Naoki Nagai, a 36-year-old Harvard graduate who grew up in Japan, is a one-man hedge fund. For the past 16 months he has written hundreds of algorithms in much the same manner as quantitative traders in the City of London or Wall Street. But, rather than trade from a Canary Wharf skyscraper or a Manhattan boutique fund, he does so from his home in Honolulu.
It's a brand new year, and a good time to look into the future to see what the next 12 months will bring. I listened to my friend Bridget Karlin make her predictions on the radio program Coffee Break with Game-Changers, which compiled what 80 thought leaders in technology, business and academics foresee for companies and industry in the coming year. Karlin, who is Intel's managing director of Internet of Things (IoT) Strategy and Technology, made the prediction that in 2017, artificial intelligence in all its various forms will go mainstream.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is the hot technology for Silicon Valley startups (I've personally talked to 15 AI startups in the past year). In fact, AngelList currently lists more than 2,000 AI startups with an average valuation of $5 million. In his TED Talk, digital visionary Kevin Kelly described AI as the next revolution, and his simple formula for startups is to "solve a problem using AI." And, IDC projected the AI market will reach more than $47 billion by 2020, with 62% of enterprises adopting the technology by next year.