by Angela Guess
A recent article by Mark Egan states, “Thomas Edison famously said, ‘I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.’ Kevin Collins can relate. By fanning the embers of a promising idea for years, he built his powerful machine learning company called Bit Stew. Now GE, the company Edison founded, just acquired it for an undisclosed sum. GE made the announcement at its Minds+Machines conference, which is taking place this week in San Francisco. Collins says Bit Stew will help make Predix, GE Digital’s cloud-based platform connecting devices on the Industrial Internet, faster and more effective. Bit Stew collects data coming from hundreds of sensors and quickly funnels it into software that analyzes the data. ‘Data integration is the Achilles’ heel of dealing with data coming from diverse sources and systems,’ says Collins. ‘With our technology, we can intelligently ingest data, model it, make sense of it, establish relationships and cleanse the data through our artificial intelligence engine, which does in minutes what can take months, if not years, for a human to do’.”
Egan goes on, “Collins says he hopes the acquisition will lead to Bit Stew’s platform, called MIx Core, being incorporated into GE’s Predix offering. Getting here was a tough journey for Collins. In 2001, he started NetReliance, a business-to-business transaction firm with customers including Agilent Technologies and Amazon. But the startup went bust after tech stocks collapsed soon after the company was founded. ‘We lost our house and our entire life savings, and we had two small kids at the time,’ says Collins. Despite the setback, Collins and his wife found they enjoyed being entrepreneurs and decided to start again — this time more cautiously. Collins and partner Alex Clark, Bit Stew’s chief software architect and co-founder, came up with the idea for Bit Stew after learning about the data integration problems the industry was facing when the pair was working at another startup.”
Read more at GE Reports.
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