It’s AI’s world and we’re just living in it. With the focus on innovative and disruptive trends across a broad range of industries, it’s clear from this month’s news that artificial intelligence and generative AI like ChatGPT is currently the most disruptive technology out there. With new applications for AI and large language models being found every day, it’s clear we’re at the start of virtually every sector of the economy being disrupted and fundamentally reshaped by the power and promise of AI.
The Global Artificial Intelligence for Automotive Market Research Report 2023, released by QY Research in March, pegged the value of the global automotive AI market at $1.95 billion USD in 2022 and projected that the market will surpass $13.3 billion USD by 2032, representing a CAGR of 24.75% from now through 2032.1
Redwood Materials announced the results of its first study to find safe, efficient, and effective recycling strategies for EV battery packs. Their pilot project resulted in a greater than 95% recovery rate for EV battery elements, including lithium, cobalt, nickel, copper, and other key metals from 500,000 pounds of end-of-life batteries. Such recycling technology holds the potential to dramatically reduce the cost of key components in EV batteries and lessen the reliance on foreign sources of raw materials.2
Microsoft announced Microsoft Security Copilot, an AI-powered chatbot designed to assist cybersecurity professionals in understanding and resolving critical security issues. The chatbot draws on GPT-4, the latest large language model from OpenAI, combined with a security-specific model built by Microsoft. Microsoft engineers tested the chatbot internally and showed promising results in processing alerts and providing relevant insights quickly. If Microsoft were to require the use of Sentinel or other Microsoft products in order to use Security Copilot it could influence purchasing decisions in favour of Security Copilot, even if other companies develop their own AI cybersecurity chatbots.3
Google Cloud announced a partnership with Midjourney to help power that company’s AI-powered visual imagery tool and natural language interface with Google Cloud’s custom AI accelerators.4 Google also announced a new program called Built with Google Cloud AI, tailored to the needs of startups building with generative AI. Built with Google Cloud AI will provide select partners with access to Google Cloud engineering teams who can help design and optimize their applications to run as-a-service on Google Cloud infrastructure as well as training and co-marketing support as they bring their products to market.5
After its split with Blizzard, NetEase Ltd announced they expect to see returns from their overseas investments in gaming studios within the next two to three years, and the company aims to be involved in a quarter of all AAA premium titles in the global market and generate half of its gaming sales from outside China within the next five years. NetEase aims to position itself as a distinct alternative to Tencent, with a strong focus on game creation and a willingness to take risks. In addition to its game development efforts, NetEase plans to embed its own AI chatbot into games, starting with the upcoming mobile release of Justice in June. This move aims to create more realistic non-player characters and reduce production costs in the long run.6
Researchers announced the development of an AI-based system called DeepGlioma that can screen for genetic mutations in cancerous brain tumours in less than 90 seconds, according to a study published in Nature Medicine.
The system, developed by a team of neurosurgeons and engineers at Michigan Medicine in collaboration with other institutions, uses rapid imaging to analyze tumour specimens and detect their genetic mutations in real time with an average accuracy of over 90%. Molecular classification is crucial for diagnosing and treating gliomas—the most common and deadly primary brain tumour—but access to molecular testing is limited, with results sometimes taking weeks. The speed and accuracy of DeepGlioma provides an opportunity for increased early enrollment in clinical trials for glioma patients. Currently, less than 10% of patients with glioma enter clinical trials, which are often restricted by the molecular subgroups that DeepGlioma can so quickly determine.7
Bloomberg announced the launch of BloombergGPT, a large language model (LLM) with a 50-billion parameter capacity. Designed exclusively for the financial sector, BloombergGPT has been built from the ground up to incorporate the unique and complex terminology of the financial industry.
Leveraging a vast archive of financial data from Bloomberg, this purpose-built LLM has undergone specialized training for tasks specific to finance. In fact, Bloomberg boasts that BloombergGPT outperforms other similarly sized open models in financial NLP tasks by significant margins, without compromising its performance on general LLM benchmarks.8
With the cost of custom GPT applications dropping dramatically just since late 2022 (Stanford’s Alpaca AI was built using open-source software and language models for less than $600 US and has performance comparable to ChatGPT, which cost millions to develop)9 expect to see LLM and NLP’s adoption across the fintech sector pick up speed in coming months.
Robotics & Automation
A team of researchers has harnessed the power of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in conjunction with an AI image-generator to decipher human brain scans and determine what a person is mentally picturing.
Using fMRI scans taken while participants viewed over 1,000 images, an AI model sifted through the data to identify specific brain patterns associated with particular images. When participants were presented with new images during fMRI scans, the system successfully detected the corresponding brain waves, generated a summary of its interpretation, and employed the AI image-generator to approximate the image the participant perceived. The generated image displayed attributes such as colour, shape, and meaning that matched the original image with approximately 84% accuracy. Although the current experiment requires training the AI model on roughly 20 hours of each participant’s unique brain activity, researchers see this amount of time coming down dramatically over the next decade, making the potential widespread application of this technology accessible anywhere.10
At Nvidia’s annual developer conference in March, there were numerous panels on the intersection of AI and 5G wireless technology. A number of sessions focused on AI’s potential to transform radio access networks (RANs) and virtualized RANs (vRANs) to help providers deliver better performance and efficiency and derive higher revenue from their RANs, as well as AI’s ability to help provide digital twins for wireless networks that will help spur innovation. Other sessions looked at how scalable 5G software that incorporates AI applications are increasingly in demand by enterprise customers and offer the potential to drive new service and innovations across 5G networks.11
According to GSMA Intelligence, global 5G connections are expected to double in the next two years, driven by technological advances and new 5G network deployments in over 30 countries. Currently, there are 229 commercial 5G networks globally and over 700 5G smartphone models.
The growth of 5G will be driven by key markets in Asia-Pacific and Latin America, including India and Brazil. For example, GSMA Intelligence says that by the end of 2025, there will be four 5G networks in India, adding 145 million additional users. Expansion into sub-Saharan Africa, such as Ethiopia and Ghana, will also spur the growth of 5G markets. From the existing 1% adoption of 5G in those regions, collaboration between government and industry is expected to expand access to 4% by 2025 and 16% by 2030. Overall, 5G is experiencing the fastest roll-out compared to 3G and 4G wireless.12
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EDGE ETF Portfolio Strategy and Activity
For the month, Evolve Cloud Computing Index Fund (DATA ETF) made the largest contribution to the Fund, followed by Evolve E-Gaming Index ETF (HERO ETF), and Evolve Cyber Security Index Fund (CYBR ETF). On the last rebalance, this security was added to the portfolio: BeiGene Ltd (Genomics).
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- “Artificial Intelligence for Automotive Market 2023 Latest Trends and Growth Analysis- AImotive, Argo AI, Astute Solutions,” Digital Journal, March 30, 2023; https://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/news/artificial-intelligence-for-automotive-market-2023-latest-trends-and-growth-analysis-aimotive-argo-ai-astute-solutions
- “One Year Update: Redwood’s California EV Battery Recycling Program,” Redwood Materials, March 2, 2023; https://www.redwoodmaterials.com/news/update-california-ev-battery-recycling-program/
- Novet, J., “Microsoft introduces an A.I. chatbot for cybersecurity experts,” CNBC, March 28, 2023; https://www.cnbc.com/2023/03/28/microsoft-launches-security-copilot-in-private-preview.html
- “Midjourney Selects Google Cloud to Power AI-Generated Creative Platform,” PR Newswire, March 14, 2023; https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/midjourney-selects-google-cloud-to-power-ai-generated-creative-platform-301771558.html
- Ichhpurani, K., “Building the most open and innovative AI ecosystem,” Google Cloud, March 14, 2023; https://cloud.google.com/blog/products/ai-machine-learning/building-an-open-generative-ai-partner-ecosystem
- Huang, Z., & D’Anastasio, C., “Life After ‘World of Warcraft’ Starts with NetEase Searching for Its Own Hits,” Bloomberg, March 29, 2023; https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2023-03-29/life-after-warcraft-starts-with-netease-searching-for-own-hits
- Fromson, N., “AI Predicts Genetics of Brain Cancers in Less Than 90 Seconds,” Technology Networks, March 24, 2023; https://www.technologynetworks.com/cancer-research/news/ai-predicts-genetics-of-brain-cancers-in-less-than-90-seconds-371471
- “Introducing BloombergGPT, Bloomberg’s 50-billion parameter large language model, purpose-built from scratch for finance,” Bloomberg, March 30, 2023; https://www.bloomberg.com/company/press/bloomberggpt-50-billion-parameter-llm-tuned-finance/
- Blain, L., “The genie escapes: Stanford copies the ChatGPT AI for less than $600,” New Atlas, March 19, 2023; https://newatlas.com/technology/stanford-alpaca-cheap-gpt/
- Ruberg, S. & Ward, J., “From brain waves, this AI can sketch what you’re picturing,” NBC News, March 25, 2023; https://www.nbcnews.com/tech/tech-news/brain-waves-ai-can-sketch-picturing-rcna76096
- Penrose, C., “How AI Is Shaping a New Era of Connectivity,” Nvidia, March 14, 2023; https://blogs.nvidia.com/blog/2023/03/14/ai-for-telecom-gtc/
- MacRae, D., “30 countries to launch 5G services in 2023,” Telecoms Tech, March 6, 2023; https://www.telecomstechnews.com/news/2023/mar/06/30-countries-to-launch-5g-services-in-2023/