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The Obtain: Sam Altman’s huge longevity wager, and the way CRISPR is altering lives

That is at this time’s version of The Obtain, our weekday e-newsletter that gives a day by day dose of what’s happening on the planet of know-how.

Sam Altman invested $180 million into an organization making an attempt to delay demise

When a startup known as Retro Biosciences eased out of stealth mode in mid-2022, it introduced it had secured $180 million to bankroll an audacious mission: so as to add 10 years to the typical human lifespan. 

The enterprise has all the time been obscure about the place its cash had come from. Now MIT Know-how Reveal can reveal that the complete sum was put up by Sam Altman, the 37-year-old startup guru and investor who’s CEO of OpenAI. 

The quantity is among the many largest ever invested by a person right into a startup pursuing human longevity, and can fund Retro’s “aggressive mission” to stall getting older, and even reverse it. Learn the complete story.

—Antonio Regalado

In case you’d prefer to learn extra about OpenAI:

+ Learn the inside story of how ChatGPT was constructed from the individuals who made it.
+ Sam Altman: That is what I discovered from DALL-E 2

Overlook designer infants. Right here’s how CRISPR is admittedly altering lives

Gene enhancing is a know-how many individuals are likely to affiliate with its ethically-fraught capacity to create designer infants. However that’s additionally a distraction from the actual story of how the know-how is altering individuals’s lives via therapies used on adults with severe illnesses. 

There are actually greater than 50 experimental research underway that use gene enhancing in human volunteers to deal with every part from most cancers to HIV and blood illnesses, in line with a tally shared with MIT Know-how Evaluate.

However these first technology of therapies will probably be vastly costly and tough to implement—and so they could possibly be shortly outdated by a subsequent technology of improved enhancing medication. Learn the complete story.

—Antonio Regalado

How China takes excessive measures to maintain teenagers off TikTok

The American individuals and the Chinese language individuals have far more in widespread than both facet likes to confess. Take the shared concern about how a lot time kids and youngsters are spending on TikTok (or its Chinese language home model, Douyin).

A number of US senators have pushed for payments that might limit underage customers’ entry to apps like TikTok. However ByteDance, the dad or mum firm of TikTok, is not any stranger to these requests. The truth is, it has been coping with related authorities pressures in China since at the very least 2018. Learn the complete story.

—Zeyi Yang

Zeyi’s story is from China Report, his weekly e-newsletter overlaying China. Enroll to obtain it in your inbox each Tuesday.

The must-reads

I’ve combed the web to search out you at this time’s most enjoyable/essential/scary/fascinating tales about know-how.

1 Google developed a robust chatbot years earlier than ChatGPT
Nevertheless, it bought spooked that the system didn’t meet security and equity requirements.(WSJ $)+ How tech’s AI obsession masks abuses of energy. (Bloomberg $)
+ In concept, copyright regulation may derail generative AI. (Insider $)
+ ChatGPT is all over the place. Right here’s the place it got here from. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

2 A professional-Ukrainian group might have orchestrated the Nord Stream pipeline assault
However there’s no proof that Ukrainian officers have been concerned. (NYT $)
+ Ukraine has denied any involvement within the assault final yr. (BBC)
+ Right here’s how the Nord Stream fuel pipelines could possibly be fastened. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

3 How the FBI pushed for extra highly effective facial recognition
It could possibly be used to gas an unlimited surveillance community. (WP $)
+ Faked CCTV footage is on the rise, too. (Wired $)
+ South Africa’s non-public surveillance machine is fueling a digital apartheid. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

4 Crypto startups are scrambling for funding 
Instances are harder than ever since issues went south for the trade’s favourite financial institution. (The Info $)

5 Meta’s massive language mannequin been leaked on 4Chan
It’s the primary mannequin from a serious firm to leak. (Motherboard)
+ Why Meta’s newest massive language mannequin survived solely three days on-line. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

6 Japan was compelled to explode its personal rocket
The car’s second engine didn’t ignite throughout takeoff. (Ars Technica)
+ What’s subsequent in area. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

7 YouTube simply can’t eliminate Andrew Tate
His misogynistic movies maintain being re-uploaded, regardless of an current ban. (The Atlantic $)

8 The hidden dangers of the share financial system
When virtually something might be rented out to strangers, not everyone seems to be well-meaning. (The Guardian)

9 TikTok’s viral drinks go away a foul style within the mouth
Customers are making more and more outlandish concoctions in a bid for views. (FT $)
+ The porcelain problem didn’t should be actual to get views. (MIT Know-how Evaluate)

10 The work cellphone is making a comeback 📱
Partly due to corporations cracking down on TikTok. (Bloomberg $)

Quote of the day

“I independently made my cash, versus say, inherited an emerald mine.”

—Halli, a lately laid-off Twitter employee, fires again at his former boss Elon Musk, who accused Halli of shirking his work tasks.

The massive story

Why can’t tech repair its gender drawback?

August 2022

Regardless of the tech sector’s nice wealth and loudly self-proclaimed company commitments to the rights of girls, LGBTQ+ individuals, and racial minorities, the trade stays largely a straight, white man’s world.

It wasn’t all the time this fashion. Software program programming as soon as was an virtually solely feminine occupation. As lately as 1980, ladies held 70% of the programming jobs in Silicon Valley, however the ratio has since flipped solely. Whereas many issues contributed to the shift, from the tutorial pipeline to the tiresomely persistent fiction of tech as a gender-blind “meritocracy,” none clarify it solely. What actually lies on the core of tech’s gender drawback is cash. Learn the complete story.

—Margaret O’Mara

We will nonetheless have good issues

A spot for consolation, enjoyable and distraction in these bizarre occasions. (Obtained any concepts? Drop me a line or tweet ’em at me.)

+ Aww, Dave Grohl has cemented his standing because the nicest man in rock.
+ These images of a cheetah cub and a pet are the cutest factor you’ll see at this time.
+ In case you get pleasure from nosing via tech executives’ emails, this Twitter account is the one for you.
+ The ten issues that actor Jeremy Robust can’t reside with out are usually unhinged.
+ This story despatched a shiver down my backbone.



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