Facebook opens up its AI tool to OpenStreetMap users


Volunteers can add unmapped roads, bridges and buildings.

Plugging a new address into your smartphone’s map app can show you where to go in seconds. But in places like rural Bangladesh and Indonesia, there are millions of miles of roads that are still uncharted territory. Facebook now hopes its AI technology will make it easier for volunteers on OpenStreetMap to add unmapped areas.

The social media giant announced today that it is opening its Map with AI tool to the entire OSM community, allowing anyone to use the tool to identify areas in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda. Eventually, the company hopes to expand its mapping tool to cover the entire world.

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IBM just made its cancer-fighting AI projects open-source


IBM recently developed three artificial intelligence tools that could help medical researchers fight cancer.

Now, the company has decided to make all three tools open-source, meaning scientists will be able to use them in their research whenever they please, according to ZDNet. The tools are designed to streamline the cancer drug development process and help scientists stay on top of newly-published research — so, if they prove useful, it could mean more cancer treatments coming through the pipeline more rapidly than before.

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Community colleges go open source to seek fix for remediation

Bossier Parish Community College in Louisiana.

One of the thorniest problems facing higher education is remedial education.  Some community colleges have found a way to dial-up free online courses to help tackle the problem.  The two-year colleges aren’t offering massive open online courses as substitutes for their offerings, however, or for the instructors who teach them.



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It pays to code, but how long will that last?

Everyone knows that software experts make big bucks.

Glassdoor published its most recent software engineering salary report last week. It found that it pays to code. Google and Facebook employees earn a base salary of ~$125K, not counting benefits, 401k matching, stock options/grants, etc., and even Yahoo! developers pull in six figures. Everyone knows that good engineers are awfully hard to find. Demand has skyrocketed, supply has stagnated, prices have risen. Basic economics.



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The complete guide to Freemium business models


The idea of offering your product or a version of it for free has been a source of much debate.

Pricing is always tricky. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs don’t give it enough thought. They will often copy the pricing strategy of similar products, base their decisions on pompous statements made by “experts” or rely on broken rationale (we worked hard so we should charge $X).

Free is even trickier and with so many opinions about it, we thought it would be refreshing to take a critical approach and dive deep into why some companies are very successful at employing the model while other companies fail. We’ve looked into economics academic papers, behavioral psychology books and strategies that worked for companies to come up with the key concepts below.

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Three radical nation-less visions for the future


Country living can be a pain. And we’re not talking about the hardships of life in a rural community, we’re talking about the difficulties of living in a country. For all the services and security the social compact buys us, we are forced to pay a price in compromises — something made all the more poignant by what’s going on in the White House right now. But unless you want to drop out of the modern, law-abiding world altogether, this is the deal we’re stuck with.


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