This year in tech, Visions of AI, Vector Database, OpenSea Bans Cuban NFTs, and Refocus..

This year in tech felt like a simulation

When I say it feels like we’re living in a simulation, what I mean is that sometimes, I hear about the latest tech news and feel like someone threw some words in a hat, picked a few, and tried to connect the dots. Of course, that’s not what’s really happening. But in January, would you have believed me if I told you that Twitter owner Elon Musk polled users to decide that he would unban Donald Trump?

This year in tech, too much happened and very little of it made sense. It was like we were being controlled by a random number generator that would dictate the whims of the tech industry, leading to multiple “biggest news stories of the year” happening over the course of a month, all completely disconnected from one another.

I can’t stop thinking about a very good tweet I saw last month, which encapsulated the absurdity of the year — it was something along the lines of, “Meta laid off 11,000 people and it’s only the third biggest tech story of the week.” Normally, a social media giant laying off 13% of its workforce would easily be the week’s top story, but this was the moment when FTX went bankrupt and everyone was impersonating corporations on Twitter because somehow Elon Musk didn’t think through how things would go horribly wrong if anyone could buy a blue check. Oh, good times.Read more...

Top 5 stories of the week: Visions of AI and security danced in readers heads

As the year comes to an end, we want to reflect on what you read in VentureBeat this week.

While others were shopping and decorating for the holidays, VentureBeat readers didn’t check out for Christmas cheer this week. Rather, they were consuming coverage in two keys — as reflected in our Top 5 stories of the week — AI and security.

Sharon Goldman’s coverage of ChatGPT and generative AI captured the two top spots among the list of most-read stories. Goldman talked to Forrester Research’s Rowan Curran about how and why ChatGPT is having an iPhone moment.  Like the iPhone did for the smartphone, ChatGPT is changing the public consciousness around AI – generative AI, in particular.

Goldman also looks back on her first calendar year at the VentureBeat and the barrage of news in areas ranging for generative AI to AI legislation. Check out how Goldman learned to stop worrying and love AI.

Even amid the holiday season, IT leaders can’t sleep on security as is clear by the traffic Tim Keary and Louis Columbus generated with their predictions stories. Keary dug into cybersecurity predictions from Google and Microsoft, and Columbus looked at security spending forecasts for 2023 and why zero trust and cloud security top the list.Read more...

Vector Database: The New Kid On The Block For AI-Driven Applications

The new kid on the block: vector databases.

Companies across every industry increasingly understand that making data-driven decisions is a necessity to compete now, in the next five years, in the next 20 and beyond. Data growth — unstructured data growth in particular — is off the charts, and recent market research estimates the global artificial intelligence (AI) market, fueled by data, will “expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 39.4% to reach $422.37 billion by 2028.”

Well-designed AI-based applications sift through extremely large datasets extremely quickly to generate new insights and ultimately power new revenue streams, thus creating real value for businesses. But none of the data growth truly gets operationalized and democratized without the new kid on the block: vector databases. 

These mark a new category of database management and a paradigm shift for making use of the exponential volumes of unstructured data sitting untapped in object stores. Vector databases offer a mind-numbing new level of capability to search unstructured data in particular, but can tackle semi-structured and even structured data as well.Read more...

OpenSea Bans Cuban NFTs From Its Marketplace, Embracing Crypto Sanctions

OpenSea’s recent decision to ban Cuban NFTs from its marketplace has been met with mixed reviews. Some users interpreted this move as a direct violation of one of Web3’s core principles: the extension of financial services to all, irrespective of nationality or geographic borders. Others expected this outcome, however. Cuban NFT artist Yordanis García Delgado told Artnet News that he “saw it coming,” adding that “It is very difficult to be decentralized and not be accountable” to US sanctions.

NFTs are difficult to directly monetize without some sort of centralized exchange or marketplace to facilitate trades. On the other hand, fungible and divisible cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ether are easier to directly transact with for goods and services – making sanctions enforcement on such transactions more difficult.

CryptoPotato reported in May that over 100,000 Cubans have turned to crypto to bypass centralised payment service providers that must comply with sanctions law. Nevertheless, Chainalysis maintains that it is too difficult for large-scale parties, like national governments, to work around such restrictions using crypto.Read more...


Robots are here to stay. And it's up to us to determine how we will coexist.

It’s predicted that 137 million people in Southeast Asia will lose their jobs due to automation in the next 20 years. This period of time will fly by in a wink, so we need to take action now. That’s where Refocus comes in.

Refocus is a cutting-edge retraining platform that gives people a unique opportunity to master from scratch the new professions of the future and help them land their first jobs in IT. Data Analytics and Web Development are the unique courses we already teach here at Refocus.

Refocus focuses on lucrative jobs like creative specialist, cybersecurity engineer, videogame designer, QA engineer, and project manager—professions that are coming in the near future and that are expected to dominate the market in the next few decades.

We also teach human skills like empathy and communication so our students can stay competitive in this ever-changing world of technology.

And last but not least: We gather top practicing experts who teach over 100 hours of theory and practice through clear and beginner-friendly online classes with detailed feedback from mentors.Read more...

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