Esteemed futurist Ray Kurzweil has joined Google as Director of Engineering. His focus will be machine learning and language processing, and will lead to advances in networks, data centers and algorithms.
“I’m thrilled to be teaming up with Google to work on some of the hardest problems in computer science so we can turn the next decade’s ‘unrealistic’ visions into reality,” Kurzweil said.
The market for brain health technology will surpass $1 billion by the end of 2012, and is set to grow at a brisk thereafter, to between $4 and $10 billion by 2020.
Technologies in demand include computerized Web-based and mobile cognitive assessments, cognitive training and cognitive behavioral therapies, and biometrics-based monitoring and brain training tools that measure physiological responses such as heart rate variability and electroencephalography.
A new device will let scientists create complex patterns of activity within the brain using optogenetics. The goal is to boost the amount of information and control that current systems deliver. It could also give more flexibility to optogenetics based neural prostheses.
As we approach 2013, the following trends continue to spawn companies, investment, and technologies:
- The proliferation of personalized mobile health technologies.
- The maturation of the Big Data ecosystem in health care.
- The rise of health startup accelerators.
- The emergence of health care exchange and alternative care delivery platforms.
The Semantic Pointer Architecture Unified Network (Spaun) is a computer model of the human brain built by Professor Chris Eliasmith and colleagues of the University of Waterloo in Canada. It comprises around two and a half million virtual neurons organized into functional groups rather like real neurons in regions of the human brain associated with vision, short-term memory, and so on. (The human brain has roughly 100 billion neurons.)
ApplySci is a peer-reviewed crowdfunding platform for scientific and medical research. It is also a virtual incubator, nurturing researchers from the early stages of funding through product commercialization. Its founders are experienced scientists, noted academics, entrepreneurs, and investors. Our mission is to improve our world by advancing and applying science.
The goal of ApplySci is to fund research through the support of individual donors. We also recognize that the needs of early stage companies go well beyond initial funding. To address these needs, ApplySci is creating an ecosystem of project advisors, mentors, lawyers, accountants, angel investors and venture capitalists to help scientists commercialize their research.