All posts tagged: early

Stable Diffusion 3 arrives to solidify early lead in AI imagery against Sora and Gemini

Stable Diffusion 3 arrives to solidify early lead in AI imagery against Sora and Gemini

Stability has announced Stable Diffusion 3, the latest and most powerful version of the company’s image-generating AI model. While details are scant, it’s clearly an attempt to fend off the hype around recently announced competitors from OpenAI and Google. We’ll have a more technical breakdown of all this soon, but for now you should know that Stable Diffusion 3 is based on a new architecture and will work on a variety of hardware (though you’ll still need something beefy). It’s not out yet, but you can sign up for the waitlist here. SD3 uses an updated “diffusion transformer,” a technique pioneered in 2022 but revised in 2023 and reaching scalability now. Sora, OpenAI’s impressive video generator, apparently works on similar principles (Will Peebles, co-author of the paper, went on to co-lead the Sora project). It also employs “flow matching,” another new technique that similarly improves quality without adding too much overhead. The model suite ranges from 800 million parameters (less than the commonly used SD 1.5) to 8 billion parameters (more than SD XL), with …

Crucial chemical for life can form in conditions found on early Earth

Crucial chemical for life can form in conditions found on early Earth

Chemical reactions in volcanic pools could have helped life get going on Earth Michael S. Nolan/Alamy One of the most important molecules in living organisms has been synthesised from scratch under everyday conditions. The finding suggests that the chemical could have formed naturally early in our planet’s history and played a role in the origins of life. The substance in question is called pantetheine. It isn’t a household name on the level of DNA or protein. However, pantetheine is the key component of a larger molecule called acetyl coenzyme A, a “cofactor” that helps enzymes to work. “Coenzyme A is in every organism ever sequenced,” says Matthew Powner at University College London. Powner has spent most of his career finding ways to make biological molecules from simple chemicals in ways that could have occurred naturally. In the past decade, he has shown that simple aminonitriles can be used to make nucleotides – the building blocks of DNA – and peptides, short versions of proteins. His team has now shown that aminonitriles can be used to make pantetheine …

Early drug treatment leads to better outcomes for Crohn’s disease

Early drug treatment leads to better outcomes for Crohn’s disease

Crohn’s disease can cause stomach aches, diarrhoea and weight loss Jacob Wackerhausen/iStockphoto/Getty Images/www.peopleimages.com Getting advanced treatment immediately after a Crohn’s disease diagnosis improves patient outcomes, according to a year-long study involving 386 people. The disease is a life-long inflammatory bowel condition that affects millions of people around the world. Symptoms include stomach aches, diarrhoea, tiredness and weight loss. “These symptoms massively impact people’s quality of life, their education, their relationships, their ability to work and so on,” says Miles Parkes at the University of Cambridge. “We don’t have any cures for it, but we do have some ways to mitigate some of these bad outcomes.” Treatment often involves dietary changes, immunosuppressants and steroids. In the UK, a medication called infliximab – an antibody that targets specific proteins in the body thought to contribute to gut inflammation – can be prescribed to people who experience regular Crohn’s disease flare-ups or who haven’t responded to other, less-intense treatments. “That’s a ‘step-up’ approach, where you reactively escalate treatment in response to disease flares,” says Nurulamin Noor, also at …

Salt early and salt often — yes, even in desserts

Salt early and salt often — yes, even in desserts

Have you had the displeasure of eating a particularly unremarkable guacamole? Or a strangely bland steak? An oddly flat Caesar salad? My hunch is that that middling dish was most likely under-seasoned — or perhaps not seasoned whatsoever. A few years back, at the labyrinthine Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tennessee, my mother and I were hungry but not famished and opted for a simple guacamole-and-margarita dinner on one of the many walkways that snaked throughout the resort like tentacles. At a tiny table next to towering greenery, we sat down and our guacamole came nearly immediately. We dug right in and said, “hmm …” pretty much right away. I grabbed a salt shaker from a nearby table, had my mom try the guacamole as-is, then salted it, stirred it with a tortilla chip, and asked her to try again. It was at that moment that my mother understood the sheer power of salt, the reason for seasoning and the purpose behind my adoration of large-flaked Kosher salt in a small bowl or basin next to …

Alberta Wildfire Season Starts Early as Canada’s Mild Winter Persists

Alberta Wildfire Season Starts Early as Canada’s Mild Winter Persists

The western Canadian province of Alberta on Tuesday declared an early start to wildfire season as a result of an unusually dry and mild winter, allowing the government to put more money and resources into tackling blazes. Canada endured its worst wildfire season on record last year as 18.5 million hectares (45.7 million acres) burned, nearly seven times the 10-year average, according to the federal government. Alberta is also suffering from drought, and 52 wildfires are still burning from last year, as well as 17 new blazes so far in 2024. Wildfire season in Alberta tends to peak in the spring and usually officially kicks off on March 1. The province declared an early start this year to better direct resources to those fires already underway, the provincial government said in a news release. “Alberta is experiencing warmer than normal temperatures and below average precipitation in many areas of the province, leading to heightened wildfire risk,” the provincial government said. The official start of the season allows Alberta Wildfire to use additional tools like fire …

Early adopters’ fast-tracking gen AI into production, according to new report

Early adopters’ fast-tracking gen AI into production, according to new report

Organizations are fast-tracking generative AI pilots into production, anticipating the rewards of greater efficiency, improved personalization and customer experiences and more informed decision-making.  One in four organizations say gen AI is critically important to gaining increased productivity and efficiency. Thirty percent say improving customer experience and personalization is their highest priority, and 26% say it’s the technology’s potential to improve decision-making that matters most.  Dresner Advisory Services‘  Generative AI Report findings reflect how organizations are taking on the challenge of evaluating and adopting gen AI today. The study is global in scope and based on insights gained from Dresners’ research community of more than 8,000 organizations and access to vendors’ customer communities. “The generative AI phenomenon has captured the attention of the market—and the world—with both positive and negative connotations,” said Howard Dresner, founder, and chief research officer at Dresner Advisory. “While generative AI adoption remains nascent in the near term, a strong majority of respondents indicate intentions to adopt it early or in the future.” VB Event The AI Impact Tour – NYC We’ll …

Inflexion Games launches Nightingale on early access

Inflexion Games launches Nightingale on early access

Are you looking to showcase your brand in front of the gaming industry’s top leaders? Learn more about GamesBeat Summit sponsorship opportunities here.  Inflexion Games has launched its Nightingale survival crafting game on early access on the PC via Steam and the Epic Games Store. The debut title from Inflexion Games casts players in the role of an intrepid Realmwalker, venturing through arcane portals to forge their own story of survival and discovery across a procedurally-generated Victorian gaslamp fantasy universe. Combining deep survival-crafting gameplay with intricate world-building and cool visuals, Nightingale aims to push the boundaries of survival-crafting gameplay with quests, an evolving narrative and an emphasis on player autonomy.  The team released a new title dubbed “This is Nightingale” to show off the player-versus-environment survival crafting game. GB Event GamesBeat Summit Call for Speakers We’re thrilled to open our call for speakers to our flagship event, GamesBeat Summit 2024 hosted in Los Angeles, where we will explore the theme of “Resilience and Adaption”. Apply to speak here The trailer showcases character customization, building and crafting, weapons …

This Eating Habit Can Be An Early Sign Of Dementia

This Eating Habit Can Be An Early Sign Of Dementia

Studies have shown that everything from brushing your teeth to climbing the stairs can reveal signs of early dementia. And now, it seems that how you take your dinner could indicate whether or not you’ve got a condition called frontotemporal dementia. The uncommon subtype of dementia affects about one in every 20 dementia patients, Dementia UK says. They say it’s an”umbrella term for a group of dementias that mainly affect the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain, which are responsible for personality, behaviour, language and speech.” And unlike other forms of dementia, its early stages may not always be characterised by memory loss or impaired concentration. Instead, one of the symptoms of behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bv FTD) is “obsessive or repetitive behaviour” ― and that can extend to food. How? “Frontotemporal dementia is associated with a wide variety of abnormal eating behaviours such as hyperphagia, fixations on one kind of food, even ingestion of inanimate objects,” a paper on the topic reads. Those with the condition may refuse to eat anything other than …

Has the ice-cream van cometh too early? | Ice-cream and sorbet

Has the ice-cream van cometh too early? | Ice-cream and sorbet

On Saturday, the temperature in north Worcestershire was 14C, the weather cloudy to overcast. At lunchtime, I had just received a phone message advising of a yellow weather warning for heavy rain, travel disruption and flooding when the first ice-cream van of the season breezed into our crescent, merrily chiming “Daisy, Daisy / Give me your answer, do”. Is this a record?David CollinsKidderminster, Worcestershire I wish my husband had received one of the Valentine’s cards (Relatives decry undertakers’ Valentine’s cards sent to care home residents, 16 February). Much better than the circular we received the same day. The envelope stated: “Important news from Britain’s most trusted funeral plan.” In the upper right corner, it said “time sensitive”. Indisputable. As if those of us with relatives living with dementia in care homes didn’t know. Now that is a misjudged, appalling stunt.Jan JeffriesBrewood, Staffordshire The government incentives mentioned in Anita Roy’s Country Diary (16 February) for farmers to restore hedgerows no longer exist, with the end of cross compliance on 31 December. This means that unless farmers follow the …

10% Off TurboTax: Last Chance for Early Season Pricing

10% Off TurboTax: Last Chance for Early Season Pricing

Tax season officially began on Jan. 29 and it runs until April 15 in most states. There are a lot of tax software options out there that can help you through the process, but if you want to file for less, time is running out to take advantage of early season pricing deals. TurboTax, our top tax software pick, ends its early season pricing on Feb. 29. That gives you a little more time to save up to 10% on TurboTax 2023. Technically, TurboTax has a free option available for filers with Form 1040 and limited tax credits only (around 37% of taxpayers qualify), but you’ll need to spring for the paid version for more complicated filings. Those costs can start to add up, which is why this deal is a great opportunity to hold onto more of your money. Right now, TurboTax has discounted the paid software by 10% when you file. For example, self-filing with TurboTax 2023 often costs as much as $89 or more to file, but right now, the maximum to …