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Perspective

Nothing Artificial About It
Innovative start-ups from India and around the world that are leveraging AI and technology to reshape business

N Mahalakshmi

Well-known physicist Stephen Hawking, who passed away this March, made a rather ominous prediction when he stated that artificial intelligence (AI) could turn out to be the worst event in the history of human civilisation if society did not find a way to control its development. He need not have died a worried man, though.

It’s true that all of us were a little wary of AI and the possibilities it brought with it. But now that it is fast becoming better than most of us, AI is being looked at as a magical cure for all our problems, big and small. Right from early detection of cancer through blood tests, ensuring autonomous cars are safe or freeing us from mundane tasks, AI could be the most transformative technology to touch our lives. In this special edition, we take a look at how AI and other emerging technologies are reshaping our lives and changing the way we do business.

We bring you a list of innovative start-ups from around the world. From a firm that builds drones that carry medical supplies to people in Rwanda to one that makes drinking water literally out of thin air, there are some truly inspirational stories.

What’s even more heartening is that innovation is alive and kicking in India as well. We present seven exciting stories of start-ups that are pushing the boundaries. You’ll read about Astrome, which is turning to space to provide internet access for all.  And then, we have Pandorum Technologies, which is redefining medical research by 3D printing liver tissues in a lab. I don’t know what most of you were doing when you were 25; I know I wasn’t doing anything worthy to write about. But meet Kaushik Mudda and Navin Jain of Ethereal Machines who have just introduced to the world, the first 5-axis 3D printer. Given that they are only 25, this is surely just many of their firsts. 

We hope you enjoy reading this issue as much as we did putting it together.

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