@Scale conference

There are hundreds of tech conferences around the world and everyone is different. One of them, @Scale, is a series of events for engineers who build systems working in huge scale. Systems which handle traffic from millions of people, have extremely complex infrastructure or are maintained and developed by tens/hundreds of software engineers.

Not everyone or every company will be there. But some of us for sure. If you want to be ready (or you are just curious), I highly encourage to see video recordings from lates @Scale Conference which took place at San Jose Convention Center, 31st of August.

https://atscaleconference.com/videos-articles/

(Video) Abstract: The Art of Design Best invested binge-watching ever

According to Wikipedia:

Binge-watching, also called binge-viewing or marathon-viewing, is the practice of watching television for a long time span, usually a single television show.

It’s Saturday. Sometimes you are simply out of fuel and the only gas station is your couch. So if there is no help for you and you need to spend all day (binge-)watching TV, here is my proposition to not feel guilty about wasted time tomorrow:

Abstract: The Art of Design

It’s always great to see inspiring people. True passion, devotion, purpose, creativity – this is what Abstract is about.

My favorite episode: Tinker Hatfield, the man behind Nike Air Max and Air Jordan.
But to be completely honest, all others are equally good. You won’t regret watching any of them!

(Video) 1% better every day

How to achieve long term goals? Continuously make small steps toward a success. If we use the power of habit, we’ll automate a process of getting better, every single day.

Do you want to decrease the number of times when you open social media from your device? Remove Facebook/Twitter/Instagram from your launch screen and make sure that you need to tap at least a couple of times to get there.
Design something to make your good habits easier to achieve and add more steps between you and bad behaviors.

Do you have 25 minutes more? See these and many more hints from James Clear about how to be 1% better every day.

 

Face Id

Yesterday there was another big day for Apple. During their “Special Event” (The first-ever event at the Steve Jobs Theater) we could see new Apple Watches, TV and iPhones, including the most advanced and desirable – iPhone X.

Among all new awesomeness: edge-to-edge screen, Neural Engine (piece of hardware dedicated for Machine Learning computations) or Animoji, there was something that can be the bigger revolution than we could think.

Face Id

Thanks to Face Id we will be able to unlock our device just with our face. Face recognition will replace Touch ID, fingerprint based authentication method – also for Apple Pay. Really complex hardware powered by machine learning solutions will keep our device and our money safe.

Will it work and be reliable enough? We’ll see in next months.
But there is something else worth noting. For the first time, secure device won’t ask us for authentication. There will be no instruction to place your finger or provide your pin/password. Instead, in most cases, iPhone will do it for us, automatically.
Such a small UX thing, but such a big change. You will need to do absolutely nothing and still, you will feel safe and secure.

Of course, probably there will be hacks and imperfections. But the first step toward password-free future was already made. And again, nature did a job for us, making each person unique.

(Book) The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons

Yesterday I published my brief summary of DeepMind’s paper “Neuroscience-Inspired Artificial Intelligence” – publication about how much different fields of AI are inspired by research in neuroscience.

If you are a techie person like me and you don’t know much about the human brain, there is a really great book which I would like to recommend:

The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons by Sam Kean

It’s not only full of information about processes happening inside our heads or roots of our behaviors. It also shows how do we actually know what we know about our brain.

If you have at least general knowledge about AI, you will find a lot of similarities between engineering and biology. Definitely worth reading to broaden your horizons!

 

(Book) Walt Disney

I’ve just finished another great biography: Walt Disney: An American Original.

The book about a great dreamer, creator of Mickey Mouse and Disneyland. This is American story about a poor kid living on the farm who became a millionaire, but who never measured his wealth by the amount of collected money. For Walt Disney money was just a tool to accomplish his master plan – to entertain people.

Disney dedicated his life to do it. And there was always something else to do to make the world better. Disney movie production, Disneyland, Disney World and never finished the prototype of the city of tomorrow: EPCOT. He was realizing his plan by the last days of his life.

Walt wasn’t cryonically frozen as the biggest urban legend about him tells us. He’s not coming back. But his legacy will live with us for the centuries, for sure!

Udacity + Google scholarships for digital skills

Today, during Google Developers Day in Kraków, we could see Google Developers + Udacity cooperation announcement which brings us 60 000 seats in their online courses (Web developer and Android developer, 30k seats in each one). The scholarship is dedicated to residents of Europe, Russia, Egypt, Israel and Turkey. All accepted students will have an opportunity to learn coding Android or Web during 3-months course with a help from Udacity and Google mentors.

Web and Android Scholarship Program

10% of the best ones will have an opportunity to take a part in Nanodegree program for free, which ends with certification and a great chance to find a real job in the picked area.

As a former student of Udacity Nanodegree program (Artificial Intelligence Nanodegree in my case), I can only say: thank you Google, thank you Udacity! This amazing initiative with high-quality materials will bring tons of value for IT industry all over the world:

  • For students and future developers who will have a chance to learn how to build a real product from experts working with those technologies on daily basis,
  • For employers who will have a chance to hire well motivated junior devs with practical experience and great will to gain new skills,
  • For entire IT industry (including Google, Udacity and others), because more IT specialist means faster growth this area,
  • And for the people all around the world. Online and cheap/free access to knowledge means that there are much fewer limitations for those who have a great will to learn and want to be professionals in the future.

Let’s build bridges, not walls.

The Keyword — Funding 75,000 Udacity scholarships to bridge the digital skills gap.

Daily Writing

This is my second day of the daily writing challenge. Still not sure how far I’ll go but I’m well motivated to give a try. Why? Because I’d like to try if it works, what are the profits and most important – because finally, I can! As non-native English speaker, I spent a lot of time practicing this language (including written form). And It seems that finally in less than 30 minutes, with no (or a little) help of Google Translate, I can produce something meaningful.

Besides various motivations, mostly from medium.com, my biggest motivations are: Tobias van Schneider with his weekly emails and daily blog by Fred Wilson, a venture capitalist who’s been writing every day since 2003 (14 years!).

Currently, I have no plan behind this – no reminder, no dedicated time during the day. I would like to see how natural it’s for me.
I’m writing at Google Docs, post by post. Subject? One, the most prominent thing from my head. Goal? Write at least 6 posts per week. If I can’t make it, I’ll think about more strict rules and long term plan.

Quote of the day:

Success is continuously improving who you are, how you live, how you serve, and how you relate. (source)

WWDC17 The most important announcements in Apple world

WWDC17, the 3rd most important product/technology conference of 2017 happening in Silicon Valley (McEnery Convention Center in San Jose).
After Facebook F8 and Google I/O, this time we could see Tim Cook and the Apple’s team showing us what’s new and what the future holds for us in the world of Macs, iPhones, smartwatches and other  products. If you didn’t have spare 2hrs of your time to see Keynote, let me walk you through the most interesting things presented this year. Continue readingWWDC17 The most important announcements in Apple world