Google's 3D meetings

PLUS: AI DNA research

Good morning human brains, welcome back to your daily munch of AI news.

Here’s what’s on the menu today:

  • Google’s 3D video calls 🤙 

    Google revealed a new display for conference calls that makes video come to life. [jump to]

  • Adobe’s Generative Fill 🖼️ 

    Adobe is adding new AI features to PhotoShop and changing the photo-editing game. [jump to]

  • DNA research & AI 🧬 

    Researchers at UCSD are using AI to find one-in-a-million DNA sequences. [jump to]


Google’s 3D video calls 📹️ 

At I/O 2021, Google announced Project Starline, a teleconferencing room that used 3D imaging and a bunch of sensors to make people come to life.

Starline perfectly simulates shadows & depth

The demo was impressive - speaking to people felt like being in the room with them, no 3D glasses required. But everyone hated the size.

Project Starline’s 2021 prototype

Google spent the last two years in the workshop doing Google things, and it just revealed its latest update. Now, Starline is just a display with a few standard cameras that generates the same 3D video.

Starline’s system went from the size of a restaurant booth to a flat-screen TV, and it’s dramatically more accurate and engaging.

The new 2023 Starline (MKBHD’s review).

Google has already begun testing the latest prototype with mobile careers and conference calls in big companies.

Why this is exciting: as remote work continues to be part of the norm, more engaging conferences will revolutionize how we collaborate. Zoom meetings may suck right now, but the next (even smaller) versions of this tech built into your laptop are about to make the distance feel a lot less significant.


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Adobe Sprinkles AI onto Photoshop 🎨 

Adobe’s Photoshop is going through major AI-fication and it’s about to change the photo-editing game forever. Here’s everything you need to know: 

1/ Adobe recently released its own AI image generator called Firefly, and it’s really impressive (though not Midjourney level just yet). Today, it’s available for use by everyone. Play with it here.

2/ The best part: Adobe says Firefly is only trained on content that the company has the rights for. This automatically makes Firefly the #1 most commercially safe photo generator in the game.

The original portrait picture

3/ Adobe also announced Generative Fill this week, a feature that will let you extend images and add objects from thin air via text prompts.

The new picture, expanded by Generative Fill

4/ Generative Fill v1 isn’t perfect. Some objects it generates don’t look natural, but it’s a pro at handling backgrounds and cutting out photo bombers.

Generative Fill creating reflections

5/ In ideal cases, Generative Fill can mimic light sources and reflections (like generating parts of an image in water). This has never been possible before.

Our prediction 🔮 : Adobe’s going to continue expanding its market share amongst photographers, but the manipulation of real pictures with AI is about to launch a niche movement against AI-generated media.


Sequencing DNA with AI 🧬 

Researchers at UCSD recently discovered a DNA activation method that's involved in the operation of up to a third of our genes, and they used AI to get there.

The scientists fed 50 million test DNA sequences (basically DNA structures) into ML systems for humans and fruit flies and asked them to find unique patterns within the two huge data sets.

Their AI model was able to find rare, custom-tailored sequences that are present in humans but not fruit flies and vice versa.

The ML models predicted the activities of the rare one-in-a-million extreme sequences, which were verified in the laboratory by using conventional testing methods.

Why this matters: mainstream Bio research today takes years and is hugely expensive. Bringing AI on board can be useful in making both biotech and medical findings. This means cheaper meds, cures for niche diseases, and another giant step toward gene editing.

BioAI startups are coming.



Think Pieces

Recently public AI-focused startups are not hot.

How humanity can avoid an AI takeover.

Startup News

Universal Music Group signs deal with AI-music startup Endel.

Cloud deals by Microsoft and Google ring are ringing alarm bells.


Analyzing citizens’ intentions to follow recommendations from a government-supported AI system.

Running AI in Emergency Care, a scoping review.


PixieBrix: LinkedIn Message Templates. Pre-fill a LinkedIn text input with templates stored in Google Sheets. [Sponsored]

CommandBar: Add custom ChatGPT to your website. AI chat + search for any website or web app. [Sponsored]

Cognosys: a better UI/UX for AutoGPT.

Metal: the ML storage platform for embeddings (backed by YC!).

EzMail: draft your emails with AI.


GPT gives very weird responses when you ask it to repeat letters.


Until next time 🤖😋🧠

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