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Sep 26, 2022

The DeanBeat: Why Neal Stephenson is starting a metaverse company 3 decades after Snow Crash

Posted by in categories: blockchains, entertainment

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It’s not often that you get to hear things from the horse’s mouth. In this case, I was able to do an interview with the guy who came up with the term “metaverse” decades ago. I feel like I’ve been waiting decades to talk to him.

Science fiction author Neal Stephenson recently announced he was teaming up with crypto entrepreneur Peter Vessenes to create Lamina1, a blockchain technology startup dedicated to the open metaverse, the universe of virtual worlds that are all interconnected, as first depicted in Stephenson’s novel Snow Crash, which debuted 30 years ago in 1992. I interviewed both Vessenes and Stephenson yesterday, just a day after McKinsey & Co. predicted the metaverse would be worth $5 trillion by 2030.

Continue reading “The DeanBeat: Why Neal Stephenson is starting a metaverse company 3 decades after Snow Crash” »

Sep 26, 2022

Can we live longer? And does the answer lie in Physics?

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension

Physics is not the first scientific discipline that springs to mind at the mention of DNA, but a group of scientists, including John van Noort from the Leiden Institute of Physics (LION) have discovered a new structure of telomeric DNA.

Longevity. Technology: In every cell of our bodies are chromosomes that carry genes that determine our characteristics. At the ends of these chromosomes are telomeres, which protect the genes from damage. Telomeres are rather like aglets, the plastic tips at the end of a shoelace – they protect the DNA from damage and fraying. However, every time a cell divides, the telomeres become shorter, until eventually the Hayflick Limit is reached, the cell can no longer divide and apoptosis – programmed cell death – occurs.

This means that telomeres are sometimes seen as the key to living longer, and the researchers behind this new discovery hope it will help us to better understand aging and age-related diseases.

Sep 26, 2022

Eye-level longevity — why breakthrough research is top investment opportunity

Posted by in categories: education, life extension

Set to be one of the largest, if not the largest, investment opportunity in the decades to come, longevity is a rapidly accelerating field; the Longevity Investors Conference targets the global investor community, bringing together institutional investors and top class experts for networking and exploration of relevant insights into the field, as well as expert education and investment opportunities.

Longevity. Technology: It’s not long to wait, now until the Longevity Investors Conference, which takes place later this month in Gstadt, Switzerland. The speaker list is full of longevity pioneers and visionaries, and we have been lucky enough to be given the opportunity to ask them some of our burning longevity questions.

Longevity. Technology readers can get their exclusive invitation to the leading investors-only longevity conference HERE.

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Sep 26, 2022

Certific and PocDoc collaborate to tackle cardiovascular disease

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, economics, life extension

Hot on the heels of its €7.4 million raise to accelerate remote medical diagnostics, Certific has announced it is partnering with healthtech startup PocDoc to tackle the world’s biggest killer – cardiovascular disease.

The novel screening will allow patients to remotely monitor blood pressure, BMI and, crucially, quantitative lipid levels through the same user experience. This solution will be rolled out through a number of pilots, in conjunction with the NHS, across the UK, and eventually across Europe and globally.

Longevity. Technology: Heart and circulatory diseases cause a quarter of all deaths in the UK – that’s more than 160,000 deaths each year, or one every three minutes. There are around 7.6 million people living with a heart or circulatory disease in the UK. This costs the country’s National Health Service (NHS) an estimated £7.4 billion per year, with a wider cost to the economy of around £15.8 billion. Early identification of those at highest risk can ensure appropriate treatment, prevent many cases and reduce the strain on the healthcare system.

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Sep 26, 2022

New $100 million longevity fund puts the spotlight on software

Posted by in categories: finance, information science, life extension, neuroscience, robotics/AI

A new longevity focused venture capital fund is preparing to announce its first investments, as it seeks to accelerate commercialisation in the field. Joining the likes of Maximon, Apollo and Korify, New York’s Life Extension Ventures (LifeX) has put together a $100 million fund specifically for companies developing solutions to extend the longevity of both humans and our planet. In a slight twist, the fund is predominantly looking to invest in companies that are leveraging software and data at the heart of their efforts to hasten the adoption of scientific breakthroughs in longevity.

Longevity. Technology: The longevity field is alive with innovation, and developments in AI and Big Data are just some of the software-led technologies driving progress throughout the sector. Co-founded by scientists-turned-entrepreneurs, Amol Sarva and Inaki Berenguer, LifeX Ventures’ investment philosophy draws on their combined experiences building software-led companies across a wide range of sectors. We caught up with Sarva to learn more.

Between them Sarva, a cognitive scientist by training, and Berenguer have led and/or founded several startups, such as CoverWallet, Virgin Mobile USA and Halo Neuroscience. The two have also invested personally in more than 150 startups before their interest turned more recently to longevity.

Continue reading “New $100 million longevity fund puts the spotlight on software” »

Sep 26, 2022

Meta’s AI guru LeCun: Most of today’s AI approaches will never lead to true intelligence

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

“Ultimately, there’s going to be a more satisfying and possibly better solution that involves systems that do a better job of understanding the way the world works.”

Along the way, LeCun offers some withering views of his biggest critics, such as NYU professor Gary Marcus — “he has never contributed anything to AI” — and Jürgen Schmidhuber, co-director of the Dalle Molle Institute for Artificial Intelligence Research — “it’s very easy to do flag-planting.”

Beyond the critiques, the more important point made by LeCun is that certain fundamental problems confront all of AI, in particular, how to measure information.

Continue reading “Meta’s AI guru LeCun: Most of today’s AI approaches will never lead to true intelligence” »

Sep 26, 2022

Frozen embryos linked to increased risk of hypertensive disorders during pregnancy, study finds

Posted by in category: futurism

IVF using frozen embryos is linked to a higher risk of preeclampsia compared with using fresh embryos or conceiving naturally, new research finds.

Sep 26, 2022

Team of physicists finds signs of pentaquark states and new matter

Posted by in category: particle physics

Theorists at the University of Pittsburgh and Swansea University have shown that recent experimental results from the CERN collider give strong evidence for a new form of matter.

The experiment at CERN, site of the world’s highest-energy particle collider, examined a heavy particle called a Lambda b that decays to lighter particles, including the familiar proton and the famed J/psi, discovered in 1974.

In a paper published online today in Physical Review D, physicists Tim Burns of Swansea in Wales and Eric Swanson at Pitt argue that the data can be understood only if a new type of matter exists.

Sep 26, 2022

Physicists shed light on a different kind of chaos

Posted by in categories: computing, particle physics, quantum physics

Physicists at UC Santa Barbara, the University of Maryland, and the University of Washington have found an answer to the longstanding physics question: How do interparticle interactions affect dynamical localization?

“It’s a really old question inherited from condensed matter physics,” said David Weld, an experimental physicist at UCSB with specialties in ultracold atomic physics and . The question falls into the category of “many-body” physics, which interrogates the physical properties of a quantum system with multiple interacting parts. While many-body problems have been a matter of research and debate for decades, the complexity of these systems, with quantum behaviors such as superposition and entanglement, lead to multitudes of possibilities, making it impossible to solve through calculation alone. “Many aspects of the problem are beyond the reach of modern computers,” Weld added.

Fortunately, this problem was not beyond the reach of an experiment that involves ultracold lithium atoms and lasers. So, what emerges when you introduce interaction in a disordered, chaotic quantum system? A “weird quantum state,” according to Weld. “It’s a state which is anomalous, with properties which in some sense lie between the classical prediction and the non-interacting quantum prediction.”

Sep 26, 2022

New study allows scientists to test therapeutics for rare neurodegenerative disease affecting young children

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics, neuroscience

For the first time, scientists will be able to test therapeutics for a group of rare neurodegenerative diseases that affect infants and young children, thanks to a new research model created by scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Their results are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Hereditary spastic paraplegias (HSPs) are a group of caused by . They lead tens of thousands of children to develop increased muscle tone in their lower extremities, causing weakness in their legs and ultimately affecting their ability to crawl or walk.

“Kids as early as six months of age that have these start to show signs of disease,” says Anjon Audhya, a professor in the Department of Biomolecular Chemistry at UW-Madison. “Between two and five years of age, these kids become wheelchair-bound, and they unfortunately will never be able to walk.”

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