Neurotech Into Your Brain is No Longer Science-Fiction


#NeuroTech #Science #Genomics

#Neuroprosthetic #HumanIntelligence #ArtificialIntelligence

Bryan Johnson is the founder of Braintree (Sold for $800M to PayPal), Kernel and OS Fund, which he started in 2014 with $100 million of his personal capital to support inventors and scientists who aim to benefit humanity by rewriting the operating systems of life. The OS Fund has invested in space. And will also continue investment in world changing technologies such as genomics, synthetic biology and AI, all of which are complementary to neurotech. Bryan also interested in material science building new forms of materials; anything that builds upon tools of creation.

He supports endeavors to cure age-related diseases and radically extend healthy human life to 100+ (Human Longevity), make biology a predictable programming language (Ginkgo Bioworks & Synthetic Genomics), replicate the human visual cortex using artificial intelligence (Vicarious), mine asteroids (Planetary Resources), reinvent transportation using autonomous vehicles (Matternet) and reimagine food using biology (Hampton Creek), among others. He’s an outdoor enthusiast, a pilot, and author of a children’s book.

The humble office in Venice Beach, his science-fiction-meets-science start-up, Kernel, is building a tiny chip that can be implanted in the brain to help people suffering from neurological damage caused by strokes, Alzheimer’s or concussions. Top neuroscientists who are building the chip — they call it a neuroprosthetic — hope that in the longer term, it will be able to boost intelligence, memory and other cognitive tasks.

Putting a computer in your brain is no longer science fiction

Kernel’s Quest to Enhance Human Intelligence

Bryan Johnson just launched a $100M commitment to Kernel in an effort to enhance human intelligence and reimagine our future. Unlocking our brain is the most significant and consequential opportunity in history — and it’s time sensitive.

We’re starting to identify the mechanisms underlying neural code and make them programmable. Our biology and genetics have become increasingly programmable; our neural code is next in line. Programming our neural code will enable us to author ourselves and our existence in ways that were previously unimaginable.

Brain Science is The New Rocket Science

Intelligence, in all its forms, is the most precious and powerful resource in existence. Whether we’re working on new forms of governance, climate science, curing disease, becoming a multi-planetary species, giving birth to and co-evolving with AI or exploring our own happiness — intelligence is upstream of everything else. It is both the master tool and master of all tools.

Machine learning has matured to the point where computer programs can outperform humans in the most challenging tests of pattern recognition and analysis.

Human Intelligence (HI) may be the largest market in history

“Human intelligence is landlocked in relationship to artificial intelligence — and the landlock is the degeneration of the body and the brain,” he said in an interview about the company, which he had not discussed publicly before. “This is a question of keeping humans front and center as we progress.”

The market for implantable neural prosthetics including cognitive enhancement and treatment of neurological dysfunction will likely be one of if not the largest industrial sectors in history. Now is the right time to start building.

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Code: The New Language of Creation | Explorations with Bryan Johnson Ep. 1 via @YouTube

The Future of Human Intelligence – Neurotechnology | Explorations with Bryan Johnson Ep. 2 via @YouTube

Changing the Nature of Nature through Synthetic Biology | Explorations with Bryan Johnson Ep. 3 via @YouTube

The Chinawood “Wanda Studios” is a Qingdao Movie Metropolis as Now the New Hollywood


BEVERLY HILLS, California. — China’s richest man, Mr Wang Jianlin, chairman of Dalian Wanda Group Co., is creating a rival to the American dream factory, from scratch. The latest acquisition — the company is buying Dick Clark Productions for about $1 billion — and dangle an enormous carrot in front of Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox, Paramount, Universal and Walt Disney.

Wanda and the Qingdao municipal government have established a major incentive program to lure movie and TV production to the 408-acre Qingdao Movie Metropolis.

Billed as an effort to “bridge the entertainment capitals of the world,” the program will provide a 40 percent rebate on certain production spending in Qingdao, which is about 450 miles north of Shanghai and is the site of Wanda Studios, still under construction.

Scheduled to fully open in 2018, Wanda Studios will feature 30 advanced soundstages, including the world’s largest at over 107,000 square feet; an underwater stage; and a 221-acre back lot.

The rebate on each film or television production will be limited to $18 million. The total amount available to disperse will be $150 million annually. There will be three classifications of rebate productions, according to Wanda, and only one of those would require Chinese cultural elements, Chinese actors and Chinese investors — films classified by the Chinese government as co-productions that are not subject to import limits. (Only 34 non-Chinese films are allowed to play in the country annually and those must suit Chinese censors.)

Applications will be evaluated by a 10-person committee of government officials and Wanda executives, a Wanda spokeswoman said.

Mr. Wang, a spry former military officer who is said to be China’s richest man, said he hoped that an additional $3 billion in Qingdao amenities — “international hospitals, international schools, yacht clubs, hotels, shopping” — would make American stars and marquee directors more willing to spend months at a time working there. “Like going on a vacation” is how he described it.

He added that the incentives were not just about busying Wanda Studios and increasing the supply of movies to Wanda’s theaters, both in China, where it controls 3,056 screens, and elsewhere.

Mr. Wang said that Wanda intended to control 20 percent of the world’s movie theater seats by 2020. It currently has about 13 percent, including those run in Europe by the Odeon and UCI Cinemas Group, which Wanda bought for $650 million.

By 2020, Wanda aims to have annual revenue of $100 billion and net profits of $10 billion. With its real estate growth slowing, Wanda is also moving into sports. It recently paid $1.2 billion for Infront Sports and Media, a sports marketing company, and tourist destinations, including a $3.5 billion entertainment, shopping and hotel complex outside Paris.

As Wanda pushes deeper into filmed entertainment, the company plans to build a $1.2 billion headquarters in Beverly Hills “to aid in China’s entry into Hollywood’s film industry and generally promote Chinese culture abroad,” Wanda said in a news release.

In the Market for Entertainment
The Dalian Wanda Group has been on an entertainment-related spending spree since 2012. Here are some of its biggest purchases and projects:

• AMC TheatersBought the theater chain, which has 5,334 movie screens in the United States, for $2.6 billion.
• Legendary EntertainmentPaid $3.5 billion for the production company, which has credits like “Godzilla,” “300” and the coming “Kong: Skull Island.”
• Hoyts CinemasBought the 400-screen Australian theater chain for $344 million.
• Odeon and the UCI Cinemas GroupPaid $650 million for the 2,238-screen European theater chain.
• Carmike Cinemas Paid $1.1 billion for the theater chain, which has 2,954 screens in the United States

• Infront Sports and MediaPaid $1.2 billion for the European marketing company.
• American HeadquartersIs spending $1.2 billion on its new United States headquarters in Beverly Hills, Calif., which includes a hotel and shopping complex.
• MtimePaid $350 million for the movie ticketing, merchandise and marketing company.
• EuropaCityIs investing $3.3 billion in the theme park, hotel and shopping complex near Paris.

SoftBank Vision Fund ($100 bn Tech Fund)


Heads Up!! #Startup #VC #SoftBankVisionFund #SiliconValley #London #SaudiArabia

SoftBank and Saudi Arabia Partnership on a “SoftBank Vision Fund” to be based in London will be investing over 5 years for $100bn tech fund

The new fund, dubbed the SoftBank Vision Fund, will be based in London and seeded with $25bn from SoftBank and up to $45bn from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund over the next five years, according to a statement from the Japanese telecoms group.

At $100bn, the new fund would be the same size as all funds raised by US venture capital firms over the past two and a half years, according to data from the National Venture Capital Association.

SoftBank said the fund would be investing over a five-year time horizon, which at $20bn a year would represent roughly a quarter of total annual investments in US-based venture-backed start-ups.

The unusually large fund underscores investors’ enduring appetite for tech sector investments, even amid concerns in Silicon Valley about inflated valuations for late-stage start-ups such as Uber and Airbnb.

Mr Son said the SoftBank Vision Fund would be “the biggest investor in the technology sector” over the next decade. The fund will be led by Rajeev Misra, SoftBank’s head of strategic finance, and it may be joined by “a few large global investors”.

His Royal Highness, Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, Chairman of PIF, commented as follows: “The Public Investment Fund is focused on achieving attractive long-term financial returns from its investments at home and abroad, as well as supporting the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 strategy to develop a diversified economy. We are delighted to sign this MOU with SBG given the long history, established industry relationships and strong investment performance of SBG and Masayoshi Son.”

The fund is on a mission to support Saudi Arabia’s new 2030 economic plan, which includes reducing reliance on fossil fuels and bolstering the private sector.

Mr Son’s vast portfolio of investments has included US carrier Sprint, Chinese eCommerce group Alibaba and internet search engine Yahoo Japan. SoftBank has invested in budding technology companies, including ride-hailing app Grab, US bioengineering start-up Zymergen and online lending group SoFi.

Public Investment Fund (PIF)

The Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund was established in 1971 to provide financing support for projects of strategic significance to the national economy, and its role has evolved to incorporate a number of different areas. These include holding and managing the government’s stakes in some of Saudi Arabia’s largest and most important blue chip companies. PIF has also set up and managed a number of companies to support innovation, diversification and non-oil sector development within the Kingdom. Furthermore, the institution has been responsible for holding and managing the government’s stake in bilateral and multilateral companies abroad as well as investing selectively in a range of other asset classes internationally.

Furthermore, the institution has been responsible for holding and managing the government’s stake in bilateral and multilateral companies abroad as well as investing selectively in a range of other asset classes internationally.

PIF has gone through major restructuring, and had supervision moved from under the Ministry of Finance to the Council of Economic and Development Affairs, led by His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Bin Abdulaziz, since March 2015. PIF, under the leadership of His Royal Highness, has revised its long term investment strategy to coincide with the country’s Vision 2030.

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Elon Musk Unveils Mars Colonisation Plan



#MOQIVibes #MOQIPositiveVibes





Screen Shot 2016-09-29 at 11.49.08 PM

[FULL + Q&A] Elon Musk Unveils Mars Colonisation Plan  (2016.9.27)

Elon Musk discusses the long-term technical challenges that need to be solved to support the creation of a permanent, self-sustaining human presence on Mars. The presentation focuses on potential architectures for sustaining humans on the Red Planet that industry, government and the scientific community can collaborate on in the years ahead.

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Congratulations! AMAC Gives Exceptional Certifications To Managers At Sequoia, Hony, IDG


AMAC Gives Exceptional Certifications To Managers At Sequoia, Hony, IDG

Neil Shen, founding managing partner of Sequoia Capital China, Hugo Shong, founding partner of IDG Capital Partners, and Hony Capital’s chief executive officer John Zhao are among dozens of well-known venture and private equity fund managers given exceptional certifications without having to pass a required official qualification exam.

The Asset Management Association of China (AMAC) released a notice last week detailing the names and reasons of why these managers are allowed to not take the required test.

Other notable investors on the list include Liang Xinjun, co-founder of Fosun Group, Sha Wang, venture partner of Asia Alternatives, David Haifeng Liu, Chief president of KKR, Andrew Y. Yan, managing partner of SAIF Partners, Xu Xiaoping, founder of Zhen Fund, Lei Jun, and co-founder of Shunwei Capital and Xiaomi Inc.

Around 30,000 Chinese private equity and venture fund managers are required to pass an official test before May 1, or they would not be allowed to continue managing their funds, according to earlier AMAC rules.

In total, 34 investment managers have been given exceptional certifications by AMAC.

All of them serve on the committees of a number of professional industry associations affiliated with AMAC, including the China Venture Capital & Private Equity Association.

These committee members are the most respected and experienced professionals in the industry. The exceptional certification makes the qualification process more practical, an unnamed insider source told Chinese media.
AMAC says that other investment managers meeting one of four requirements can apply for similar exceptional certifications.

The four requirements include: working in the venture and private equity industry for six years or more and having successfully exited at least two projects; having worked as senior management of a publicly listed company or a sizeable private company for over 12 years; having worked in senior management role for over 12 years; and having taught in university or worked in finance-related research institutions for over 12 years.

All applicants are also required to submit two recommendation letters from well-know investors in the industry.


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The Asset Management Association of China (AMAC)



Visa Offering Startups up – The Everywhere Initiative


Visa Offering Startups up – The Everywhere Initiative: Three $50,000 Challenges. You Must Act Fast – Submission is Now Open through May 26, 2016.


Now in its second year, Visa’s The Everywhere Initiative is awarding up to $150k to three deserving startups solving important business challenges. Each winning company will get up to $50k and work alongside Visa to implement its idea on the corporation’s global platform.

Wherever you want to be, Visa is going to help you get there. In its second-annual Everywhere Initiative we will once again present three real-life business challenges for startups to help solve. If you’re a startup, apply now for a chance to win pilot money and an opportunity to work directly with Visa and co-create innovative solutions that help consumers achieve their goals. Submission is now open through May 26, 2016.

Recognizing the importance of getting feedback quickly with a pilot, Visa is directly investing in promising ideas without taking equity in a low-risk, low-barrier, frictionless way. Visa wants to work with the most promising ideas and entrepreneurs and is ready to leverage its presence as an innovation leader in order to do so.


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Xavier Niel’s New Project – Coding School 42 Plans to Educate Students in Silicon Valley for Free


Xavier Niel’s New Project – Coding School 42 Plans to Educate Students in Silicon Valley for Free. 42-ecole-informatique-free-visite-president

Project 42 has created a computer science version of the Hunger Games to select students.

First, it’s free. Niel is investing $100 million in the U.S. to create a new school. And it starts with a brand new 200,000 square foot building in Fremont opened 24/7 with thousands of iMacs.

Second, 42 welcomes all students between 18 and 30. After filling out your online application, the real challenge starts. The 42 team has created a computer science version of the Hunger Games. They call it the swimming pool because they want to see if you can swim by throwing you into the figurative pool. You and 1,000 others students face the same coding and logic challenges.




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