When Robots and Blockchain Collide

Stephen Hawking once warned that the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) would either be the best or worst thing to happen to humanity.

Reflecting on 2017, there’s no doubt it will go down as a breakthrough year in the field of AI.

It burst into the public consciousness and became a topic frequently debated in the media. And as mainstream interest increased, so too did innovation. Major tech companies increased their spending by 59.3% in 2017, reaching a whopping $12.5 billion.

But 2018 could be even bigger.

The International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is currently underway in Las Vegas. And it’s already buzzing with the latest innovations in technology and artificial intelligence.

Panasonic’s newest invention is a $16,000 robot called Laundroid, which uses AI to fold laundry. The robot has a neural network of 256,000 images of different clothing items, which it uses to work out how best to fold.

Meanwhile, Samsung made the pledge to have AI built into all of their products within the next two years. That includes fridges, washing machines and ovens. Come 2020, your kitchen appliances will be able to respond to your behaviour.

This surge in AI development comes after the Chinese government vowed to become an AI superpower by 2030. China is spending millions in an attempt to overtake the US in the development of new AI tech.

You may not have noticed but the rippling effects of the AI revolution have already started to manifest themselves in various ways in your daily and working life.

As Markets & Money contributor Terence Duffy wrote on Tuesday, when a piece of AI achieves commercial success, it is, for some reason, no longer seen as artificial intelligence. Instead, as Terence says, it’s considered to be ‘a really clever piece of code or smart device.’

We have already seen this cycle of acceptance occur multiple times over the last decade. For example, you wouldn’t necessarily consider your smartphone to be artificially intelligent, even when it comes to personal assistants like Siri.

Or that an article you read online is written by artificially-intelligent writing programs.

AI reaches true success when it infiltrates your daily life unnoticed. And 2018 is set to be the year this technology truly permeates our daily lives. As president of Microsoft Asia Ralph Haupter confirmed:

I believe 2018 is the year that this will start to become mainstream, to begin to impact many aspects of our lives in a truly ubiquitous and meaningful way’.

No doubt we are eclipsing a period of rapid growth in this sector. As a result, many are starting to wake up to the dilemmas that AI may pose. There are key questions that need to be addressed. Including the changing nature of work and the protection of privacy. 

With the rise of AI-embedded devices, data is proliferating and becoming more complex and personal.

How we store and transfer this mountain of data securely is already a pressing dilemma. And even the dominance of big names like Apple and IBM isn’t enough to keep the floodgates closed.

That’s why the intersection of blockchain and technology, particularly AI, will be the biggest investment theme of 2018. The revolution of the internet has long passed. The next revolution will be related to how we securely store our ever-accumulating mountain of data.

Exponential Stock Investor editor Ryan Dinse revealed the companies that he believes to be the frontrunners in this revolution in a new report. These companies are devising solutions that use blockchain technology to make our ever-connected lives safer and more efficient.

To find out how you can grab a copy of the report, click here.

This week in Markets & Money:

On Monday, Ryan questioned Trump’s knowledge of literature. In particular, his familiarity with Joseph Heller’s novel Catch-22. The debacle Heller explores is one that Trump has been mired in quite frequently of late. Especially when it comes to his economic plans to cut taxes and boost infrastructure. Although these are viable ideas for the short term, they have the potential to exacerbate existing problems in the long run. And as Trump continues to act brashly, the world’s markets wait with baited breath to see full extent of the consequences.

To read the full story, click here.

On Tuesday, Terence used recurring cycles in the markets to predict the future for technology. When it comes to new tech, it’s well-known that a successful new invention can raise markets to new heights. Usually, these innovations come out of the US. But China has recently been creeping into the spotlight as a leading tech destination. Some of the largest Chinese internet giants are working on game-changing artificial intelligence projects. And with the help of government funding, China is set to be a world leader in this space by 2030.

To read the full story, click here.

On Wednesday, Ryan noted the similarities between blockchain and the dotcom boom. The rise of these new technologies resulted in a frenzy of investing. Back in the 1990s, you could have taken advantage of the hype by adding ‘dotcom’ to the end of your business name. The same is now true for blockchain. The company which most recently jumped on the bandwagon was Kodak, which has created its very own Kodak-coin. Clearly, people are trying to make a quick buck from the crypto mania. But that doesn’t mean it’s all just a fad. Ryan urges you to look past all the naïve investing and consider the revolutionary potential of blockchain. If you can do that, the companies with true value will be easier to find.

To read the full story, click here.

On Thursday, Ryan spotted a clue that suggested this current market boom has much longer to run. There’s no question that India’s rapidly growing population will be a huge driver of global growth over the next decade. And many saw the nation as picking up the slack left behind by China’s slouching economy. But Ryan questions whether China will continue to flat-line for much longer. Looking at the charts, China’s economy looks set for a second boom. And if both China and India boom at the same time, early investors could be in for a wild ride.

To read the full story, click here.

On Friday, Ryan responded to Warren Buffett’s claim that bitcoin is a bubbly asset that will end badly for investors. Buffett himself claims that he doesn’t know anything about bitcoin or cryptos. Which prompted Ryan to delve into other investment gold mines Buffett has missed out on. For example, he only invested in Apple in 2016. And has never gotten involved in Google or Amazon. That said, Buffett is right about one thing: Most cryptos are overvalued and will eventually fall. But the few that make it through this volatile period could be the best investment you ever make.

To read the full story, click here.

Regards,

Katie Johnson,
For Markets & Money


Katherine Johnson, usually going by just ‘Katie’, is a member of Port Phillip Publishing’s editorial team, as well as the Editor of the Saturday edition of Markets & Money. Katie works with all of your editors to maintain the quality of their research and analysis. In her Saturday Markets & Money articles she specialises in cryptocurrency and technology stories, and brings you a recap of the week from your other Markets and Money editors.


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