AI in art and quality kidney care for India

After facing hurdles in availing of decent dialysis service in his hometown, Prabhat Kumar Srivastava set out to bridge the gaps in India’s kidney care ecosystem.
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Hello,

There’s AI in your art and no, it’s not just DALL-E.

Last week, at a fair in Colorado, US, Jason Allen’s “Théâtre D’opéra Spatial” won the state’s fine-art competition. Here’s the catch: He hinted that his artwork was largely created by an artificial intelligence tool Midjourney. 

This has sparked a new debate as AI-generated art is generally considered plagiarism. After all, it relies on millions of existing pieces of art to “build” a new piece.

In other news, Amazon said its The Rings of Power series drew over 25 million viewers worldwide on its first day, its biggest-ever debut. The series, which aired two episodes on Friday, has six more episodes that will release weekly until October 14.

ICYMI: The latest workplace scandal involves this “mouse jiggler”, a device that simulates mouse movement, keeping your computer awake while you are away. And people are using it to outsmart employers who are surveilling them using monitoring software.

But the million-dollar question is: Do employees need to be monitored?

In today’s newsletter, we will talk about 

  • Delivering quality kidney care to the underserved 
  • Indian startups innovating in the NFT space
  • Age no bar for ultramarathon runner Pushpa Bhatt

Here’s your trivia for today: Who was the first Secretary-General of the United Nations?


Healthcare

Quality kidney care for the underserved

After facing hurdles in availing of decent dialysis service in his hometown of Jabalpur (Madhya Pradesh), Prabhat Kumar Srivastava set out to bridge the gaps in India’s kidney care ecosystem.

In 2017, he joined hands with Dr Saurabh Pokhariyal and Pankaj Tandon and launched VitusCare to provide quality dialysis therapy to the bottom-of-the-pyramid population.

Solving for the masses:

  • To make dialysis care accessible and affordable in Tier II and III India, VitusCare leverages data analytics and offers a hub-and-spoke model. 
  • It also provides therapy at stand-alone centres and in the comfort of people’s homes (especially for the geriatric population) under its home dialysis initiative. 
  • The startup, which conducts up to 1,25,000 dialysis sessions each year, wants to offer up to 10,00,000 dialysis sessions annually.  

Web3

Indian startups innovating in the NFT space

In 2021, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) took the world by storm. Even as the global NFT market sees a decline with the crypto market experiencing a downward trend in the last few months, Indian innovators continue to believe in the transformative potential of this technology.

In fact, several Indian startups are actively leveraging NFT tech and demonstrating how blockchain-based asset ownership could bring about significant changes in a wide range of industries.

Multiple purposes:

  • Estate Protocol is bringing ownership of real estate through NFTs.
  • FanTiger allows users to own a fraction of a song to earn royalties.
  • Bru Finance helps farmers avail loans using NFTs, and more.

Athletics

Age no bar for ultramarathon runner Pushpa Bhatt

Three years ago, when Pushpa Bhatt was 63 years old, she ran the world’s highest ultramarathon, the Khardung La Challenge, across a 72-km stretch, 17,852 feet above sea level. However, as luck would have it, she missed the cut-off by four minutes.

Now, at 66, she is training for the 2022 Ladakh ultramarathon set to take place on September 9. Her first attempt in the Ladakh marathon will be featured in a book titled Runner’s Strength, to be released soon.

Training of the mind:

  • Pushpa took up running at the age of 47 when her colleagues were planning to participate in the Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon.
  • From 2014 onwards, she’s had four podium finishes at the TATA Mumbai Marathon. She has also participated in Satara Marathon, Thane Marathon, and Ladakh Marathon. 
  • At the age of 65, she did a course at the American College of Sports Nutrition to become a qualified nutritionist.

News & updates

  • Fly gourmet: The aromas of airplane food are once again wafting through cabins at 35,000 feet. From vegan meatballs to ice cream sundaes, airlines are offering new options and old favourites to woo returning travellers. 
  • Stay alert: Investors should be cautious for the rest of 2022 about US equity and credit as markets have not absorbed the Federal Reserve’s determination to keep interest rates as high as 4%, advises Greg Fleming, the veteran banker who heads Rockefeller Capital Management.
  • On hold: For the second time in five days, NASA halted a countdown in progress and postponed a planned attempt to launch the debut test flight of its giant, next-generation rocket, the first mission of the agency's moon-to-Mars Artemis program.

What you should watch out for

  • The UK is to get a new Prime Minister.  
  • Teachers’ Day today to commemorate the birthday of Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan. 

Who was the first Secretary-General of the United Nations?

Answer: Trygve Halvdan Lie of Norway, who was in office between 1946 and 1952.


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