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“Ex-SpaceX Leader Tom Ochinero Establishes Fresh Venture Capital Entity, Documents Disclose”

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Former senior SpaceX executive Tom Ochinero is teaming up with SpaceX alum-turned-VC, Achal Upadhyaya, and one of Sequoia’s top finance leaders, Spencer Hemphill, on a new venture called Interlagos Capital, TechCrunch has learned. There is little public information available about Interlagos, and the trio did not respond to TechCrunch’s request for comment. Ochinero, Upadhyaya and Hemphill are all listed on the documents. Ochinero is just the latest SpaceX executive to move from the behemoth space company into venture investing. Other notable investors in the SpaceX-to-VC pipeline include Founders Fund’s Scott Nolan, who was a very early SpaceX employee, and Alpine Space Ventures’ Bulent Alton.

Top Performers: AI Companies in Y Combinator’s Winter 2024 Cohort

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These AI startups stood out the most in Y Combinator’s Winter 2024 batchDespite an overall decline in startup investing, funding for AI surged in the past year. So it’s not exactly surprising that AI startups dominated at Y Combinator’s Winter 2024 Demo Day. The Y Combinator Winter 2024 cohort has 86 AI startups, according to YC’s official startup directory — nearly double the number from the Winter 2023 batch and close to triple the number from Winter 2021. As we did last year, we went through the newest Y Combinator cohort — the cohort presenting during this week’s Demo Day — and picked out some of the more interesting AI startups. Datacurve hosts a gamified annotation platform that pays engineers to solve coding challenges, which contributes to Datacurve’s for-sale training data sets.

“Automating AI Training Data Curation: DatologyAI’s Revolutionary Technology”

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Massive training data sets are the gateway to powerful AI models — but often, also those models’ downfall. Morcos’ company, DatologyAI, builds tooling to automatically curate data sets like those used to train OpenAI’s ChatGPT, Google’s Gemini and other like GenAI models. “However, not all data are created equal, and some training data are vastly more useful than others. History has shown automated data curation doesn’t always work as intended, however sophisticated the method — or diverse the data. The largest vendors today, from AWS to Google to OpenAI, rely on teams of human experts and (sometimes underpaid) annotators to shape and refine their training data sets.

Tencent’s Popular Game “Honor of Kings” Targets Expansion into MENA Region

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Honor of Kings, Tencent’s massively popular mobile game, has its eye set on the international market in 2024. In part thanks to its success with loot boxes, Honor of Kings has been an enormous financial success for Tencent. It was the world’s second-highest-grossing mobile game in December, trailing only after Monopoly Go!, according to market research firm Sensor Tower. As of February 6, Honor of Kings had amassed over 2 million pre-registrations across MENA, Eastern Europe and South Asia. With its flourishing gaming population, the MENA region will be an important test for Honor of Kings’ second try at global expansion.

Driven by the mantra of ‘advancing technology for the betterment of humankind,’ this Chinese artificial intelligence enterprise sets its sights towards the United States

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Working to apply artificial intelligence to molecular simulations, DP, short for “Deep Potential”, believes that the unifying power of “scientific research for humanity” will pave the way for its global expansion. Areas that can benefit from scientific computing range from biopharmaceutical research and car design to semiconductor development. The London-based AI powerhouse reported £44 million ($60 million) profit in 2020, up from a whopping £477 million ($650 million) loss in 2019. In the meantime, DP’s international ambitions might encounter roadblocks from the ongoing decoupling that’s dividing the U.S. and China across many areas, including scientific research. “Both the fields of basic science and biopharmaceuticals are shared by all of humanity, and they are relatively open and inclusive.