Four For Friday | April 14, 2023
LF39 | DNA supply chain, Dog Aging Project, Amazon's Sidewalk and animated drawings
Welcome to a Looking Forward’s Four For Friday. Four things that have piqued my interest this week relating to systems change, healthy longevity and / or Web3. Enjoy!
Tracking supply chains using DNA mist
This NYTimes piece covers some fascinating breakthroughs in efforts to clean up supply chains and be able to securely tell where the components of products actually come from. According to a recent McKinsey study, 45% of firms have no visibility into their upstream supply chains. One company profiled, Applied DNA Sciences has developed a ‘DNA mist’ that is sprayed onto raw materials and can be tracked around the world using DNA tracking techniques. They’re already using this in Sweden to improve security for ATMs.
Dog Aging Project gets go ahead
28-year old longevity biotech entrepreneur Celia Halioua has just got FDA approval to do a trial on dogs of a drug that aims to help them live longer, and better. Her company, Loyal, has developed a drug that mimics the effect of calorie restriction, one of the most established pathways that leads to longer lives and less age-related sickness. If all works out if could be in the market by 2025. The transferability of this drug from man’s best friend to humans is then the next logical step, so look out for biohackers buying large dogs and nabbing their prescription pills…
Amazon’s surreptitious new Sidewalk tech
It’s likely that you don’t know that Amazon has been building a US-wide wireless IOT network called Sidewalk. This is “secure, free-to-connect, long-range and low-power shared community network designed to provide connectivity for billions of devices” now covers 90% of the US population. Apple uses its own network of devices to power its ‘FindMy’ feature, allowing you to track objects of lost phones. This network is potentially much broader, powered by Amazon smart speakers and devices but also other participating vendors such as gas alarms, water leaks and smart door locks. Significantly. Chicago entrepreneur Adam Sobol’s CareBand has been participating for a few years, to create a dementia wandering detection solution.
Got Kids? Check out animated drawings
If you want to impress your kids, or just feel young at heart, check out this cool tech that scans pictures and makes them come alive…
Opportunity for Premium Subscribers: Jon Metzler in Conversation, this Monday
I’m hosting a podcast with Japan-, innovation- and cluster-expert, Jon Metzler this coming Monday, 4pm PT, Tuesday 9am Melbourne time. Jon’s a Berkeley lecturer with a fascinating background, having spend years understanding Japan and applying his research and experience. The podcast will form the basis of a future post, but if you’re a premium Looking Forward subscriber and would like to join the Zoom call, let me know. We’ll be doing others with more UK / Europe friendly time zones in future.
Jon Metzler is a lecturer at Berkeley Haas, where he teaches on competitive advantage in technology markets, and on international business at the undergraduate and MBA levels. He is also associated faculty for the UC Berkeley for Center for Japanese Studies. He has received grant funding from the UC Berkeley Center for Japanese Studies, and from the UC Berkeley Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity. Metzler is also faculty mentor at Berkeley Skydeck, an accelerator for Berkeley-affiliated startups.
That’s all for this week. As always, feedback welcome. Feel free to share insights or links of interest.
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