MED 8.3.18

T2F: text to face generation using Deep Learning [github]

Text-to-Face generation using Deep Learning. This project combines two of the recent architectures StackGAN and ProGAN for synthesizing faces from textual descriptions. The project uses Face2Text dataset which contains 400 facial images and textual captions for each of them. The data can be obtained by contacting either the RIVAL group or the authors of the aforementioned paper.

The Internet Bet on Advertising. But It Got the Bet Wrong.  [RickWebb]

Until recently, internet-based companies have focused almost entirely on demand fulfillment. Even though the early days of the internet advertising, first ushered in by Wired with what we call today the banner, were focused on brand advertising, very quickly thereafter people started caring about the clicks on those ads, and began tracking them through to purchase. And with that, the internet threw out brand advertising and instead focused on direct advertising — in particular targeted advertising, the kind that can track clicks, landing pages, conversions, and of course you, the consumer.

Ofcom’s annual Communications Market report is out  [PDF]

Telecoms, TV, radio and post services revenue totalled £54.7bn in 2017, 2% lower than 2016. • 5.2% of households’ spend was on communications services (£124.62 per month); 70% of this was on telecoms services.

Where to Go After Product-Market Fit: An Interview with Marc Andreessen  [a16z.com]

..You mentioned three or four tactical things that startups can do to stay viable. One is product iteration and building products that serve more of that market. Second, you really emphasize building up distribution. Third is M&A, which seems to be really underutilized in Silicon Valley today, at least in terms of the next generation of companies. If you have a $10 or $20 billion market cap, you should be buying things. One thing you didn’t mention, but I’d love to hear more on, is moats — in other words, building defensibility into what you’re doing. As you think about those four different factors, how do you rank them or think about common failure modes?

 I am shocked by the absence of M&A relative to what I would expect in the environment. And I would say there’s no question that the big new tech incumbents are not buying enough stuff just on the math. I think it’s just kind of obvious. In the old days, their predecessor companies were far more aggressive at building up their positions for M&A. And honestly, the Fortune 500, the big public companies, are not nearly as aggressive as I think they’re going to be

I think this is a temporary lull. I think five years from now we’re going to be having a very different conversation, because it’s just going to become obvious that this is an underutilized thing. And I do think that that could be a very effective weapon, therefore, for somebody who really figures this out and does it aggressively in the right way.

 

Live

Lollapalooza Live,

LIVE from Lollapalooza 2018

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Arts

Film: Nico 1988 Review: A Darkly Beautiful Biopic of a Musical Icon [Vogue]

Amazingly, this movie, which stars the brilliant Danish actress Trine Dyrholm, manages to cut through Nico’s carefully crafted mask. Biopics, and perhaps in particular, those that focus on musicians, tend to be unsatisfying:

Video/advert:  Dream Thieves  [YouTube Koho.ca]

www.koho.ca Directed by: Fleur Fortuné   This Horrific Ad Will Awaken Your Demons. But What Is It For?
A plea for restoring balance, in the most pragmatic sense of the term