Maj. Gen. Kim Crider (ret.) joined VIA for a chat about data, AI, and enterprise innovation for VIA Visionaries interview series

Devoted readers of VIA’s blog will remember Major General Kim Crider (ret.) from our Power Up! blog, that recapped a friendly competition between our team members for the best AI project idea. Maj. Gen. Crider provided her data and technology innovation expertise on a panel of judges selected to pick the winning idea.

VIA was delighted to bring Maj. Gen. Crider back to our HQ in Somerville to share with our VIA Visionaries followers just how remarkable her career has been. Along with other guests we’ve had on our VIA Visionaries speaker series, Maj. Gen. Crider shares a collective mission with VIA of making our communities cleaner, safer, and more equitable.

Here is a little background on Maj. Gen. Crider.

Maj. Gen. Crider has had an impressive career spanning over 35 years in the United States Air Force, where she held the distinguished role of Chief Data Officer. She is also the former Chief Technology Innovation Officer for the United States Space Force. Beyond her service, Maj. Gen. Crider has held pivotal roles with Harvard University as CIO-Executive IT Consultant and with MITRE as a Senior Information Systems Engineer. Currently, as the Founding Partner of Elara Nova: The Space Consultancy, Maj. Gen. Crider continues to influence the space sector while offering her expertise as a Board Director and Advisor for various companies.

With over 40 minutes of captivating conversation, Colin asked Maj. Gen. Crider an array of questions ranging from why she chose to devote her time to the military, the role of data in today’s “AI world”, and exceptional applications she is seeing in the space sector.

One of our favorite moments was when Maj. Gen. Crider gave us an analogy of just how large the amount of data we are seeing today is:

“…We’re entering hundreds of zettabytes of data this year and it’s going to continue to grow into numbers that you can’t even really imagine. You think about 200 zettabytes. What is that? I mean, I heard somebody talk about this statistic, for those of us who have been around for awhile, we can start to get our head around something like, this year alone we are going to be around 120 zettabytes of data, which is a billion terabytes and then next year we’re going to be at 180 zettabytes of data. So, 60 zettabytes, somebody said, is like 60 trillion DVDs, 60 trillion DVDs.

To hear the full question and response, and Colin’s shout-out to those of us who remember DVDs, watch the video below!

We’re thrilled to have hosted FIVE exceptional VIA Visionaries events at our HQ in Somerville in the second half of 2023. True to our mission, we will be bringing you an impressive lineup of speakers in 2024 with some exciting updates to the format. Be sure to follow VIA’s website and social media (LinkedInXInstagram) for the latest on this series and more!