Turbotodd

Ruminations on tech, the digital media, and some golf thrown in for good measure.

Archive for February 20th, 2018

Russians, Bots, Guns, Rinse, Repeat

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So how long did it take before the Russian Twitter bots kicked into high gear after last week’s tragic school shooting in Parkland, Florida?

According to a story in The New York Times, it only took about an hour:

The accounts addressed the news with the speed of a cable news network. Some adopted the hashtag #guncontrolnow. Others used #gunreformnow and #Parklandshooting. Earlier on Wednesday, before the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., many of those accounts had been focused on the investigation by the special counsel Robert S. Mueller III into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

If you want to keep a lookout for such bots, the Alliance for Securing Democracy has some recommendations: Look for a high volume of posts or content that conspicuously matches hundred of other accounts.

And this is just the latest example of Russian bots going into action…they were also seen in the Russian election manipulation, as seen in the first major Robert Mueller indictment last week…they were featured in the national anthem NFL boycott (#standforouranthem, #takeaknee)…and now, guns.

Seeing a trend yet?

Any significant issues dividing the American public along partisan lines, there’s an increasingly good chance at least a few Russian bots will be standing smack dab in the middle of the dividing line.

Written by turbotodd

February 20, 2018 at 11:56 am

Austin’s SparkCognition Sparks $24M Series B

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Austin Inno is reporting that Austin-based AI firm SparkCognition announced today it has completed a Series B funding round of $24 million.

That round builds on an earlier round last June of $32.5 million. 

SparkCognition builds AI solutions for applications in energy, oil and gas, manufacturing, finance, aerospace, defense, and security. Its website currently lists four core product lines which the company claims provides “human intelligence at machine scale.”

Austin Inno observes that SparkCognition’s new funding is “part of a wave of recent investment in Austin-based AI and machine learning companies,” with large rounds going to CognitiveScale, Conversable, Tethr, and Cerebri AI last year, among others.

Written by turbotodd

February 20, 2018 at 10:57 am

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