Berry Gordy, Herny Ford, Larry Page, and the Funk Brothers

All of history’s greatest figures achieved success by having pistis, “trust; commitment; loyalty; engagement.”
Motown is an American record company founded by Berry Gordy Jr. as Tamla Records on January 12, 1959, and was incorporated as Motown Record Corporation on April 14, 1960, in Detroit, Michigan. Gordy started Motown with an $800 loan from his family and royalties earned writing for Jackie Wilson.

The Funk Brothers

The Funk Brothers are the Detroit-based session musicians who performed the backing to most Motown recordings from 1959 until the company moved to Los Angeles in 1972.
According to the documentary Standing in the Shadows of Motown, the Funk Brothers have “played on more number-one hits than the Beatles, Elvis Presley, the Rolling Stones and the Beach Boys combined.

People would ask, what is the Motown sound? It was the musicians. Without them, there really wouldn’t be a Motown.
~Paul Riser
Motown music arranger

[The Funk Brother] created billions of dollars worth of music, a lot of it they created themselves.
~ Cornelius Grant
Temptations music director
In 1973, BLACK ENTERPRISE started its annual ranking of the nation’s largest black-owned businesses, and Motown debuted at the No. 1 spot, grossing $40 million in revenues and holding that position on every list until 1983 when the company grossed $91.7 million in revenues. Motown lost the title of list leader in 1984 when Johnson Publishing Co., publisher of Ebony and Jet magazines and producer of Fashion Fair Cosmetics, took the top spot.

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EB-5 investment in New Rochelle

Chinese nationals, who often seek visas so that their children can receive an American education, account for a large percentage of EB-5 investors.
I recently connected with the VP of AI and Machine Learning at Unity Technologies, and we exchanged a couple of emails. This has led to our decision to having our students develop apps with the Unity game engine after building our chess-playing robot.
We are also working on having a group of students attend Unity Unite in Los Angeles in October.
On Thursday, November 15th @ 7 pm at the Larchmont Public Library, I will demo CHHE, an intelligent restaurant recommendation app and give a talk on applying artificial intelligence to local retail.
In addition, we are working on a Pokémon Go-type game called Ask, Seek, & Knock that will incorporate a new blockchain protocol called Avalanche.

Danny Lange

Yong Zhao
Yong Zhao books

Yong Zhao is a Foundation Distinguished Professor in the School of Education at the University of Kansas.
TJ: The EB-5 visa grants permanent U.S. residence to anyone investing a half million dollars in a U.S.-based development project. Eighty percent of EB-5 recipients are Chinese. According to a NPR report, Bryan Withall of Sino Outbound estimates that 70 to 80 percent of families are pursuing EB-5 visas for their children’s education. As “Wang” tells us:
I’m only doing this for my son’s education. He is in a good local school, but all they do is study for tests. The Chinese education system turns everyone into the same type of person.
Chinese students score higher than American students on international tests but many Chinese parents still want their children to be educated in the United States. Can you explain this?
YZ: I’ve written about this in various places, most extensively my book Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon: Why China has the Best (and Worst) Education in the World. The simple answer to this paradox is that test scores are not good indicators of education quality. In fact attempts to pursue test scores can be counter productive, damaging what actually matters for success in life, such as confidence, creativity, and love of learning.

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Ask, Seek & Knock to Use Avalanche Token

Ask, Seek & Knock will use the Avalanche token and be featured in the documentary Dear Mr. Man: Let America Be America Again.

Avalanche token

Demystifying “Snowflake to Avalanche”
Not every day that somebody in the field of distributed systems, comes out and says “I have a new breakthrough to tell you about”. However, recently, Prof. Emin Gün Sirer, from Cornell University, said that he does.
Avalanche comes in and combines the best of Classical Consensus Protocols and Nakamoto Consensus Protocol:
  • Quick finality and low latency: That is, it takes around 2 seconds to achieve finality across the globe. This basically means that after 2 seconds, you can get your payment processed and verified.
  • Higher throughput: 1000–10,000 transactions per second.
  • Robust: The network does not need to agree on who the participants are to achieve undeniable consensus.
  • Quiescent protocol: Most importantly, the protocol is green. That means that it is sustainable, it does not waste any energy, and that there is no special ecosystem of miners with their own separate interests from the users.

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CHHE, Intelligent Restaurant Recommendations


For my talk on Applying AI to Local Retail, I will demo CHHE, a Restaurant Recommendation engine based on things you care about and your current location. The recommendation engine will use Neo4j Spatial, Restaurant Data from Factual, and OpenTable API.

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Andrew Moore’s talk lead me to understand that developing graphs is an important step to developing next-level artificial intelligence (AI) applications and Nassim Taleb wrote about the importance of tinkering.

CMU AI chart

Machine learning is really important and it will continue to improve but it is kind of done. The crazy new stuff is living on top of machine learning with decision-making systems which are now able to have models of the world through machine learning.
~ Dr. Andrew Moore
Dean of the School of Computer Science
At Carnegie Mellon University

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Amazon is a Bad Neighbor

“The second is this, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
~ Mark 12:30-31
Jeff Bezos and Harvey Weinstein

Jeff Bezos and Harvey Weinstein

Loving Your Neighbor is Good for Your Health

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Competing Against Amazon

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Applying Artificial Intelligence to Local Retail
A talk and demo given by
Terrance Jackson
Thursday, November 15th @ 7 pm
Larchmont Public Library
121 Larchmont Avenue, Larchmont, NY

Amazon Doesn’t Just Want to Dominate the Market—It Wants to Become the Market
The company is a radically new kind of monopoly with ambitions that dwarf those of earlier empires.
Setting up shop on Amazon’s platform has helped Gazelle Sports stabilize its sales. But it’s also put the company on a treacherous footing. Amazon touts its platform as a place where entrepreneurs can “pursue their dreams.” Yet studies indicate that the relationship is often predatory.

Amazon vs other retailers

As a local retailer, if you think keeping up with Amazon is expensive and time-consuming, consider the alternative: extinction.
Today’s retailers face a number of complex and emerging challenges.
Thanks to lower overhead and higher volume, online behemoths like Amazon can deliver products faster and at a lower price, driving smaller retailers out of business.
In order to compete, retailers need a new approach – and the fresh technologies that go along with it.
Personalized Promotion & Product Recommendation Engines
Delivering real-time recommendations to online shoppers is a proven way to maximize revenue. It improves the customer experience and increases sales. According to McKinsey & Company, 35 percent of what consumers purchase on Amazon and 75 percent of what they watch on Netflix come from product recommendations.
However, shoppers expect finely tuned product recommendations and react poorly to one-size-fits-all or uninformed recommendations (e.g., “I’ve already bought that. Why are they showing it to me again?”). To be effective, recommendations must be personalized based on the individual consumer’s preferences, shopping history, interests and needs – in addition to what’s already in their current shopping cart.

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Who Will Control the Future of AI?

Will it be big tech companies like Google, Amazon, Apple, or Facebook, who will use AI to increase their power or wealth; or will the benefits be more evenly and democratically available?
According to Gartner, the global enterprise value derived from AI will total $1.2 trillion this year, a 70 percent increase from 2017. AI-derived business value is projected to reach up to $3.9 trillion by 2022.

Mark Cuban on AI

I am telling you, the world’s first trillionaires are going to come from somebody who masters AI and all its derivatives and applies it in ways we never thought of.
~ Mark Cuban

CMU AI chart

Machine learning is really important and it will continue to improve but it is kind of done. The crazy new stuff is living on top of machine learning with decision-making systems which are now able to have models of the world through machine learning.
~ Dr. Andrew Moore
Dean of the School of Computer Science
At Carnegie Mellon University

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