 2019

Just like electricity, we will soon start to see real-time computing become pervasively available and invisible at the same time, writes Madhukar Kumar, Head of Developer Advocacy at Redis Labs The...

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Internet Of Things (IoT): 5 Essential Ways Every Company Should Use It

Internet Of Things (IoT): 5 Essential Ways Every Company Should Use It

The Internet of Things (IoT) means everyday objects are now creating data and connecting to the internet. The result is more data – a lot more data. Data we can use in ways we could not have...

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3 Data Integration, Management and Architecture Trends for 2019

3 Data Integration, Management and Architecture Trends for 2019

The coming year almost certainly has some surprises in store for the technology space, but one factor IT professionals can bank on is that digital transformation will remain a top goal for...

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The opportunities and challenges of a freelance data scientist

The opportunities and challenges of a freelance data scientist

A day rarely goes by when there isn’t an article about how attractive the data science field is for all practitioners, regardless of where they are in their career. According to Glassdoor.com, data...

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Much-maligned AI Technology can Actually Increase CSat Scores

Much-maligned AI Technology can Actually Increase CSat Scores

When technologists talk about artificial intelligence and customer experience in the same sentence, they're usually talking about bots. More specifically, pundits generally focus on how the mass deployment of support bots has seriously reduced CSat scores in nearly every major industry.

Bots, however, employ a very simplistic and inexpensive form of AI programming that's far too primitive to really meet the needs of customers in the real world. Savvy companies are now deploying far more sophisticated AI mechanisms alongside skilled technicians to reduce wait times and ensure that everyone's diverse needs are met.

Defining CSat Metrics

Computer scientists and marketing experts don't have very much in common. Statistics may be the only area where the two fields do overlap regularly. Programmers and customer service gurus both want to interpret information in terms of easily digestible metrics.

Measuring customer satisfaction isn't easy, but some companies are using what they refer to as CSat key performance indicators. These are often part of the balanced scorecard sheets businesses use to find out how frustrated people are with their support crews.

Outsourcing support teams began in the early 1990s, and customers quickly jumped ship from many brands that adopted the practice. An overwhelming majority of larger firms have been ...


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Deep learning turns mono recordings into immersive sound

Deep learning turns mono recordings into immersive sound

Listen to a bird singing in a nearby tree, and you can relatively quickly identify its approximate location without looking. Listen to the roar of a car engine as you cross the road, and you can...

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The Democratisation of AI: 5 Changes We Should Expect in the Job Market

The Democratisation of AI: 5 Changes We Should Expect in the Job Market

Over the last decade, the way people treat the idea of artificial intelligence saw some significant changes. From a buzzword mostly referring to some distant future, it changed into a very real prospect that sees active implementation. Self-driving cars, machine learning, machine translation, neural networks – all these things are just the first tentative steps into the realm of true AI, but they already change the rules of the game all over the world.

Very soon, we are going to live in a world where AI is not just a prerogative of a small selection of high-profile tasks, but where it permeates every nook and cranny of our lives. And, of course, the job market will be the first to feel the consequences of this great AI democratization. In this article, we will cover five most likely changes that are supposed to happen (and already do happen) in the nearest future.

1. Companies are going to recruit data specialists from non-traditional locations

One of the main limiting factors precluding AI research to develop faster is the lack of specialists. Although it is already one of the most prestigious industries in the world and people are eager to get a relevant degree, the talent pool ...


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5 Ways Artificial Intelligence Will Continue to Shape Marketing

5 Ways Artificial Intelligence Will Continue to Shape Marketing

In 2018, artificial intelligence began making its virtues clear to the marketing industry in tangible ways. Want proof? Just check out Lexus’ powerful new commercial scripted by IBM Watson. So, what...

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Low-Carbon Cities Are Better for Your Health Than Any Superfood

Low-Carbon Cities Are Better for Your Health Than Any Superfood

Climate change is already harming people’s health. In August last year, over 45 million people in India, Bangladesh and Nepal were affected by unprecedented monsoon flooding, while last year’s...

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The Music Industry and Big Data: The Union

The Music Industry and Big Data: The Union

We are witnessing the constant and ongoing change of the music industry today. We consume songs quite differently than before; we take our music everywhere thanks to the portable speakers, iPod’s, smartphones and so on. Also, the way artists record music and the different ways they release it has drastically changed as well. Another thing that changes equally in today’s business world is big data. When these two unite, some great conclusions come to our mind.

One such conclusion is that the music industry takes care of what people are listening. This was not the case in the past. The music industry also takes care of where and when people are listening t music, which formats they use the most and so on. Spotify is a company which discovered that one of its listeners listened to Justin Bieber’s song “Sorry� for more than 40 times. This certainly made them ask what did the poor guy do?

Remember the last time you heard a song and automatically started nodding your head. Don’t think that happens by accident. Big data today can even predict which song will become popular. For example, at the University of Antwerp, Belgium, developed an algorithm which managed to calculate ...


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