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MIT Technology Review

Climate tech is back—and this time, it can’t afford to fail

Lost in a stupor of déjà vu, I rang the intercom buzzer a second time. I had the odd sensation of being unstuck in time. The headquarters of this solar startup looked strangely similar to its previous offices, which I had visited more than a decade before. The name of the company had changed from…

Posted on 2 December 2023 | 12:00 pm

The Download: generative AI’s carbon footprint, and a CRISPR patent battle

This is today’s edition of The Download, our weekday newsletter that provides a daily dose of what’s going on in the world of technology. Making an image with generative AI uses as much energy as charging your phone The news: Generating a single image using a powerful AI model takes as much energy as fully charging your…

Posted on 1 December 2023 | 1:10 pm

A high school’s deepfake porn scandal is pushing US lawmakers into action

On October 20, Francesca Mani was called to the counselor’s office at her New Jersey high school. A 14-year-old sophomore and a competitive fencer, Francesca wasn’t one for getting in trouble. That day, a rumor had been circulating the halls: over the summer, boys in the school had used artificial intelligence to create sexually explicit…

Posted on 1 December 2023 | 11:00 am

The first CRISPR cure might kickstart the next big patent battle

That’s a real nice CRISPR cure you have there. It would be a pity if anything happened to it.  Okay. Drop the tough-guy accent and toss the black fedora aside. But I do believe that similar conversations could be occurring now that a historic gene-editing cure is coming to market, as soon as this year.…

Posted on 1 December 2023 | 10:37 am

Making an image with generative AI uses as much energy as charging your phone

Each time you use AI to generate an image, write an email, or ask a chatbot a question, it comes at a cost to the planet. In fact, generating an image using a powerful AI model takes as much energy as fully charging your smartphone, according to a new study by researchers at the AI…

Posted on 1 December 2023 | 9:18 am

Sustainability starts with the data center

When asked why he targeted banks, notorious criminal Willie Sutton reportedly answered, “Because that’s where the money is.” Similarly, when thoughtful organizations target sustainability, they look to their data centers—because that’s where the carbon emissions are. The International Energy Agency (IEA) attributes about 1.5% of total global electricity use to data centers and data transmission…

Posted on 30 November 2023 | 3:03 pm

The Download: abandoning carbon offsets, and creating new materials

This is today’s edition of The Download, our weekday newsletter that provides a daily dose of what’s going on in the world of technology. The University of California has all but dropped carbon offsets—and thinks you should, too In the fall of 2018, the University of California tasked a team of researchers with identifying projects from which…

Posted on 30 November 2023 | 1:10 pm

The University of California has all but dropped carbon offsets—and thinks you should, too

In the fall of 2018, the University of California (UC) tasked a team of researchers with identifying tree planting or similar projects from which it could confidently purchase carbon offsets that would reliably cancel out greenhouse gas emissions across its campuses.  The researchers found next to nothing. “We took a look across the whole market…

Posted on 30 November 2023 | 11:00 am

Google DeepMind’s new AI tool helped create more than 700 new materials

From EV batteries to solar cells to microchips, new materials can supercharge technological breakthroughs. But discovering them usually takes months or even years of trial-and-error research.  Google DeepMind hopes to change that with a new tool that uses deep learning to dramatically speed up the process of discovering new materials. Called graphical networks for material…

Posted on 29 November 2023 | 4:00 pm

Augmenting the realities of work

Imagine an integrated workplace with 3D visualizations that augment presentations, interactive and accelerated onboarding, and controlled training simulations. This is the future of immersive technology that global head of Immersive Technology Research at JPMorgan Chase, Blair MacIntyre is working to build. Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies can blend physical and digital dimensions…

Posted on 29 November 2023 | 3:00 pm