I will not add another voice to the tumultuous cacophony around the fall of Silicon Valley Bank. The one thing worth pointing out, though, is a comment from Nicole Glaros, former Chief Investment Strategy Officer at TechStars (one of the preeminent startup accelerators and investors): “Why can’t we ever come together as an industry?”
Silicon Valley loves to talk a big game about the ecosystem — but, as we have just witnessed, when push comes to shove, it predominantly acts exceptionally selfish. As they say: Talk is cheap…
Read on for a real-world example of the power of democratization and its implications for the future.
Peter Diamandis, years ago, summarized the effects of technological progress in his “Six Ds of Disruption” framework. The final stage in the progression is “democratization.”
Personally, I might not always agree with Diamandis, but in this case, his insight is spot on. We all had heard the curious case of the iPhone — affordable only by upper-middle-class consumers in affluent societies when it launched; today, you are hard-pressed to see anyone without a (typically Android-based) smartphone anywhere in the world. And democratization affects not only the sheer cost of technology but also its accessibility.
Here is a very recent example: On March 1st, OpenAI announced the availability of not only ChatGPT via its API and Whisper. The former receives all the press at the moment, but the latter is no less impressive: Whisper takes voice recordings and transcribes them into text. All it takes is one (!) line of code (“transcription = openai.Audio.transcribe(“whisper-1”, file)”) at the cost of a mere $0.006 per minute, and you can transcribe, with high accuracy, spoken word into editable text.
Within 5 minutes (literally 5 minutes), I wrote a proof-of-concept taking a voice recording from my iPhone, transcribed it with Whisper, and sent it on to ChatGPT to summarize the recording in bullet points. All for a few cents and near instantaneously.
At a far lesser accuracy, this type of technology was considered magical (and partly impossible) just a few years ago. This brings up an important question: What technologies are we seeing today which aren’t quite good enough, and more importantly, too expensive to use at scale, becoming democratized in the next few years? And what are we going to build with them? (via Pascal)
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📺 What You Can’t Say on YouTube YouTube’s demonetization policies are anything but clear leading many people to seek other platforms that don’t “censor” videos such as Rumble. But everyday creators are willing to work with YouTube’s rules… if they only knew what those rules were exactly. Mafe ⇢ Read
👀 FTI 2023 Trend Reports One of the best and most comprehensive annual tech trends reports (from Amy Webb’s team at FTI) is now available for download (password: trends). Jeffrey ⇢ Read
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♀️ Unsung Heroes: Women Also Shaped the History of Tech When we think of the history of technology, we often picture a male-dominated field. However, women’s contributions to technology have been just as significant, if not more so. Pedro ⇢ Read
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📉 A good overview of what has been happening in the startup world lately.
🧠 Using LLMs to reconstruct your brain activity into highly accurate images. Not scary at all!
🤖 How to make the most of Bing AI.
🙋 ChatGPT explained for normal people.
Ever wondered what our dystopian ChatGPT-powered world will look like? Here it is. 😱
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📕 Disrupt Disruption – The Book: Get your copy of our bestselling book and learn how to decode the future, disrupt your industry, and transform your business here.
🔗 The Thin Wisps of Tomorrow Flipboard: Our continuously updated collection of Thin Wisps of Tomorrow as a Flipboard Magazine.
Radically yours, take good care, friend!
— Pascal, Mafe, Pedro, Vivian, and the three Js (Jane, Jeffrey, and Julian)