Treasure Trove of Trends in Artificial Intelligence (AI)

by Steve O'Keefe on November 11, 2010

Venture Capitalist Panel at Singularity Summit 2009

CLICK FOR VIDEO: Venture Capitalist Panel at Singularity Summit 2009

If you are looking for investors to help your Minitrend Adventure take flight, today’s post has some promising news for you. I’d like to introduce you to three venture capitalists who are looking for you.

  • Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal and an early investor in Facebook, is looking for startups that are losing money and expect to lose money for a long time to come.
  • Mark Gorenberg is managing director of Hummer Winblad Venture Partners and a board member at M.I.T. who is interested in companies that are like two-year-olds: very disruptive, but with a promising future.
  • David Rose is a serial entrepreneur and the founder of New York Angels, the largest group of angel investors in New York, and AngelSoft, matchmaking software that pairs projects with funds.

These three venture capital heavyweights came together on a panel at the 2009 Singularity Summit, a conference founded by futurist Ray Kurzweil, investor Peter Thiel, and the Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence. The Institute’s mission is to explore the implications of machine intelligence surpassing human intelligence in the near future. If you are new to the concept of “the singularity,” a good place to start is Ray Kurzweil’s provocative bestseller, The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology, published in 2006.

The Singularity Summit has been generous, if slow, at putting videos of its conference sessions online, free for all to see. Video from the 2010 summit, held in San Francisco last August, has yet to make it to the Institute’s website. However, one of the nice things about listening to futurists is that even years later, you’re still in time to benefit from their predictions.

In the video referenced above, these three venture capitalists sit down with CNBC host Bob Pisani to talk about trends they are interested in investing in. They identify three interrelated components that excite them about VC pitches:

  1. Cloud Computing
  2. Globalization
  3. Crowdsourcing

The way they see it, cloud computing and related technologies help make possible the globalization of technology which in turn makes possible crowdsourcing, so that many minds representing many perspectives can easily and rapidly help improve whatever process you are pitching. It’s a fascinating triangle of tech that leads to rapid development of disruptive technologies.

The Singularity Summit provides a treasure trove of videos with technological geniuses going back to 2006. Some of the brilliant thinkers you can access through the site include Christine Peterson (Foresight Nanotech Institute), Aubrey de Grey (Methuselah Foundation), Peter Norvig (Google), Peter Voss (Adaptive AI), Sam Adams (IBM), Esther Dyson (ICANN), and dozens more.

Exploring these video archives will help you quickly hone in on Minitrends which have the greatest promise for development in the coming three-to-five years. They can also help you locate the people who can assist you with both technology and money. As both Peter Thiel and David Rose describe in the video, successful venture capital is often about putting the right people together so they don’t have personality conflicts that derail their promising projects.

There’s one other trend you can glean from this video — a fashion trend. VCs don’t wear ties. Sometimes it comes down to those little things when you’re on the hunt for big money. Good luck!

News Editor, Minitrends Blog

Source: “Venture Capitalist Panel at Singularity Summit 2009,” Singularity Institute, 11/04/09
Source: Singularity Interviews 2006-2009, Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence.

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2 Responses to “Treasure Trove of Trends in Artificial Intelligence (AI)”

  1. on February 6th, 2013 8:26 pm

    You really put together many wonderful tips in ur posting, “Treasure Trove of Trends
    in Artificial Intelligence | MiniTrends”. I am going to be
    coming to ur web page in the near future. Thank you ,Harriet

  2. Carrie Vanston on February 7th, 2013 12:43 pm

    Harriet: Thanks a lot for your kind comments! Best, Carrie

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