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The culture must be built. Dispatch 8.

"We’re going on an adventure.”

Innovating a post-Moore's Law architecture for AI (TechUK)

I wrote this for TechUK and their #SuperchargeUKTech Week 2023. I won’t repost it here, except for a brief extract. Go give them the traffic.

“As complexity and cost continue to skyrocket at each new node, the value of scaling no longer applies to most designs, and the economic basis for scaling erodes for all but the largest-volume chips. Moore’s Law describes significant integration and scaling that were never imaginable before. But at the same time, focusing on that integration sucked in all the talent to do mostly scaling and integration types of engineering, instead of creating new innovations. Confronting the end of Moore’s law should enable a new era of creativity, I hope. What should we create? New architectures that will deliver the benefits we once got from Moore’s Law but using advancements in software and co-optimized silicon to do so, rather than relying on improved manufacturing.”

Could this exoplanet be inhabited? (Mashable)

The James Webb Space Telescope detected traces of a substance called dimethyl sulfide in the atmosphere of an alien Hycean world located 120 light-years away. On Earth, this molecule is mainly produced by phytoplankton, which are microscopic plant-like organisms found in both saltwater and freshwater environments. It’s life! As we know it! Weirdly this story was not on the front of any newspapers in the UK, but I found it thrilling.

Could it be made by something other than life? Maybe, but on Earth it is absolutely a bio-signature. I’m dreaming already of the hydrogen-rich clouds hanging over an ocean teaming with life.

Bristol Supercomputer with a cool name (University of Bristol)

That name is Isambard-AI. It is not, as far as I know, a project to recreate the mind of the dead engineer but rather a national resource for researchers and industry experts spearheading AI innovation and scientific discovery which will apparently be “one of the most powerful supercomputers in Europe”.

If recreating the minds of the dead using AI is your thing, why not see this play? Anthropology at the Hampstead Theatre is a brilliant, twisty AI thriller that I loved. It’s on until October 14.

Sand-swimming robot inspired by freshly hatched baby sea turtles (New Atlas)

Okay, I admit that this story is just here for the cuteness. Can robots be cute? I think that’s a question humanity will transform around in the rest of this century, as our attitudes to other kinds of intelligence change. In the meantime, go watch the robot baby sea turtles swim through the sand.

Going back to the exo-planet story, I think if we are going to visit those worlds the representatives we send are likely to be cool robots with smart ways of locomotion, so maybe the cute will pay off in a big way down the line.


I’m David Harold, a technology entrepreneur, analyst, and advisor. Each week I select a handful of things that seem to be ways in which technology is intersecting our potential to survive, thrive, and conjoin.

Shameless plug

My writing partner, Bill, has been very slow on this one, but at last, it's out. Love's Labour's Lost & Won, Shakespeare's great tale completed using mostly his words. Available to buy & on KDP. UK; USA. As well as channeling the ghost of William Shakespeare, I create high-impact by-line or ghost-written copy. If you have keynote, research, or key content requirements I’m here for you.

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