Machine Learning For Investing In Consumer Goods Startups


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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Our portfolio company CircleUp has been building a marketplace for startup investing, by accredited and institutional investors, in consumer goods companies (natural foods, personal care, beverage, home goods and apparel). In four years of operation, over $300mm has been raised on CircleUp by entrepreneurs to scale their consumer goods startups.

But underneath all of this has been a sophisticated data science effort designed to track the entire consumer goods sector (all companies, not just the ones on CircleUp) and determine which companies succeed and why. Yesterday CircleUp took the covers off this data science effort, called Helio, and explained what they are up to with it.

Here are some bits from that blog post:

there’s endless data on consumer product and retail companies. And, much of it is public. A quick Google search of the product in your pantry tells you how many SKUs the brand has, price points for

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Random forests to save human lives


This post is by Zachary Flamig, Race Clark from All - O'Reilly Media


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Flash flood prediction using machine learning has proven capable in the U.S. and Europe; we’re now bringing it to East Africa.

Flash floods are the second most deadly extreme weather event in the world (after heat), but many of these deaths could be avoided with better prediction. Unfortunately, flood prediction is notoriously hard: the small space-time window of flash floods means that forecasts from atmospheric models must very accurately place the occurrence of precipitation and capture the extreme rainfall magnitude. But those most vulnerable are in the poorest countries, where weather data is dependent on global forecast models with grid spacing between 100 and 800 km2. Extreme localized rainfall (flash floods are commonly defined to occur within six hours of causative rainfall and over basins less than 1,000 km2) tends to be averaged out in these models. While the global models do a poor job at

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Four short links: 28 February 2017


This post is by from All - O'Reilly Media


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Fake Markets, Evil Growth, Robo Doom, and Secure Remote Passwords

  1. Tech and the Fake Market Tactic (Anil Dash) — a very useful razor with which to cut the nonsense around worker automation companies. It seems this “market” has some awfully weird traits. Consumers can’t trust the information they’re being provided to make a purchasing decision. A single opaque algorithm defines which buyers are matched with which sellers. Sellers have no control over their own pricing or profit margins. Regulators see the genuine short-term consumer benefit but don’t realize the long-term harms that can arise. This is, by any reasonable definition, no market at all.
  2. Exponential Growth Devours and Corrupts — David Heinemeier Hansson’s fantastic essay about the poison of venture capital and the vicious circles of self-destruction that result from chasing exponential growth at all costs. It was originally intended to be a talk at Webstock, which is where

    Continue reading “Four short links: 28 February 2017”

Glorium Technologies at HIMSS 2017


This post is by Alexandra Riabtsun from Glorium Technologies


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glorium at himss17

 

Glorium is not going to rest when so many healthcare events are taking place worldwide. These days, we were at HIMSS 2017 that took place in Orlando on the 19th-23rd of February. New companies, new ideas, new perspectives. Glorium’s found a lot of opportunities and we are now eager at developing them.

 

HIMSS17 was an extremely interesting event, as it has raised important issues for the healthcare industry. For instance, Michael Levitt, a Health and Human Service Secretary, had a speech about the fortune of the Affordable Care Act.

 

Judy Faulkner, Epic CEO, announced two new EHR to be developed in the near future. They are going to be cheaper than the existing version of Epic, but with fewer features.

 

Ginni Rometty, CEO of IBM, told about cognitive computing technologies and how they can influence on the personalized and precision medicine progress.

 

Kevin Campbell, cardiologist Continue reading “Glorium Technologies at HIMSS 2017”

Superstar Firms


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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Watching Amazon take home two Oscars last night brought home the point that they are a juggernaut, a massive business capable of throwing its weight behind all sorts of new businesses.

It turns out these superstar firms, not robots, may be the most important economic issue right now.

This piece from the Economist argues that taxing robots is a bad idea but figuring out how to deal with these superstar firms who are accumulating much of the profits in our economy is a good idea. Here’s the money quote:

A new working paper by Simcha Barkai, of the University of Chicago, concludes that, although the share of income flowing to workers has declined in recent decades, the share flowing to capital (ie, including robots) has shrunk faster. What has grown is the markup firms can charge over their production costs, ie, their profits. Similarly, an NBER working paper published in

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Four short links: 27 Feb 2017


This post is by from All - O'Reilly Media


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Meta Language, PDF Extraction, Collaborative Editing, Programming Principles

  1. A Representation Language Language (PDF) — 1980 CS paper that really should have led with the “there’s no problem that can’t be solved with another layer of indirection” line.
  2. pdfabextracttools written in Python 3 with the aim to extract tabular data from (OCR-processed) PDF files.
  3. ChainPadreal-time collaborative editor algorithm based on Nakamoto blockchains.
  4. Id Software Programming PrinciplesAs soon as you see a bug, you fix it. Do not continue on. If you don’t fix your bugs your new code will be built on a buggy codebase and ensure an unstable foundation. See a snake, kill a snake.

Continue reading Four short links: 27 Feb 2017.

The American Formula


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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It’s that time of year when investors (including me) spend the morning reading Warren Buffett’s annul shareholder letter.

There are always nuggets of wisdom and insight in these letters and I enjoy them very much.

In this year’s letter, Warren spells out the formula that America has used to build the greatest economy in the world.

Sadly one of those four pillars is at risk – “a tide of talented and ambitious immigrants.”

We can’t allow that to happen. There is too much to lose by turning off that tide.

Thanks to AVC reader Abid Azam for sending me that quote this morning.

A Bridge in Porto 


This post is by from Om Malik


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Ponte Dom Luis, Porto, Portugal. It is an engineering marvel that always amazes me! 

Made with Fuji xPro2 and Fuji f2/23mm lens

The Monthly Match


This post is by Fred Wilson from AVC


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Last month, when the Gotham Gal and I and our friends Brad and Amy combined to match $20k of donations to the ACLU and ended up raising $120k on a weekend that saw the ACLU raise over $25mm, we committed to do a match every month for all of 2017. Part of me wants to keep doing this as long as we have an administration hostile to the rights of minorities in the White House but we will see about that. We are going to keep doing this monthly match for the rest of 2017 and then we will see how we feel about it.

So, today we are launching a second match offer. Brad, Amy, Joanne, and I will match the first $20k of donations to the National Immigration Law Center, which “engages in lawsuits that defend the fundamental and constitutional rights of all Americans, including low-income immigrants

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Four short links: 24 Feb 2017


This post is by from All - O'Reilly Media


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Apple DRM, Automatic Forecasting, Conversation API, and API Idempotency

  1. Apple’s SSAFE DRM — development notes from a 1979-80 anti-piracy project, discovered in an interesting fashion. (via BoingBoing)
  2. Prophet — open source forecasting procedure implemented in Python and R. It is fast and provides completely automated forecasts that can be tuned by hand by data scientists and analysts. From Facebook. (via Sean Taylor)
  3. Perspective APIan API that makes it easier to host better conversations. The API uses machine learning models to score the perceived impact a comment might have on a conversation. Developers and publishers can use this score to give real-time feedback to commenters or help moderators do their job, or allow readers to more easily find relevant information, as illustrated in two experiments below. We’ll be releasing more machine learning models later in the year, but our first model identifies whether a comment could be

    Continue reading “Four short links: 24 Feb 2017”

Google’s iOS Keyboard gets the one feature it really lacked: voice typing


This post is by from TechCrunch


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voice I really like Gboard. It’s been my primary iOS keyboard since Google launched it back in May of 2016, and it’s pretty much the only third party iOS keyboard that I’ve stuck with for more than a week. But it was missing one glaring feature that iOS’ own keyboard has offered for years: voice transcription. Not anymore! Google shipped an update to Gboard this morning… Read More

The Future of Battery Technology


This post is by Jeff Desjardins from Technology – Visual Capitalist


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The Battery Series
Part 5: The Future of Battery Technology

The Battery Series is a five-part infographic series that explores what investors need to know about modern battery technology, including raw material supply, demand, and future applications.

Presented by: Nevada Energy Metals, eCobalt Solutions Inc., and Great Lakes Graphite

The Battery Series - Part 1The Battery Series - Part 2The Battery Series - Part 3The Battery Series - Part 4The Battery Series - Part 5

The Battery Series: The Future of Battery Technology

The Battery Series - Part 1The Battery Series - Part 2The Battery Series - Part 3The Battery Series - Part 4The Battery Series - Part 5

The Future of Battery Technology

This is the last installment of the Battery Series. For a recap of what has been covered so far, see the evolution of battery technology, the energy problem in context, the reasons behind the surge in lithium-ion demand, and the critical materials needed to make lithium-ion batteries.

There’s no doubt that the lithium-ion battery has been an important catalyst for the green revolution, but there is still much work to be done for a full switch to renewable energy.

Sponsors
Nevada Energy Metals
eCobalt Solutions Inc.
Great Lakes Graphite

The battery technology of the future could:

MyKronoz reveals a full-color smartwatch with mechanical watch arms


This post is by from TechCrunch


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unspecified (1) This is a first. MyKronoz just introduced the ZeTime, a hybrid smartwatch with arms like those found on traditional watches. Essentially the company put a watch movement behind the touchscreen, drilled a hole, and let gears stick through. At this point, the watch is not available for purchase though the company says it will be out in September for $199. Apparently, even with the watch… Read More

Early Uber investors say they’re ‘disappointed’ in the company’s response to sexual harassment claims


This post is by Megan Rose Dickey from TechCrunch


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uber_seo_car Freada Kapor Klein and Mitch Kapor, two early investors in Uber, are feeling “disappointed” and “frustrated” in light of Uber’s response to claims of sexual harassment at the company, the two wrote on Medium today. Earlier this week, Uber said it had hired US Attorney General Eric Holder and Tammy Albarran, partners at law firm Covington & Burling, to work… Read More

Thistle launches meal kits to make nutritious baby food at home


This post is by from TechCrunch


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Thistle Baby sends pre-measured ingredients and recipes to parents who want to make their own baby food. Food delivery startup Thistle was never been in the business of making meal kits, those boxes of pre-measured ingredients and recipes to help customers cook at home. The startup’s married cofounders, Ashwin Cheriyan and Shiri Avnery, thought that prepared meals, ready-to-heat or raw and ready-to-eat, were a better fit for their busy customers. Meal kits, they said, felt like time… Read More