In my travels this week I found a company called Dreamcam that offers ultra-immersive virtual reality experiences of the XXX variety and it got me thinking about the future of tech, and specifically looking back on where it’s come from. For example, why is the internet as fast as it is?
There are a few theories on it, but the one I like, and what holds water for me, is porn.
We want better download speeds so we can watch our porn faster. Dreamcam above might not be the future in virtual reality porn (and its eventual corrolary into the metaverse) but something like it will be. Dreamcam isn’t public, so you can’t necessarily get your hands on some shares, but if a company were to come around and offer real life immersive experiences complete with haptics gloves—we’d see the birth of a whole new industry, and likely a massive computing revolution along with it to carry it.
Here are a handful of companies, great and small, making moves in an attempt to be the future of their sectors.
Liquid Avatar Technologies (LQID.C) introduced a payment card and loyalty program for their metaverse. The LQID card is a physical prepaid dbit card using OptimizeFT’s Engage 360 solution. It’s available in the United States. The card can get the holder cash back by shopping at Liquidshopz and earning points by particpating in Aftermath Island activities.
Aftermath Island is what they called their metaverse. Kind of ominous, actually. The only other context I’ve heard the word aftermath used is usually as a dystopian future after a calamity of some kind like a nuclear apocalypse.
So naturally I got curious so I thought I’d hop to their website and see what their version of the metaverse looks like. If this was a metaverse set up like Mad Max with nuclear mutants and gunplay, I’d probably find a way to bypass the no-Canadians allowed and give it a shot.
I’ll admit that I was completely primed to make fun of this. Sadly, no mutants allowed, so it’s not for me, but I can’t help but think this might make a neat little techy gift for the nerd in your life.
It does provide multiple different craftable spaces with a multitude of themes, which is fairly neat. You buy the NFTs for the land, the assets just like in every other metaverse, and populate said land. Then presumably run stories, and collect loyalty rewards.
“We’re excited to offer the very first payment card for the metaverse, supporting individuals and entities as they engage in virtual activities. In addition to retail and on-line payment opportunities, users of the LQID card will be able to experience exciting virtual land and NFT opportunities at Aftermath Islands and other immersive experiences,” said Michael Konikoff, chief revenue officer for Liquid Avatar Technologies.
DeFi Technologies shows that this Decentralized Finance thing may just have a future afterall
DeFi Technologies (DEFI.NEO) posted their financial performance stats for the three and twelve month period ending December 31. Normally, this kind of dry thing gets jazzed up for the crowds, but if you’re reading this roundup, there’s a solid chance you’re curious about how DeFi (and not just the company) will perform in its first year in the primetime.
Is there a future for DeFi?
Now you can’t necessarily draw large scale macro conclusions about how decentralized finance is going to do based on the numbers associated with an infrastructure play like DeFi, but it doesn’t hurt.
As it turns out their Exchange Traded Products (ETP) company Valour has done decently well with US$363 million assets under management (AUM) as of December 31, 2021. The company picked Valour up in April of 2021, and their total revenue has been $10.6 million with a net income of $4.7 million.
“We continue to see strong demand and inflows into our Valour business as the Web 3.0 ecosystem continues to grow at a frenetic pace. With 8 ETPs launched thus far as well as numerous others planned for 2022, the growth in AUM at Valour has been exceptional. As we look to launch additional innovative ETP’s related to crypto, DeFi, gaming, and the metaverse, we expect rapid continued growth. I would also like to thank the DeFi and Valour team for their hard work and execution. Generating over $15 million in our first year of business when we effectively only started generating staking revenues in Q3 is the result of hard work and execution on everyone’s part,” said Russell Starr, chief executive officer of DeFi Technologies.
The company also enjoys $9.2 million in cash with assets of $459.7 million and working capital of $11.5 million as of the end of 2021.
Here’s some quicky stats for the three months ended December 31, 2021
- Total revenues of $5.1 million;
- Net loss of $50.0 million;
- Adjusted net loss of $2.2 million excluding share-based compensation expense of $29 million, impairment loss of $11.4 million, loss on deemed disposal of an associate of $6 million and amortization of intangibles of $1.4-million;
- Node validator revenue of $544,407, management fees on ETP of $783,527 and staking and lending income of $2.4 million.
Bit Digital teams up with Bitmine Immersion Technologies
Cryptocurrency might be the future of money but Bitcoin mining has a lot of problems. It’s environmentally unsound because of the amount of energy it gobbles up from the grid, and in how that energy is formed most of the time. The amount of electricity takes a toll on each individual server, causing them to overheat. Air conditioning for these things isn’t cheap either.
Some companies take up shop in cold countries like Sweden or Canada, and others look for new tech so they can continue to take their days off on the beach instead of huddling for warmth and fighting off polar bears.
In this case, Bit Digital (BTBT.Q) inked a letter of intent to fire up a relationship with BitMine Immersion Technologies (BMNR.OTC) to start with 7,000 current generation ASIC miners. BitMine’s gig is to submerge Bitcoin miners in immersion cooled containers involving a dielectric fluid that cools them down and makes them run more efficiently.
“We are happy to begin our relationship with BitMine Immersion Technologies, and have known the team for some time. As a company, we have been intrigued by mining using immersion technology, and we are happy we found an ideal hosting scenario allowing us to utilize the benefits offered by immersion cooling of our machines,” said Bryan Bullett, CEO of Bit Digital.
The agreement includes a split of the mined bitcoin over multiple years.
That could be an expensive deal for both parties, and lucrative too.
Is Imagine AR just smoke and mirrors?
Now let’s move away from the blockchain-based companies into something adjacent. Technically, augmented reality (AR) is becoming adjacent as the metaverse begins to force convergence of multiple different types of technology, but for right now, we can consider it separate.
In this case, we have ImagineAR (IP.C) and their deal with ArcTouch. ImagineAR signed an ImagineAR SDK (software development kit) licensing agreement with ArcTouch to put their AR platform into an immersive app experience for a Fortune 500 consumer products company.
Yeah. No names on who the company is—that’s actually quite common. ArcTouch has deals with companies of all sizes from startups to Fortune 500, apparently, so that’s probably their entryway.
Here’s a quote:
“The ImagineAR solution enables us to implement world-class AR experiences for our clients smoothly. This solution will help us create an immersive app experience that connects consumers with our client’s brand in an exciting new way,” said Adam Fingerman, chief experience officer of ArcTouch.
Windfall Geotek is the marriage of mining and artificial intelligence
In the interest of full disclosure I don’t know a lot about mining.
That’s an entire industry with its own nomenclature, it’s own language and customs and it’s full of people that honestly seem set in their ways. If you can bring on a technology that makes their lives easier, then great. But mostly from what little exposure I’ve had it’s very staid, get-off-my-lawn types.
That’s fair. It’s also why I don’t play in their sandbox.
But what I do know about is artificial intelligence. Windfall Geotek (WIN.V) employs an artificial intelligence program called CARDS to use historical data to detect potential sources of wealth within a certain probability. Is this the future of mining? Hard to tell. It depends on how well its accepted by its adherents.
In this case, they’re helping Opus One Gold find new drilling targets using their mineral exploration targeting tech, using the same signatures as known mines and deposits. The original survey covered the Noyell property in Quebec, which hosts the gold discovery and they’re calling it Zone 1. It was originally drilled in 2020 and 2021 by Opus One and now has a strike length (defined as the longest horizontal dimensions of a body or zone of mineralization) of over 400 metres.
“I followed the evolution of the Windfall AI system since 2007. The latest results from their work seem to confirm that the targets generated by Windfall AI technology can be very accurate with five to 50 metres overburden. Our first objective is to test whether our known gold targets like Noyell Zone 1 and neighbor Vezza mine will overlap existing targets generated by the AI system. Subsequently, we will work on targets generated by AI technology in areas with less historical work done in our Casa-Berardi-Douay-Cameron projects portfolio. It is of great interest for us as our projects are located close to infrastructures, manpower and mining friendly communities,” said Louis Morin, Opus One’s CEO.
Basically, it streamlines the way folks used to find potential sources of mineralization. I asked a mining exec once how they find new mines, and he told me they look at what’s around it and figure that if there was gold over there then there’s a good chance that there’s going to be gold over here. That’s honestly about an exact a quote as I can remember from a one-off conversation, but it’s close enough for government work.
Liberty Defense proprietary AI will keep you safe
As the world gains in population and global disparities continue to make life rough for large segments of the population, we’re going to see an uptick in the need for personal defense, cyber-security and home defense in the future. In this case, we have Liberty Defense Holdings (SCAN.V), which offers artificial intelligence aided tech capable of spotting concealed weapons.
They probably have one of the best sales niches going. If the tech works and is decently cheap, then folks are going to pile in to get it installed wherever they can. Especially folks who watch TV or pay attention to what media types say, because most of them pedal in fear. Taking advantage of that fear yields dividends, even as academics like Stephen Pinker shrug their shoulders and say statistically, the world has been growing safer.
But that doesn’t mean we don’t need protection—if only from ourselves. Seriously, look around. The past few months have been tumultuous at best with clashing ideologies regarding something as flimsy as a facemask often leading to violence.
And this pandemic isn’t going away. It’s going to be with us in some capacity in the future, and likely every year for the rest of our lives. Maybe Liberty is onto something with their portals.
“With our collection of real-world data from our proprietary HEXWAVE hardware portals, Liberty has reached a critical milestone on its development path to bring advanced security detection to the market. We have been developing a cutting-edge deep learning algorithm with our team of industry experts, who have previously and successfully brought to market industry-leading AI algorithms used in the aviation security screening market. And, with the hardware configuration recently completed on the first two beta HEXWAVE portals, we are confident we now have an imaging platform that can deliver high-quality image data to enhance our AI algorithm,” says Michael Lanzaro, Liberty president and CTO.
Plurilock pulls down another sweet government contract out of the SEWP
Last but not least we have Plurilock Security (PLUR.C) which pulled in another $224,000 purchase order from the U.S. Library to Congress. Specifically from NASA’s Solution for Enterprise-Wide Procurement Program (SEWP).
They’ve been doing this for years. Every few months they’ll pull in a six figure deal with an American government agency for their formidable biometric cybersecurity suite. Their overall plays with the SEWP are to expand within the government vertical, continuing to milk those sweet government funds for all they’re worth. And they’re worth quite a bit. So far they’ve pulled in USD$5.28 million in sales.
Their core products include a cybersecurity suite that takes a person’s biometrics and uses it as continual verification. Sit down at your computer and type. Handle your mouse. You may not notice it, but you build habitual patterns which are distinctly yours. This suite notices it, and uses those to determine that the person at the computer is in fact the person who should be there.
How’s that for future tech?