Author: Scott Kinka

The Bridge Podcast - Adam Weiner Granite TelecommunicationsOn this episode of The Bridge, I’m joined by Adam Weiner, Vice President of Technology at Granite. We’re talking about using AI at scale and so much more.

Granite is one of the premier telecommunications solutions providers for businesses across the United States and Canada. With unparalleled North American coverage, Granite is the leading corporate phone service provider to multi-location companies through our scalable solutions, customized to manage their clients’ local, regional, and national locations. Through long-term commercial wholesale contracts, Granite offers dial-tone, infrastructure solutions, advanced data services, broadband, and security services to their customers at significant savings.

During our conversation, we get into why we need to solve little issues so they don’t become big ones, what Granite’s Edge Boot device is all about, how the company’s Granite 360 platform aims to provide transparency and flexibility for customers, and what using AI to scale really looks like.

Topics covered in this episode:

  • How Granite’s commitment to quality service and customer experience contrasts with larger companies that may struggle with scalability and product portfolio management.
  • Granite’s role in access aggregation and service provision in comparison to incumbent providers.
  • What Granite’s differentiation in approach looks like in practice.
  • An overview of Granite’s portfolio expansion from traditional services like POTS and circuit aggregation to a full suite of managed services.
  • The importance of integration in modern technology solutions and Granite’s role in providing end-to-end support for customers.
  • The introduction of Granite’s Edge Boot device: what it is, how it works, and the multiple functionalities.
  • Why Granite emphasizes providing solutions that offer resiliency, scalability, and diversity across carriers for competitive prices.
  • Why the integration of various technologies from different vendors is a crucial aspect of Granite’s service.
  • Why international connectivity presents unique challenges.
  • Predictions for the coming months.


Links for this episode:

Past episode: Mark Palmer of Granite

The Bridge Podcast - Adam Weiner Granite HeadshotABOUT ADAM WEINER

Information Technology professional with an unmitigable desire to be challenged. Adam has a proven track record of delivering unparalleled results while operating at the bleeding edge of what is possible, given a set of resources/requirements. A constant desire for technical and interpersonal self-improvement drives a ceaseless engine of growth and motivation. Gaining experience in varied and complex situations to complement theoretical and practical knowledge is his current focus.

CONTACT ADAM

LinkedIn. https://www.linkedin.com/in/adam-weiner-3a888886/

Web. https://www.granitenet.com

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Scott Kinka (00:00):

Hi, and welcome to The Bridge. My guest on this episode is, as you can see, Ben Affleck. We’re really excited to have him here on the show. Adam’s never heard that joke before. Adam Weiner is from Granite. He’s the vice president of technology there and as a background in network architecture and engineering, has been there for quite some time. We’re looking forward to hearing his story. Adam, welcome to The Bridge.

Adam Weiner (00:22):

Scott. Thanks for having me. I appreciate it.

Scott Kinka (00:25):

Fantastic. And you’re from Quincy or Quincy as they say there locally, right?

Adam Weiner (00:31):

Yes sir. I’ve worked really hard to get rid of my Boston accent, but if we really get into it, it might come out. So be on the lookout for that.

Scott Kinka (00:42):

Yesterday, I was at a Comcast event, and as most people know, they’re headquartered here in Philadelphia. I’m a Philadelphian, and I came in, and I was having that conversation with a bunch of people. Somebody next to me was from the city, and it takes me literally 15 seconds before I said Kuku and it’s all coming out water. And then surprisingly enough, the speaker, Keenan Thompson from Saturday Night Live was his speaker. He came out in an Eagle’s jersey and a Phillies hat sideways and proceeded to make fun of our accent for the next 10 minutes before the event began, which was great. But Adam, tell us a little bit about you personally. Obviously, we got the location out of the way, but tell us about Adam.

Adam Weiner (01:31):

Yes sir. Background in mechanical engineering: I worked for a little bit in surgical robotics for a company called Intuitive Surgical in the DaVinci microscopic surgical robotics machine. I then got into telecommunications, specifically network design and network architecture branched into software engineering and development. Now, I’m mostly responsible for our new product ideation future landscape and how we knit all of our products together to provide value for the customer.

Scott Kinka (02:05):

That’s fantastic. So you’re like the Skunk Works guy.

Adam Weiner (02:08):

We actually have a Skunk Works team here. Yeah, it’s called Granite Labs or the A TG Advanced Technology Group, and a bunch of really smart guys that we work

Scott Kinka (02:18):

With. And I’m sure we’re going to get into that a little bit more. We talked a little bit in the preshow so I won’t jp too far ahead, but we’ll hear about some of that stuff that the Skunk Works is working on right now. So I get that. Adam, tell us a little bit about, I always ask people this: how about your superpower? We’ll get into granite in a minute, but everybody that I talk to in technology has a superpower. What’s yours?

Adam Weiner (02:46):

The ability to troubleshoot. I would say that’s where I really cut my teeth. When something is not working as it should, I’m usually able to identify why and come up with a solution to resolve it. That’s really how I got my break in this particular industry. So a lot of the time we spend is focused on reducing the amount of time people have to invest to fix problems. And I think you mentioned, you alluded to it, we’re going to talk about a platform that we’re building to do just that.

Scott Kinka (03:21):

Fantastic. So we had Mark Palmer on the show last year, and it’s funny, we were talking in the pre-show, it was basically a year ago because he predicted that weekend that the Eagles were going to win the Super Bowl, and I was quite grateful as a lifelong Eagles fan that he made that prediction. Needless to say, everyone knows that that didn’t come true and here we are only just a couple of days after the Chiefs did it again at the end of the game. What was your prediction? What was your prediction on the Super Bowl?

Adam Weiner (03:54):

It was the Niners, and they had a phenomenal first half. And really just here in Boston, we wanted any outcome except for what happened because now the conversation about Mahomes is better than Brady, the Chiefs are better than the Patriots is happening, and that’s not a conversation we enjoy.

Scott Kinka (04:20):

I was out of the country watching the game, and somebody said, you’re from Philadelphia; who are you rooting for? And I said I’m rooting for neither. If there’s a way for nobody to win the Super Bowl, it would be fabulous. But honestly, I do think at the end of the day, it was a very different Super Bowl than the year before, which was like, who was going to make the one mistake last year? And it was like, who was going to stop making mistakes this year? It felt like it was a completely different game. Adam, tell us, we talked about Mark, and last year when he was on the episode, many of our episodes at the time, we were still stabling up as technologists from what happened in the pandemic and post-pandemic to our businesses. And one of the things that Adam talked about, I’m sorry, Adam, that Mark talked about was just really that you guys, he felt like you guys have done an expert job of sticking to your knitting, knowing where you are, and being expert at it.

Scott Kinka (05:22):

And if I can oversimplify clearly, oversimplification is basically like we’re really experts in doing the little things at small locations exceptionally well, such that businesses that have lots of locations lean into us to sort of solve those problems. And I probably describe that poorly, but I’m going to start there. Rather than asking you to define granite, I’m going to ask you to sort of respond to Mark’s description, how well he describes it, and then of course, if you can give us a little bit of background on Granite for those who didn’t see that episode.

Adam Weiner (06:00):

Absolutely. He described it fairly well. If we’re going to use a generalization of Amazon as compared to Apple, we’re definitely Apple. We know our target demographic, our target market. We build comprehensive and intelligently targeted products for that demographic, and we know that we can help national multi-location, retail, healthcare, and technology company support their business from a managed services perspective, technology perspective and really focus on the quality of experience that the customer is getting. It’s very rare that a business exists on the opposite end of the spectrum, and I would say Amazon is probably the paradigm or the best example of that where they can do everything well. It takes an incredible scale, and I think that’s where a lot of the larger telcos fail, and you start to see cracks come through who they are as a company or their product portfolio because they’re trying to be too much to too many different people and there’s always going to be a limiting factor there. So I think Mark did a very accurate job describing Granite, and we’re certainly focused on that niche and solving that problem.

 

Innovating Managed Services with AI at the Edge

Scott Kinka (07:29):

Yeah, and you mentioned the big I, Lex, I mean, the reality of it is part of your portfolio is in doing access aggregation, right? So I mean those companies that you just mentioned, I guess, maybe competitive on a deal are, in some ways, the service that you’re reselling to a customer kind of in an aggregated format. Can you speak a little bit more to that, and then where’s the plus up for you guys in those types of scenarios?

Adam Weiner (07:55):

So we work with the incumbent technology providers to provide services for customers. The difference between, say, AT&T and Granite is that AT&T wants to sell you an AT&T service, and out of footprint, they’re still going to sell you something that’s branded as an AT&T service. Granite is focused on the experience that the customer is having, and we want to understand your business, what type of growth you’re looking for, and some of the issues you’ve been experiencing with your current technology product portfolio. And then, we would come up with, across different vendors and different technologies, something that makes sense that delivers more resiliency, more scalability, and more diversity across carriers for a more competitive price.

Adam Weiner (08:56):

The chief business model is it’s rarely the correct decision to buy a thousand circuits from Verizon, both from a resiliency perspective and also from a cost perspective. And Granite is best positioned to have that conversation when we talk about multiple underlying carriers across the country or across the region and then also stitching their product in to what you already have. That’s another thing that I think granted does very well is the integration piece. It’s not just can you provide the access, can you provide the product? Customers have a business that they’ve built over decades, centuries in some cases, and there’s a story that exists at every single location, and every location is unique. Being able to drop something that can easily integrate without disrupting the customer’s business support their business drive revenue and drive scale for them is a difficult problem. And I don’t think it’s something that a lot of the I Lex are equipped to handle because they’re mostly focused on economies of scale with particular products, right? It’s a lot easier to sell circuits at a very large scale and focus on maximizing profitability there than it is to focus on the very small and very nebulous problems that are going to occur across a thousand different sites when you’re dealing with different types of stores, maybe an acquisition type model and a business that’s grown over time.

Scott Kinka (10:40):

Got it. And just to put the sort of breadth of that managed service in perspective for our listeners, we’re talking effectively connectivity, infrastructure, and telco. Are there other categories in there? And obviously the managed services and monitoring and full support around that, but are there other services that fit into that portfolio as well that we should be aware of?

Adam Weiner (11:03):

Absolutely. And you mentioned the brief recap of Granite We’re a 1.8 billion company privately held, with no debt. We have top 10 healthcare, top 10 retail, top 10 financial. All our customers, 80 of the Fortune 100, do business with us, and our focus was traditionally pots and circuit aggregation and has grown into a full suite of managed services really championed by Epic, which is our cellular-based POTS replacement technology, our mobility products and services, and then a lot of the SD wan, SSE and enterprise networking and security type solutions that we sell now. So the managed services that knit the access and the technology together is where we’re finding a lot of our business going in 2024.

Scott Kinka (12:01):

Yeah, it’s funny. I’ve spent a lot of time in my career in software development and running internal IT as well, and I’ve said to our teams, that any tool that does everything doesn’t do anything particularly well, but you can go buy all the point solutions, and you’re basically in the integration business, there’s your choice, which side is it? So you’re solving in a lot of ways the integration business problem for customers that look like those that you described.

Adam Weiner (12:33):

Absolutely, and we have relationships with the carriers, the technology vendors, and MSPs. We have a field services business that does 12,000 successful dispatches a week in order to provide onsite support for installation, repair, or customer needs, and then our network operations for ongoing optimization of solutions and lifecycle management as business needs and demands change, which they always do. Everyone’s trying to get into AI, and how can this improve my operational efficiency and my scale? The network architects and the managers of network engineering at companies are getting these directives from the CIO, from the CTO and they’re coming to us to have those conversations.

Scott Kinka (13:27):

Yeah, there have been a lot of recent episodes where we branch; I feel like it doesn’t matter who I’m talking to. It could be a data center provider, it could be a unified communications provider or a CX provider. It might be on the infrastructure or aggregation side. We end up in AI and you’re totally right. I mean, in some cases, it’s the solution looking for a problem. I feel like we’re doing with AI what we did with cloud six, eight years ago. It’s like the board’s like, go do AI. I don’t really know what that means, but okay. You guys, however, have put a lot of effort into really practically using AI at the edge, and you’ve got some fun stuff that you’re working on in the skunk work. So maybe this is a good stepping off point to a little bit about what you’re working on on your edge product.

Adam Weiner (14:17):

Yeah, for sure. We came up with an idea a few years ago, and it’s spawned because, as Granite’s network architect, originally I was responsible with our team for designing our North American service provider network, including power management, out-of-band management, access console access to devices, things that data center engineers and technologists take for granted. But what doesn’t exist on the market is something that combines all of those things together in a form factor that’s palatable for individual business locations and sprinkles some of that magic machine learning on top, which we’ll talk about. We had the idea of building a fleet, deployable, managed out AIOps type device, and the chief aim was to detect issues, resolve issues, reduce operational cycles spent on simple tier one, tier two repair type or optimization type issues and kind of bring your entire network management system, your alerting system, your response system into the modern age. And what we did was we patented a device that we call Edge Boot. It looks like this: it can grow and expand, but essentially, this is in a very small footprint, all of those things in one; it’s an Amazon Alexa for AIOps business in 2024.

Scott Kinka (16:10):

Super cool. And you held that up. It’s a one U high half rack-wide kind of form factor, right? Pretty simple.

Adam Weiner (16:18):

Yeah, it is one U; it has the ability to expand, so this device has one power control port. And I’ll grab the expansion module, but you can see it right here; sorry for going out of frame.

Scott Kinka (16:35):

You’re fine.

Adam Weiner (16:36):

This is the concept. So right here, you can quickly and easily just press this button, and this will pop off. Here’s your control, primary control module unit with your cellular base out-of-band access as well as all of the console access. This gives you additional power control ports, and they just fit together simply and easily. Super. And you have the ability to expand the product dynamically over time.

Scott Kinka (17:07):

So the outlets on the back of there, you’re doing not only providing the edge for your device, so you talked about the out-of-band, there’s pots replacement that you’re probably driving off of the platform, that kind of thing, but the outlets are like via ai, you sense it’s not a network problem, but maybe a hung device. This is just, I’m just trying to situationalize it. You just cycle the port, give it the three-finger salute because that’s what ultimately, at the end of the day, the AI is telling you to do on that particular, that next device that’s plugged in there for all intents

Adam Weiner (17:35):

And purposes. Exactly, yeah. There’s a learning model. So there’s one that executes locally on the device, and then there’s a neural net in the cloud that processes the data and we make a recommendation with a confidence interval that says, based on what we’re detecting, it’s very likely that this action is going to resolve the issue working with the customer. We can tweak the model and get it to a point that it’ll detect things like a broadband modem, desyncing from the upstream co-provider edge router, reboot the broadband modem, and resync it back to bring the service back online within 30 seconds. Wow. Whereas what we’ve seen is even in the best case, 30 to 45 minutes having to call the site, identify someone that can find the broadband modem, and manually pull the power cord to reestablish connectivity.

 

Simplifying Service Aggregation with a Click of a Button

Scott Kinka (18:36):

Fantastic. And for you guys who are providing, as you mentioned, I mean you’re aggregating services across multiple L to be able to layer that service on top in a lot of ways, there’s a self-healing element to your service that is not available on the underlying network or service that you’re effectively reselling as part of the overall service you’re delivering for the customer.

Adam Weiner (18:58):

Absolutely. And it is something that stitches together all of the technologies that the customer might have. We deal with a lot of customers that have iterated their networks and their technology solutions over time. So it’s possible that they have Juniper switches and Palo Alto firewalls, and their edge devices are VMware Velo cloud, or they have something else like that. And over time, you have to manage all of these different orchestration platforms and all of these different ways to interface with the devices. We have all of the API libraries for 60 plus different technology vendors built into our platform, and we’re able to be that watchdog on-site and translate what needs to happen between all of the languages that the different vendors speak. And I think that’s the value add. That’s a real value add in 2024 where a lot of people have multi-vendor environments.

Scott Kinka (19:55):

Yeah, I mean huge bottom line is, for all intents and purposes, what you’re saying is that you’ll, with those API libraries, you don’t have to be providing all of the services per se, that the device is monitoring and pulling logic on and frankly feeding into the ml.

Adam Weiner (20:11):

Yeah, we’ll do as much or as little as you want us to do. I had a conversation with a 5,000-site customer today, and they said, look, this is great. We have our own network management system, and we’re ingesting a lot of different event feeds. What we would really like is the ability to post to an API that you have on this device that would inform your local model or reset a power port, bring power on and offline, execute a console session, execute a Python script, and things like that. Can you do that? Absolutely. The entire platform is built to wrap and expose the onsite controls that we have to the customer if they have their own sophisticated management system.

Scott Kinka (21:00):

Super cool. And is this available today, Adam? In market? It

Adam Weiner (21:03):

Is, yeah. Granite net.com. The platform is Edge boot.io is the web application for the website. There are interest forms on both of those if you want to have a more detailed or in-depth conversation.

Scott Kinka (21:18):

Yeah, obviously. Okay, cool. Super interesting there. We got a couple of minutes left. You also mentioned a little bit about what you guys are doing on, you called, I think, the Uber of service aggregation, something along those lines earlier. You’re spending some time on a product you’re calling Granite 360. Can you tell us a little bit more about that?

Adam Weiner (21:38):

Yeah, absolutely. And hopefully, we don’t take as long to be profitable as Uber took, but not to fire any shots.

Scott Kinka (21:47):

Hey, privately held, man, you’re not going to get that kind of distance, right? You’re going to make it happen. 

Adam Weiner (21:52):

That’s true. But yeah, the idea is technology has penetrated our lives in so many ways and ways that we take for granted. It still amazes me to this day that I can press a few buttons and whatever food I want just shows up, I can press another few buttons, and I can have a stranger show up and drive me where I need to go. Our lives have evolved based on the technology that we have access to, TikTok and Instagram, and all of these social media networks inform a lot of the economy today. What we don’t have is a really seamless and transparent way to see what’s going on with our managed services as we look at what’s available and how we can procure and build solutions together. So we’ve taken a lot of input from our partners that are out there working with customers and talking to customers.

Adam Weiner (22:56):

And everybody just wants us to open the kimono, for lack of a better analogy, and show you, here are all of the integrations, here are all of the carriers that we do business with. Here are all of their products. This is what they cost. Make an informed decision, press a button, work with your team, identify the solution that makes sense for you, and you have a complete project plan that’s online that can be custom-tailored for your business. Everything from procuring products to operating their lifecycle of opening tickets with our network operations group, integrating your ITSM ServiceNow remedy, whatever you’re using on your incident management side directly with us as an MSP. The idea is flexibility and ease of integration. If it’s incredibly difficult to do business with granite, we’re not going to grow our business as quickly as we would want to. So we’re making it as easy as possible by saying, this is what we have; this is how you interface with us.

Adam Weiner (24:07):

We’re happy to do business with you if you want to do business with us. If you would like to see any additional things or any additional services or data points that would help you make a more informed decision, the high-velocity model that we have is custom-built for that problem statement. An example is on Granite 360, we have a customer tools section, and we had a customer that said, you manage our Fortinets. It would be great if you could build an application for us that we would press a button and it would use utilizing I perf three to build an on-demand throughput test to servers that you hosted on your service provider network so that we can check the integrity of our circuits, the throughput of our circuits, the quality of our applications, all of these things. And we don’t want Scott, the network architect, doing this; we want someone on the tier one help desk to be able to do this. And what we’ve been able to do is, in two weeks, build this application that has all of this logic, all of the logic, all of these variables in something that’s very easy to confuse and give it to this customer and all of our customers with Fortinet hardware.

Scott Kinka (25:28):

Super cool. I mean, just getting back to that earlier conversation, and it’s probably a good segue to sort of jp out to some fun questions at the end, but we were having that sort of conversation about the chat we had with Mark last year and sort of reacting and how the pandemic is affecting our routes to market. This feels like a direct result of that conversation. I mean, our expectations as consumers have changed significantly since then, and you guys marketplace visibility action without necessarily having to pick up a phone nber. Really, really an interesting approach there.

Scott Kinka (26:05):

I’d love to wrap with a little bit of fun if that’s okay. I think we’re doing okay on time, but before I do that, I actually do have one last question because, given the types of businesses you’re going after, I imagine that you are having to solve for international connectivity inside that customer base you just talked about. Can you speak a little bit about that? And I am saying that sort of in the vein of even if you wanted to buy all the circuits on some of these networks from one leg, it’s just not possible if you’re an international business. Talk a little bit about that value proposition and then also just kind of what’s unique and challenging about doing business internationally.

Adam Weiner (26:50):

Yeah, I think the international problem is the compounding effect of the cultural differences in certain countries and the legal requirements in different countries. And for a lot of organizations, a lot of multinational organizations, different arms of the business in different countries have different deciding bodies and they have different business processes and procedures a lot of the time. So it’s rare that you get not just one provider but just one uniform solution across an international organization; it’s very probable that you’re going to have to make changes in order to accommodate for local laws or the way that business is done in that particular country. And it’s some of the most fascinating stuff for me is understanding the nuances between how, for example, American 4G and 5G network architectures exist, how they’re built, and how they integrate the decisions that maybe Verizon and at t have made versus how Orange operates their network in Europe and Deutsche Telecom. And there’s a lot of uniqueness there, both in the technology and the way that they’ve chosen to operate. And I think you’ll see some of that manifest over the next couple of years without getting too nerdy. There are conversations about open ran and different ways to approach open sourcing and containerizing the mobility networks. And a lot of that is coming from a more competitive European landscape, I think.

Scott Kinka (28:50):

And can I ask that the Edge Boot product can be deployed internationally? Is that a series?

Adam Weiner (28:58):

Yeah, it absolutely can. It’s built to be modular, so whether it’s a type one connector or a UK-based connector, we have the ability to deploy it in countries with other electrical standards.

Scott Kinka (29:11):

Got it. So think about that. You’re talking about the differences in the networks, the way they perform, the way they interact, but you’ve got a product that’s doing effectively self-healing based on what’s actually happening at that location. So the solution itself is adapting in a lot of ways not to oversell that concept, but am I thinking about that right?

Adam Weiner (29:30):

Yeah, you absolutely are. And it brings to light things that we don’t often think about in America. We take for granted that I think our power grid is, for lack of a better term, fairly reliable. It is a little outdated, but it’s fairly reliable, and you see a lot of manufacturing now pivoting to India and their power infrastructure is a lot less robust than ours is. So there’s a dying gasp sensor built into the Edge boot, and we can detect and inform the customer when there are anomalies in the power delivery infrastructure when there’s over current or over voltage or if a facility loses utility power so that the issue is with the electric utility and you’re not chasing things on the network or firewall side or application

 

Granite VP Predicts Robot-Driven Retail Revolution

Scott Kinka (30:27):

Access. Makes sense. I mean, you’re totally right about the way we think about power as ubiquitously available here in the United States. We’ve started doing business in, we have a BPO business, and we’ve started doing business with some BPOs in South Africa, where the employment environment is very conducive. That’s a great job in certain areas of South Africa, but it’s rolling blackouts even in the major cities scheduled rolling blackouts to be able to support the power needs inside the country. So how do you keep people on the phones and everybody’s expecting to go to alternative power at certain points in the day, and what’s that? Just a whole different other set of things to consider internationally that, obviously, you guys have navigated for some of your customers. Can I jp into some fun? We’ll do this real quick, and we’ll get you up.

Adam Weiner (31:12):

Alright, let’s

Scott Kinka (31:13):

Do it. Three fun questions. The first one I think I prepped you for which is I’m going to need a shameless prediction for the next 12 to 18 months. It could be tech could be about your company, could be about sports, wherever you want to go, just throw something out there so that we can look back on it in a year.

Adam Weiner (31:30):

Sure. Let’s just say the Chiefs are not going to win the Super Bowl again next year in 2025, and I hope that that prediction comes true, but I think one thing that you’ll start to see is a focus on robotic retail and robotic-assisted shopping at a more micro level. And we start to see it around here, I don’t know if you’ve ever seen it, but in grocery stores, a lot of the times around here we have this little robot that’s navigating the aisles and looking at inventory and things like that. I really do think the retail shopping experience is going to be transformed by robotically assisted processes within a year very, very quickly because consumers are starting to expect a different level of experience and instant gratification. And the thought of driving to the grocery store, having to walk around the grocery store, procure things themselves, and put them in their cart, I think what is likely going to happen is you’re going to have robots do the shopping for you. You’ll go to the store and pick up your parcels directly from the front. You’ll have already paid for them, and it will become a more seamless experience.

Scott Kinka (32:59):

Wow, that’s super interesting. We could completely unpack that, but I know we’re heading towards the top of the hour, so we’ll hit these next two questions. One, this one’s not as much fun. Is there something that you’re reading right now, something that you’re listening to that you’d like to share with the listeners? Yeah,

Adam Weiner (33:15):

I just finished a book by Chris Miller called Chip War, which is if you ever saw the departed about the, you asked me to use my Boston accent, go for it. But yeah, we got those micro processes and we got to fight for them, but it was about the technology and the political landscape of securing essentially technology control in the eighties and nineties and who would be able to build and procure this compute superiority. So Chris Miller’s Chip War, it’s a pretty great book.

Scott Kinka (33:57):

It’s all about the silicon level basically. We’re in the chips right now. Exactly. Yeah, totally. Okay, that sounds like a lot of fun. I want to read that one last one. Alright, so whatever the next pandemic-level thing is that occurs could be the zombie apocalypse or the robots taking over with AI or what have you. There’s one application that’s still functioning on your phone. Which one is it?

Adam Weiner (34:24):

That’s a really good question. I am really into notion right now. I don’t know if you’ve ever used it. I haven’t. Okay. To describe. It’s essentially all of your apps that you use to operate your day-to-Day life all in one. So it manages task flows and creative idea generation and workflow management and the ability to prioritize things and communicate different tasks with your wife or significant other; I would probably say that right now or definitely not Microsoft Teams, that one, the zombie apocalypse, can take that app away.

Scott Kinka (35:12):

You may have hit on a technicality on this question, which we regularly ask, and I’ll tell you why. Because if I’m thinking about Notion, it’s informing itself from all the data that’s in all of your other apps, right? I mean fair. So I’m wondering, I mean, you may win just because you might’ve hit on a technicality. You chose that sort of as an aggregator, pun intended, given the business of data from your other applications. So I think you won on that’s pretty creative. I appreciate that. I still think the best answer we’ve ever gotten was a flashlight. Look, if nothing else works at this point, it doesn’t really matter to me at this point. Just get me a way to light up the dark while the zombies are coming for me, which I thought was pretty interesting. But yeah, people go, Hey, my ES ESPN app, like there’s nothing to watch but old games. Let’s think about that for a moment. You can watch the Kansas City Chiefs win the Super Bowl again and again and again if you choose to do that. Adam, this was a great conversation, a brisk 36 minutes. I really appreciate your time. If anybody wants to connect with you, I’m assuming that they can do that right with you on LinkedIn.

Adam Weiner (36:19):

They absolutely can. Yep.

Scott Kinka (36:20):

Okay, fantastic. Well, I appreciate that, and thank you for being guests here on the bridge. Thank you to our listeners for hanging with us. My guest today has been Adam Weiner, who is the VP of technology at Granite. Adam, thank you so much. We appreciate your time today. Thanks so much.

Adam Weiner (36:37):

Thank you for your time, Scott. Take care.