The future of drug discovery and AI – the role of man and machine — from by  Ayn de Jesus


Episode Summary: This week on AI in Industry, we speak with Amir Saffari, Senior Vice President of AI at BenevolentAI, a London-based pharmaceutical company that uses machine learning to find new uses for existing drugs and new treatments for diseases.

In speaking with him, we aim to learn two things:

  • How will machine learning play a role in the phases of drug discovery, from generating hypotheses to clinical trials?
  • In the future, what are the roles of man and machine in drug discovery? What processes will machines automate and potentially do better than humans in this field?


A few other articles caught my eye as well:

  • This little robot swims through pipes and finds out if they’re leaking — from by Adele Peters
    Lighthouse, U.S. winner of the James Dyson Award, looks like a badminton birdie and detects the suction of water leaving pipes–which is a lot of water that we could put to better use.
  • Samsung’s New York AI center will focus on robotics — from by Saqib Shah
    NYU’s AI Now Institute is close-by and Samsung is keen for academic input.
    Samsung now has an artificial intelligence center in New York City — its third in North America and sixth in total — with an eye on robotics; a first for the company. It opened in Chelsea, Manhattan on Friday, walking distance from NYU (home to its own AI lab) boosting Samsung’s hopes for an academic collaboration.
  • Business schools bridge the artificial intelligence skills gap — from
    Business schools such as Kellogg, Insead and MIT Sloan have introduced courses on AI over the past two years, but Smith is the first to offer a full programme where students delve deep into machine learning.

    “Technologists can tell you all about the technology but usually not what kind of business problems it can solve,” Carlsson says. With business leaders, he adds, it is the other way round — they have plenty of ideas about how to improve their company but little way of knowing what the new technology can achieve. “The foundational skills businesses need to hack the potential of AI is the understanding of what problems the tech is actually good at solving,” he says.




Computing in the Camera — from by Paul Reynolds
Mobile AR, with its ubiquitous camera, is set to transform what and how human experience designers create.

One of the points Allison [Woods, CEO, Camera IQ] made repeatedly on that call (and in this wonderful blog post of the same time period) was that the camera is going to be at the center of computing going forward, an indispensable element. Spatial computing could not exist without it. Simple, obvious, straightforward, but not earth shaking. We all heard what she had to say, but I don’t think any of us really understood just how profound or prophetic that statement turned out to be.


“[T]he camera will bring the internet and the real world into a single time and space.”

— Allison Woods, CEO, Camera IQ



The Camera As Platform — from by Allison Wood
When the operating system moves to the viewfinder, the world will literally change

“Every day two billion people carry around an optical data input device — the smartphone Camera — connected to supercomputers and informed by massive amounts of data that can have nearly limitless context, position, recognition and direction to accomplish tasks.”

– Jacob Mullins, Shasta Ventures




The State Of The ARt At AWE 18 — from by Charlie Fink


The bigger story, however, is how fast the enterprise segment is growing as applications as straightforward as schematics on a head-mounted monocular microdisplay are transforming manufacturing, assembly, and warehousing. Use cases abounded.

After traveling the country and most recently to Europe, I’ve now experienced almost every major VR/AR/MR/XR related conference out there. AWE’s exhibit area was by far the largest display of VR and AR companies to date (with the exception of CES).


AR is being used to identify features and parts within cars





Student Learning and Virtual Reality: The Embodied Experience — from by Jaime Hannans, Jill Leafstedt and Talya Drescher


Specifically, we explored the potential for how virtual reality can help create a more empathetic nurse, which, we hypothesize, will lead to increased development of nursing students’ knowledge, skills, and attitudes. We aim to integrate these virtual experiences into early program coursework, with the intent of changing nursing behavior by providing a deeper understanding of the patient’s perspective during clinical interactions.

In addition to these compelling student reflections and the nearly immediate change in reporting practice, survey findings show that students unanimously felt that this type of patient-perspective VR experience should be integrated and become a staple of the nursing curriculum. Seeing, hearing, and feeling these moments results in significant and memorable learning experiences compared to traditional classroom learning alone. The potential that this type of immersive experience can have in the field of nursing and beyond is only limited by the imagination and creation of other virtual experiences to explore. We look forward to continued exploration of the impact of VR on student learning and to establishing ongoing partnerships with developers.


Also see:




Virtual reality is actually here — from by Bart Perkins


In parallel with gaming, VR is expanding into many other areas, including these:

  • Healthcare
    Surgical Theater is working with UCLA, New York University, the Mayo Clinic and other major medical centers to use VR to help surgeons prepare for difficult operations. Virtual 3D models are constructed from MRIs, CAT scans and/or ultrasounds.
  • Mental health
    Meditation promotes mental health by reducing stress and anxiety.
  • Education
    Unimersiv is focusing on historical sites, creating a series of VR tours for the Colosseum, Acropolis, Parthenon, Stonehenge, Titanic, etc. These tours allow each site to be explored as it existed when it was built. Additional locations’ virtual sites and attractions will undoubtedly be added in the near future. The British Museum offered a Virtual Reality Weekend in August 2015. Visitors were able to explore a Bronze Age roundhouse with a flickering fire and changing levels of light while they “handled” Bronze Age relics. The American Museum of Natural History allows students anywhere in the world to take virtual tours of selected museum exhibits, and other museums will soon follow.
  • Training
    Virtual reality is an excellent tool when the task is dangerous or the equipment involved is expensive.
  • Crime reconstruction
  • Architecture
  • Collaboration
    Virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality will form the basis for the next set of collaboration tools.




VR and education: Why we shouldn’t wait to reap the benefits – from by Josh Maldonad


However, we see very little experienced-based learning in all levels of education today. Traditional learning consists of little more than oration through lectures and textbooks (and their digital equivalents). Experience-based learning is often very difficult to facilitate in the classroom. Whether it be a field trip in elementary school, or simulation exercises in med school, it can be tedious, costly and time consuming.

Where VR is really winning in education is in subject matter retention. The first of several surveys that we’ve done was based on a VR field trip through the circulatory system with high-school age children. We saw an increase of nearly 80% in subject matter retention from a group that used VR, compared against a control group that was provided the same subject matter via text and image. (I’ll expand on the details of this experiment, and some research initiatives we’re working on in another blog post).

Example apps in healthcare:

  • Emergency response and Triage Decision making
  • Nursing fundamentals, safety and communication procedures
  • Anesthesiology: patient monitoring and dosage delivery



Residential design and virtual reality: a better way to build a home? — from


The old phrase of ‘needing to see it to believe it’ is a powerful mantra across all aspects of residential design. Architecture, interior design and property development are all highly visual trades that require buy-in from both those working on the project and the client. As such, making sure everyone is sold on a coherent vision is vital to ensure that everything goes smoothly and no one is left dissatisfied when the project is completed.




Google Translate: Updated
For those travelers out there, you might want to know about Google Translate’s ability to read in an image of one language, and provide you with a translation of that language/signage/label/etc.

Also see:


From this page, here are some of the visual translation products:



Now HoloLens lets you check your mail in a wall-sized mixed reality version of Outlook — from by Ian Paul
Now you can check your email or make a calendar appointment without removing Microsoft’s augmented reality headset.

hololens multiple flat apps

You now can pin multiple 2D apps in virtual space,
and Microsoft’s HoloLens will remember where they are.



VR in Education: What’s Already Happening in the Classroom — from by Susanne Krause
“Engagement was off the charts”  | Connecting to the world and creating new ones using virtual reality


It’s a way for educators to bring their students to places that would be out of reach otherwise. Google Expeditions, the VR mode of Google Street View and Nearpod’s virtual field trips are among the most popular experiences teachers explore with their students. “Some of our students have never really left the bubbles of their own town”, says Jaime Donally, creator of the #ARVRinEDU chat on Twitter. “Virtual reality is a relatively inexpensive way to show them the world.”



How augmented reality is transforming building management — from
IBM People for Smarter Cities presents “Dublin lab – Cognitive Buildings”

In the video below, a facilities manager is using a mobile device to scan a QR code on a wall, behind which is a critical piece of HVAC equipment. With one scan, we can view data on the asset’s performance and health, location data for the asset. This data is being pulled by the IoT Platform from the asset itself, TRIRIGA, and any other useful sources.








But the best experiences, VR acolytes agree, are still yet to come. Resh Sidhu leads VR development for Framestore, the high-end visual effects house that won an Oscar for the movie Gravity, and has since expanded into creating VR content. With hardware finally delivering on its promise, she believes it is now up to creatives to explore the possibilities.



HTC Brings VR Center to Paris; Vive Exhibit at Nobel Museum — from by Jonathan Nafarrete


There’s so much more to VR than just gaming. Which is probably why HTC has been exploring entirely new ways to bring VR to art, education and culture — starting with museums around the world.

HTC recently collaborated with TIME-LIFE on “Remembering Pearl Harbor,” a VR experience commemorating the 75th anniversary of the attack with exhibitions at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City and the Newsuem in Washington D.C. Last month, Vive also collaborated with the Royal Academy of Arts in London on the world’s first 3-D printed VR art exhibit.

Now HTC Vive has revealed the launch of a new VR center at La Geode, part of Paris’ Science and Industry Museum, as well as a partnership with the Nobel Museum for a first-of-its-kind VR exhibit showcasing the contributions of Nobel laureates.




MIT’s amazing new app lets you program any object — from
The Reality Editor is a Minority Report style AR app that makes programming your smart home as easy as connecting the dots.





Take me away! Elderly home residents given virtual reality goggles to help them feel like they are travelling the world — from by Belinda Cleary

  • Residents at a Perth nursing home are trialing virtual reality goggles
  • The technology will allow them to see the world without leaving their seats
  • It’s hoped the trial will bring back lost memories in dementia patients




NASA partners with Microsoft to provide holographic computing in space — from by B.J. Murphy


Partnering with multinational technology company Microsoft, NASA has since been engaging with their astronauts to use HoloLens headsets to help them make complex computations and provide them with virtual aid as they work inside the ISS. Labeled Project Sidekick, this form of space-based holographic computing will help empower astronauts by allowing them to achieve greater autonomy in their work as they explore and connect back home at NASA headquarters.

With the Cygnus delivery of the HoloLens headsets, expect holographic computing to become a crucial facet of future space exploration – one more item to check off of our list on, “How to become more like Star Trek.”



How to try virtual reality today without breaking the bank — from by Jacob Siegal


2016 might be the year that virtual reality finally takes hold in the tech world. Sony, Microsoft and Oculus VR are all planning to launch their own hardware before the end of next year, with tons of developers already hard at work on games, apps and other software to ensure that VR hits the ground running.

But if you don’t want to wait until next year to see what VR has to offer, you can take a sneak peek at the innovations today without putting a strain on your wallet.



Breaking Down Billion-Dollar AR/VR Investment In The Last 12 Months — from by Tim Merel





Which VR Headset Holds the Pole Position? — from by Felix Richter




The show goes on in Paris – through augmented-reality glasses — from by Barbara Casassus
If your French doesn’t go beyond bonjour, you can still enjoy a night at a Parisian theatre thanks to new glasses that provide simultaneous translations


It’s Saturday night at Le Comédia theatre in central Paris and I’m staring at the stage through square plastic glasses. While the actors in the musical Mistinguett, Reine des Années Folles sing boisterously in French, the words appear simultaneously in English on a small screen in the right-hand lens. Though it’s not the same as watching the show unfettered, I find it surprisingly easy to follow the translated dialogue along with the action.




Immersive VR Education




Also see Immersive VREducation’s:
ER VR Trailer – Virtual Reality Medical Training Simulation




Virtual-reality lab explores new kinds of immersive learning — from by Ellen Wexler


That can have implications in distance learning, he said. For students attending class via webcam or video lecture, the video is two-dimensional, and the audio doesn’t sound as it would if they were in a real classroom. Mr. Duraiswami thinks the virtual-reality technology could help the experience feel more immersive. “If all you’re seeing is a bunch of things in front of you, you’re not as immersed,” Mr. Duraiswami said. “You want the instructor to feel as if they’re right in front of you.”




10 killer media applications enabled by ‘virtual reality’ headsets — from by Mike Elgan
Virtual reality headsets can do much more than ‘virtual reality,’ a technical term that is badly defined in most news reports. Here are 10 rapidly developing applications.



Deakin University to launch virtual and augmented reality hub — from by Rebecca Merrett
Industry partners, as well and students and staff, can get their hands on latest virtual/augmented reality tech


Deakin University will launch an Interactive Digital Centre Hub in Melbourne CBD in the first half of 2016, which will allow industry partners to access the latest virtual and augmented reality technology. Partnering with EON Reality, more than US$10 million has been poured into the facility and will be the first of dedicated centre to virtual and augmented reality in the Asian region. Having a strong group of researchers in virtual reality, Deakin University decided to open a hub to facilitate working with industry and host education programs and courses in this field.



Virtual reality could finally get people to care about climate change — from by Chris Weller


As the founding director of Stanford’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, Jeremy Bailenson firmly believes that statistics don’t make people care about issues.

Experiences do.

That’s why Bailenson has spent the last few years developing an underwater virtual reality (VR) experience that shows people firsthand how climate change impacts ocean health.


All the data in the world won’t make a problem seem real unless people care about it on an emotional level, he says. According to Bailenson, virtual reality solves that problem without creating new ones.



Virtual reality in 2016: The 10 biggest trends to watch — from by Erin Carson
2016 promises to be a watershed year for virtual reality as a commercial product. Here’s what to expect.


Revolutionary tech for the real world — from

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

AR is also highly effective for education and training says Ronald Azuma who leads the AR team at Intel Labs. Why? “Because it makes instructions easier to understand by displaying them directly over the real-world objects that require manipulation, thus removing the cognitive load and ambiguity in spatially transforming directions from traditional media like manuals, text, images and videos into the situation at hand.”




Samsung launches Gear VR virtual reality headset in Australia, promises 360-degree web browsing — from
AUSTRALIAN phone users will be able to play virtual reality games, watch 360-degree films, and navigate the web using their eyes as Samsung launches its third virtual reality headset.



CES 2016: driverless cars and virtual reality to dominate at world’s biggest technology show — from
The world’s biggest technology showcase kicks off in Las Vegas on 6 January 2016. Here’s what we know about what will be happening at the Consumer Electronics Show



Should your institution move into the Augmentarium future? — from by Ron Bethke
The University of Maryland, College Park, is leading the way in studying the innovative applications of augmented and virtual reality across a wide range of fields


The potential applications of virtual and augmented reality in a host of disciplines–including education, science, medicine, the arts, entertainment and industry–are massive, say large institutions like the University of Maryland (UMD), whose Augmentarium serves as a potential instrumental model for innovative research facilities and universities looking to make their impact on the future.



Sundance 2016 dominated by VR, over 30 experiences listed — from


This year’s Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah was a surprise hit for virtual reality (VR) technology. It was here that Oculus VR revealed its new film-focused division, Oculus Story Studio, while plenty of other filmmakers and story tellers showcased their own projects using head-mounted displays (HMDs) in the festival’s New Frontier section. That section is set to return for the 2016 edition of the festival from 21st – 31st January, and is this time utterly dominated by VR experiences.



Virtual reality for all, finally — from by Larry Greenemeier
Will the new generation of headsets hitting the consumer electronics market deliver enhanced virtual-reality experiences at more affordable prices?


You can be forgiven for rolling your eyes at the latest round of promises that virtual reality has finally arrived for the masses. Tech companies have been hanging their hats on that one for decades without much success, due to high prices and poorly rendered graphics that have given people headaches—literally.

Despite these missteps, a new generation of virtual-reality tech targeted at consumers has begun to hit the market, most prominently with Samsung’s $100 Gear VR visor released in late November. Both Gear VR and Google Cardboard—which starts at less than $20 and was launched in 2014—rely on a smartphone clipped or slid into their respective visors. The headset’s binocularlike lenses—between the phone and wearer—help deliver a 3-D VR experience. That makes the gadgets a relatively low-risk investment for consumers and enables tech companies to gauge public demand for virtual reality in advance of devices such as ones from Oculus, Sony and HTC slated for next year that feature more sophisticated embedded sensors and displays.

Now that VR headsets no longer cost tens of thousands of dollars the door is open for educational and social applications that are true to virtual reality’s roots, allowing people to learn and interact in digital classrooms and playgrounds.


Here’s what virtual reality means for kids stuck in the hospital — from by Drew Olanoff


Virtual reality is here to stay and it’s more important than just playing a game or watching a boxing match in a more immersive way. It could, and will, change lives. Imagine this kind of happiness in children’s hospitals everywhere, all of the time. Then think about how doctors can train for surgery virtually. Pretty amazing stuff, eh?

Addendum on 12/20/15:


iDoctor: Could a smartphone be the future of medicine?

Description of video (which was done back in January 2013):

One of the world’s top physicians, Dr. Eric Topol, has a prescription that could improve your family’s health and make medical care cheaper. The cardiologist claims that the key is the smartphone. Topol has become the foremost expert in the exploding field of wireless medicine. Dr. Nancy Snyderman reports.




Also see:









From the website:

Mezzanine™ is a collaborative conference room solution that introduces multi-user, multi-screen, multi-device collaboration. This is next-generation communication: share any content from any device with anyone, anywhere.

Mezzanine transforms creative teamwork, executive meetings, and sales presentations into real-time, collaborative work sessions. Mezzanine expands on existing telepresence technology by providing what we call InfoPresence™—the incorporation of multiple users, multiple devices, and multiple streams of information in the collaboration environment. The future of conference room collaboration is here.

A Mezzanine workspace lets any person on a network bring their own device and share content and applications with any colleague, anywhere in the world, interactively. Mezzanine is a collaborative conference room solution combining presentation design and delivery, application sharing, whiteboard capture, and video conferencing, all within a framework of multi-participant control.


Also see:

  • Oblong Technovates with LA High School
  • Oblong at OME
    Oblong Industries recently participated at OME, a summit hosted by UC San Francisco.  The two-day summit focused on charting the future of precision medicine—an emerging field combining big data with clinical research and patient care to deliver insights and advances in treatment that is more targeted and enables improved patient outcomes.


The doctor will see you now…through the eyes of a robot — from by Jacob Siegal @jacobsiegal


‘Robodocs’? ‘Tricorders’? How telemedicine will shape the future of health — from by Ki Mae Heussner


From DSC:
Reminds me of a card I saw at the store which said something along the lines of “we live in strange times indeed my friend…when we take insurance advice from a Gecko!” …or something along those lines…   🙂

Tagged with:  
Welcome to the doctor's office of the future: It's a kiosk


Image: HealthSpot
Also see:






The robot doctor will see you now — from by Jennifer Alsever, contributor
The RP-VITA robot promises to eliminate geographic boundaries and allow physician specialists to care for faraway patients.


Also see:

Tagged with:  

The coming revolution in health care — from by Adam Bluestein
To understand how the American health-care system is about to change, forget Washington. Look to the innovative companies hard at work on the future.

Excerpts/BIG IDEAS:

  • Medicine is a marketplace
    With new software, the doctor will see you now, not in three weeks.
  • The consumer is king
    How to get good data into the hands of patients.
  • The digital health record is here
    A cure for chronic paperwork.
  • Health care is social
    Is the crowd smarter than your doctor? Just possibly.
  • The house call makes a comeback
    A computer screen becomes an exam room.
  • The algorithm is in
    Why smart software means better diagnoses.
  • Your doctor is watching you
    How a simple text message can make you healthier.


Also see:

My thanks to Michell Zappa, Founder Envisioning Technology for this item:


The future of health technology -- a new visualization from Envisioning Technology


Technology is the ultimate democratizing force in society. Over time, technology raises lowest common denominators by reducing costs and connecting people across the world. Medical technology is no exception to this trend: previously siloed repositories of information and expensive diagnostic methods are rapidly finding a global reach and enabling both patients and practitioners to make better use of information.

Our new visualization is an exercise in speculating about which individual technologies are likely to affect the scenario of health in the coming decades. Arranged in six broad areas, the forecast covers a multitude of research and developments that are likely to disrupt the future of healthcare.

Tagged with:  

IBM working on Watson app for smartphones — from by Sebastian Anthony


After conquering Jeopardy, battling patent trolls, and chasing down health insurance fraudsters, IBM now plans to bring Watson to smartphones. Watson is an artificial intelligence that is capable of answering very complex questions using natural language answers. In essence, IBM is hoping to build a better, faster, and more professional/enterprisey version of Apple’s Siri, the voice-controlled assistant that debuted on the iPhone 4S.

IBM Watson


Watson, come here: A clue to cancer! — from by Jack Uldrich

Excerpt (emphasis DSC; regarding the video there, I don’t think we can so easily access/create/contain “wisdom”):

Last year, I published my top ten trends in health care. Number Five on the list was “artificial intelligence.” Specifically, I addressed the ability of IBM’s “Watson” supercomputer to revolutionize diagnosis.

Well, the folks at Memorial Sloan-Kettering have now hired Watson. If you’re in the healthcare industry, I can’t encourage you strongly enough to watch the following two-minute video because it points toward the future of cancer diagnosis.

As one of the physicians says in the video, “This is beyond evolutionary, this is revolutionary!” He goes on to add, “This could totally change the way we conduct medicine.”

IBM’s new mainframe aimed at assimilating “private clouds” — from by
The zEC12 aims to do what “private clouds” do faster, better, and cheaper.
IBM would like big enterprise customers to reconsider that whole distributed “private cloud” thing and go back to the original big data solution: mainframes. Today, IBM unveiled the zEC12, its next generation of the System Z mainframe platform. And like the Borg, IBM is hoping that companies will let the zEC12 assimilate their virtualization environments into a big, black cube.


Active in Cloud, Amazon reshapes computing — from The New York Times by Quentin Hardy


SEATTLE — Within a few years,’s creative destruction of both traditional book publishing and retailing may be footnotes to the company’s larger and more secretive goal: giving anyone on the planet access to an almost unimaginable amount of computing power.



© 2022 | Daniel Christian