ai

  1. Energy and Environment
  2. Land
  3. Planet
  4. Tech

What is vertical farming? Indoor agriculture (like greenhouses) using vertical space to optimize crop production in a controlled environment

Pros

  • Minimized pests and pesticides
  • Greater precision and control over water and nutrients, less waste
  • More food produced per acre of land, more sustainable for our planet in the long run
  • Reduced distribution supply chains delivering fresher produce to customers at greater speed

Cons

  • Higher costs
  • Deep know-how and expertise required 
  • Limited number of crops can be grown profitably (leafy greens vs. strawberries that require more sunlight and thus more electricity)

Why vertical farming? The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted food supply chains around the world. The shift to remote work increased office space vacancies... creating an opportunity to redesign spaces. Now is a good time to rethink ways to feed a growing population, especially in urban cities. We need to better adapt to supply and demand shocks.

A touch on Big Tech Algorithmic or machine-learning solutions are applied to the biggest challenge in agriculture: optimization. Artificial intelligence (AI) helps minimize food waste by figuring out the right amount of energy, water, and nutrients required to produce food. 

Bottom line With increased pressure on supply chains around the globe, rethinking traditional farming and redirecting efforts toward vertical farming (and AI) will address food security challenges and reduce waste in the future.

Dig deeper → 4 min

  1. Big Tech
  2. Profit
  3. Tech

What's happening Neuralink, a neural tech company owned by Elon Musk, is hosting a public event this Friday, August 28th. The event will feature a live demo of the innovative new technology.

What is Neuralink? The four by four millimeter chip sits in a sealed cylinder where it is inserted in the back of your head. Made up of 1,024 electrodes, the N1 works with your brain's neurons to solve neurological mysteries.

Musk believes the micro-chip will be able to solve any neurological disorder from Parkinson's to Alzheimer's.

Why it matters The technological prospects of solving neurological mysteries is fascinating and worthy of covering.

This emerging new era in the human timeline will make or break the human future, and quite possibly the natural world.

Some talking points

  1. Philosophical questions: Humans are flawed. That makes us human. If Neuralink makes our brains perfect, free of mistakes and failures, what does that world look like?
  2. Hacking: Technology is advancing faster than laws and regulations. Legal and compliance frameworks just can’t keep up. How can we safely stop hackers from entering our brains?
  3. Global inequality: When Neuralink inevitably matures into a product for convenience rather than desperation, rich kids who can afford neural chips will advance even faster beyond less-privileged peers.

Bottom line When do we take it 'too far'? Will we ever?

Let's learn the lessons of our past, and put reasonable pressure on innovative new technologies before they get too big to fail. That way we can ensure that the innovation is serving the best interest and will of the people, rather than exacerbating our greatest problems.

Dig deeper → 5 min

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