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The Inc. Founders Project brings you the stories of the entrepreneurs building our future. Hosted by Alexa von Tobel (Founder/CEO of LearnVest and now Founder + Managing Partner of Inspired Capital), listen to the tales of guts, inspiration, and drive behind the people and companies at the forefront of technology. Each weekly conversation digs into each founder's professional playbook — and starts to uncover what makes them tick as people.
 
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What will the future of machine learning look like? According to Lukas Biewald, machine learning has the power to solve many of humanity's biggest problems. That's why he founded Weights & Biases, to build tools that help machine learning practitioners thrive. Weights & Biases is used and loved by over 100,000 practitioners to track their models, d…
 
Ion Stoica is co-creator of the distributed computing frameworks Spark and Ray, and co-founder and Executive Chairman of Databricks and Anyscale. He is also a Professor of computer science at UC Berkeley and Principal Investigator of RISELab, a five-year research lab that develops technology for low-latency, intelligent decisions. Ion and Lukas cha…
 
Gene Berdichevsky started Sila, the next generation battery materials company, over a decade ago. But, with an eye toward building a hundred-year company, he's just getting started. Gene started his career as the seventh employee at Tesla, where he engineered the Roadster battery. Now at Sila, he's focused on battery innovation in driving the large…
 
To build one successful startup is no easy feat, but to do it twice is even more impressive. It was a childhood spent in a small Turkish village that propelled Eren Bali's passion for working to solve problems of accessibility. First, he created Udemy to make education accessible, scaling it to over 10 million students worldwide. In 2016, he starte…
 
Stephan Fabel is Senior Director of Infrastructure Systems & Software at NVIDIA, where he works on Base Command, a software platform to coordinate access to NVIDIA's DGX SuperPOD infrastructure. Lukas and Stephan talk about why having a supercomputer is one thing but using it effectively is another, why a deeper understanding of hardware on the pra…
 
In 2011, Steve and his co-founders set out to build a company. They understood the power of a vertical strategy and realized that restaurants were ripe for innovation. Enter Toast, which powers restaurants with point of sale, front of house, back of house, and guest-facing technology. Toast has grown rapidly with a clear focus on their customers: r…
 
Chris Padwick is Director of Computer Vision Machine Learning at Blue River Technology, a subsidiary of John Deere. Their core product, See & Spray, is a weeding robot that identifies crops and weeds in order to spray only the weeds with herbicide. Chris and Lukas dive into the challenges of bringing See & Spray to life, from the hard computer visi…
 
At his core, Jack is a creator. While his musical group Pomplamoose had taken off on YouTube, he realized that the mechanism for turning his fans' attention into dollars was broken. So, he built Patreon, a membership platform that makes it easy for creators to earn salaries directly from their biggest fans. Since its launch in 2013, Patreon has pai…
 
Kathryn Hume is Vice President Digital Investments Technology at the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC). At the time of recording, she was Interim Head of Borealis AI, RBC's research institute for machine learning. Kathryn and Lukas talk about ML applications in finance, from building a personal finance forecasting model to applying reinforcement learning …
 
As we all strive to increase our productivity, it's no wonder that productivity startup Notion has taken off. Since co-founder and CEO Ivan Zhao launched a prototype a few years ago, Notion has gained a cult following of over one million users. With a team of less than 30 employees, the company has already achieved a sky-high valuation of $800M. Iv…
 
What if there was a stock market for private companies? Carta is well on its way to realizing that vision. Henry Ward launched the company to 2012 under the name eShares. Fast-forward and Carta now manages over $575B in equity for 11,000+ companies and has a sky-high valuation of its own at $1.7 billion. Henry shares his vision for closing the weal…
 
Sean McClain is the founder and CEO, and Gregory Hannum is the VP of AI Research at Absci, a biotech company that's using deep learning to expedite drug discovery and development. Lukas, Sean, and Greg talk about why Absci started investing so heavily in ML research (it all comes back to the data), what it'll take to build the GPT-3 of DNA, and whe…
 
After meeting as freshmen at Georgetown, Jonathan and his two-cofounders set out to open a healthy fast food restaurant in a 500 square feet storefront. From those quaint beginnings, Sweetgreen has grown into a massive food platform, with over 100+ locations and 200+ outposts. Jonathan shares why authenticity is core to the brand, why their inexper…
 
You might know him as the host of Gradient Dissent, but Lukas is also the CEO of Weights & Biases, a developer-first ML tools platform! In this special episode, the three W&B co-founders — Chris (CVP), Shawn (CTO), and Lukas (CEO) — sit down to tell the company's origin stories, reflect on the highs and lows, and give advice to engineers looking to…
 
What if every American were an investor? At Robinhood, Vlad Tenev is on a mission to make the financial system work for everyone. He co-founded the company in 2013, and the fast-growing brokerage has become an investing giant. With over 13 million users and $1 billion in funding, it's no surprise incumbents have been influenced by Robinhood's model…
 
Welcome to Business Brainstorm Podcast. Today's guest is Stephen Mathai Davis. Diversifying our investment might be easy in hindsight, but understanding the benefits and caveats requires an expert of Stephen's caliber. With his relentless pursuit of finding new investment themes, this intriguing episode is a must-listen for people interested in inv…
 
Pete is the Technical Lead of the TensorFlow Micro team, which works on deep learning for mobile and embedded devices. Lukas and Pete talk about hacking a Raspberry Pi to run AlexNet, the power and size constraints of embedded devices, and techniques to reduce model size. Pete also explains real world applications of TensorFlow Lite Micro and share…
 
Pieter is the Chief Scientist and Co-founder at Covariant, where his team is building universal AI for robotic manipulation. Pieter also hosts The Robot Brains Podcast, in which he explores how far humanity has come in its mission to create conscious computers, mindful machines, and rational robots. Lukas and Pieter explore the state of affairs of …
 
In this episode we're joined by Chris Albon, Director of Machine Learning at the Wikimedia Foundation. Lukas and Chris talk about Wikimedia's approach to content moderation, what it's like to work in a place so transparent that even internal chats are public, how Wikimedia uses machine learning (spoiler: they do a lot of models to help editors), an…
 
Growing up, David's grandmother instilled an important lesson: that the only thing someone can't take away from you is your education. So when a mentor of David's offered to back him as an entrepreneur, he decided to bring the joy back to education and build a school that everyone would want to attend. In 2015, he launched MasterClass, which now pr…
 
In 2012, Vishal Garg and his wife tried to buy a home and quickly realized how inefficient the mortgage process was. As Vishal puts it, the mortgage industry acted as though the internet didn't exist. So in 2016, he founded Better to build an all-in-one platform to take customers through the entire home-buying process, from finding an agent, to sec…
 
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