Gaming’s Impact Toward Data Science and AI Careers

Under the circumstances and the economy of the world we’re working with in 2020, many of our consumer experiences at home are helping uncover new opportunities in work. A most obvious place to start is in exploring what streaming media, social media, and gaming, can mean in other fields of work or in uncovering opportunities for entrepreneurs.

Our friends at GamerJibe (a Collective graduate) and The Level Up Experience have been exploring this for some time; and since hosting one of the first-to-market virtual career fests, it’s been fascinating to watch their work and impact, mature in new ways that keep our economy informed and working.

Gamerjibe, the next-gen events platform, makes it easy to organize 3D browser-based events that appeal to the digital generation, to run networking events, job fairs, esports watch party, or conferences.

Emerging Tech in Cyber Security

One such talk recently hosted Cyber Warrior Network’s Nigel Leblanc, Marine Corp Captain and Mentorch Founder Lavontay Santos, and Patrick Kelley and Jeff Barron of Critical Path Security, with MediaTech VenturesTed Cohen and Gamerjibe’s Michael Lubker.

“The first time I entered the Gamerjibe space and I saw the Marine avatars in Dress Blues, I was like, ‘Yep, it’s on.’ The uniform speaks for itself… this event showed me the tip of the iceberg [for] what is possible when people think outside of the box on how to use technology to connect with other human beings.”

Captain Lavontay Santos; Innovating with Virtual Recruiting with U.S. Marines

The panel, of course, explored cybersecurity and getting into the space, as well as security threats, the significance of the number of intrusions that occur every day, and how the Quarantine has exposed companies; but it was the talk of the discipline and control it takes to work in cybersecurity and the challenges of AI that caught my attention.

Patrick Kelley, “we never really define the intelligence that we’re trying to emulate. Machine Learning is between supervised and unsupervised, depending on the models, so pivoting is a matter of what you’re looking for and doing your best to not include some unintentional bias so that you’re not over-fitting or under-fitting your model.” Given the real cost of capably spinning up AI, such as with IBM Watson, he explores, it’s not an approachable solution for most; the more data and faster you need to move with machine learning, the more difficult it becomes.

“There is this attention to detail and discipline, and control, and the ability to drop in interchangeably with your teammates. There is a readiness that we find with our veterans in the space, that is really hard to match.”

Critical Path Security’s Patrick Kelley

It’s that readiness that struck me given what we do here and how we might better prepare everyone for the future of careers in this science.

Daniel J. Valentino sat down virtually, thanks to these experiences and talks that The Level Up Experience and Gamerjibe are facilitating, and spoke with data scientist and Collective grad, Rob Campanell uncovering how gaming provides a path to these challenges and the high bar of workforce development in machine learning, A.I., and cybersecurity.

Learn Unity ml-agents.  The toolkit focuses on a niche in the machine learning space, called reinforcement learning.  This is how to get started with example environments; the imitation learning environment of ml-agents is going to have an impact on how game testing is done.

“The Unity environment is really good tool for reinforcement learning because it can vividly show you the failures with your assumptions.  I am looking at ml-agents as new tool for optimization problems.  Key advice is to learn it now, because it will creep into many industries, and you will be expert when a lot more opportunities open up.  Another Unity tool to learn is Unity Simulations where beta users have used it highly effectively for game balancing.”

Rob Campanell

What we’re exploring here is the use of simulation environments to provide circumstances in which we can learn and then even test situations in safe environments. Unity is already used for a wide range of simulation tasks and Unity Simulation leverages the cloud to run millions of simulations simultaneously. “By running the LGSVL Simulator on Unity Simulation,” as an example of the credibility and diligence of this approach, shares Seonman Kim, Vice President of Engineering, Advanced Platform Lab at LG Electronics, with Help Net Security, “Autonomous vehicle developers will be able to dramatically accelerate the training of their systems by running multiple scenarios in parallel.”

Generally, Campanell adds, those getting started might use Kaggle to build their data science portfolio. The opportunity to showcase your work as you learn is found in more than competitions now. “Highlight your data sets you’ve created, analysis with notebooks, and Q&A to the Kaggle community.”

LOUD Capital and Chicago Bulls Announce Semifinalists Featuring Collective Graduate GamerJibe

LOUD Capital, an early-stage alternative investment venture capital firm, in partnership with the Chicago Bulls announced today the 20 semifinalists for the first-ever Chicago Bulls Venture Competition, powered By LOUD Capital (CBVC), a pitch challenge that will provide a platform for start-up entrepreneurs with the opportunity to prove the worth of their business idea and value to the Chicago community.

Making it to the semifinal round are 20 submissions that were evaluated based on: strength of management team; value proposition/unique advantage; relevance of market identification/target audience; scalability; intangibles and funding readiness; impact on the Chicago community; and clarity and presentation. 

“Knowing that venture capital can be a very powerful and empowering pathway, we are always intentional about looking at historically underserved founders. I’m proud to say these 20 semifinalists are diverse and represent many different communities.”

Dr. Navin Goyal, co-founder and CEO of LOUD Capital.
  • Eight of the 20 companies (40%) have at least one minority founder or co-founder 
  • Six of the 20 companies (30%) have at least one female founder or co-founder 

Collective graduate of the second cohort of our program in Austin, TX, GamerJibe finds themselves among incredible company as result of the recognition.

GamerJibe is a platform for gamers and influencers to interact online. It enables gamers, game creators, and influencers to easily interact and do business with each other. GamerJibe allows online gamers to discover new games and other players, play games online with new friends, discuss topics such as gameplay strategy, and attend online virtual events.

Further Roster of the Chicago Bulls Venture Competition:

Charge Running
Charge Running is an app designed to enhance the running experience.

PromoShare is a peer-to-peer, word-of-mouth rewards platform for live events and brands.

FanFood is a mobile ordering platform dedicated to enhancing the guest experience at live events.

TappedIn is a tech-enabled marketing and analytics company that connects consumers and the food and beverage industry at the critical point of purchase.

SplitGym is a peer-to-peer marketplace to buy and sell unused memberships at fitness studios and gyms.

Fanisko offers a one-stop fan engagement platform that helps brands increase mobile fan retention by using innovative digital engagement techniques while increasing revenue opportunities.

Pepper is a connected cooking and nutrition platform. The Pepper smart kitchen scale, which offers integration with smart speaker Amazon Alexa, and guides the user with meal preparation and nutrition management.

Vous Vitamin
Vous Vitamin offers dietary supplements that use survey data and lifestyle information to create bespoke vitamin regimens for users. 

Spotivity is a dynamic and interactive search, mapping, and education app that helps enable users to maximize after-school time.

Gather Voices
Gather Voices offers software that automates creation, management, and publishing of digital videos.

Bitewell is a tech platform that connects users with meals that match their macronutrient and dietary preferences and fitness goals.

Tipoff is a multicultural digital team wordplay game. Revenue comes from app store sales of the game.

Gameday allows fans to buy and sell ownership in new and existing sports teams through a tokenized trading exchange.

Honest Game
More than 800,000 high school students each year find themselves academically ineligible for collegiate athletics.

Careband is a safety and security system for patients with dementia that provides caretakers the ability to track the location of the individual.

PeopleVine is a brand engagement and rewards platform with a portal that gives customers a place to view activities, number of visits, and any earned points/dollars.

Aurora Tights
Aurora Tights is an athletic brand that sells tights in an array of skin tones.

Good Neighbor
Good Neighbor is a mobile platform that seeks to bolster communication and collaboration among neighbors.

StreamLayer is an audience engagement company focused on changing the way we watch live video.

“After an overwhelming level of interest in the first Chicago Bulls Venture Competition, we are impressed by the talented group of Chicagoland entrepreneurs named as semifinalists.”

Matt Kobe, vice president of business strategy and analytics, Chicago Bulls.
  • One winner will receive a $50,000 investment from LOUD Capital as well as legal, promotional, business development services that will be issued in phases. 
  • Each round of the challenge will be judged by Chicagoland professionals who have expertise in an array of sectors, including start-up development, professional sports, business, community engagement, and government.
  • Five finalists and one winner will be announced at halftime during a Bulls home game at the United Center on March 10. 

The remaining four contenders will have the option to work with Chicago-area startup incubator 1871 to continue to implement the content of their business plans to get their plans off the ground.