Continuing to iterate the newsletter. This week: fewer links; more context. Apologies for late delivery, was on planes travelling to rainy, gastronomic, San Sebastian most of the day.
Dept of AI
There have been 60 years of false starts in AI but the integration of AI with machine learning, neuroscience & control theory is starting to deliver real results, off the back of Moore’s Law and the growth in data. A new report suggests that the market for enterprise AI will grow 50x in the next 10 years to $11bn. Conversations with experts like @barneyp (has code running on NASA spacecraft) and @petewarden (working with deep learning at Google) makes me believe this forecast is conservative.
China’s one child policy has left, even the world’s most populous nation, with a shortage of workers. Robots are filling the gap. Recommended.
Firms in Minnesota are addressing the shortage of skilled workers by turning to robots. Amazingly this is happening in small firms as well as large; and in many cases use of robots has made employees happier by allowing them to concentrate on high-cognition tasks rather than the mundane.
Will an artificially intelligent system ever be able to “feel” as humans do? In other words, “what might these machines want to do for themselves? What might a machine paint for its own purposes? What are its aesthetic desires?”
Depart of human enhancement
Michael Solana, of Founders Fund, makes the case for gene-hacking to build superheroes. After all, he argues, the world is better with them than without them.
Pushing the boundaries of science and ethics, Chinese scientists had some success in engineering human embryos. They are among the first to admin germline engineering. (They use a technology called CRISPR, which along side ‘deep learning’ in AI, you can expect to hear a lot of in coming years.)
Some of the techniques enabling this are in the faster-than-Moore’s Law improvement in genome sequencing. (Old post - worth reading if you didn’t already know this; has a great graph).
Dept of new ways of working
The company’s Web Services—which undergird Netflix, Healthcare.gov, and Spotify—might be the one of the most important piece of technology to the modern tech boom. Having spent more than $1m on AWS in my time, I can attest to it’s sublime wonderfulness for businesses, large & small.
Can technology help communities become more responsive to their citizens? A report from a town that’s ahead of the curve - everything runs on twitter
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