By John Roach


Graphic showing CloudTune operating around the world.

Amazon Science

October 10, 2023

How CloudTune generates forecasts for the Amazon Store

On what are known as game days to teams inside Amazon, millions of virtual “customers” log on to the Amazon Store to search for items, browse product pages, load shopping carts, and check out as if they were real customers hunting for bargains during a sale such as Prime Day. “It’s like a fire drill, a planned practice,” said Molly McElheny, a principal technical program manager.

Digital twin image of New York City showing trees, streets and skyscrapers.

Amazon Science

July 18, 2023

Geopipe uses AI to create a digital twin of Earth

Planet Earth is getting a digital twin. A pair of friends who met during high school in an online forum are now using their PhDs in computer science to pioneer artificial intelligence (AI) techniques that will allow them to create an exact digital replica of the world — one that adds deep and rich layers of detail and nuance to the traditional online mapping experience.

A three megawatt hydrogen fuel cell at Plug in Latham, New York.

Microsoft / Innovation Stories

July 28, 2022

Hydrogen fuel cells could provide emissions free backup power at datacenters, Microsoft says

Latham, New York – Hydrogen fuel cells packed into a pair of 40-foot-long shipping containers here ramped up on an overcast day early this June as engineers gathered around laptops displaying data on the state, health and power output of the cells in this first-of-a-kind hydrogen generator. “This is it, it’s running at three megawatts right now,” exclaimed Mark Monroe, a Microsoft engineer.

Microsoft / Innovation Stories

April 6, 2021

To cool datacenter servers, Microsoft turns to boiling liquid

Quincy, Washington – Ping! Emails and other communications sent between Microsoft employees are literally making liquid boil inside a steel holding tank packed with computer servers at this datacenter on the eastern bank of the Columbia River. Unlike water, the fluid inside the couch-shaped tank is harmless to electronic equipment and engineered to boil at 122 degrees Fahrenheit.

Yale Environment 360

March 3, 2016

Can Data-Driven Agriculture Help Feed a Hungry World?

From Bonneville County, Idaho, to Buenos Aires Province, Argentina, tablet-toting agronomists with Anheuser-Busch InBev — the world’s largest brewer by volume — are visiting farmers who grow the company’s malt barley, a key ingredient in beer. These meetings are a decades-old ritual: Growers review contracts as agronomists offer advice on ways to maximize productivity and profitability.

National Geographic

April 29, 2015

Will Huge Batteries Save Us From Power Blackouts?

Glacier, Washington, is the final stop for coffee and treats on the Mt. Baker Highway, which ends at a ski area holding the world record for most snowfall in a season. The small town in the woods might seem an unlikely spot for a $9.6 million warehouse to store excess energy, but it might prove the perfect testing ground. The area's winter storms routinely knock out power to Glacier.

About John Roach

John Roach is a storyteller, writer and editor with two decades of experience as a science and technology journalist. He is curiosity driven, dives into research, ask questions and sculpts answers into narratives that resonate with readers. He currently writes about artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing, digital infrastructure and sustainability. Earlier, he worked in digital media as a reporter for the Environmental News Network, National Geographic and NBC News.