Broadband has become an assumed service, and yet in some parts of the state – and even the city – high-speed internet access is limited, unavailable, or unaffordable. Broadband access is necessary to help our students learn, to build small businesses and to enable residents to engage as citizens.
As we type, click, and swipe, it is easy to forget about the underlying infrastructure that supports our online activities. This critical infrastructure is complex and in order to provide equitable access to broadband, physical considerations like fiber infrastructure and broadband readiness of buildings are critical to how we expand access.
In addition, we need to buy service from someone. Should cities pursue Muni Networks like Chattanooga, TN and Westminster, MD or should cities pursue strategies that promote competition and choice. Whether it is provided by a company or a local government, the service that we buy needs to be fast, affordable, and reliable.
Please join us on Wednesday, November 16, for a discussion on Broadband Equity. Panelists will include:
Microsoft’s Beyond //build event hosted at the brand new Burlington office, bringing Microsoft’s latest developer news to local area developers
We recently opened the brand-new Microsoft Technology Center (MTC) facility in Burlington, underscoring Microsoft’s continued commitment to driving technology advances that benefit the broader Boston-area business community. As one of more than 40 such centers around the world, the Burlington MTC provides a collaborative environment where commercial and public sector organizations alike can come together to explore and experience innovative new technologies and learn how to put them into action.
To showcase the new facility and bring the local business community together, Microsoft hosted a Beyond //build event on Oct. 4. More than 100 developers, architects and technology enthusiasts converged at the Burlington MTC for the one-day event, which featured some of the “best of” innovations from //build, provided an insider’s view to some of the hottest innovations that have arisen since spring, and showed off what’s next for cloud development.
In a compelling keynote, Microsoft Partner Director of Program Management John Montgomery talked about Microsoft’s commitment to creating open and flexible solutions that support any developer, any app and any platform. He walked attendees through some of the most significant transformations in Microsoft technology that are enabling developers to do things they’ve never been able to do before.
“With Microsoft’s intelligent Azure cloud, powerful data platform and flexible developer tools, it is easier than ever to design, build and manage breakthrough apps that work across platforms and devices,” said Montgomery.
From the power of SQL Server to the cutting-edge AI features in Cortana Intelligence, Montgomery explained how Microsoft is making it much easier for developers to create intelligent, predictive apps that surprise and delight customers.
Next came the deep-dive sessions that let developers experience how to put Microsoft’s innovative technologies to work:
Technology architect Timothy Baggs from the Microsoft Technology Center in Cambridge led a demo-heavy session framed around the latest Microsoft AI technologies. Developers experienced how Microsoft Cognitive Services and machine learning can expand Cortana’s understanding of the world, and also learned how to use the Microsoft Bot Framework and Bot Builder to build their own bots that connect meaningfully with users using natural language processing and deep learning. Baggs also dove into the Universal App Model and demonstrated code that runs apps on Xbox, Windows and HoloLens.
Rich Ross, an architect at the Microsoft Technology Center in Philadelphia, guided attendees through the key steps for developing hyper-scale and mobile applications using the power of Azure App Service. He showed ways developers can use Microsoft Cognitive Services to interact with users in a natural way, as well as how to integrate computer vision, face recognition and speech processing into their web, mobile and desktop applications. Developers also came away with a deeper understanding of how the Azure Service Fabric and built-in programming models can help them build and manage applications at scale.
Microsoft developer experience expert Chris Bowen took attendees on a deep dive into DevOps. They learned how building a thriving DevOps culture can break down the barriers (and sometimes conflicting priorities) between development and operations teams. Using Team Services and Azure as a backdrop, Bowen demonstrated how DevOps can fuel the ongoing creation of innovative applications that accelerate the transformation of their business.
Microsoft developer experience expert Chris Bowen took attendees on a deep dive into DevOps.
Overall, the event showcased just one of the many ways the new Burlington MTC serves the regional community.
If you missed out, it’s not too late to join in on the learning experience. We invite you to come and experience the many ways the Burlington MTC can help you find the right solutions to transform your business in a mobile-first, cloud-first world.
Our beautiful new state-of- the-art facility provides a collaborative environment where you can lay hands on the latest technologies and meet with Microsoft experts who can guide and inspire you. The facility is equipped with an Envisioning Center, an Interactive Center and a Device Bar as well as a few briefing rooms. Our expert staff will show you the latest in Microsoft and partner solutions and guide you through anything from optimizing your investments in Microsoft software to planning a right-sized move to the cloud. We’ll work with you to envision how emerging technologies can help you innovate, find new customers, expand into new markets and build a successful future for your organization.
What exactly is Data Science? How does it differ from analytics?
We live in a world with seemingly infinite data, and if you can learn the right balance of skills, there are lucrative opportunities available to you. During this panel we are bringing together professionals across all areas of the data industry. You will hear about their career paths in data engineering, marketing analytics, and business intelligence.
Fostering and encouraging participation from women is a key goal of the SBIR/STTR program. This pre-day conference event will address the issues and challenges women have in running or working in technology focused small business through a series of interactive panels. It will include panelists who have moved technology from the lab to market, played key decision making roles in financing small businesses or have a keen interest in making a difference in this area.
The D3 Conference is your opportunity to gather with and learn from some of the most innovative designers, developers, product, and process people in the country. This one day conference will feature tracks for managers and hackers with inspiring keynotes that will push you to innovate in your projects and products.
There’s always a trade-off in the world of software development: do you release products rapidly – or do you take a little bit more time and ship more robust products with as few bugs as possible? During this ½ day summit we will dig into strategies that organizations are using to achieve their ultimate goal of Building Better Products.
Voatz is hosting a community voting day via its award winning mobile voting platform. Potential voters and various local stakeholders will be able participate in live voting focusing on several current events and issues of importance (including a mock version of the upcoming Massachusetts State Primary) via a compatible smartphone (or via a Voatz Ballot Station in case you don’t have a compatible smartphone).
The DisruptCRE conference series showcases the best and brightest ideas from the most innovative minds in technology and commercial real estate. We bridge the gap between the built environment and technological innovation.
Fast Forward: The Technology Revolution in Transportation and What It Means for Massachusetts is a half-day event that will bring you up to speed on changes in mobility, while introducing our new Fast Forward report.
HTML and CSS are the fundamental building blocks of the web. Whether you’re a beginner who wants to get started in web development, a designer looking to hand-code their concepts, or a marketer who wants a little more control over their CMS, you’ll need to know HTML and CSS to get the job done!
Healthcare, with its complicated regulations and procedures, is an industry ripe for innovation. How can partners, providers, and digital healthcare startups collaborate more closely to make sure that we’re achieving the right outcomes for patients while remaining profitable?
Join the Massachusetts Digital Health Community for showcase demos from over 30 startups and emerging technologies followed by a lively debate on healthcare partnerships October 18th!
Are you registered to vote? In 2008, 6 million Americans missed their chance to vote — either because they missed a registration deadline, or didn’t know how to register. National Voter Registration Day, a new annual initiative, brings this information to the forefront to make sure every American has all the necessary information to register to vote.
The National Association of Secretaries of State has established the fourth Tuesday of September as National Voter Registration Day annually, making today (September 27, 2016) the day to act!
This presidential election, we want to make sure every American has a chance to vote. That’s why we’re excited to partner in Rock the Vote’s Corporate Civic Responsibility Program, working to make voter registration readily available to employees and consumers alike. And, with Microsoft Pulse, we’re helping the public become more informed voters through initiatives like WatchTheDebates.org.
Looking for an easy way to find voter registration information? Just Bing search “how to register to vote” and Bing will display local information for you, including deadlines, requirements, and an online voter registration platform.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! For innovators, artists, scientists, citizens, and more — those who love Boston — HUBweek is here from Sunday, September 25 through Saturday, October 1 to celebrate the best of the best our city has to offer. HUBweek is an annual celebration focused on the future that is being built in and around Boston, spotlighting innovation at the intersection of art, science, and technology. Over 130 organizations have teamed together for behind-the-scenes views, live talks, demonstrations, and parties that encourage HUBweek-goers to explore, imagine, and exchange ideas.
We’re honored to not only be in the middle of the celebration at our Kendall Square offices but by sponsoring HUBweek and hosting/co-hosting events of our own throughout the week. We’ve gathered some of these events (and some bonus events) to give you, our beloved reader, an insider’s guide to HUBweek 2016:
The impact of innovation in Greater Boston spans from art and food to technology and community.
At the HUBweek Roxbury Innovation Showcase, now’s your chance to taste innovation in Roxbury. Hear from leaders making an impact by promoting inclusive innovation in our city. Meet tomorrow’s innovators who are shaping the future of business, technology, design and fashion. Learn, mingle and share experiences to help each other take new ideas and ventures to the next level.
What does it take to make a building extroverted? How do parks, plazas, and streetscapes foster collaboration and innovation?
The future is always under construction in Kendall Square: world-shaping ideas, breakthrough discoveries, and a built environment that constantly responds to the ever-changing needs of Kendall’s vibrant community.
Join us for a walking tour of Kendall Square. Visit the places that make work work and learn how developers and planners are mixing living and working in this emerging neighborhood. You’ll get an insider’s view on the development strategies that artfully blend high tech labs, eateries, walkable outdoor civic spaces, co-working incubators and corporate campuses.
The tour culminates with an insightful panel discussion where you’ll hear from urban planners, architects, and designers on how they collaborate to create an environment that’s as exciting as the inventions it helps to spawn.
This event is sold out, but the waitlist is still open.
Join us for an evening of storytelling with some of Boston’s top female leaders in the innovation economy as they share their biggest “Aha Moments.” Storytellers will share a 10 minute story about a realization, discovery or instrumental conversation that changed the course of her career. There will be plenty of time for audience Q&A, so bring your pressing questions and let’s tip the scales toward more women in leadership positions in Boston and beyond!
This event is sold out, but the waitlist is still open.
The overwhelming abundance of granular data is recasting and overturning public perceptions in a number of different fields, from criminal justice to health care. An interdisciplinary group of scholars, technologists, and media members will leverage administrative data, both historical and current, to explore pressing, emerging trends and deeper issues around fairness, community, safety, and privacy during HUBweek’s first annual hackathon: Data Science, Journalism and the Future of Justice.
Thursday, September 29
pARTy On the Greenway
Rings Fountain The Wharf District Parks of the Rose Kennedy Greenway
Boston, MA 02109
Food, music, and art collide at the pARTy on The Greenway at the Wharf District Parks for a massive celebration of Greater Boston’s creative community and the kickoff of ArtWeek Boston. This block party-meets-nighttime-arts festival will feature a one-of-a-kind musical performance by The ECCE Ensemble who will premiere their performance of Allegorical Gardening: a music, dance, and visual arts event that combines Ai Weiwei’s Circle of Animals / Zodiac Heads, Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Tierkreis, and the choreography of Creative Collaborator Colin Gee, around the The Greenway’s Rings Fountain.
Musicians Ernst Karel & Bhob Rainey (duo) and Caroline Park (solo) perform original multichannel works within the enormous mezzanine of Boston City Hall. Taking their cues from the unusual raw concrete forms and cavernous space of this icon of Brutalist architecture, the musicians will use the room’s fantastic, complex acoustics to shape and diffuse the sounds.
At this first-of-its-kind event, HUBweek, the Museum of Science, Boston Children’s Hospital, Hacking Pediatrics, and Microsoft invite children and their families to join us in reimagining the future of health. Using the beloved game of Minecraft, participants and patients from Boston Children’s Hospital will work together to build the hospital of the future in worlds created specially for this event. Children will be encouraged to think creatively and to build spaces that promote fun, health, and happiness.
Created to inspire youth to take interest in the fields of science, technology, engineering, math (STEM) and computer science, Google Geek Street has partnered with local technology organizations for a free, fun-filled day of interactive demos like virtual games, robotics and electronic tinkering. Music, giveaways and tasty treats will be available!
While you’re celebrating HUBweek in Kendall Square, don’t forget to look up at our video wall at 522 Main Street — your #HUBweek tweets may be featured LIVE!
Join us on September 27th and 28th for the Innovation and the City Conference. Innovation and the City is hosted by the Microsoft Technology & Civic Engagement Team, the Venture Café Foundation, and Mass Economics. The conference convenes practitioners, policy makers, and scholars to discuss the strategies, opportunities, and drawbacks associated with the innovation economy and urban economic development. Our goal is to provide a forum for experts and practitioners to discuss building vibrant and inclusive innovation economies in U.S. cities. The conference will be held at the Microsoft New England Research and Development Center in Cambridge’s Kendall Square. Last year’s conference attracted about 200 people for two great days of discussion and networking.
This year’s presentations and panels include:
Cities in the Innovation Economy
How City Governments Can Support Innovation
Building Coalitions for an Innovation Agenda
Innovating Across Borders
Innovation in the Just City
Panel moderators include Jennifer Bradley, co-author of The Metropolitan Revolution and founding director of the Center for Urban Innovation at the Aspen Institute; Toni Griffin, Professor in Practice at Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) and founder of Urban Planning for the American City; and Patrick Larkin, Interim Executive Director at Mass Technology Collaborative (MTC) and Director of the Innovation Institute at MTC. Dr. Maarten Hajer, Professor of Urban Futures at University of Utrecht and Chief Curator of International Architecture Biennale Rotterdam 2016, will give the keynote address, “The City as Public Domain: Strategies for Cities in the Next Economy.”
Please visit the conference website, www.innovationandthecity.org, for a detailed agenda, videos of past conference sessions, registration, and additional information. You may also register on Eventbrite here.
Teresa M. Lynch is the Principal of Mass Economics. In this role, Teresa works with national philanthropic and policy leaders to create programmatic and investment frameworks to address economic and social inequality across the U.S, as well as with local organizations and governments to develop neighborhood and city strategies that generate economic vitality and broad-based opportunity for residents. Her most recent work has focused on developing economic cluster strategies that align with cities land and workforce assets; evaluating urban innovation assets and potential innovation districts; and working to develop frameworks and strategies for inclusive core city economic growth and neighborhood entrepreneurship.
After highlighting the winners of 16 separate impact categories, from Emerging Executive of the Year to Best Use of Internet of Things to Innovative Technology, the awards shifted to more individual honors. The MassTLC Distinguished Leadership Award, honored to individuals growing, changing, and inspiring lives through developing and promoting technology in the region, was awarded to the following leaders:
Want to join these Distinguished Leaders in transforming your community?
Join New Urban Mechanics in igniting Boston’s public spaces at the Public Space Invitational (or create your own!). Follow Vicky Wu Davis’ footsteps and volunteer to support YouthCITIES’ March-to-May Bootcamp or recommend the program to a teen near you. Nominate a nonprofit for Resilient Coders’ Resilient Rebuild, which will (re)build a website for a non-profit organization for free. Consider how you’re promoting diversity in your company like Akamai does, and seek companies who want to take real action to drive diversity. Or… enact your own idea to make direct change.
Congratulations to all the winners!
Missed out on the gala? Catch up below with some of the top tweets from the night:
In Boston, we are rich with nonprofits doing amazing work. Many of these organizations extend their impact through the use of technology. And while technology can help nonprofits achieve their mission, deploying or implementing that technology is often challenging. We are also fortunate to reside in a thriving tech community, full of professionals who understand the tools that could help nonprofits scale and extend their reach. Connecting nonprofits to the tech community is the goal of the fantastic New England GiveCamp.
In its seventh year, New England GiveCamp is a weekend-long event where technology professionals donate their time and unique talents to provide software solutions for local charities and other non-profit organizations. This event enables the tech community to utilize their skills to give back to the organizations and nonprofits in New England. Kudos to Jim O’Neil and the whole GiveCamp team – we can’t wait to see what you build this year.
— Aimee Sprung
The weekend of October 14-16th marks the Seventh Annual New England GiveCamp, a 48-hour hackathon that benefits non-profit organizations in the Boston and greater New England area.
Each year about 80 volunteers – including software developers, graphic designers, social media consultants, videographers, copywriters, and project managers – form teams to provide technical services to the 20 or so non-profit organizations that apply to the camp. Many of the projects are focused on creating or updating website properties, but past efforts have also included logo, letterhead, and brochure creation, social-media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) strategy, and integration with 3rd party systems like Salesforce and PayPal. Alumni of the program include Science Club for Girls, Catching Joy, Boston Volunteers, Children’s Charter Trauma Clinic, RESPOND, the Rock and Roll Library, and dozens of others from across New England.
We are actively searching for non-profit organizations to round out the “class of 2016,” as well as sponsors for financial and in-kind donations, and, of course, on-site volunteers to lend their expertise. We are grateful to have Microsoft as a sponsor since the beginning days of GiveCamp.
Additionally, follow us on Twitter @NEGiveCamp, friend us on Facebook, email us at email@example.com, and check out the following TedX talk from co-founder Kelley Muir on how this event has impacted both the organizations and the volunteers. We look forward to seeing you October 14 – 16!
Developers and architects, this one’s for you! Please join us on Oct. 4 for an exciting (and free), one-day event that’s focused 100 percent on you: Beyond //build. We’ll be diving into some of the most talked-about topics from //build, discussing cool, new technology developments, and revealing what’s next for Microsoft and cloud developers.
You’ll have a chance to go deep into a range of topics, like how to build on Microsoft’s 20-plus years of AI development to create more intuitive and engaging user experiences with Microsoft Cognitive Services, Cortana and conversational bots. You can learn how DevOps can transform your development practices and help you deliver innovative applications faster.
John Montgomery, Partner Director of Program Management for Microsoft’s visual studio team will keynote the event. As an attendee, you will also have the opportunity to hear from some of Microsoft’s top technology architects and developer experience experts who will guide you through sessions in your choice of three tracks:
Next Generation Client Experiences
Timothy Baggs, technology architect from Microsoft’s Technology Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is an expert in app development in speech, gesture, cognitive intelligence, cloud and the internet of things. He’ll share data, insights and advice around how to:
Create more personal experiences using conversational bots with the Microsoft Bot Framework and Bot Builder. Learn how to build a bot with your existing code, generate conversational dialogs from scratch and give your bot skills with natural language processing and deep learning technology. Walk away with tools to build a great bot that can connect with users, wherever they are.
Build universal apps that can run on XBOX, Windows and HoloLens. Dive into the Universal App Model and see examples of code running across various devices including laptop, phone and an IoT device. As a bonus, we’ll show how you can use the Microsoft Band to extend your application experience to your user’s wrist. And who knows what other toys might make an appearance?
Push the limits of Cortana to support a wide range of new user engagement models. Stretch the bonds of what’s possible with Cortana by looking at how Microsoft Cognitive Services and machine learning can expand Cortana’s understanding of the world. This session will be technology- and demo-heavy, so make sure your seat backs and tray tables are in their full and upright position!
The Power of Azure
Rich Ross, a solution architect and technical solutions professional with the Microsoft Philadelphia office, brings his expertise from more than two decades of experience leading cross-functional, global teams through the complete system development cycle to show how you can:
Develop HyperScale web and mobile applications with Azure App Service. Learn some key steps to make sure your app truly scales, from simply making sure your app is stateless, through fine-tuning App Service to optimize for scale and leveraging services across Azure to scale. Up your game with best practices guidance based on real projects deployed on App Service.
Create smarter and more engaging experiences using Microsoft Cognitive Services. Bring the knowledge of the web right into the experience, while interacting with users in a natural way and across multiple languages. Explore service-encompassing technologies like computer vision, face recognition, speech processing and how to integrate those services into your web, mobile and desktop applications.
Build and operate always-on, scalable, distributed applications using Azure Service Fabric. Learn how to build highly available, low-latency applications using a microservices approach that can be deployed into Service Fabric clusters running in different environments, including Microsoft Azure, on-premises with Windows Server or other clouds. You’ll come away with a deeper understanding of how this microservices platform enables you to build and manage applications at scale, and you’ll be ready to get started using the built-in programming models.
Chris Bowen, senior developer technology specialist for Visual Studio and Azure in Microsoft’s Developer Experience (DX) group, is an architect and developer with more than 20 years of tech industry experience. He’ll draw from his extensive DevOps expertise to help you:
Discover the DevOps culture and how these tools and practices make development teams more productive. In a rapidly evolving world that is defined by the velocity of its deliveries, DevOps is now becoming a quintessential requirement for every organization. Learn about the benefits of a DevOps culture and how it breaks down the barriers and conflicting priorities that often exist between development and operations teams. Learn how, by working together, we can deliver systems into production more often, with increased quality and more effective management and support.
Learn how to use DevOps to get innovative applications into users’ hands faster. Get started along the path to a DevOpsNirvana. This demo-heavy session will use Team Services and Azure as a backdrop to show how DevOps can help your teams realize value faster than ever before.
See how DevOps enables you to deliver high-quality, modern applications again and again. Learn how PowerShell, PowerShell DSC, Azure ARM Templates and Team Services are used to dynamically create environments, deploy to those environments and test the solution. Once in production, see how to leverage Application Insights to complete the DevOps story and drive production feedback into the backlog. This will be a deep dive, so bring your scuba gear!
Register here for the Microsoft New England Beyond //build event.