These 14 startups are using AI to reinvent how wine is made, diseases are detected, and other big challenges that will still exist after the coronavirus outbreak

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While all kinds of gee-whiz artificial intelligence startups have received ample funding over the last few years, they may lose support in the midst of wild market volatility.

With that atmosphere of endangered innovation in mind, Business Insider asked six investors about the AI startups that they particularly like right now. Here are 14 that won praise, including companies that track weather patterns to help grow vineyards, make “smart” cameras to alert authorities to school shooting threats, and collect wastewater to follow the coronavirus through sewers.

SEE ALSO: The AI startup industry may be heading for consolidation and bigger problems as the economy gets tougher: ‘Get acquired or go out of business’

Affectiva: Measuring emotional responses to videos

Company: Affectiva

What it does: Affectiva uses emotion-recognition software to measure people’s responses to digital content – such as ads and TV programming – to help clients create better ads and more engaging content.

Why it’s cool: Spun out of MIT Media Lab in 2009, Affectiva lets gaming, marketing, or entertainment companies run tests to gauge whether an audience is interested, bored, or confused. Companies can use Affectiva’s analysis of reactions to cut out the ineffective parts of an ad, or accentuate the popular attributes of a new character.

Founders: Rana el Kaliouby and Rosalind Picard

Funding: $53 million to date, most recently in a $26 million round led by Aptiv PLC, as well as Trend Forward Capital, Motley Fool Ventures and CAC.

Aquabyte: Spotting sea lice and keeping fish healthy

Company: Aquabyte

What it does: Aquabyte aims to make fish farms more efficient and sustainable through software that tracks how much food fish need

Why it’s cool: It uses underwater cameras and computer vision to determine the weight and health of fish, to more accurately deduce their feeding needs. It can also detect and alert farmers to “sea lice,” a minuscule and deadly fish parasite.

Founder: Bryton Shang

Funding: Around $14 million from NEA, Costanoa, and others in a Series A

Arable Labs: Monitoring plant health for harvesting trendy wines

Company: Arable Labs

What it does: Arable Labs developed an IoT-enabled, all-in-one weather and plant health monitor, that provides weather forecasts and history along with hyper-local plant and soil insights for irrigation, crop protection and harvest planning.

Why it’s cool: Trendy California wine country vineyards, including Chalk Hill, Sebastiani, Firestone, and Scribe, use its technology to monitor their grapes

Founder: Adam Wolf

Funding: $18.8 million Series A via S2G Ventures, Middleland Capital, Village Capital, and the National Science Foundation.

Actuate: Upgrading existing security systems to better stop shootings

Company: Actuate

What it does: Actuate sells cloud software that can be used with existing security cameras to help stop shootings or robberies. It uses computer vision to detect firearms or intruders, and claims to have 99%+ accuracy with minimal false positives.

Why it’s cool: Its software doesn’t use facial recognition or track personally identifiable information, which means that it’s not biased in the same way that a human security guard might be.

Founders: Sonny Tai and Ben Ziomek

Funding: $2.2 million seed round led by Bling …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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