3 treats for the data & analytics types among you:

Randy Bean, in the Sloan Management Review, tackles a fundamental organizational shift toward data variety — rather than data volume: “it is not the ability to process and manage large data volumes that is driving successful Big Data outcomes. Rather, it is the ability to integrate more sources of data than ever before — new data, old data, big data, small data, structured data, unstructured data, social media data, behavioral data, and legacy data.”   From Sam Ransbotham’s piece outlining research into organizational use of advanced analytics — also in the Sloan Review: Data and analytics can still provide considerable value for organizations. But there are two words in that statement to emphasize — can and value. “Can” implies potential — but not certainty. “Value” implies benefit but not necessarily advantage. Both ideas infuse our research findings.   Scott Brinker has released his 2016 survey of the Mar-Tec landscape, and it’s (as usual) fantastic. This year, he’s moved away from the stack as metaphor, and towards six ‘capability clusters’, namely:  Advertising & Promotion Content & Experience Social & Relationships Commerce & Sales Data Management

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Robot news that isn’t utterly terrifying:

Via the IEEE Spectrum: scientists at Google are using convolutional neural networks to teach robots to grasp (physical objects, not the plot of Infinite Jest). To wit: “In essence, the robot is constantly predicting, by observing the motion of its own hand, which kind of subsequent motion will maximize its chances of success. The result is continuous feedback: what we might call hand-eye coordination. Observing the behavior of the robot after over 800,000 grasp attempts, which is equivalent to about 3000 robot-hours of practice, we can see the beginnings of intelligent reactive behaviors. The robot observes its own gripper and corrects its motions in real time.”   Anthony Lydgate in the New Yorker on the rapid demise of Microsoft’s infintely-millennial bot, Tay: “Why didn’t Microsoft know better? Plop a consciousness with the verbal ability of a tween and the mental age of a blastocyst into a toxic, troll-rich environment like Twitter and she’s bound to go Nazi.”

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This week in Internets-Miscellany:

Jason Fried wrote a terrific piece outlining in excruciating detail the way(s) that the 37 Signals crew uses Basecamp (#natch) to power the creation of its podcast. There must be a German word that means ‘executed in a quintessentially Samsung way’. If so, it applies to this otherwise promising Samsung Smart Windshield concept. In a March 2016 update to his epic ‘Mobile is Eating the World’, Ben Evans throws us this gem: smartphones will be the first tech product to be bought by almost everyone on earth, every 2-3 years. Finally: Popular Mechanics vs. a smart pan vs. our favorite Twitter account.