Heads up, algorithm fans! The good news is that there’s (finally!) been a breakthrough in the classic “travelling salesman” problem. The bad news? The minuscule improvement involves a factor of 10-34. Plus a few more quick reads on your favorite technologies, including an insight-filled report on automation, AI, and the future of work, the growing field of AI-driven legal analytics, and a peek at how your next smoothie will be made.

  1. Accelerating Out of the Crisis,” a new report from Forrester, notes that AI and automation now often go hand-in-hand in reshaping the future of work. And over 75% of all digital transformation projects focus on automation.
  2. How much is a 10-34 improvement worth? Probably not much, even if it’s a percentage of a mega-hefty number. But what could wind up being worth a lot is the recent demonstration that, having hit a wall several decades ago, improvements to the long-reigning best solutions to the classic “travelling salesman problem” are, in fact, possible (even if it’s just by a teensy sliver for now).
  3. You are what you tweet: A new AI predicts educational outcomes based on student tweets. (tl;dr: Students who tweet about egghead topics tend to be eggheads.)
  4. AI-driven legal analytics are on the rise, as cash-strapped clients seek to minimize expensive billable lawyer hours. (Which begs the question: Will the next Law & Order spinoff feature a wisecracking lawbot?)
  5. I, for one, welcome our new smoothie-making overlords.

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