In This Issue
Vol. 27 Issue 28
FROM WATSON TO THERANOS
- I. FROM WATSON TO THERANOS
- II. THE PROBLEMS WITH NEURAL NETWORKS
- III. THE PROBLEMS WITH MODERN HEALTHCARE
- IV. NEW ARCHITECTURES, NEW MATHEMATICS
- V. THE COMPLEXITY OF BIO
- VI. SUMMARY
MORE FROM SNS
MEMBER SPOTLIGHT: Benjamin Smarr
I. From Watson to Theranos
There is essentially no question that, despite recent Wall Street gyrations, the engagement between artificial intelligence (AI) and healthcare is the most dynamic and exciting arena in technology today. More money is being invested in more companies, from startups to public firms, and more of it is chasing this fascinating new nexus of activity. Advanced compute systems of all kinds, including but not limited to neural networks, are creating a pivot in the history of healthcare and the sciences and economic models that drive it.
Unfortunately, as with all human activities, this has created the usual share of cons and hyper-marketing for the wrong companies and products – something I’ll discuss shortly. But at the top of this issue, it’s even more important to briefly underline the reasons for optimism and excitement in these fields, before we look at what has failed to date and why.
The overall view could not be more exciting: in the field of healthcare, there’s never been a more important, more pivotal moment than with the advent of advanced computing’s intersection with nearly every part of the industry, from medical records to image interpretation to cancer cures. Healthcare has moved from “standard of care” practice to “evidence-based” practice, at the same time creating massive lakes of digitized data. This is the “point of the spear” in medical science today.
Conversely, from the perspective of advanced computing, there has never been a more exciting moment than with the advent of AI, currently almost always (wrongly) interpreted to mean neural networks. As companies move beyond NNs to more advanced systems and mathematics, we find ourselves in this other world, also at that moment of being “at the point of the spear.”