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Is there anything AI can't do?

I don't do much programming anymore, but I've been tinkering with a bit murder of Arduinos (the plural for an Arduino, like crows, is unquestionably “murder”). My C skills are rusty as hell and ChatGPT was a surprisingly helpful tool for coding and debugging. It was pretty refreshing to have the ability to throw a bunch of code together with the compiler's error message, just for the robots to inform me (1) I actually shouldn't be programming and (2) methods to fix my n00b errors.

Of course, none of this can come as a surprise to anyone who's been being attentive, however the sheer variety of next-generation startups coming our way suggests that AI's tentacles are reaching far and wide.

The truly amazing thing is how early we’re on the trail to AI. Current generation technology is the engineering equivalent of a toddler, and all of the mediocre reviews various generative AI software receives are akin to judging a fish on its ability to climb a tree.

“I'm surprised nobody did a parody of the particular review of a three-month-old baby saying that he just poop's his pants and might't even finish whole sentences,” said Steve Blank in an interview with TechCrunch last 12 months. “Copilot has modified every programmer's life. It’s probably increased productivity by 50%, and that’s just in case you use it poorly.”

I'm excited to see where this all goes.

In this sense . . .

It's at all times all AI

Photo credit: Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto/Getty Images

FlowGPT seems to be the digital embodiment of the Wild West, a spot where the law is more of a suggestion and security measures are the annoying belongings you click past to get to the great things. FlowGPT was founded by a duo who apparently decided that what the world really needed was a marketplace for AI apps that range from the mildly useful to the doubtless nefarious. It's the playground for everybody who thought, “Yeah, I want an app that tells horror stories like I'm a scared girl from a movie, but can it also teach me methods to code malware?” Investors, In a move that screams “what could go flawed?”, they’ve poured $10 million into the corporate, proving once more that ethics within the tech world may be just as flexible as your funding.

Inkitt checked out the world's dwindling reading habits and said, “Challenge accepted.” With a daring plan to grow to be the Disney of the twenty first century, they're throwing $37 million at solving the issue, because why not? The company's strategy? Use AI to sift through self-published stories in your app, select those that show promise, after which turn them into bestsellers.

AI creates your website: While Wix and Squarespace prepared the ground with their easy-to-use drag-and-drop interfaces, Armenia's 10Web is emerging, aiming to tame the WordPress beast.

AI reads your messages for you: Particle.news, the brainchild of former Twitter engineers, enters the ring with a brand new tackle news processing. Armed with $4.4 million in seed funding, their vision is to supply a “multi-perspective” news reading experience.

AI programmed for you: StarCoder 2 is a family of models with as much as 15 billion parameters trained on a whopping 67.5 terabytes of information. StarCoder 2 is trained on around 619 programming languages.

This week's most interesting fundraisers

Hand holds a wallet

Photo credit: Lia Galimzianova (opens in a brand new window) / Getty Images

Fervo Energy helps the geothermal sector take off, raising $221 million by penetrating deep into the Earth's crust to harness its heat. This Houston-based company uses directional drilling techniques, a legacy from the oil and gas industry, to significantly expand the reach of its wells. By equipping these wells with fiber optic cables and an array of sensors, Fervo can map subsurface thermal patterns and monitor well performance with unprecedented precision.

Initia enters the blockchain scene with a daring mission to handle the notorious complexity and fragmentation that plagues blockchain application development. The company goals to bridge the gap between the multichain universe and app-specific blockchains, providing a streamlined approach to interoperability and simplification. The company's approach goals to remove the technical hurdles for app developers and strives to grow to be the app store of the crypto world, where accessing and creating applications is as easy as possible. With a recently accomplished seed financing of $7.5 million, the corporate is stepping on the accelerator.

Money for photos: Photoroom, a Paris-based AI photo editing app, has successfully accomplished its latest funding round, securing $43 million at a $500 million valuation.

Money for money: Embat has successfully secured $16 million in Series A funding. The company's goal is to revolutionize the way in which finance teams work by digitizing and automating processes corresponding to accounting, bank reconciliation and company treasury management.

Money for AI: Mistral AI announced a major advancement in its journey with the disclosing of a brand new large language model called Mistral Large, designed to compete with giants like OpenAI's GPT-4. This announcement got here with news of a strategic partnership and investment from Microsoft.

This week's big trend: What goes up must also come down

Cartoon rocket takes off and crashes.

Photo credit: Bohdan Skrypnyk/Getty Images

A brand new trend is emerging within the VC ecosystem through which investors are increasingly supporting startups which might be intended to support other startups of their shutdown processes. This trend is gaining momentum against the background of a high failure rate of startups and a major slowdown in enterprise capital financing after the post-2021 boom. Startups like Sunset and SimpleClosure are stepping in to supply corporations with more streamlined and fewer painful options for liquidation, handling all the things from legal and financial logistics to asset disposal and capital return. These services have gotten increasingly vital because the variety of startups facing closure increases. Last 12 months alone, over 3,200 enterprise capital-backed U.S. corporations closed.

Google tousled: Google recently found itself in a relatively awkward situation when Gemini portrayed the Founding Fathers of the United States (famously white slave owners) as a multicultural group that included people of color. This incident sparked widespread ridicule and criticism and highlighted the challenges of balancing diversity and historical accuracy in AI-generated content.

Apple killed the self-driving automobile: Apple is scrapping its secretive, long-standing effort to construct an autonomous electric automobile, executives announced in a temporary meeting with the team Tuesday morning. The company is probably going cutting lots of of employees from the team and all work on the project has stopped.

I’m the captain now: Byju Raveendran, the founding father of eponymous edtech group Byju's, told employees on Saturday that he would remain the startup's chief executive and that rumors of his firing were “greatly exaggerated,” a day after a shareholder group voted for his extraordinary removal General meeting.

More must-watch TechCrunch stories. . .

Every week there are at all times just a few stories I would like to share with you that one way or the other don't fit into the categories above. It could be a shame in case you missed them. Here is a random choice of goodies for you:

Please someone buy our cars: Toyota's latest offering of the 2023 Mirai Limited, a fuel cell vehicle, epitomizes the fuel battle facing the automotive industry. The deal effectively drops the worth of the vehicle from $66,000 to $11,000, taking into consideration rebates and incentives at no cost hydrogen fuel.

Just playing around: Bumble, once a dominant player in the web dating scene, is currently stumbling through turbulent waters, including major losses and a layoff of 350 employees.

No, Gmail is not going to disappear: An old TechCrunch story drove a ton of additional traffic when a web-based hoax claimed that Google was shutting down Gmail. That is in fact not the case.

Apple is investing more resources in AI: Apple CEO Tim Cook guarantees that Apple will “break recent ground” with GenAI this 12 months. He announced this throughout the company's annual general meeting.

The tiger grows 65 billion stripes: Payments infrastructure giant Stripe announced today that it has signed deals with investors to supply liquidity to current and former employees through a $65 billion tender offer.


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