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Steve's ITK: AI honeymoon


Steve's ITK

October 30 · Issue #1 · View online
Steve's In The Know: Everything I published recently, commentary you won't find elsewhere, write-ups of events I attended or spoke at, and industry rumours.

The title of Metro Bank founder Vernon Hill's book
The title of Metro Bank founder Vernon Hill's book
Opening thought: AI honeymoon
I was kindly asked to be on a panel at this year’s invite-only Penrose Awards on the topic of Artificial Intelligence and how it will impact education and employment. Afterwards it got me thinking that perhaps AI is entering a honeymoon period before the real arguments start. Rather than jobs being replaced or displaced (which will happen) they are increasingly being augmented by AI.
Examples of this include in medtech, such as radiology where a computer can give a second opinion on images and at a scale unrivalled by humans, or an AI-powered doctor app that can help to pre-screen symptoms to determine what, if any, medical attention is required next and how fast.
And if we are to define AI at its most basic as a computer’s ability to look at a large data set and make decisions on our behalf, even something as commonplace as navigation software: it doesn’t replace taxi drivers (yet) but does mean they no longer need to pass a test like the Knowledge.
Bonus: At the same event, Vernon Hill, the legendary founder of Metro Bank, delivered a very entertaining keynote. Afterwards I was lucky enough to ask a question from the floor: what value can digital-only challenger banks like Monzo, Atom, Tandem and Starling add to banking? His reply: “absolutely none”.
What I wrote about this week
With founders out, Rocket-backed Nestpick reboots as apartment rentals aggregator
Perkbox, an employee engagement platform, picks up £2.5M backing from Draper Esprit
Seedcamp-backed Twine launches marketplace for creatives
Honeycomb, a TV and video ad management startup from Adstream founders, scores £3M Series A
​Culture Trip secures $20M Series A to serve up content for the “culturally curious”
Red Sift, a startup from ex-Shazam technical architect, wants to make your data work for you
Closing thought: Courting PR
Seedrs was in the news again after Andy Murray, the British tennis star, invested an undisclosed amount in two more startups through the platform: WeSwap and Perkbox. What wasn’t so widely reported is that Murray is a ’strategic partner’ to the equity crowdfunding platform. Good PR if you can get it!
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