Tag Archives: mark

Predictive maintenance vendor launches AI warranty

In a development that appears to mark a new confidence in AI’s abilities, Augury, a monitoring and predictive maintenance software vendor, added a repair and replacement warranty to its Machine Health platform that compensates customers if a missed diagnosis leads to failure of certain equipment.

The AI warranty is one of the first of its kind in the predictive maintenance field, even though the technologies have been used for years.

“Field service monitoring and predictive maintenance are hot topics and there are many initiatives around that leverage machine learning and AI,” said Alan Pelz-Sharpe, founder of market advisory and research firm Deep Analysis. “It’s an area that will grow substantially over the coming years but few to date have committed SLAs [service-level agreements] such as this to back up their claims.”

AI warranty

Called Guaranteed Diagnostics, the warranty policy offers customers of Augury’s predictive maintenance platform up to $100,000 for repairs and replacement if the software incorrectly predicts when a machine part may fail, leading to the machine breaking down and work being lost.

The warranty offering is the result of a partnership between Augury, founded in 2011, and specialty insurer and reinsurer Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company (HSB).

Through its venture capital arm, HSB, a subsidiary of Germany-based reinsurance giant Munich Re, signed a partnership with Augury and invested in Augury’s Series A funding round in 2015. Munich Re later co-led Augury’s Series B round.

Over the years, HSB’s data science, engineering and insurance teams partnered with Augury on pilot projects and use cases. Guaranteed Diagnostics is the latest joint project.

Augury will provide Guaranteed Diagnostics, which was unveiled June 9, customers of Augury’s flagship Machine Health platform at no additional cost, said Saar Yoskovitz, co-founder and CEO of Augury.

It’s an area that will grow substantially over the coming years.
Alan Pelz-SharpeFounder, Deep Analysis

Augury is slowly rolling out the insurance plan to a subset of customers and a specific group of machines and plans to offer the insurance to most of its customers by the end of the year, Yoskovitz said. To start, the warranty policy will only apply to utility room machines, such as pumps and compressors, with no timeline yet for it applying to production line machines.

“When you go to production lines, it gets a bit more complex,” Yoskovitz said.

HSB and Munich Re have backed AI and analytics companies in the past, said John Riggs, senior vice president, head of technologies and Americas IoT at HSB. But Augury’s platform differentiates it in the mark because it’s focused on industrial equipment and vibration monitoring, he said.

HSB seemingly sees the potential in AI warranties, as Riggs said it plans on creating similar insurance policies with other AI and analytics companies.

Augury, predictive maintenance, AI warranty
Predictive maintenance vendor Augury now offers a special AI warranty program

Informing the industry

The purpose of Guaranteed Diagnostics is to not only attract more customers, but also to push the predictive maintenance industry to adopt similar AI warranties, which Yoskovitz said benefits other vendors and their customers.

Yet, according to Pelz-Sharpe, this type of insurance policy can create as much harm as good.

“Much like preventive healthcare, everyone is in favor of it, but nobody wants to pay for it. Meanwhile, others get rich off the back of poor health situations,” he said.

“It’s a cost versus risk situation — many failures will be covered by insurance, but failures brought on by normal wear and tear will not be,” Pelz-Sharpe said. “So, predictive AI has a role to play for sure, but how big that role will be is unclear at this point.”

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Xbox Series X: The Most Powerful and Compatible Next-Gen Console with Thousands of Games at Launch – Xbox Wire

Gaming leaves an indelible mark on all of us. From the epic stories and universes we experience playing as our favorite heroes, to the heat of intense competition, victory and defeat. Through the shared accomplishments we achieve as a worldwide community, gaming brings us together.

Thousands of developers from across the globe are currently creating the next generation of transformative games, many of which can only be realized through the power and innovation of the Xbox Series X. Led by Halo Infinite, our 15 Xbox Game Studios teams are hard at work creating the biggest and best line up of exclusives in Xbox history. We are incredibly excited to show many of the new games in development for Xbox Series X soon.

Preserving Your Gaming Legacy

As gamers, we also know how important it is to preserve and respect our gaming legacies. Your favorite games and franchises, your progression and achievements, and the friendships and communities you create through gaming should all move with you across generations. Not only that, your favorite gaming accessories and peripherals should also move forward with you as well.

Our goal has always been to empower gamers to play the best versions of games from across four generations of Xbox at the launch of Xbox Series X. These principles were key to us from Day 1 and influenced many of our design decisions as we started on our journey to create our most powerful and compatible console ever.

Compatibility Journey

Our compatibility journey began with the announcement of Xbox 360 Backwards Compatibility coming to Xbox One at E3 2015. I clearly remember that first magical experience of jumping into one of my favorite Xbox 360 games, Final Fantasy XIII, and instantly resuming where I had left off years before as if no time had passed at all. I was instantly transported back to that special time and all the great memories and personal connections I have made through gaming. The energy and passion from the community continues to motivate us to this day.

Through a tremendous amount of hard work, technical innovation, and partnership with the industry’s leading creators we were not only able to bring more than 500 Xbox 360 games to Xbox One, we were able to go back even further into the archives and resurrect some of your favorite franchises from the original Xbox. The very same team who created new innovative ways to preserve and enhance your existing catalog of games on Xbox One is the same team pushing the envelope again with Xbox Series X.

Maintaining compatibility presents a massive technical challenge as fundamental system and chip architectures advance across generations. Developers highly optimize their games to the unique capabilities and performance of a console to provide the best experience for their players. To make the Xbox Series X our most compatible console ever required both significant innovation in the design of the custom processor as well as the unique design of the Xbox operating system and hypervisor at the heart of our next generation platform.

With more than 100,000 hours of play testing already completed, thousands of games are already playable on Xbox Series X today, from the biggest blockbusters to cult classics and fan favorites. Many of us in Team Xbox play on the Xbox Series X daily as our primary console and switching between generations is seamless. By the time we launch this holiday, the team will have spent well over 200,000 hours ensuring your game library is ready for you to jump in immediately.

All Games Play Better on Xbox Series X

Not only should gamers be able to play all of these games from the past, but they should play better than ever before. Backwards compatible games run natively on the Xbox Series X hardware, running with the full power of the CPU, GPU and the SSD. No boost mode, no downclocking, the full power of the Xbox Series X for each and every backward compatible game. This means that all titles run at the peak performance that they were originally designed for, many times even higher performance than the games saw on their original launch platform, resulting in higher and more steady framerates and rendering at their maximum resolution and visual quality. Backwards compatible titles also see significant reductions in in-game load times from the massive leap in performance from our custom NVME SSD which powers the Xbox Velocity Architecture. As I play through my personal backlog as part of our internal testing, all of the incredible games from Xbox One and earlier play best on Xbox Series X.

The team was not content to just rely on the increased hardware performance to improve your playing experience. The team developed new platform level capabilities to ensure all of your games continue to get even better. In partnership with the Xbox Advanced Technology Group, Xbox Series X delivers a new, innovative HDR reconstruction technique which enables the platform to automatically add HDR support to games. As this technique is handled by the platform itself, it allows us to enable HDR with zero impact to the game’s performance and we can also apply it to Xbox 360 and original Xbox titles developed almost 20 years ago, well before the existence of HDR.

In addition, the new Quick Resume feature was designed to not only work with new games, but it can also be enabled for backward-compatible titles. Quick Resume enables players to resume exactly where they left off, across multiple titles, ensuring gamers can get right back to the fun in an instant.

All of these advances happen at the platform level and require no additional work from title developers.

Advancing the State of the Art of Game Preservation

In addition to preserving the legacy of our loyal fans who have been with us since the beginning, we enable entirely new generations of gamers to play and enjoy the timeless games from our past while respecting and honoring their creators.

Beginning with Xbox One X, the compatibility team developed brand new innovations that could be applied to a hand curated list of titles to enhance them even further than what was possible when they were first created. Techniques such as the Heutchy method, which enables titles to render with increased resolutions up to 4K, or applying anisotropic filtering to improve the final image quality bring these classic games up to modern standards, better than ever before.

With all of the additional power and advancements of the Xbox Series X, the compatibility team now has a veritable playground of new capabilities to innovate and push the limits of game preservation and enhancement. The compatibility team has invented brand new techniques that enable even more titles to run at higher resolutions and image quality while still respecting the artistic intent and vision of the original creators. We are also creating whole new classes of innovations including the ability to double the frame rate of a select set of titles from 30 fps to 60 fps or 60 fps to 120 fps. 

The team also continues to listen to feedback from the community on additional titles you would like to see added to the compatibility program. Resurrecting titles from history often presents a complex mix of technical and licensing challenges, but the team is committed to doing everything we can to continue to preserve our collective gaming legacy.

We can’t wait to share more with you as we get closer to the launch of Xbox Series X this holiday.

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Author: Microsoft News Center

Zuckerberg lists benefits, drawbacks of remote work

Facebook Inc.’s co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivered a frank assessment about the benefits of remote work, especially with respect to recruiting. He also listed the drawbacks, uncertainties and the need for improvements in remote work technology. 

But the biggest takeaway from Zuckerberg’s livestream employee town hall Thursday is that the pandemic has permanently changed how work will get done — especially at Facebook. 

“I think that it’s quite possible that over the next five to 10 years, about 50% of our people could be working remotely,” Zuckerberg said.

Zuckerberg sees this as a major cultural change for the firm.

“I just think COVID is going to be with us for a while to come,” Zuckerberg said. “That means that we can’t and don’t have to figure out every single detail about what the long-term is going to look like right now.”

Zuckerberg listed some clear benefits of remote work. It “gives access to a lot of new pools of talent,” Zuckerberg said. Specifically, people who would never consider moving to a bigger city for a job, he said. “I’m very excited about that.”

Another benefit to remote work is retention. “Improved retention is as valuable — if not more — than being able to recruit new people,” Zuckerberg said.

I think that it’s quite possible that over the next five to 10 years, about 50% of our people could be working remotely.
Mark ZuckerbergCo-founder and CEO, Facebook Inc.

While his remarks were directed at Facebook employees, Zuckerberg’s theme was universal. Every firm, it seems, is trying to figure out how to adapt now and after the pandemic ends.   

Flexibility is top employee choice

Working in the office remains popular at Facebook. In an internal survey, about 50% of Facebook employees “said that they really just want to get back into the office as soon as possible,” Zuckerberg said. 

The largest preference, about 60%, wanted flexibility, a mix of being able to work in the office and from home. Employees weren’t limited to one choice in the survey.

The employee sentiment about flexibility is in line with Gartner’s assessment about the future of work. 

“I think the norm of the 9 to 5, Monday through Friday, brick and mortar office space will be replaced with a much more flexible environment — both in location and time,” Liz Joyce, a Gartner analyst, said. 

“In the near term, the reality of reopening while still maintaining social distancing will drive that flexibility,” Joyce said. “Many organizations will have to adjust schedules to allow smaller groups of employees in the office.”

That is true for Facebook, which employs about 45,000 people. The social network giant has already told its employees they can expect to work from home through 2020. About 95% of its employees are now working remotely. 

Facebook, when it reopens offices at some future point, will limit occupancy to 25% capacity. “A lot of us are going to have to be working remotely for some time to come,” Zuckerberg said.  

Tools are falling short

Zuckerberg didn’t indicate problems with worker productivity but said messaging and video chat tools were falling short of “building bonds” between employees in the company. They were more transactional, he said. But this is also an area that Facebook is working on with its enterprise Workplace collaboration platform. 

Zuckerberg raised long-term questions about balancing in-office and remote work, such as: “How do we make offices effective and full of energy if a lot of people who have desks aren’t around?” 

Zuckerberg continued to point to a need for employees to meet from time to time, as well as building tools for collaboration. He also announced some new office hubs in Denver, Dallas and Atlanta, which seemed intended to create some focal points for people hired and working in those regions.

From a cost perspective, Zuckerberg said a shift to remote work wouldn’t necessarily lead to cost savings, a conclusion he based on discussions with other firms that have undergone such a transition. “There are just different costs here,” he said, and that includes more tooling to make remote work offices function, including good audio, lighting and internet connection for video. 

Not all firms will follow Facebook’s approach. 

Consider OpenText in Waterloo, Ontario. Like Facebook, the content management firm shifted 95% of its 15,000 employees to remote work in response to the pandemic. 

At some point, a majority of OpenText employees will return to their offices, but just not as many as before. 

OpenText expects about 2,250 employees, or about 15% of its workforce, will continue to work remotely full-time, or more than double the pre-pandemic number of remote workers. The increase in remote work will allow OpenText to close some smaller offices. The large development centers in Silicon Valley, Europe, India and the Washington, D.C., area will remain.

“OpenText has always had a relaxed work-from-home policy” to support families with young children, people with special needs and those with long commutes, said Muhi Majzoub, executive vice president and chief product officer.

“Many of our employees have told us in previous employee surveys that they actually prefer and feel more productive working from home” instead of dealing with long commutes, Majzoub said.  

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International Women’s Day 2020: Creating opportunity for all – Microsoft Partner Network

Sunday, March 8th will mark a day that’s close to my heart, International Women’s Day.

The day shines a light on the progress we’ve made in recognizing the potential of a diverse and inclusive economy and the power that comes from developing strong, female role models. Yet while we can reflect on that progress, we must also acknowledge the work that still must be done. It is critical for me that we address the challenges that still exist for women in today’s business landscape—there are many women around the world who are locked out of opportunities many take for granted, for a variety of reasons.

I’m proud of the work we’ve done at Microsoft so far to increase access and opportunities for women through our workplace culture, policies and technologies. I believe we have a responsibility to highlight other organizations that have also prioritized diversity and inclusion and encourage others to do the same.

Building opportunity and access for all through technology

Technology helps organizations empower their employees, optimize their operations, connect with their customers and transform their products. It’s also a key factor in building an inclusive economy; an economy that harnesses the power of diversity to create opportunities and positive business outcomes for all. At Microsoft, we understand that a diverse work force inspires diverse solutions, which ultimately helps drive innovations that benefit everyone.

That’s why I am excited to share that Microsoft is supporting the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals through our #BuildFor2030 campaign. Through October, we will be highlighting Microsoft partners with solutions that align to the UN’s goals. And in celebration of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day on March 8th, we will be focusing on solutions by women-led organizations within our Microsoft partner community. I encourage you to read more about these incredible innovations here.

These solutions showcase the entrepreneurial spirit of women in technology—a community that is grossly underrepresented in the marketplace today. Recent studies suggest, if women and men participated equally as entrepreneurs, global GDP could rise by approximately 3% to 6%, boosting the global economy by as much as $5 trillion. If we work together, we can start that shift, and create more opportunities for everyone.

Did you know?

According to the McKinsey Global Institute:

  • Companies in the top quartile for gender diversity are 21 percent more profitable than companies in the bottom quartile
  • Companies in the top quartile for ethnic and cultural diversity are 33 percent more likely to outperform companies in the bottom quartile
  • Closing the gender gap in the workforce could add $28 trillion to the global GDP
  • Closing the gender gap in the workforce could add $28 trillion to the global GDP

Women in Cloud

In January, Microsoft hosted the Women in Cloud Summit in Redmond, and I had the privilege of discussing how we can all work to create more opportunities for women in technology. Women in Cloud is a community-led organization that brings together female entrepreneurs, global leaders, corporations, and policy makers to support economic development for women in tech. They have vowed to help create $1 billion in economic access and opportunity by 2030.

As an executive sponsor of this initiative, I have sat down with many female business owners and have heard their struggles, triumphs and breakthroughs. Everyone I’ve met has emphasized the importance of access to technology, customers, partners, and investments. My team and I are focused on creating access for their growth through co-marketing and co-selling opportunities as we strive to create an inclusive marketplace for all partners to deploy cloud solutions and services.

Building for the future

While we are focused on creating equal access and opportunity for women business owners today, we must also prepare the next generation of entrepreneurs and female tech leaders. To participate in the global economy and businesses of the future, understanding and innovating with technology will be a core skill of any job. Young women need to embrace technology and develop skills and passions that will be key success factors in a world where technology is part of every business in every industry.

I’d like to invite all Microsoft partners to join other impact-oriented technology solution leaders in the #BuildFor2030 campaign to highlight their innovative solutions. And in honor of International Women’s Day, I encourage you to take action and drive momentum towards creating a gender-equal society by supporting this campaign.

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Author: Steve Clarke

For Sale – Macbook Pro, Mid 2009 – No WiFi/Bluetooth PLEASE READ

Sorry to be a pain, but I still don’t understand what I am seeing in photo 6. You say the pi type mark shows when the screen is black, but photo 6 is not the screen is it? Surely photo 6 is the outside of the lid, hence I can see the illuminated apple logo…so I don’t understand how the mark can show through the aluminum…and what is the capital T doing there? I’m interested…perhaps as a restoration project….

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OpenText’s Mark Barrenechea talks Google, AI, future of CMS

Since he took the helm as CEO of OpenText in 2012, Mark Barrenechea ushered the company through arguably the biggest change in content management technology’s history: On-premises applications migrated to the cloud, which in turn were broken down into content services.

His company, based in Waterloo, Ontario, serves customers all along the digital transformation spectrum. Some still use paper-based workflows and ingest enterprise content into applications hosted on premises. Others are all-cloud, and automate processes with the latest AI and machine learning tech. 

Barrenechea, who took on the added role of CTO in 2016, discussed where content management is going and how AI is changing everything about the technology, workflows and even the definition of content itself.

OpenText started in 1991 and has gone through many chapters in its history. How would you describe the current chapter?

Mark Barrenechea: We started out as a search company, evolved into a content management company in our second phase, and since have evolved into enterprise information management. [EIM] is a very wide, horizontal platform to manage, deliver, secure and exchange unstructured data.

OpenText CEO Mark Barrenechea and Google's Kevin Ichhpurani
The Google-OpenText partnership is deeper than with other cloud providers, OpenText CEO Mark Barrenechea said, pictured here with Google’s Kevin Ichhpurani discussing the companies’ joint plans during last July’s OpenText Enterprise World keynote.

Over the decades, OpenText acquired many companies. In the last few years, Dell EMC’s Documentum and Guidance Software stand out. How would you describe OpenText’s acquisition philosophy?

Barrenechea: We’re not a ‘public private equity firm.’ We’re a strategic acquirer, building a software platform for information management. Through that lens, we are going to remain an acquirer, remain a consolidator. [An acquisition] has to be a strategic fit in our EIM market. It also has to fill a green space for us, whether it be some functionality, industry or geography that can accelerate our time to market. It also has to meet our financial discipline around value, return on investment capital, payback and integration into the tech stack.

How has AI changed content management and content services over the last few years?

We’re going to support all the clouds, but we’re going deeper with Google in order to add capabilities to the OpenText platform.
Mark BarrenecheaCEO, OpenText

Barrenechea: Maybe this comes with time — we’ll see if it’s wisdom — but I’ve been in software more than 30 years, and I’ve seen a lot of trends come and go. B2B2C tech, dot-com, big data. AI is real because it’s the natural next extension to extreme automation. Once you automate a corporate process, and you automate it for a long time, and, if your data’s really good, you want to go into that data and learn as much as you can to create a better process, company or business model.

AI [can do that], but it’s also going to take time. I’m in a lot of discussions where we tried to go get this insight or outcome, but the process wasn’t quite complete yet. Or the data wasn’t quite right. Those are the battle fronts right now. I’ve seen a lot of progress in getting the process and data right and now AI and machine learning is producing very actionable insights, whether that’s into talent all the way through to field service preventive maintenance to cash collections. It’s also intersecting with GDPR and privacy as to what can be shared.   

OpenText introduced its own Magellan AI two years ago, but you’re also partnering with Google for AI services. To outsiders, it kind of looks like you’re competing with yourself.

Barrenechea: One of the things we’ve learned is that you have to bring in many sources of data — and keep enriching the data — to get actionable insights. We’ve been bringing new features into Magellan, but we need to look at third-party data sources as well and have a factory to be able to cleanse and merge these different data sources.

But it can’t all be just OpenText data and an OpenText tool to provide insight. So, the partnership with Google provides different tools, different data in different languages, facial recognition going to metadata, speech to metadata, being able to translate and transcribe. For us, it’s about enriching OpenText tools, and Google helps us do that at scale with market-proven technology. It’s quite complementary.

Are you doing the same with AWS and Microsoft Azure partnerships, or is Google a favored partner, and how does it figure into the OpenText roadmap?

Barrenechea: We support all of them, as well as other clouds hosted by Rackspace and global service integrators. A customer can come along and deploy on their own, or we can provide a managed service. But there are features in Google Cloud that we’re going to go deeper in: G Suite, the desktop products, browser, clickstream, transcription and AI. We’re going to support all the clouds, but we’re going deeper with Google in order to add capabilities to the OpenText platform.

What technologies on the OpenText roadmap should customers and prospective customers watch in the near term?

Barrenechea: First, technologies that enable sustainability and responsibility: Enabling ethical supply chains; enabling the circular economy from recycle, reuse, replant; supporting efficacy — track and trace the minerals that make up products. We have a lot of activity in our products to enable this over our business network and content services. It’s a real area to watch.

Second, the volume of content is exploding; handling that with our content services and business network.

In the next three to five years, the center of our world will not be a document. The center of content services will move from a document to an ID. Being able to capture all the metadata and transactions around an ID, whether it’s a person, application or thing and making everything machine-readable — voice, transcripts, facial recognition, photos videos, PDF — is front and center, what we’re working on.

Editor’s Note: This Q&A was edited for clarity and brevity.

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For Sale – Apple MacBook 2017 space grey

Selling MacBook 12” 2017 space grey in good condition, the odd small mark on the top and bottom, no dents on top/bottom or corners.

Everything works has it should.

Battery count is 104
No warranty left on it.
No marks on screen
Comes with box and plug/usb-c lead.

Comes with cover to protect it.

Price and currency: £630
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: PayPal/BT
Location: Lincoln
Advertised elsewhere?: Advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

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Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

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For Sale – MacBook Pro 13” with Touch Bar 2017

This is 12 months old, boxed & not a mark or scratch.

3.1Ghz i5 CPU
8GB Ram

Price and currency: £1150
Delivery: Delivery cost is not included
Payment method: BT
Location: Bolton
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

This message is automatically inserted in all classifieds forum threads.
By replying to this thread you agree to abide by the trading rules detailed here.
Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

Microsoft, Amazon, Google, IBM, Oracle, and Salesforce issue joint statement for healthcare interoperability

Photo credit: ITI
Pictured, L-R: Dean Garfield (ITI) – Alec Chalmers (Amazon) – Mark Dudman (IBM) – Peter Lee (Microsoft) –– Greg Moore (Google)

Interoperability is an overlapping set of technical and policy challenges, from data access to common data models to information exchange to workflow integration – and these challenges often pose a barrier to healthcare innovation. Microsoft has been engaged for many years on developing best practices for interoperability across industries. Today, as health IT community leaders get together at the CMS Blue Button 2.0 Developer Conference here in Washington, DC, we’re pleased to announce that Microsoft has joined with Amazon, Google, IBM, Oracle, and Salesforce in support of healthcare interoperability with the following statement:

We are jointly committed to removing barriers for the adoption of technologies for healthcare interoperability, particularly those that are enabled through the cloud and AI. We share the common quest to unlock the potential in healthcare data, to deliver better outcomes at lower costs.

In engaging in this dialogue, we start from these foundational assumptions:

  • The frictionless exchange of healthcare data, with appropriate permissions and controls, will lead to better patient care, higher user satisfaction, and lower costs across the entire health ecosystem. 
  • Healthcare data interoperability, to be successful, must account for the needs of all global stakeholders, empowering patients, healthcare providers, payers, app developers, device and pharmaceuticals manufacturers, employers, researchers, citizen scientists, and many others who will develop, test, refine, and scale the deployment of new tools and services. 
  • Open standards, open specifications, and open source tools are essential to facilitate frictionless data exchange. This requires a variety of technical strategies and ongoing collaboration for the industry to converge and embrace emerging standards for healthcare data interoperability, such as HL7 FHIR and the Argonaut Project. 
  • We understand that achieving frictionless health data exchange is an ongoing process, and we commit to actively engaging among open source and open standards communities for the development of healthcare standards, and conformity assessment to foster agility to account for the accelerated pace of innovation. 

Together, we believe that a robust industry dialogue about healthcare interoperability needs will advance this cause, and hence are pleased to issue this joint statement.

While I’m new here at Microsoft, I’ve been focused over the past decade on lowering the barriers to innovation in healthcare, working closely with open source and standards development communities. I’m happy that my first blog post here at Microsoft aligns so well with my charter to collaborate on open cloud architecture with the healthcare community.

Electronic Health Records (EHRs) are approaching universal adoption in US hospitals and ambulatory practices, thanks in part to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs. The 21st Century Cures Act will make digital health data even more accessible with the call for open APIs.

In the context of US healthcare, many health record systems have focused on consistent representation for a key set of data elements defined by the Meaningful Use Common Clinical Data Set. As support for this common data set grows, it becomes easier to plug new tools into clinical workflows, analyze clinical histories, collect new data, and coordinate care. Many of these technical capabilities have been available within small, tight-knit health systems for a long time – but developing these capabilities has required complex, custom engineering and ongoing maintenance and support. Driving toward open architecture makes adoption faster, easier and cheaper.

As a medical student, I used to practice what I called “rogue interop” – connecting to services where I could, and cobbling together the data platform I wanted. It all worked, but it was a nightmare to maintain. Later when I joined the research faculty at Boston Children’s Hospital and started work on the SMART Health IT Platform, we wanted to build a robust platform to isolate app developers from the underlying details of an EHR system, so we started by designing new, open APIs from scratch and bridging to the underlying vendor system.

This work caught the attention of Health Level Seven (HL7), the healthcare standards development organization responsible for several generations of health data standards. When HL7 convened a “Fresh Look Task Force” to invite perspectives about newer, API-based approaches to data exchange, I was pleased to participate, sharing my experience from SMART.

This task force (among many influences) ultimately inspired the creation of Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) – a more open, agile approach to the development of healthcare standards. I got involved with the FHIR community early when I wrote the first open-source FHIR server. Five years later, it’s been inspiring to see so many vendors, including Microsoft, supporting the emerging FHIR standard.

I joined Microsoft because it is among the largest contributors to open standards and open source. We actively contribute innovative technology to standards efforts in many industries, and we implement thousands of standards in our products that are formulated by a broad diversity of standards bodies. Just over the past year we’ve seen deep commitments to cross-cloud consumer data portability through the Data Transfer Project, an interoperable ecosystem for AI models through the Open Neural Network Exchange (ONNX), and the world’s leading software development platform through the acquisition of GitHub.

We at Microsoft are taking a collaborative approach to building open tools that will help the healthcare community, including cloud-hosted APIs and services for AI and machine learning. Microsoft understands that true interoperability in healthcare requires end-to end solutions, rather than independent pieces, which may not work together.

Most recently, we’ve added support for FHIR to the Dynamics Business Application Platform through the Dynamics 365 Healthcare Accelerator, and developed an open source Azure Security and Compliance Blueprint for Health Data and AI for deploying a FHIR-enabled, HIPAA/HITRUST in Azure. These solutions are results of Microsoft teams working closely with our partners to ensure all components of our product portfolio work together to serve the unique needs of healthcare scenarios.

Transforming healthcare means working together with organizations across the ecosystem. Today’s joint interoperability statement reflects the feedback from our healthcare customers and partners, and together we will lay a technical foundation to support value-based care. We expect that the assumptions from our joint statement will continue to evolve and be refined based on this open dialog with the industry.

Please join the conversation. You can find me on Twitter @JoshCMandel. If you want to participate, comment or learn more about FHIR, you can reach our FHIR Community chat at https://chat.fhir.org.

Cuphead Goes Triple Platinum! – | Studio MDHR

Hello friends! We’re barely past the halfway mark of 2018, and are humbled to announce that Cuphead has already reached over 3 million copies sold! It’s hard for us to express just how appreciative we are to everyone who has played and enjoyed our niche little run & gun game with the wacky rubber-hose characters.

To celebrate this huge milestone, we’re putting Cuphead on sale on Steam and Xbox for the next couple of days! So if you haven’t had a chance to wallop the Devil, it’s a good day for a swell battle!

We’ll also be marking the occasion here at Studio MDHR with some extra-special giveaways over the next few days. Keep an eye out on Twitter or Facebook for some fun surprises.

Looking back, 2018 has been a very exciting year for us.

The big highlight, of course, was getting the chance to pull the curtain back on the project we’ve been working on since the original game’s release: our upcoming DLC, The Delicious Last Course!

We’ve also been so fortunate to be able to share in the adventure with some amazing people. We met the legendary animator James Baxter at this year’s Annie Awards in February, and somehow managed to convince him to do an on-stage animation collaboration with us at E3!

In June, we cheered on the amazing Mexican Runner as he delivered a lightning fast and hilariously entertaining speedrun at Summer Games Done Quick 2018. It’s such a thrill to see people still finding new and exciting ways to explore the Inkwell Isles.

So while we’ll mostly have our pencils to paper for the rest of the year, we still have a couple little tricks up our sleeve before the end of 2018. Stay tuned to our social channels to be the first to know! Hi dee ho!