Posted In:

Technology


#309
Whatever Works

Published:

Oct 26, 2019


Author:

Posted In:

Technology

Published:

Oct 26, 2019


Author:


Share:

Google has announced a momentous breakthrough in computing power. The technology giant has claimed to achieve "quantum supremacy," meaning getting a quantum computer to perform a task that a classical computer cannot.

Specifically, Google says it’s quantum computer performed a calculation in just over 3 minutes that would take the fastest supercomputer in the world around 10,000 years!

Google CEO Sundar Pichai described the research as like humanity launching the first rockets into outer space, but was immediately rebuffed by some folks who said: “Why go into space without getting anywhere useful?” IBM went a little further in their blog post to actually refute Google’s claims, arguing that "the same task can be performed on a classical system in 2.5 days and with far greater fidelity."

But Google was not the only potentially questionable speed test to be announced this week! New Zealand’s Jack Goodhue talked up his mullet, the haircut that has become a Rugby World Cup mascot, saying "I'm not getting rid of the mullet as there's actually scientific evidence that shows it makes me faster. It was done at Harvard, I think."

Portfolio News


Anyfin "Loan shark zones" - Campaign magazine recognized portfolio company Anyfin's recent marketing push, taking name-based puns to the next level with a series of signs that were put up outside other lenders in central Stockholm. Read more

Whatever Works


Google claims a quantum breakthrough that could change computing - The Sycamore quantum processor was able to perform a specific task in 200 seconds that would take the world’s best supercomputer 10k years to complete. Read more

'Scientific evidence' that shows mullet makes Goodhue faster - Jack Goodhue says his much-maligned mullet is staying, no matter how many times his All Blacks team mates, coaches, or the media tell him it is out of fashion. Read more

Quantum computing is here! but also not really - Although IBM has questioned Google’s results, many researchers say they appear to represent a scientific milestone. A quantum computer has now given us the first taste of the technology’s potential by doing something beyond any any conventional computer, even if on a contrived problem. Read more

Industry News


Ping An’s $22 billion push to shed old-school insurance skin - Ping An Insurance wants to be valued more like a technology company. Its executives have yet to convince investors their planned $22 billion spend on everything from artificial intelligence to blockchain will work. Read more

FBI interview tricks help this fund manager see through CEO lies - The Pengana Australian Equities Fund, uses the FBI’s interview techniques to get under the skin of CEOs, seeking to catch them in lies, exaggerations and deflections of blame for their actions. Read more

The great integration of data, technology and services - The insurance industry is one of the first to feel the force of this convergence of data and technology. An example is the advisory firm Aon, which can now collect and analyse information on a business’s intangible assets, such as its intellectual property. Read more

Stock pickers struggling to beat index funds need a recession in the worst way possible -Active mutual funds are slowly bleeding out to ETFs and index funds. CNBC argues that an economic recession might be needed to revive organic interest in the stock pickers, who need to prove they can outperform the market when it counts. Read more

Ripple CEO bank partnerships clarified - OK, so it's not 30 days a week that Ripple is signing with banks as The Information first reported - but The Block confirms that company is in fact singing 2 to 3 deals per week with banks. According to CEO Garlinghouse, the equity side of the business is valued at $305m and the company holds $15bn worth of its XRP currency. Read more

Square rolling out zero-fee stock trading on its Cash App - Square's cash app is joining the herd and coming after Robinhood with zero-fee trading. The service will also offer fractional share purchases. Read more

SEC clarifies that no Bitcoin ETF due to market manipulation - After rejecting Bitwise's Bitcoin ETF, the latest in a series of attempts, the SEC has clarified that a bitcoin ETF is unlikely to be approved anytime soon. Read more

Millennials and Gen Z embrace "multi-banking" - Under 25s are opening multiple bank accounts and leaving old ones open, a habit not found in older generations. The trend may be alarming for startups like Monzo and Starling as large portions of their customer base are keeping their primary account with a legacy bank. Read more

Select Financings


Blueground - New York based short-term apartment rental startup has raised $5m in Series B funding co-led by WestCap and Prime Ventures. Read more

Databricks - San Francisco based tooling platform for deep learning, machine learning, and graph process has raised a $400m Series F led by Andreessen Horowitz. The company has reportedly surpassed $200m in run-rate revenue. Read more

Grafana Labs - New York based open source time series analytics platform raised a $24m Series A led by Lightspeed. Read more

Layer 1 Texas based Bitcoin miner utilizing renewable energy sources has raised $50m
of equity capital on an estimated pre-money valuation of $200m from Peter Thiel. Read more

Luge Capital - Canadian based fintech and AI VC firm has raised $85m for its debut fund to make seed investments as small as $150k and up to $2m. Read more

Truebill - San Francisco based personal financial management app has raised a $15m Series B led by Eldridge Industries. Read more

Very Good Security - San Francisco based data privacy platform raised a $35m Series B led by Goldman Sachs. Read more


Share:

FinTech Collective Newsletter

“If you're in fintech and you don't get the @fintech_io newsletter, you're not really in fintech. Pure Gold.” — Jase Wilson, CEO, Neighborly (@jase)

Delivered every Saturday, the weekly newsletter, produced by our team, provides a tightly edited rundown of global fintech news, along with a bit of our original analysis.