Pharmaceutical startup NowRx today announced it has closed a $20 million round raised through crowdfunding platform SeedInvest. NowRx, which claims the round is the largest in SeedInvest's history, says it will use the funds to expand into new U.S. markets (including Arizona) and expand its pharmacy technology. The global e-pharmacy market could be worth $107.53 billion by 2025, according to Zion Market Research, and the pandemic will no doubt accelerate its growth. Contactless shipments promise to limit exposure to the coronavirus while saving time otherwise spent standing in line. The startup operates 5,000-square-foot micro-fulfillment centers in cities like Burlingame, California, where automation technologies -- including robots -- sort, count, bottle, and label orders "at the same or better" margins as large pharmacy chains.
Boring is the new sexy in Silicon Valley. As the coronavirus crisis has turned America upside down, it has become in vogue to just do the basic things right. Quantum computing may come eventually, and everyone still wants a moonshot. But for now, people are just asking for their video conferences to work and their doctors to have face masks. And that explains partly why Microsoft is courting a new class of customers: America's cows.
In 2018, Silicon Valley, like Hamlet's engineer, was hoist with its own petard. Citizens were panicking about data privacy, researchers were sounding alarms about artificial intelligence, and even industry stakeholders rebelled against app addiction. Policymakers, meanwhile, seemed to take a renewed interest in breaking up big tech, as a string of congressional hearings put CEOs in the hot seat over the products they made. Everywhere, techies were grasping for answers to the unintended consequences of their own creations. So the Omidyar Network--a "philanthropic investment firm" created by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar--set out to provide them.
Set in 2013, California based AI-centric healthcare providers, Caption Health has raised a fund of up to 53 million dollars to modify equipment and quicken the medical scanning by their registered nurses without undergoing an elaborative training. It was a revisionist approach by Caption Health CEO, Charles Cadieu to bring alteration in the field of medical science with the help of artificial intelligence. Investors seized this opportunity with the pandemic's onset to envision quick popularization of Caption Health and contributed to equipping better AI-powered Softwares for performing ultrasounds and scans. After receiving the market authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for cardiac ultrasound software last year, it helped to engage even the non-specialist to conduct the ultrasound where the machine automated reading and interpretation of the search results. It further helped to demonstrate the accuracy of machine learning technologies recently. Robert Ochs, deputy director of the FDA's Office of In Vitro Diagnostics and Radiological Health, commented on it: Cardieu observed the significance of this software as it will be a boon to the COVID patients in this time of crisis by quickly detecting any change in the cardiovascular functions.
Dr. Fallon Wilson is, like civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer, sick and tired of being sick and tired. Hamer and Wilson were both talking about a lack of progress on civil rights, but Wilson is talking specifically about data, AI, and tech from companies that have for years failed to make meaningful progress on diversity and inclusion initiatives. In a speech at the Kapor Center in Oakland, California, she said people cannot rely on companies like Facebook or Google to bring about meaningful change. "The truth is that the business of diversity and inclusion in tech companies will never eradicate structural racism, and I think we have to be clear about that," she said. "They cannot be the weathervane, nor should they, of what equitable progress looks like for Black people in this country as it relates to tech. Wilson was not referencing recent events like boycotts over Facebook's willingness to profit from hate or renewed diversity promises from Google and Microsoft.
Two people looking at the exact same scene before them may perceive it differently as a result of a so-called'fingerprint of misperception'. Researchers at the University of California Berkeley found natural variation in the inherent visual ability to pinpoint the exact location and size of objects. A series of experiments on nine individuals found'dramatic differences' in the ability to resolve fine details as well as discrepancies in judging location and size. The differences are due to how the brain processes visual stimuli, the academics believe, but the exact neural network responsible for the variation remains unknown. 'We assume our perception is a perfect reflection of the physical world around us, but this study shows that each of us has a unique visual fingerprint,' study lead author Miss Zixuan Wang, a UC Berkeley doctoral student in psychology, told Berkeley News.
At our AI-focused Transform 2020 event, taking place July 15-17 entirely online, VentureBeat will recognize and award emergent, compelling, and influential work through our second annual VB AI Innovation Awards. Drawn from our daily editorial coverage and the expertise of our nominating committee members, these awards give us a chance to shine a light on the people and companies making an impact in AI. Here are the nominees in each of the five categories -- NLP/NLU Innovation, Business Application Innovation, Computer Vision Innovation, AI for Good, and Startup Spotlight. A senior principal scientist at Amazon Research and faculty member at the University of California, Santa Cruz, Dr. Hakkani-Tur currently works on solving natural dialogue for Amazon's Alexa AI. She has researched and worked on natural language processing, conversational AI, and more for over two decades, including stints at Google and Microsoft.
Phil Duffy, is the VP of Product, Program & UX Design at Brain Corp a San Diego-based technology company specializing in the development of intelligent, autonomous navigation systems for everyday machines.The company was co-founded in 2009 by world-renowned computational neuroscientist, Dr. Eugene Izhikevich, and serial tech entrepreneur, Dr. Allen Gruber. The company is now focused on developing advanced machine learning and computer vision systems for the next generation of self-driving robots.Brain Corp powers the largest fleet of autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) with over 10,000 robots deployed or enabled worldwide and works with several Fortune 500 customers like Walmart and Kroger.What attracted you initially to the field of robotics?My personal interest in developing robots over the last two decades stems from the fact that intelligent robots are one of the two major unfulfilled dreams of the last century--the other dream being flying cars.Scientists, science-fiction writers, and filmmakers all predicted we would have intelligent robots doing our bidding and helping us in our daily lives a long time ago.
Amazon (AMZN) has introduced shopping carts that make it faster and more convenient to shop by automatically tracking the items put in the cart, enabling consumers to eliminate the checkout line. The new Dash Carts will first be featured at Amazon's Woodland Hills, California, grocery store, set to open this year. To use the Dash Carts, shoppers will need to have an Amazon account and a smartphone. Shoppers simply scan a QR code located within the Amazon app to begin loading items into the cart. The Smart Cart is fitted with computer vision algorithms and sensor fusion to recognize merchandise that is put into the cart.
This interview contains spoilers for Palm Springs, including the ending. There are plenty of romantic comedies in which a couple gets a second chance at love--but what about a million chances? In Palm Springs, two wedding guests played by Andy Samberg and Cristin Milioti find themselves stuck in a temporal rut, reliving the same day over and over again, and having company on their endless journey doesn't always make the going easier. Viewers raised on Groundhog Day will expect that the story is building towards a karmic out, but extricating themselves turns out to involve a dose of hard science, provided courtesy of science advisor Clifford Johnson. Johnson, a PhD who teaches at the University of Southern California, helped fine-tune the time-travel mechanics of Avengers: Endgame, and he's also written and drawn a nonfiction graphic novel, The Dialogues, that features "conversations about the nature of the universe."