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High School Students develop innovative wildfire prediction and prevention device using machine learning technique
Two California sophomores from Monta Vista High School, Cupertino, Aditya Shah and Sanjana Shah, designed and built a Smart Wildfire Sensor device that can be used in a synchronized network of sensors to predict and prevent wildfire in a forest, using machine learning technique. The Smart Wild Fire sensors provide 92% accuracy in predicting fires. The analysis phase maps the images of accumulated biomass in real time.This data in conjunction with other environmental factors like weather, wind, air-quality predicts level of fire hazard accurately. This device uses Google's TensorFlow Neural Network to analyze the captured images in machine-learning phase. This solar powered device is designed to consume minimal power for prolonged battery life and LoRa (long range) low power wireless platform to cover the vast forest areas where GSM signals may not be available. This device is extremely useful to predict and prevent wildfires in the remote terrain where human access is often difficult.
Posted on 11 Mar 2017
Who Should Be Responsible for Pushing Gender Diversity at Work?
Even though research has shown that there are concrete benefits to hiring and promoting more women into leadership positions, progress remains stilted in corporate America - especially at the top. Only 14 percent of executives at Fortune 500 companies are women. While the number of female board members has been increasing, the number of female executives remains stagnant despite efforts and stated corporate commitments to change the ratio. Jeffery Tobias Halter thinks that men should help spearhead efforts to change that. Tobias is the former director of diversity strategy at Coca-Cola, but since 2001, he's been working as a consultant focused on getting men to participate in gender-balancing initiatives. His company, YWomen, has worked with dozens of Fortune 500 companies, including McDonald's, Walmart, GE, Citigroup, and Costo.
Posted on 11 Mar 2017
After all this time, Twitter finally found some women scientists to recommend
New users joining Twitter are presented with a list of recommended people to follow in categories like entertainment, government, gaming and politics. It's telling, then, to see what kinds of people Twitter has deemed influential enough to merit a spot on these lists, which often act as a gateway to hundreds of thousands of followers and widespread public recognition. Until today, if you were interested in ''Technology and Science,'' you were likely given a list that was 100% male. Then, Verge science editor Elizabeth Lopatto tweeted Eveleth's message at Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey - and actually got a response. Apparently, the Twitter team got to work. And the list reflected the changes.
Posted on 11 Mar 2017
'Brogrammer' Attitude May Hinder Technology Diversity
Forty-five percent of female technology workers say they have witnessed exclusionary behavior in the workplace, according to a new study of more than 1,000 tech workers by Austin, Texas-based tech job board Indeed. Experts cite the ''brogrammer'' culture that sometimes crops up in the tech industry, where the nerdy computer-programmer stereotype is shunned and is replaced by a jet set, skirt-chasing, bottle-popping, frat house attitude. Often, this brogrammer clique consists solely of white men. This type of office culture, experts say, encourages exclusivity along racial and gender lines in what is already a white-male-dominated industry. Indeed's study of U.S. employees, conducted by London-based survey consultancy Censuswide, also showed that 64 percent of nonwhite tech workers say they felt uncomfortable at work, compared to just 24 percent of workers who identify as white. Twenty-nine percent of women who responded to the study said they had been discriminated against versus 21 percent of men. About 32 percent of Asian and other nonwhite tech workers said they had experienced discrimination, compared with 22 percent of white employees. Details about the nature of the discrimination were not provided in the study.
Posted on 20 Feb 2017
Silicon Valley's gender gap is the result of computer-game marketing 20 years ago
It's no secret that there is a pronounced gender gap in technology fields. In 2014, 70% of the employees at the top tech companies in Silicon Valley, such as Google, Facebook, and Twitter, were male. In technical roles, this phenomenon is even more pronounced; for example, only 10% of the technical workforce at Twitter is female. But things haven't always been this way. The numbers of enrollments among men and women in computer science were on their way toward parity in the 1970s and early 1980s. In 1984, 37% of computer science graduates were women, but those numbers began to drop dramatically in the middle of the decade. By 2016, that number had been whittled down to 18%. This dip in the 1980s has created a chasm that the past 30 years hasn't been able to overcome - and the dude-centric computer marketing campaigns of that time may be to blame.
Posted on 20 Feb 2017
Canadian government removes kitten from webpage promoting girls in science and technology
A day after the National Post reported about the controversy over a government of Canada website to promote girls in science, the page has been drastically altered and no longer specifically mentions girls or uses images of kittens or fashion as promotional gimmicks. The original campaign (which was at this link) used selfies, kittens and fashion to entice young girls to pursue jobs in science, technology, engineering and math, the so-called STEM fields. Science Minister Kirsty Duncan launched the effort, called Choose Science, on Feb. 11 to mark the International Day for Women and Girls in Science. In addition to social media, the campaign includes a slick website, with resources for parents, teachers and girls to help address the persistent gap of women in those fields.
Posted on 20 Feb 2017
The Linux Foundation and the National Center for Women & Information Technology Release Inclusive Speaker Orientation Course for Events
The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit advancing professional open source management for mass collaboration, and the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) has announced the availability of a free LFC101 - Inclusive Speaker Orientation course to help prepare event presenters and public speakers with background knowledge and practical skills to promote inclusivity in their presentations, messaging, and other communications. Development of the course was first announced in November. The course, offered in three 20-minute, self-paced modules, presents content in a simple and practical way applied to the specialized needs of presenters. Topics covered include crafting presentation messages, scripting discussions, presenting media and subconscious communications. The course is based on NCWIT's ''Unconscious Bias'' messaging, which encompasses the ideas of ''Realize, Recognize, and Respond.'' The Inclusive Speaker Orientation Course is available for free online.
Posted on 20 Feb 2017
The lack of women in tech is getting worse
There has been a lot of talk about how to get women into tech, particularly on company boards and into leadership positions. Yet despite the scrutiny, the number of boards with no women increased in 2017, according to Silicon Valley Bank's 2017 "Startup Outlook" report. More than 70% of the 941 startups surveyed did not have a single female board member in 2017, up from 66% the year before.
Posted on 20 Feb 2017
Let it ripple - 50/50
Join the movement on May 10th for 50/50 Day where thousands of companies, schools, organizations, and homes around the globe - women, men, all genders, all ages - will screen the short film 50/50: Rethinking the Past, Present, and Future of Women + Power; engage with free discussion materials that bring to life important research and join a 24-hour global LiveCast Q&A featuring prominent leaders discussing the intersection of gender and economics, health care, environment, politics, race and so much more.
Posted on 13 Feb 2017
Snap says ''diversity is about more than numbers''
Snap Inc., the parent company of Snapchat and Spectacles, included in its filing to go public a brief tidbit on diversity. Unlike tech companies like Apple, Google, Twitter, Facebook and several others, Snap has not released a diversity report. At the end of 2016, Snap employed 1,859 employees, but Snap won't say how diverse it is. ''That's because we believe diversity is about more than numbers,'' it reads. Snap says that it is focused on developing a team of people with diverse backgrounds, as well as creating an inclusive culture for them. For Snap, the company says it's about having a culture ''where everyone comes to work knowing that they have a seat at the table and will always be supported both personally and professionally.''
Posted on 13 Feb 2017

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