November 8, 2012 marks an important milestone in the Big Data revolution. With the opening of hack/reduce, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit created to cultivate a community of Big Data experts in Boston, technologists now have a state-of-the-art facility to develop ideas and incubate the next generation of technology innovation. When Fred Lalonde (CEO and founder of Hopper) and I co-founded hack/reduce, our goal was to help young technologists experiment with Big Data, share ideas, and cultivate a community of thought leaders without the burden of raising capital.
We have raised more than $1 million from local venture capital firms and leading global technology providers to aid in the creation of the facility; additionally, we’ve been able to establish partnerships with MIT CSAIL and Harvard, which we believe will turn the tide on where entrepreneurs look to establish roots and nurture their ideas from inception to company formation. hack/reduce also looks to create the next wave of disruptive Big Data companies; consider that Boston has produced some of the hottest Big Data startups. including DataXu, Hadapt, Recorded Future, and Sqrrl. These companies continue to lead in their respective markets and draw Big Data talent from all over the globe to the Boston area.
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick has been incredibly supportive, not only announcing the Massachusetts Big Data Initiative, but also providing a $50,000 grant for the support of hack/reduce. If you haven’t been to the website (http://www.hackreduce.org) or followed all of our recent activities on Twitter (http://twitter.com/hackreduce), I’d strongly encourage you to do so. There are workshops taking place, the chance to access a 1,000-node cluster, and networking opportunities with others interested in exploring the data tsunami.
One of the things I’ve been most excited about since starting down this path with Fred has been the overwhelming response we’ve gotten from the local community. The event celebrating the opening of the space is no exception. We’ve received thousands of requests, but only had room for a few hundred. Not to worry: For those of you who weren’t able to attend, November 8 is just the beginning. We’ll continue to update you on our progress and keep you informed of events to come. I look forward to collaborating with all of the entrepreneurs at hack/reduce, each of whom is helping to drive the resurgence of technology leadership in Boston.