How to Vet the Engineering Chops of Your Software Vendors

Campaigns & Elections | February 06, 2020

After witnessing the debacle in Iowa, campaign decision-makers across the country are wondering just how good is the engineering behind the software they purchase for their campaigns? And for good reason: the stakes couldn’t be higher. Unfortunately, it’s hard to suss this out in the evaluation and procurement stage with a vendor. Slick branding, a jazzy demo, and a bargain price are designed to entice. But these attributes don’t tell you how the software will hold up in the heat of an election. Political technology is notoriously difficult to build and test, partly because usage of the software goes from zero in the off-season to 100 mph on Election Day. No software is bug-free, but you can reduce the likelihood of problems by making informed decisions during the vendor evaluation process. Here are some ways to vet the engineering capabilities of your vendors to know if you’re buying smoke and mirrors, or battle-tested software.

Spotlight

Martial Hebert offers a brief overview of current challenges in AI for robotics and a glimpse of the exciting developments emerging in current research. Why did companies like Intuit, JP Morgan Chase, MasterCard, and BuzzFeed deploy AI and what business advantages have they already reaped from those deployments? How have the toolsets recently developed at Google and Microsoft opened up AI as a mainstream business reality?


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ENGINEERING TECH

Constrafor Announces Partnership with Bespoke Metrics to Help Subcontractors Grow their Business

Constrafor | April 23, 2022

Constrafor, a leading construction procurement and financing platform, is pleased to announce a partnership with Bespoke Metrics, an innovative prequalification and risk analytics company. Constrafor and Bespoke Metrics both serve the construction industry with a strong focus on building innovative technology solutions that help subcontractors grow their business. Constrafor's Early Pay Program allows subcontractors to accelerate their payments, so they can take on more projects. Compass by Bespoke Metrics empowers subcontractors to manage all prequalification and data requests in one platform, while providing feedback on ways to increase your contract size, and likelihood to win. Constrafor's cutting-edge procurement platform is a natural extension to the COMPASS prequalification tool, as it allows subcontractors to seamlessly interact with their existing and new General Contractors. Constrafor and Bespoke Metrics are uniquely placed to provide an integrated solution to help subcontractors streamline their pre-construction and take on more projects. "We are thrilled to partner with Bespoke Metrics, a like-minded, innovative company focused on making contractors' lives easier. The construction tech space has few options for integrated Prequal, Procurement and Financing, and we are excited to be at the forefront with Bespoke Metrics" says Anwar Ghauche, Founder and CEO of Constrafor. "Prequalification and procurement go hand in hand, and we couldn't think of a better company to work with than Constrafor" said Michael Ho, CEO at Bespoke Metrics. "We share the same beliefs around using data analytics and technology to mitigate risk and ensure the success of our subcontractor partners." About Constrafor As a SaaS and fintech innovator purpose-built for construction, Constrafor is setting new standards of productivity and cost-efficiency for the way GCs and subcontractors manage essential back-office tasks and financial transactions. For General Contractors, Constrafor's robust cloud platform streamlines and standardizes subcontractor procurement & administration, including contracts, COIs, invoices & payments and diversity procurement – all in one place. For Subcontractors, the platform offers fast and cost-effective receivables financing, including an Early Pay Program (EPP) that shortens invoice payment time, frees up cash and allows them to take on more projects. About Bespoke Metrics COMPASS by Bespoke Metrics is a leading prequalification platform that supports data collection, verification and analytics across the entire construction supply chain. Unique to COMPASS, Subcontractor data is collected through the standard universal 1Form. General Contractors receive data-driven analytics to support decision making to mitigate project and default risk. Subcontractors have full control over who can see their data, utilize 1Form for all their prequalifications and data requests, and deliver powerful analytics to gain new business opportunities.

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ENGINEERING TECH

Saulsbury Awarded EPC Contract for Two Cryogenic Processing Facilities in West Texas

Saulsbury | January 18, 2022

Saulsbury was recently awarded the EPC contract for the design and installation of two cryogenic processing facilities in the Midland Basin. The facilities, designed with a base-rated capacity of 200 MMSCFD each, mark Saulsbury's 61st and 62nd cryogenic processing facility projects since 2006, representing nearly 11 BCFD of processing capacity, and its 23rd and 24th cryogenic processing facility in the West Texas region. Saulsbury will be responsible for the engineering, procurement, and construction of the processing facilities that will include amine treating, molecular sieve dehydration, cryogenic gas processing, residue gas compression, nitrogen rejection, slug catching, condensate stabilization, and all balance of plant equipment, utilities, electrical, instrumentation, and controls infrastructure. Work on this facility started in December with a phased commissioning starting in late 2022. "This important project will continue to showcase Saulsbury's position as a premier EPC contractor for delivering high-quality, speed-to-market solutions for the midstream gas processing space,Our continued practice of implementing project-specific design innovations and optimization will further strengthen our commitment to delivering one of the Midland Basin's premier facilities for our client." -Sean Trotter, Saulsbury VP EPC Engineering/Major Projects. For Saulsbury, this award further solidifies the company's reputation and longstanding history as an industry leader in the oil and gas industry for self-performing the full engineering and construction of cryogenic gas processing facilities. Saulsbury is well known in this industry for its successful project execution and world-class safety performance. About Saulsbury Industries Saulsbury Industries is a full-service engineering, procurement, fabrication, and construction company that specializes in building the infrastructure necessary to fuel the future. Saulsbury serves its clients in heavy industrial markets by designing and building safe, well executed, capital-efficient projects nationwide. Headquartered in Odessa, Texas, the company's national office footprint includes Dallas, Houston, Port Arthur, Henderson, Abilene, Pecos, and Corpus Christi, TX; Carlsbad, NM; Tulsa, OK; and Bismarck, ND. For more information, please visit www.saulsbury.com and follow Saulsbury on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.

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ENGINEERING TECH

ECOX Spruce Construction Secures License to Launch Green Infrastructure Operations

Eco Innovation Group | May 12, 2022

Eco Innovation Group, Inc. an innovative company developing green energy solutions, announces that ECOX Spruce Construction, Eco Innovation Group's California-based green construction subsidiary, has been issued an official General Contractor's License by the State of California (License no. 1091210). According to the California Department of Consumer Affairs Contractors State License Board (CSLB) page, businesses and individuals who construct or alter any building, highway, road, parking facility, railroad, excavation, or other structure in California must be licensed to perform work. The license was issued on Friday, May 6, 2022. As previously communicated, ECOX Spruce Construction plans to focus primarily on Green Infrastructure projects. "Obtaining a GC License is the initial step for our ECOX Spruce Construction subsidiary formed early this year, and it will allow us to expand operations in the rapidly growing Green Infrastructure space, Our focus on ecologically sustainable infrastructure is core to the ECOX business. Large chains such as Starbucks, for example, are actively building out locations in California to be resource positive, using solar infrastructure, additional efficiencies, and reclaimed wood construction. A growing number of major organizations are moving in the same direction." Julia Otey-Raudes, CEO of Eco Innovation Group The Company expects the trend toward ecologically sustainable construction to accelerate as fossil fuel prices soar and the ESG movement continues to put pressure from a financial direction on companies to transition to more sustainable infrastructure models. The RE100 is a group of more than 360 companies worth more than $2.75 trillion in revenues that have pledged to fully transition to renewable energy. Starbucks is one of many participants in the group that has already achieved this milestone, along with Microsoft, Clif Bar & Company, and SAP. Otey-Raudes continued, "We believe the trend toward green construction is only in its very early innings and has the potential to become one of the most powerful growth opportunities over coming years for the application of new capital and resources. Now that we have our GC License in California, we can aggressively attack this market opportunity with the objective of becoming one of its true leaders in the decade ahead." ECOX Spruce Construction, Inc., was founded as a California corporation in January 2022. It is ECOX's second green construction subsidiary, following the 2021 establishment of the Company's Canadian construction company, Spruce Engineering and Construction of Alberta. About Eco Innovation Group Eco Innovation Group was founded by Inventors and Business Professionals to help nurture and catalyze the most innovative and impactful products and services, and to deliver those innovations to the world, improving the quality of life in our communities and the world around us, while delivering value to our shareholders. At ECOX, we are dedicated to developing and commercializing successful products. But we will never lose sight of the fact that we exist, first and foremost, to help people and improve life on the planet we all share. We take our Social Responsibility Contract seriously in all our endeavors. It is not only what we do. It is who we are.

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MARKET

Palantir Technologies to Expand in South Korea

Palantir Technologies | January 10, 2022

Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) Group and Palantir Technologies Inc. (Palantir, NYSE: PLTR), a leading builder of operating systems for the modern enterprise, will collaborate to build a big data platform for HHI’s core businesses, including shipbuilding and offshore engineering. The two parties will also consider establishing a joint venture to promote the big data platform business in the mid- to long-term. HHI Group and Palantir signed a memorandum of understanding on January 4 for the establishment of the big data platform and a joint venture. The signing event was held in a hybrid online and offline format one day before “CES 2022” and was attended by Kisun Chung, CEO of Hyundai Heavy Industries Holdings; Young-cheul Cho, CEO of Hyundai Doosan Infracore; Seok Cho, CEO of Hyundai Electric; as well as chief executives from Palantir Technologies. Based on the agreement, HHI Group and Palantir will jointly build a big data platform for the Group’s key affiliates related to shipbuilding & offshore engineering, energy, and industrial machinery. HHI Group will provide the affiliates’ process expertise and sales know-how whereas Palantir will offer software and development personnel. Once the big data platform for each affiliate is built, the two parties plan to create a joint venture that specializes in developing and selling big data platform services. Based on the accumulated achievements, the joint venture will commercialize big data solutions from platform construction to operation to generate sales targeting domestic and foreign companies. Hyundai Heavy Industries, a shipbuilding and offshore engineering affiliate of HHI Group, is working on the “Future of Shipyard (FOS)” project to transform itself into a smart shipyard, the first of its kind in the world, by 2030. All processes from design to production are connected in real time to build a shipyard that enables smart work management where Palantir’s Foundry data platform is applied. The big data platform will also be adopted by energy affiliates, such as Hyundai Oilbank. The energy company plans to build a platform at its plant in Daesan, South Chungcheong Province, South Korea, for five years from this year with a strategy to maximize process efficiency by integrating more than 100 production management systems into one. Hyundai Doosan Infracore, an affiliate of industrial machinery, already developed “DI 360,” a big data collaboration platform, with Palantir Technologies in 2019, and is currently using it to manage its parts supply chain, handle on-site quality claim issues, and seize sales opportunities. HHI Group and Palantir Technologies are also planning to consider building a platform for other affiliates, such as Hyundai Construction Equipment. Heavy Industries HoKisun Chung, CEO of Hyundaildings, said, “We expect that this partnership with Palantir Technologies will substantially improve the competitiveness of core businesses of the Group. It will be an important turning point in innovation of organizational culture that changes the way we work using data.” “HHI Group shaped one of the most significant industries of the twentieth century and is absolutely vital to the lives we lead,We are deeply grateful for the opportunity to partner with a company that is not only a leader among the world’s industrial giants but one whose continued growth and success are critical to our collective welfare and security.” - Alexander C. Karp, co-founder and chief executive officer of Palantir Technologies Inc About Palantir Technologies Inc. Palantir Technologies Inc. builds and deploys operating systems for the modern enterprise. Additional information is available at https://www.palantir.com.Who dares, wins.

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Spotlight

Martial Hebert offers a brief overview of current challenges in AI for robotics and a glimpse of the exciting developments emerging in current research. Why did companies like Intuit, JP Morgan Chase, MasterCard, and BuzzFeed deploy AI and what business advantages have they already reaped from those deployments? How have the toolsets recently developed at Google and Microsoft opened up AI as a mainstream business reality?

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