Wonder Dynamics raises $2.5M seed to equip indie filmmakers with AI-powered VFX

Practically every film production these days needs some kind of visual effects work, but independent creators often lack the cash or expertise to get that top-shelf CG. Wonder Dynamics, founded by VFX engineer Nikola Todorovic and actor Tye Sheridan, aims to use AI to make some of these processes more accessible for filmmakers with budgets […]

Scale CEO Alex Wang and Accel’s Dan Levine explain why sometimes unconventional VC deals are best

Few companies have done better than Scale at spotting a need in the AI gold rush early on and filling that gap. The startup rightly identified that one of the tasks most important to building effective AI at scale — the laborious exercise of tagging data sets to make them usable in properly training new […]

How we dodged risks and raised millions for our open-source machine language startup

Jorge Torres Contributor Jorge Torres is CEO and co-founder of MindsDB, an open source AI layer for existing databases. Adam Carrigan Contributor Adam Carrigan is a co-founder and COO of MindsDB, an open source AI layer for existing databases. Open-source software gave birth to a slew of useful software in recent years. Many of the […]

NLPCloud.io helps devs add language processing smarts to their apps

While visual ‘no code‘ tools are helping businesses get more out of computing without the need for armies of in-house techies to configure software on behalf of other staff, access to the most powerful tech tools — at the ‘deep tech’ AI coal face — still requires some expert help (and/or costly in-house expertise). This […]

Formation raises $4M led by Andreessen Horowitz to train truly ‘exceptional’ software engineers

Sophie Zhou Novati worked as a senior engineer at Facebook and then Nextdoor, where she struggled to hire great engineers for her team. Frustrated, she decided to try training engineers to meet her team’s hiring standards by mentoring at a local coding bootcamp. After two and a half years of mentoring on nights and weekends, […]

YC-backed Abacum nets $7M to empower finance teams with real-time data and collaboration tools

SaaS to support mid-sized companies’ financial planning with real-time data and native collaboration isn’t the sexiest startup pitch under the sun but it’s one that’s swiftly netted Abacum a bunch of notable backers — including Creandum, which is leading a $7M seed round that’s being announced today. The rosters of existing investors also participating in […]

Acorns’ new fintech target is debt management with acquisition of Pillar

Popular saving and investing app Acorns has acquired Pillar, an AI-powered startup built to help manage student loan debt, in its second acquisition of 2021. New York-based Pillar helps consumers optimize their debt payments by focusing first on student loans. It launched in May 2019 with $5.5 million in seed funding led by Kleiner Perkins. […]

Aporia raises $5M for its AI observability platform

Machine learning (ML) models are only as good as the data you feed them. That’s true during training, but also once a model is put in production. In the real world, the data itself can change as new events occur and even small changes to how databases and APIs report and store data could have […]

Extra Crunch roundup: Tonal EC-1, Deliveroo’s rocky IPO, is Substack really worth $650M?

For this morning’s column, Alex Wilhelm looked back on the last few months, “a busy season for technology exits” that followed a hot Q4 2020. We’re seeing signs of an IPO market that may be cooling, but even so, “there are sufficient SPACs to take the entire recent Y Combinator class public,” he notes. Once […]

5 machine learning essentials nontechnical leaders need to understand

Snehal Kundalkar Contributor Snehal Kundalkar is the chief technology officer at Valence. She has been leading Silicon Valley firms for the last two decades, including work at Apple and Reddit. We’re living in a phenomenal moment for machine learning (ML), what Sonali Sambhus, head of developer and ML platform at Square, describes as “the democratization […]