Like ice cream, today’s edition is “steeped in optimism and sparks joy”

When it comes to “medical miracles” there’s always been a big three.

They are:

Reversing paralysis.

Helping the blind to see.

Curing the incurable diseases like cancer and dementia.

Well, now one of those big three has been achieved.

From The Guardian:

Partial sight has been restored to six blind people via an implant that transmits video images directly to the brain.

Some vision was made possible – with the participants’ eyes bypassed – by a video camera attached to glasses which sent footage to electrodes implanted in the visual cortex of the brain.

University College London lecturer and Optegra Eye Hospital surgeon Alex Shortt said it was a significant development by specialists from Baylor Medical College in Texas and the University of California Los Angeles.

“Previously all attempts to create a bionic eye focused on implanting into the eye itself. It required you to have a working eye, a working optic nerve,” Shortt told the Daily Mail.

“By bypassing the eye completely you open the potential up to many, many more people.

“This is a complete paradigm shift for treating people with complete blindness. It is a real message of hope.”

As it stands right now, the images the camera produces are of low quality, but the scientists in charge of the study have high hopes.

The lead neurosurgeon, Daniel Yoshor, believes that “within my lifetime we can restore functional sight to the blind.”

First we had meatless meat, then fishless fish… now we’re getting milkless milk

From Veg News:

Today, Silicon Valley technology startup Perfect Day unveiled a first-of-its kind, lactose-free vegan ice cream made with real cow-milk proteins that are not derived from a cow.

That’s right, Perfect Day has made a kind of lab-grown milk, that is made of the same building blocks as dairy, but has never been anywhere near a cow.

Again, from Veg News:

[Perfect Day] prints a cow’s DNA sequence as a blueprint that is inserted into yeast-based microflora—tiny living organisms used to make everyday items such as vitamins and probiotics. The flora then takes the place of a cow and undergoes an acellular (without animal cells) fermentation process producing an abundance of milk proteins. The end result is a tasteless base that can be used to make a number of animal-free products that are so close to traditional dairy that Perfect Day is legally required to include a statement that reads “contains milk protein” on its labels to address allergen and regulatory concerns.

The company has started with ice cream because of its positive appeal. Ice cream is “steeped in optimism and sparks joy” the founders said. But this process can be used to make any kind of dairy product, from milk to cheese to yoghurt.

Ah, but what about the price?

While the price of their vegan ice cream concept is steep, at scale, Perfect Day’s formula is 40-percent cheaper and much less volatile than milk derived from a cow making it attractive to consumer-goods manufacturers. On a grander scale, Perfect Day’s flora-based proteins can be a path to protein independence in countries, particularly island nations, that are tied to importing dairy products as creating milk and cheese in this new, sustainable way, would only require fermentation tanks in lieu of dairy farms.

Facebook faces $1 million a day fines if it goes ahead with its Libra cryptocurrency

As I wrote about yesterday, Facebook’s Libra project has brought so much attention to cryptocurrency that Donald Trump himself tweeted about it last week.

Well, now the US government (of parts of it at least) is putting its money where its mouth is.

From Cointelegraph:

A proposed bill to fine major tech firms such as Facebook $1 million per day if they issue cryptocurrencies is being circulated by Democrats, Reuters reports on July 15.

Reuters cites a copy of draft legislation — reported on by Cointelegraph when it first surfaced online last week — and notes that it proposes to impose a $1 million fine daily upon any firm that violates its proposed rules.

Per Reuters, the bill is being put forward for discussion by the Democratic majority leading the United States House Financial Services Committee, and reportedly states that:

“A large platform utility may not establish, maintain, or operate a digital asset that is intended to be widely used as medium of exchange, unit of account, store of value, or any other similar function, as defined by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.”

The report notes that the draft bill — entitled the “Keep Big Tech Out Of Finance Act” — appears to be a mark of increased scrutiny from legislators sparked by Facebook’s recent unveiling of its forthcoming Libra coin, which would have potential exposure to a combined 2.7 billion users each month.

Even for a goliath like Facebook, the prospect of being fined $1 million per day must be daunting.

If you want to know why the US government is feeling so threatened by Libra and other cryptocurrencies, you need to catch my colleague Sam Volkering’s crypto webcast today at 2pm.

He’s going to covers what is happening to crypto markets right now, why it’s happening, what he believes will happen going forward – and perhaps most importantly, how you can make money from it.

In fact, he’s revealing two crypto plays he believes could turn £50 into as much as £10,000.

So if you want to see what all the fuss is about, get your name down here while there’s still time.

Until next time,

Harry Hamburg
Editor, Exponential Investor

Category: Technology

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