Pongo Points 1/18/24

Magma drilling in Iceland could lead to tons of clean energy | FOX on the blockchain | Chinese firm develops micro atomic battery | OpenAI launches GPT Store | CoinGecko reports half of crypto failed

1. Drilling for Magma in Iceland for Clean Energy

Why it’s interesting: Scientists in Iceland are planning to drill into a magma chamber, something that was previously impossible (and ill-advised), in order to study its effects and determine if it is a viable source of geothermal energy.

What stands out: Besides the obvious risk of starting an eruption, drilling into magma chambers was difficult as there’s no consistent way of identifying where they are - something a team in of scientists in Iceland lucked out in doing.

What’s next: If experiments in the magma chamber prove successful (which won’t be known until at least 2026), then magma chambers might prove to become invaluable generators of clean, geothermal electricity.

2. FOX Announces Blockchain-Based Verification Tool to Combat AI

Read it on TechInsiders here: The Future of Verified Content

Why it’s interesting: In an effort to combat malicious AI-generated content, FOX’s R&D team announced a blockchain tool that they plan to use to verify the authenticity of content that they produce.

What stands out: The announcement proclaims that the tool will be open-source, meaning that any content creator can use their platform to authenticate content, as they seek a “constructive and open path” to AI integration tools.

What’s next: The creation and implementation of FOX’s Verify Tool is a positive development in the “content-AI” conflict, and likely a response to the NY Times lawsuit against OpenAI - suggesting that the legislation of AI might soon be divided across party lines.

3. Chinese Firm Creates Compact Atomic Battery

Read it on Betavolt here (partial English translation on Futurism): Betavolt successfully developed civilian atomic batteries

Why it’s interesting: Betavolt developed a miniature atomic battery that’s smaller than a coin and produces enough electrical output to power implanted medical devices for up to 50 years.

What stands out: The official press release suggests that the batteries will be mass produced in 2025, with plans to launch larger batteries that “can make mobile phones never charge and…drone[s] can fly all the time.”

What’s next: Atomic batteries are not widely used in consumer products today (and the space is rife with fraud), but continued research and development might eventually yield workable prototypes that significantly reduce our reliance on traditional batteries for low-voltage devices.

4. OpenAI Launches GPT Store

Read it on OpenAI here: Introducing the GPT Store

Why it’s interesting: Initially set to launch in November 2023, OpenAI launched its GPT Store last week, where users can create their own custom AI models using ChatGPT and possibly even earn income from custom builds.

What stands out: “GPT Builders” are community creators that generate new AI models tailored to more specific use cases, since those models would be trained on more specific data to generate better results than stock ChatGPT.

What’s next: The GPT Store is poised to become the next evolution of “app stores,” just as the iPhone revolutionized mobile applications.

5. CoinGecko Reports “Over 50% of Cryptocurrencies Have Failed”

Why it’s interesting: CoinGecko, a major cryptocurrency data aggregator, revealed that over 50% of cryptocurrencies have either been abandoned by their teams, been exposed as scams, or do not have any trading activity as of the end of 2023.

What stands out: One of the major headwinds for the crypto industry is the amount of grift and fraud in the space which, as CoinGecko admits, is most prevalent during bull runs - with nearly 70% of new coins that launch during a bull run being abandoned shortly thereafter.

What’s next: Despite struggling with an increasing number of bad actors and rugpull projects, the crypto industry has been making positive headway with products like stablecoins, asset tokenization, and more accessible financial tools.

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