Microsoft, T-Mobile band together with blockchain startups for new Cascadia Blockchain Council

This proves once again that the Blockchain aspect of the cryptocurrency market will outlast the current gyrations in Bitcoin and Ethereum, among others.

Screenshot 2019-03-29 23.11.20 cryptowinter

As of the near time of publication.

A group of blockchain entrepreneurs, institutions and tech giants are banding together to make the Pacific Northwest a hub for the burgeoning technology. The Cascadia Blockchain Council is an effort…

Source: Microsoft, T-Mobile band together with blockchain startups for new Cascadia Blockchain Council

Microsoft expands Azure IP Advantage Program with new IP benefits for Azure IoT innovators and startups

Drawing of lightbulb in protected circle

At Microsoft, we’re investing in helping our customers as they move to the cloud. We see an opportunity to help support companies in this changing environment by bringing our security, privacy, compliance and intellectual property assets and expertise to bear in order to help them be more successful. We’re excited to now take an additional step that expands innovation protections.

Today, we are pleased to announce the expansion of the Microsoft Azure IP Advantage program to include new benefits for Azure IoT innovators and startups. We first announced Azure IP Advantage in February 2017, to provide comprehensive protection against intellectual property (IP) risks for our cloud customers. A trend we saw at the time – and one that continues today – is a growing risk to cloud innovation from patent lawsuits. Last year, we joined the Open Invention Network (OIN) and the License on Transfer (LOT) Network to help address patent assertion risk for our customers and partners.

But we believe we can do more. The number of IoT-litigated patents in the U.S. witnessed an increase of more than 400 percent from 2013 to 2018. That’s why, after speaking to customers and reflecting on how we could add even more value to the Azure IP Advantage program, we decided to expand the program with new benefits focused on the Azure-powered Internet of Things (IoT)ecosystem and startups to help deter lawsuits against Azure customers. The new features announced today include:

  • Uncapped indemnification coverage for Microsoft’s Azure Sphere and Windows IoT. Indemnification helps protect a customer from IP infringement claims asserted against the customer for its use of the product or service. Today’s expansion brings uncapped indemnification coverage to Azure Sphere and Windows IoT, including the open source software incorporated by Microsoft in these products.

  • Access to 10,000 patents for customers using Azure to power IoT devices to defend themselves against IP lawsuits. This benefit can help deter patent lawsuits against Azure customers for their workloads and applications running in Azure or on their IoT devices, as qualified customers can pick a patent to use in their defense of a lawsuit.

  • The ability for startups on Azure to acquire Microsoft patents to help boost their business. Qualified startups who also join the LOT Network can acquire Microsoft patents through LOT in technical areas including artificial intelligence, multimedia, and security. Patents can play an important role for startups as they grow, look for ways to protect their innovations, and attract critical capital support.

The post-Microsoft expands Azure IP Advantage Program with new IP benefits for Azure IoT innovators and startups appeared first on Microsoft on the Issues.

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PyDev of the Week: Miro Hrončok

This week we welcome Miro Hrončok (@hroncok) as our PyDev of the Week! Miro teaches at Czech Technical University and helps out with the local PyLadies chapter. He is also involved with the Special Interest Group for Python in Fedora as he works for Red Hat in addition to his teaching position. You can check out some of the projects he is involved in over on Github or check out his website. Let’s take a few moments to get to know Miro better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

 

I’m a guy from Prague, Czech Republic, in my late twenties, yet both of my parents are from Košice, Slovakia, so I’m kinda both Czech and Slovak. I’ve studied Pascal at a gymnasium and later did my bachelors and masters in Computer Science/Software Engineering at the Faculty of Information Technology, Czech Tecnical University in Prague. Most of my hobbies are related to computers and technology but apart from that I have two Irish Wolfhounds and I love to ski.

 

One of my dogs when she was little

My technological interest has always been connected to Free and Open Source Software (and Hardware), starting with the Czech Linux community when I was a teenager, co-founding the RepRap 3D Printing Lab during my early years at the university and joining Fedora and later Red Hat, now working in the Python Maintenance team, also pro-active in the Czech Python community.

 

Why did you start using Python?

 

Python somehow sprung to the surface everywhere where I was doing something. Was it some basic Linux utilities or several RepRap oriented apps, it happened to be written in Python (or Perl)/\. I liked the Python syntax a bit more and since I was already familiar with multiple languages such as C, C++, Java, Pascal or even PHP, I decided to give Python a try. Accidentally, I got the Czech translation of Dive Into Python 3 by Mark Pilgrim for free at some Czech Linux conference, so that was my primary source of wisdom.

 

 

What other programming languages do you know and which is your favorite?

 

Apart from the already mentioned languages, I mostly work in (Bourne Again) Shell. I don’t think I have a favorite programming language other than Python, but I love both TeX and [OpenSCAD](https://ift.tt/wnaUOM) (not “programming” languages per se).

 

I’m really excited about Rust, yet I still haven’t found the right project to learn it on and I’ve somehow lost the patience to learn by hello world examples since I’ve finished the university.

 

Haskell is another language I’d like to learn one day.

 

Thanks for doing the interview, Miro!

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A tragedy that calls for more than words: The need for the tech sector to learn and act after events in New Zealand

Four months ago, when our team at Microsoft first made plans for a visit to New Zealand that began yesterday, we did not expect to arrive on the heels of a violent terrorist attack that would kill innocent people, horrify a nation and shock the world. Like so many other people around the globe, across Microsoft, we mourn the victims and our hearts go out to their families and loved ones. This includes two of the individuals killed who were part of the broader Microsoft partner community.

 

We appreciate the gravity of the moment. This is a time when the world needs to stand with New Zealand.

 

Words alone are not enough. Across the tech sector, we need to do more. Especially for those of us who operate social networks or digital communications tools or platforms that were used to amplify the violence, it’s clear that we need to learn from and take new action based on what happened in Christchurch.

 

It’s sometimes easy amidst controversy for those not on the hot seat to remain silent and on the sideline. But we believe this would be a mistake. Across the tech sector, we can all contribute ideas, innovate together and help develop more effective approaches.

 

The question is not just what technology did to exacerbate this problem, but what technology and tech companies can do to help solve it. Put in these terms, there is room – and a need – for everyone to help.

 

The post A tragedy that calls for more than words: The need for the tech sector to learn and act after events in New Zealand appeared first on Microsoft on the Issues.

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PyDev of the Week: Bruno Roche

This week we welcome Bruno Roche (@rochacbruno) as our PyDev of the Week! Bruno works for Red Hat and participates in the Python, Flask and Rust communities. You can see some of his projects over on Github or check out some of his writings on Medium. Let’s take a few moments to get to know Bruno better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

 

I’m Bruno Rocha, Software Engineer from São Paulo, Brazil.

 

I started playing with computers at a very young age when I was 12 when my mother gave me an old IBM XT 5160. After a few days playing DOOM and studying LOTUS 123 worksheets, I naturally became the computer boy in the family. I did a course of MS.DOS 6.22 (the novelty of that time) and learned to program some things with BASIC and dBase, a few years later the web appeared in Brazil and I started to make HTML sites with CGI in Perl and also to create programs with macros in MS Access 95.

 

I worked for some years as an instructor in basic computer courses, some jobs as a web designer, I also worked with network installation, PC building, and in 1998 I met Linux through Conectiva (A Brazilian Red Hat based distro). I got involved with Open Source and Linux and then I became sysadmin in hybrid networks with Linux and Windows NT.

 

Years later I joined the University of Information Systems and I graduated, during graduation I fell in love with programming and since then I have been working with software development, started some small business (in the days when we did not call it “startup”), I worked for Palm Inc. developed drivers and sales force systems for Palm OS with C, developed portals and CMS for several large companies in Brazil, taught online Python courses, worked in the Data Science team of the largest Job board in Brazil and since 2016 I have been dedicated to Quality Engineering and Test Automation at Red Hat.

 

Besides software and computers, I am vegetarian since I was born, and vegan for more than 15 years. I have been very active in animal rights activism movements and also in the rescue of abandoned animals (currently taking care of 32 rescued animals).

 

In my free time I love cooking vegan food but my favorite hobby is road cycling, I have participated in some vintage bike races with my Bianchi 1973 and my Caloi-10 1980, recently I became father of a boy, Erik is 3 months old and life has changed a little and since then my favorite hobby has been to sleep when I can.

 

Why did you start using Python?

 

In the early 2000s I was focused on bringing Linux to the desktops of the companies for which I provided SysAdmin services, Knoppix (Linux from Live CD) came out, and in Brazil I got involved with the community around the Linux distribution called Kurumin Linux. The innovation in this Linux was the so-called “Magic Icons” many written in Python and one of these icons led to an interactive tutorial on Python, that’s when I had my first contact and then I started contributing to this community.

 

The idea of bringing Linux to Desktops failed, but in compensation I learned Python that very soon became useful in other areas with the emergence of web frameworks like Pylons, Turbogears and Django.

 

Despite working with different technologies like .NET, PHP to pay the bills every day I got more involved with Python and adopted it as my preferred language for projects, around 2008 I became a core committer and one of Web2py’s most active contributors. I started organizing meetups, talking at many community events and large conferences, in 2012 I co-authored a book on web development with Python and in same year I was nominated a Fellow member of the Python Software Foundation where I still work in 2 workgroups.

 

Since 2008 I have worked exclusively with Python in different areas, teaching, maintaining some open-source libraries, more heavily involved in web with Django and Flask and more recently focused on automation of tests and Quality Engineering.

 

What other programming languages do you know and which is your favorite?

 

I am fluent in C, C#, Javascript, Bash, PHP, Perl, Lua, Python and currently learning Rust.

 

In addition to Python (of course) because it is the technology and community that has supported me for almost 15 years, if I had to choose just one language I would choose Rust because it is an innovative language, it gives me the feeling that I am doing things in the right way, it’s very challenging and everything indicates that it will have a bright future! (or rather, rusty future)

 

Thanks for doing the interview, Bruno!

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PyDev of the Week: Maria Khalusova

PyDev of the Week: Maria Khalusova

This week we welcome Maria Khalusova ( @mariakhalusova) as our PyDev of the Week! Maria works for JetBrains and will be speaking at AnacondaCON this April. If you’d like to catch up with her, you can check out Maria’s blog. Let’s take a few moments to get to know Maria better!

Can you tell us a little about yourself (hobbies, education, etc):

 

Growing up I loved two things – math and books. I kid you not, I solved math problems for fun. Not surprisingly, I went on to study Applied Informatics at the Dept. of Mathematics and Mechanics of Saint Petersburg State University which I graduated from in 2007. This field is actually really close to modern Data Science, all the math parts of it were there, plus a good chunk of computer science program. I only wish I got to learn Python at my University and not Java 😀 Sadly, back then such fundamental packages like pandas and scikit-learn didn’t even exist yet.

 

Even before I graduated, I started working at JetBrains, first as a technical writer for IntelliJ IDEA. Fun fact: this June will be 13 years since I joined the company. I’ve changed projects, job roles, countries even, but not the company.

 

In recent years I’ve re-discovered my passion for math, data science, machine learning, and deep learning. I’ve brushed up on my rusty math knowledge and have been self-educating ever since. This is a never-ending process which I think is great.

 

Why did you start using Python?

 

Once I realized I wanted to do data science and machine learning, the choice of the language was quite obvious to me. There are of course R and Julia, but the two major things that got me sold on Python were the deep learning libraries and Python being a general purpose language.

 

What other programming languages do you know and which is your favorite?

 

I mentioned earlier that back in the university I learned Java but it never fully clicked with me due to all the boilerplate one had (still has?) to write to do even a simple thing. I do know some R but I don’t really use it in anger. These days I’m eyeing Kotlin but haven’t really used it yet for anything other than toy samples. Shame on me, given how close I am to the people who are the ultimate experts on Kotlin.

 

 

Thanks for doing the interview, Maria!

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