AI and the future
Calling artificial intelligence a hot topic these days would be a serious understatement. With Open AI’s ChatGPT wowing and terrifying users in equal measure and transforming the debate around the potential of AI-driven tech, not to mention the debate around sentience, consciousness, and the potential implications of AI for society, more and more investors are looking to keep up with the latest innovations, and understand the best ways to invest in AI. It has already been employed by a growing number of businesses looking for new approaches who are able to capitalise on the advances made in the sector in recent years.
In April 2023, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced £100 million in funding for a Foundational Model Taskforce. This taskforce will be responsible for accelerating the UK’s capability in rapidly-emerging types of artificial intelligence, while working to establish safety and reliability. This is the largest amount ever committed to this field by a nation state, and positions the UK at the forefront of action around AI safety. We mention this just to indicate the key role the UK specifically will play in the evolution of AI, and why UK-based AI startups may benefit from this significant effort to cultivate AI tech and establish safe practices. But which AI companies should you invest in?
In this article we’ll look at some of the companies to watch in the Access EIS Fund portfolio that are powered by AI. If you’re an investor looking to back the next generation of AI-driven business, you might want to consider building your EIS portfolio to gain access to some of the latest and most compelling opportunities.
What is it?
An online tutor designed to enable learning at a faster rate than existing online learning. Its AI-driven tech adapts to its user’s knowledge level by testing them and creating the best sequence of educational modules for that user.
How does it use AI?
Learney’s online platform adapts to students by regularly assessing their knowledge and guiding them to their next areas of study accordingly. Students move through a series of nodes, with the particular pace and route they take determined by AI to meet their evolving knowledge requirements, and gradually allowing them to proceed to higher levels.
This system of adaptive learning is made possible by recent developments in AI, particularly the enormous progress the technology has made with transformers – a specific type of model that boosts the speed of sequence transduction, where an input is transformed into an output, used in systems like GPT3. In a similar way to GPT3, which is capable of producing language that’s indistinguishable from text created by humans, with Learney the application of this technology allows the AI to develop a deeper understanding of teaching materials.
What is it?
Immersive Fox automates the process of video creation. Its technology enables users to generate a digital representation of themselves – what Immersive Fox calls an ‘AI twin’ – that can be used to present whatever text is provided and create video content without the need for film crew or lengthy production times.
How does it use AI?
Immersive Fox’s technology uses Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs), a particularly exciting and rapidly developing field in AI. These networks are a means of approaching generative modelling that employs deep learning methods such as neural networks, and represent a specific model architecture for training a generative model.
In short, it involves two sub-models, a generator and a discriminator, which are trained together, so the model is able to discern which of the examples it generates are real – which replicate or resemble the input – and which are fake.
What is it?
HoxtonAi offers people count and occupancy measurement and analysis, aiming to optimise the use and planning of physical spaces. Around 40% of the world’s resource usage and 86% of the world’s economy is invested in physical spaces.
It works using self-installed sensors and cameras, placed above the door, alongside its Control Room cloud platform. The data gathered allows real time space monitoring to optimise ticketing, set staff rotas and to allocate resources to busy areas, and to notify team members when certain traffic thresholds are met. For retail clients, it can output everything from street footfall to entrance count, transaction quantity and size, conversions and average basket value for retail clients.
Since founding, Hoxton Ai has gone from enabling simple people counts to sophisticated occupancy and staffing metrics, and continues to further deepen the capabilities of its product. It emphasises ease of installation, scalability of the service and flexible contracts to fit business needs.
How does it use AI?
HoxtonAI uses computer vision, a cornerstone of AI, in order to interpret and translate movements in the real world into actionable data for asset owners. Computer vision brings together two essential technologies to do this, deep learning, and a convolutional neural network – a class of neural network that’s designed for analysis of visual imagery. Then, through inputting vast amounts of data, the system can be taught to ‘see’ and generate data based on what it sees.
Because Hoxton AI’s products are deployed across different environments and geographies (in leisure assets, retail stores, real estate), the system must deliver reliable results despite the environmental changes. This means the platform needs to be able to constantly train and retrain - i.e. learning from Site A in order to be more accurate in Site B. Its proprietary cloud infrastructure allows that type of learning in order to optimise accuracy across all sites – becoming richer and more powerful as it is deployed in more and more locations.
If you're interested in building a portfolio of startup investments, the Access EIS Fund adds high-quality businesses to its portfolio every month. Read on to find out more about us, and consider investing if you'd like to start building your portfolio today.
The Access EIS Fund
Our fund co-invests with proven angel investors to build large portfolios of hand-picked companies for our investors. It’s a high risk investment, and we can’t guarantee that every startup will be a unicorn, but we’re confident that our approach is the smartest on the market. Even better, we can show you the data to prove it.
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