The 11 most important lessons I’ve learned at Microsoft

(Alex Hinrichs, a long-time Microsoft release manager, just announced his retirement. Here are some of the lessons he’s learned, posted on LinkedIn). I heartily agree with all of these!    Engineering is all about people. Big software projects are built by giant human systems, and giant human systems run on relationships. Good relationships require trust. Trust is built via daily face-to-face rituals. When there is trust, then and only thendo you have an environment where the best ideas win.   Define and agree on the PROBLEM… And then work on the SOLUTION. So often, people will argue and argue about how to solve something, and 95% of the time, they can’t agree on the solution, because they don’t agree on the problem they are trying to...

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Balancing Life in Writing and Tech

I recently had the opportunity to talk at some length with an engaged set of students at Olympia High School. (I talk regularly to school groups, and if you’d like to book me to talk to your school group, you can contact my booking agent here.) We discussed both my high tech career as well as my writing, and found ourselves discussing technology, the future, and how one balances career aspirations as well as creative endeavors.   Here are some of the resources I shared with them after my talk, as “footnotes” to our conversation.   1) First, I spoke about removing distractions from my creative work and focusing. Here is relevant information about phones and other technology as intentionally addictive and distracting.   Addiction to...

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Intel’s Next Generation Drone Platform with the Intel® Context Sensing SDK

The Intel® Context Sensing SDK surfaces the power of the Intel Integrated Sensor Solution and advanced sensor capabilities to power mobile, laptop and wearable apps. What if the Intel Context Sensing SDK could be used to understand a drone’s environment and even control a drone?  That’s the vision we set out to discover in this demo at Intel® Day Zero Google I/O in 2016. Our demo at the Intel Google I/O Day Zero Pre-Party demonstrated the integration of Intel’s Context Sensing SDK with Intel’s next generation drone platform for the collection and analysis of telemetry and environment sensing data. The demo highlighted how data collected by individual sensors on individual drones can be aggregated and processed for different use cases including authentication and...

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Intel in Shenzhen — Context Sensing SDK

Our team has delivered a useful set of context-aware tools that can be seen in several games and both Android and Windows apps on the show floor at IDF Shenzhen. You can get the “Intel Context Sensing SDK” toolset here: http://contextsensing.intel.com/ And here’s some more information about the Intel Context Sensing SDK. Context Sensing SDK surfaces the power of Intel’s sensor hub and advanced sensor capabilities to power mobile and Web apps, thru standard RESTful APIs, dynamic algorithms and state machines, married to Intel’s next-generation Intel Integrated Sensor Solution for Android and for Windows, with all your data aggregated to a world-class managed cloud service. Context Sensing SDK is a library available for both Android and Windows that helps you...

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God and the Robots

I am writing a non-fiction book called God and the Robots. Here’s a first look at my early book proposal.  ——————————————– In the summer of 2015, two stories were on the front page of the New York Times. The stories did not appear to be related. The first was an announcement that a group of technical luminaries – including Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking – had signed a statement calling for governments to outlaw the building of autonomous killing weapons, or so-called “Terminator” machines.[1] The other was a story about a well-meaning robot called “hitchBot” being destroyed by vandals while hitchhiking across the United States.[2] The first story was about how...

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