5 Key Stories From The Digital Worlds

December 3

BY NABYL CHARANIA

1. 

PROGRAMMING BIOLOGY: READ (R), WRITE (W), EXECUTE (X)

  • the convergence of biology with computation and engineering has finally unlocked our ability to “execute” in biology
  • Today, with the precision of CRISPR tools and synthetic DNA advances, we can write to biology
  • As we can increasingly analyze and understand biology, we’re gaining the biological equivalents of software debuggers and compilers

2. 

SUPERGIANT VC ROUNDS WEREN’T LIMITED TO LATE-STAGE STARTUPS

  • VC rounds of $100 million or more really took off in 2014 and 2015, as massive amounts of money began flowing into venture capital funds at the far end of the assets-under-management spectrum
  • While concentrated in late-stage deals, supergiant venture checks aren’t exclusive to more mature companies
  • Series A and Series B deals accounted for between 21 and 37 percent of global supergiant deal volume since 2010

3.  

HOW NEURAL NETWORKS WORK—AND WHY THEY’VE BECOME A BIG BUSINESS

  • based on neural networks, a type of data structure loosely inspired by networks of biological neurons
  • Neural networks are organized in layers, with inputs from one layer connected to outputs from the next layer
  • wider availability of AI-optimized computing power has driven a growing demand for data to train increasingly complex neural networks

4. 

NOW THAT IKEA HAS COLONIZED EARTH, IT’S GOING AFTER MARS

  • Swedish furniture giant is already thinking about how to outfit these minuscule living spaces of the future
  • MDRS was established in the early 2000s to help researchers and students from around the world figure out how humans can survive on other planets
  • tried to work with products for small-space living situations that could be arranged in a flexible and multifunctional way

5. 

AMAZON AI GENERATES MEDICAL RECORDS FROM PATIENT-DOCTOR CONVERSATIONS

  • allows doctors to easily transcribe patient conversations and add those interactions to someone’s medical records with the help of deep learning software
  • doctors can use the software in conjunction with Comprehend Medical, a tool Amazon announced last year that can read unstructured medical text and then pull information like dosages and symptoms from it
  • For Amazon, Transcribe Medical is just the company’s latest foray into the lucrative healthcare industry