The close of the awards season is almost here, presenting a perfect opportunity to ignore the Academy Awards completely or become fully engrossed in the narratives of who will, or will not, win.
Each year the Oscars gives statisticians, Big Data experts and artificial intelligence programs a chance to project the outcomes based on information from previous award ceremonies. No matter what the data dictates, Meryl Streep is always a safe bet.
To project the winner of the Best Picture category, mobile entertainment technology company Disrupted Logic's ctalyst analyzed category nominees and winners for the last 17 years. Through a "learning cycle," the AI made predictions for the winner in 2000. If that prediction was correct, it would move on to projecting the next year, according to Disrupted Logic. If the AI was wrong, it would restart its analysis cycle, comparing and testing until it predicted the correct winner.
It took ctalyst 10,000 learning cycles to correctly predict the Best Picture winner from 2000 to 2016. Using its new found prediction skills, ctalyst projects "La La Land" will win the Academy Award for Best Picture, with 66% of votes in the whimsical film's favor.
The AI also predicted the runners up, giving "Arrival" 21% of the vote and "Hacksaw Ridge" 5%. Of course, we will never know who almost won the Oscar, but it's fun to dream.
The technology sector has a colorful cast of characters, deserving of a night in the spotlight. CIO.com recently projected who (or what) the Academy Award would go to in the cybersecurity sector. Inspired by the glamorous season and an outside-the-box application of awards, CIO Dive is choosing winners for Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director and Best Picture for the technology sector.
Best Actor: Brad Smith, president and chief legal officer of Microsoft
In recent months, Smith has come out as the star of the legal technology realm, setting the tone for many issues, from cybersecurity policy to a response toward President Donald Trump's immigration executive order.
Most recently, speaking at RSA 2017 in San Francisco last week, Smith called for a "digital Geneva convention" to address the "new battlefield" of cybersecurity. Representing one of the largest tech companies in the world, Smith has emphasized how companies have started to fall into the cross hairs of nation state opposition.
Whether it's defending Microsoft's interests, or standing up for the little guy, Smith has emerged as a technology sector thought leader determined to help shape the technology law into a more modern realm.
Best Actress: Diane Greene, SVP of Google Cloud
Greene is a long-time industry darling that has set out to make Google's enterprise business a major player that can compete with giants like Microsoft and Amazon. Formerly the founder and CEO of VMware, Greene has accelerated the reputation of Google Cloud, luring customers along the way.
Recently, she emphasized that Google is perfect for the enterprise, and said its technology is reliable, secure and scalable. Certainly the brand has name recognition. It is still to be determined if Google Cloud can take away a bit of Amazon Web Service's market share, but in just the past year it has made significant headway.
For example, Snap Inc. just signed a $2 billion deal for Google Cloud services over the next five years.
Best Director: Artificial Intelligence
AI has become the buzzword that just won't quit, dictating how companies plan to operate in the coming years. Organizations are chomping at the bit to gain access to more intelligent technology to help streamline internal processes.
Today, AI is that glitzy, up-and-coming directory that every company wants to get its hands on. Right now, it may be over hyped and still needs to prove itself in the technology landscape. But until it reaches maturity, it sure is fun to talk about. In some cases, it's even fun to worry about AI and its potential job-stealing ways.
Best Picture: Salaries
What would the technology industry have to talk about, if it couldn't discuss the practically unlimited salary potential of its workers? Everyone loves a good salary guide, which inevitably tells the same story every time: Data analytics is in and, well, so is everything else.
Big Data, security and networks are all showing huge salary growth potential, encouraging workers to flock toward those skill sets. With glaring employment gaps, those experts already in the field are seeing big paydays and ever-growing demand. I mean, who wouldn't want to see a potential Big Data salary of $183,500 each year?
The high-tech skills have led to a poaching climate in the industry, with companies frequently enticing workers away from one another. The biggest player? Amazon.