A Saturday morning briefing on innovation and society.
Damn, that Rick Rubin piece was the BEST
AI leapfrogging may have the greatest effect (like mobile phones) in developing countries. Here, the legacy systems are under-developed, skilled knowledge work is just emerging, and the real need to connect to global advances is greatest.
My fuzzy crystal ball suggests where it Could Happen, and Should Happen, and Would have the most impact is health care. The costs of care at the intersection of the care needs of everyone and our evolving expectations for what care we can have, AND the aging demographics make this a huge win for all addressing the administrative mess, shortage of staff, high costs, and the dare I saw it, guess work of managing health and illness. Combine AI with DNA sequencing securely correlated with mass data on DNA sequences/health/illness/treatment patterns, and my guess is we dramatically increase health and wellbeing, and dramatically reduce the frustration, delays and cost of getting care when it is necessary.
For the AI leapfrog question—I asked ChatGPT 😄
It provided a bunch of answers, but this was my favorite: Education.
"Although education has seen some digitization, its core methodologies haven't changed much over the years. AI has the potential to transform this field completely by enabling personalized learning experiences, where the content, pace, and approach are tailored to the individual needs of each student. It could also automate administrative tasks for teachers, freeing up more time for instruction and student interaction. In addition, AI-powered predictive analytics could help identify learning gaps and suggest remediation before a student falls behind. Lastly, AI could make quality education accessible to remote areas or disadvantaged communities, democratizing learning opportunities globally."
[If you'd like to see the prompts I used and other suggestions that ChatGPT made, here's the transcript: https://chat.openai.com/share/974ea15a-b097-4f8d-9dc6-c1892ccfb588]
I find this option particularly compelling because of an article I read this week (https://avichal.com/2011/10/07/why-education-startups-do-not-succeed/), which makes the case that education startups have historically failed because of:
(a) Focus on increased quality, instead of reduced cost: Entrepreneurs & VCs are often well-educated and treat education like an investment, while most consumers see it as an expense,
(b) Wrong distribution framework: Selling into governments is slow and does not follow growth curve of consumer-focused tech companies; and
(c) Wrong target audience: The biggest opportunities are serving the poor in the US and abroad, vs. US middle class, which have often been the targets.
It seems to me that these elements prevented the last wave of innovation (digitization) from transforming education—but AI-driven personalization will be transformative enough to leapfrog the entire system: quality *and* costs will be improved, which makes consumer distribution feasible and creates a more compelling value prop for all audiences (affluent & not; domestic & international).
Thanks for the thought-provoking question, Kyle!
Kyle - I want to drop a note to thank you and share my appreciation for sharing the content and increasing our awareness on a broad spectrum of topics. I look forward to your email every Saturday morning as start my day on the patio sipping my coffee.