Thinks 750

Chris Miller: “The biggest challenge the chip industry faces is that we haven’t yet had a test of the industry’s resilience in the face of a geopolitical disruption. The reality is that the most plausible large-scale geopolitical disruption, which is something going wrong in the Taiwan Straits, would happen at the absolute epicentre of the world’s chip production in Taiwan and to a lesser extent in China. Although the chip supply chain has been resilient to economic and natural disasters, it is completely unprepared for the coming geopolitical shock — a possible Chinese attack on Taiwan…If you look at the numbers, 90% of the most advanced processor chips are produced in Taiwan, and over a third of the processing power added annually comes from Taiwan. There’s just no way the world can make up to that in a short amount of time if it loses access to Taiwan. The reality is that we are so reliant on chips today that a reduction in supply would absolutely destroy the global economy. It could lead to a 1929-style Great Depression as manufacturing output will drop in almost every country. The risk is that a Chinese attack in Taiwan is getting more likely every year.”

Anticipating the Unintended: “Throughout history, a key feature of a sovereign state was its control over the supply and circulation of money that’s used within its boundaries. The royal mints, after all, have been around for more than two thousand years. As modern nation-states emerged through the 19th and 20th centuries and as global trade increased, central banks emerged to manage the monetary system and provide financial stability. There are three forms of money in any modern economy: banknotes, bank deposits, and central bank reserves (“reserves”). Where does CBDC then fit in? Simply put, a CBDC is a digital form of a banknote issued by the central bank…CBDC would actually allow ordinary citizens to directly deal with central bank money. It will be an alternative to banknotes. And it will be digital.”

Economist: “The coming wave of foundation models is likely to turn a lot more AI boring. These algorithms hold two big promises for business. The first is that foundation models are capable of generating new content. Stability AI and Midjourney, two startups, build generative models which create new images for a given prompt. Request a dog on a unicycle in the style of Picasso—or, less frivolously, a logo for a new startup—and the algorithm conjures it up in a minute or so. Other startups build applications on top of other companies’ foundation models. Jasper and Copy.AI both pay OpenAI for access to GPT3, which enables their applications to convert simple prompts into marketing copy. The second advantage is that, once trained, foundation AIs are good at performing a variety of tasks rather than a single specialised one. Take GPT3, a natural-language model developed by Openai, which forms the basis for Chatgpt. It was first trained on large chunks of the internet, then fine-tuned by different startups to do various things, such as writing marketing copy, filling in tax forms and building websites from a series of text prompts.” Wired: “Generative AI will alter how we design just about everything. Oh, and not a single human artist will lose their job because of this new technology.”

Karthi Marshan: “I see that today Data Sciences is getting the centre of the table position and that’s fine. But in the bargain, we may run the risk of losing out on the power of psychology and perhaps even neuroscience and great art type design. Those are the three things I think are going to be the skills needed for marketers of the future and they should build muscle in these three areas. And design is about immersing yourself in culture. I see a lot of incredibly tacky designs being made by agencies and approved by brand managers, because neither of them have been exposed to the richness of culture. Whether it’s Indian or international, you have to read a lot. You have to see a lot. You have to consume a lot of not just Netflix, but also local theatre. All of that has to happen for you to be a great marketer going forward.”

Sangeet Paul Choudary: “On most Web2 platforms, creators had limited creative benefits from the participation of other creators. Web2 platforms benefit from positive indirect network effects (i.e. more producers attract more consumers and vice versa) but direct network effects for creators are weak or negative (e.g. more creators may mean greater competition for the same consumers, leading to lower value for every creator). On the other hand, Web3 platforms benefit from positive direct network effects because of the composability of creation environments. Composability allows dApp (decentralized applications) developers to leverage existing code and interoperate across an entire ecosystem of dApps.”

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.

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