DNA Script picks up $38.5 million to make DNA production faster and simpler

DNA Script has raised $38.5 million in new financing to commercialize a process that it claims is the first big leap forward in manufacturing genetic material. The revolution in synthetic biology that’s reshaping industries from medicine to agriculture rests on three, equally important pillars. They include: analytics — the ability to map the genome and […]

Innowatts raises $18 million for its energy monitoring toolkit for utilities

Innowatts, an automated toolkit for energy monitoring and management targeting utilities, has raised $18.2 million in a new round of funding from investors led by Energy Impact Partners . Previous investors Shell Ventures, Iberdrola and Energy and Environment Investment participated along with another new investor, Evergy Ventures. As utilities respond to new, renewable power coming […]

Audi self-driving unit taps newcomer Aeva for its unique lidar

Audi’s self-driving unit has tapped a startup with a unique approach to lidar as it ramps up testing in Munich using a fleet of autonomous electric e-tron crossover vehicles. Audi subsidiary Autonomous Intelligent Driving, or AID, said Wednesday it’s using lidar sensors developed by Aeva, a startup founded just two years ago by veterans of […]

Talk all things robotics and AI with TechCrunch writers

This Thursday, we’ll be hosting our third annual Robotics + AI TechCrunch Sessions event at UC Berkeley’s Zellerbach Hall. The day is packed start-to-finish with intimate discussions on the state of robotics and deep learning with key founders, investors, researchers and technologists. The event will dig into recent developments in robotics and AI, which startups […]

Uber spent $457 million on self-driving and flying car R&D last year

Uber spent $457 million last year on research and development of autonomous vehicles, flying cars (known as eVTOLs) and other “technology programs” and will continue to invest heavily in the futuristic tech even though it expects to rely on human drivers for years to come, according to the company’s IPO prospectus filed Thursday. R&D costs […]

Fabula AI is using social spread to spot ‘fake news’

UK startup Fabula AI reckons it’s devised a way for artificial intelligence to help user generated content platforms get on top of the disinformation crisis that keeps rocking the world of social media with antisocial scandals. Even Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg has sounded a cautious note about AI technology’s capability to meet the complex, contextual, messy […]

Driving down the cost of preserving genetic material, Acorn Biolabs raises $3.3 million

Acorn Biolabs wants consumers to pay them to store genetic material in a bet that the increasing advances in targeted genetic therapies will yield better healthcare results down the line. The company’s pitch is to “Save young cells today, live a longer, better, tomorrow.” It’s a gamble on the frontiers of healthcare technology that has managed […]

This hole-digging drone parachutes in to get the job done

A new drone from the NIMBUS group at the University of Nebraska can fall out of a plane, parachute down, fly to a certain place, dig a hole, hide sensors inside it and then fly away like some crazy wasp. Robots are weird. The goal of the project is to allow drones to place sensors […]

Drones ground flights at UK’s second largest airport

Mystery drone operator/s have grounded flights at the U.K.’s second largest airport, disrupting the travel plans of hundreds of thousands of people hoping to get away over the festive period. The BBC reports that Gatwick Airport’s runway has been shut since Wednesday night on safety grounds, after drones were spotted being flown repeatedly over the […]

This 3D printer squirts out wet paper pulp

Like a kid shooting spitballs, designer Beer Holthuis has figured out that sopping wet paper is the best material for making mischief. His 3D printer, a primitive RepRap clone that literally squirts out huge lines of paper pulp, is designed to allow artists and designers to create more sustainable 3D objects. According to 3DPrint.com, Holthuis […]