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Apple launches bike navigation in the Maps app


The feature has been available on Google Maps for quite some time. But now Apple is following suit. In the future, users of the map app will also be able to have bicycle routes displayed.

Since 2020, users of the Apple Maps app have also been able to display routes for bicycles. Now the function is finally coming to Germany – even without the need for an update.

This brings the bicycle navigationi in the maps app

Apple completely overhauled its map app last year. So now the bicycle function is following – just in time for spring. The feature is available throughout Germany from today and offers not only navigation for the bike but also other details.

For example, you can also display the condition of the route. This includes information about the altitude profile of the route or whether it leads past a busy road. With the function “Avoid inclines or busy roads” you can avoid such routes for your bike route.

Apple has also taken care of the breaks with its map update. Because you can also display places along the way – similar to the gas station on a car route. These include public toilets, rest areas and bicycle repair shops.

However, the new function for bike routes in Apple’s Maps app is not only available on the iPhone. The Apple Watch also supports the new feature and gives haptic signals on the wrist.

Maps app with bike navigation: 3D city views

The innovations in the map app also bring another new detail for Berlin, Hamburg and Munich. Because Apple will also offer detailed 3D city views in the application in the future.

For example, bridges or tunnels, but also parks are shown in detail in . This also applies to the turning lanes on streets, bus and taxi lanes, pedestrian crossings or footpaths.

Sights also stand out clearly from the maps. These include, for example, the Brandenburg Gate and the Berlin TV Tower as well as the Frauenkirche in Munich.

Pedestrians also benefit

In the future, Apple will also be bringing this 3D view for pedestrians to other cities in Germany. The function was previously available in Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt am Main and Munich.

In the future, however, pedestrians in Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Essen, Cologne, Leipzig and Stuttgart will also be able to have their directions given in augmented reality. Apple accesses the image from the camera and overlays it with the navigation from the map app.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2023/02/17/apple-fahrrad-karten-app/

Whiskey as a crypto token: why this startup idea failed


With a whiskey token, the collectors market should become more attractive for investors. But the million dollar project flopped. Founder Lasse Balzer tells what he learned from it.

Lasse Balzer (left) and his co-founders learned a lot from the founding of WhyToken.

Lasse Balzer and his co-founders have been working toward this day for months: On December 1, 2018, the crypto token they developed together will be offered for sale for the first time. It will be decided within a very short time whether the launch is a success – or whether your project will fail. If everything goes well, according to the plan of the founders, their token should make the exclusive whiskey collector’s market accessible to a wider audience for the first time.

When looking for a worthwhile investment, whiskey is probably not at the top of most people’s list – annual returns in the double-digit range beckon, and over several years even in the triple-digit range. The problem: Investments are extremely risky. “You have to be very knowledgeable as a collector and need a good network, similar to other niche markets such as vintage cars or sneakers,” says founder Lasse Balzer in an interview with Gründerszene. “Otherwise you can make a lot of bad investments.”

Together with four other whiskey lovers, he developed an idea intended to minimize the risk for investors: a whiskey portfolio put together by experts, in which customers can participate in the increase in value by investing just a few euros via a crypto token. Should the token fall below the value of the portfolio, a buyback mechanism is provided.

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Founders rely on bootstrapping

“So you have a certain security with which we wanted to address people who are interested in the topic but are not fully involved in the matter,” says Balzer. In June 2018 he and his colleagues finally founded WhyToken GmbH. It is the first start-up for all five, four of them work on the project alongside their full-time job. And: You finance the startup entirely through bootstrapping, investing a total of six figures out of your own pocket.

The Initial Coin Offering (ICO) follows almost six months later – the moment of truth. Did the time, the money, the effort pay off? Things looked promising in the first few hours: “We got close to a million relatively quickly,” Balzer recalls. “But then it was just a mess.” The founders clearly missed their minimum target of two million euros.

As a result, further investments failed to materialize because confidence in the project was lost. “That’s why it was already clear to us after a month or two: If something extraordinary doesn’t happen, it won’t happen anymore,” says Balzer. A little later, the investors get their money back, in 2020 the GmbH will finally be liquidated – and the WhyToken project has officially failed. What remains is the question: What went wrong?

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Bootstrapping – how startups grow without anyone else’s money

Launch at the wrong time

In the meantime, five years after the company was founded, Lasse Balzer has a clear answer. The timing of the ICO was a decisive factor. “We had to push back the planned date again because there was still a need for coordination with the Bafin. When we finally got the go, the crypto market was at its lowest point.” The founders decided to launch anyway because they consider their model to be crisis-proof thanks to the safety net.

The second mistake, according to Balzer, in retrospect: the marketing. The startup relies on organic growth and wants to establish itself on the market with a competent team of consultants through trustworthiness. Contrary to the advice of experts, the founders decide against putting money collected through the ICO into marketing and instead keep the investments in trust – a model Balzer would still stick to.

However, he would plan more budget for marketing today and approach potential investors before the first day of sale. “We said a bit naively: the money will come,” admits the founder. “We would have had to invest even more time and energy beforehand so that the ICO would only be a sure-fire success.”

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No more full-time job, get investors early – four lessons from a founder who failed

Too many founders spoil the broth

After all, he took another lesson from the failed start-up: five founders are at least two too many. It is a great advantage to be able to spread the financial and time burden over several shoulders. “But I wouldn’t do it again,” says Balzer. In the WhyToken founding team, it quickly became apparent that not everyone thinks entrepreneurially and pushed the project forward with the same intensity.

He therefore deliberately started his second company, Barrel Beast, which produces its own whiskey, with just one co-founder. “The exchange is great, much faster than was the case with WhyToken before.” Balzer says in retrospect that he was able to take a lot with him from the failed project. “With the whiskey token, we tried to create a big bang. Our new business model, on the other hand, is more fragmented and the risk is more manageable.”

The founder still believes in the business with crypto products – despite the increasing criticism and negative personal experiences. “Excluding intermediaries makes sense in many places, simply for reasons of efficiency,” he says. “But it will certainly not have such a rapid and disruptive impact as we initially imagined.”

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This teenager is selling the dream of a modern airline – but dubious companies and crypto deals raise doubts

Source: https://www.businessinsider.de/gruenderszene/technologie/whisky-krypto-token-whytoken-scheitern/

Artificial intelligence generates never-ending Super Mario levels


With MarioGPT, researchers from Copenhagen have developed an artificial intelligence that can generate infinitely long Super Mario levels. The system is currently in the test phase.

Super Mario has delighted many children and adults for almost 40 years. The video game series about the red plumber always provides challenges, laughter and moments of frustration. With the “Super Mario Maker” series, players can now even build their own levels and make them available to the community.

Generating new level sections is a task that not only humans can take on. At least that is what a team from the University of Copenhagen has shown. Because in a new research paper they presented the artificial intelligence MarioGPT.

MarioGPT gets basic information from users

Similar to ChatGPT, the user enters the text at the beginning. This specifies what content you want in the new level. In addition to selecting tubes, item blocks or coins, setting opponents is also possible. In a first version, however, the algorithm does not yet differentiate between enemy types.

However, players can define whether they want an opponent. Whether it is a Goomba, hammer thrower or mole is left to chance. In order for the generation to work, the system divides the available space into different categories. Depending on the category, the desired elements then appear.

Super Mario: Trainigs data is based on original games

The researchers trained MarioGPT with material from the two classics “Super Mario Bros” and “Super Mario Bros: The Lost Levels”. The training was based on 84 levels with different degrees of difficulty. The AI, meanwhile, is based on GPT-2, not the same model that uses Chat GPT (GPT-3).

In the first version, the generator allows levels with a size of up to 50,000 steps. Each individual step is based on four random level sections. So what the final level looks like is always left to chance. The system is still under development, but could bring amusement to your living room in the near future.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2023/02/17/mariogpt-super-mario/

Spotify founder develops AI to diagnose diseases


Spotify founder Daniel Ek focuses on the topic of artificial intelligence with his start-up Neko Health. The company’s goal is to use an AI scanner to diagnose diseases.

Digitization is making great strides in the medical field. Many companies are now trying to predict diseases without major interventions in order to reduce patient stress. But there are also visions that turn out to be frauds – recently, for example, at the US company Theranos.

An old acquaintance from the technology industry now wants to make it possible to diagnose many diseases using artificial intelligence. We are talking about Spotify founder Daniel Ek. For this purpose, he founded a new start-up called Neko Health, which focuses on the use of AI-supported body scanners.

Neko Health: Spotify founder AI scanner for disease diagnosis

The AI ​​system should be able to recognize various health problems without major interventions. It detects and measures the growth of liver spots, skin rashes and age spots. An additional scanner examines irregularities in blood pressure, pulse and heart function.

To ensure that this works as effectively as possible, the system has over 70 different sensors. These record around 50 million data points, including on the skin, blood vessels, heart and breathing.

The system then feeds the algorithm with data so that it can examine deviations from a healthy person. The AI ​​scanner requires a large amount of comparative data for this. So, as more people undergo the procedure, the system is likely to become more reliable.

A body scan via artificial intelligence costs only 179 euros

The advantage of the new approach is obvious. Because compared to classic medical treatments, the costs are relatively manageable. Since a scan only costs 179 euros (2,000 Swedish krona), an examination should be affordable for many people.

This is especially true in countries where there is no insurance system and patients pay for treatments out of their own pockets. Neko Health already offered the first test scans via the website. These have been fully booked for about two weeks. This shows that many people are longingly waiting for such a technology and that the demand is there.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2023/02/17/neko-health-ki-krankheiten/

This solar fence is set to revolutionize highways and agriculture


The US company Sunzaun presented a special photovoltaic system. Because with a solar fence requires little space and brings some benefits.

As part of the energy transition, the creativity of many companies is increasing. Wind power and solar systems can now be installed in a wide variety of variations. For example, after there is already a garden fence that also serves as a wind turbine, the Sunstall company is now going one step further.

With the spin-off Sunzaun, the Californian manufacturer wants to offer vertical solar systems for farms, farms and highways. The new system follows the trend of converting usable space into power plants. Agriculture and energy production go hand in hand.

Solar fence protects against the sun and can reduce water consumption

According to the manufacturer, the system has a number of advantages. In addition to more effective land use, the panels offer shade for crops and animals and are intended to reduce water consumption.

Overall, the panels can be tilted by up to 15 degrees, and even stronger winds shouldn’t cause any major problems. Sunzaun is currently still undergoing certification for the safety of the system. 43 of the modules producing on both sides were installed on a test site in California.

Overall, the resulting solar fence was able to deliver an output of 23 kilowatts, the electricity generated then flowed into two batteries. Especially in the mornings and afternoons, the system makes a significant contribution to the electricity requirements of the local wine production facility.

New type of solar system can already be ordered

Studies in the field demonstrate that solar systems do not always have to be tilted towards the sun. A study by the University of Leipzig in August 2022 found that solar panels working on both sides generate as much energy as systems facing the sun. Assuming they are oriented east and west.

Interested parties can order the system directly from the manufacturer. However, Sunzaun does not give any direct information about the price on its website. Nevertheless, the system shows to what extent the expansion of solar systems does not necessarily have to fail due to a lack of roofs and space.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2023/02/18/solarzaun-landwirtschaft/

Tiktok boss confirms Chinese developers have access to US data


The US Congress questioned CEO Shou Zi Chew for five hours. Also: Block is accused of lax standards and chatbot startup Character.AI is already worth a billion dollars after 16 months.

Sometimes the Tiktok boss Shou Zi Chew had to put up with a rude tone. Chew argued that banning the app would “silence the voices of over 150 million Americans.”
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Good morning! While you slept, work continued elsewhere in the digital scene.

The top topics:

The short film platform Tiktok could be banned in the US. CEO Shou Zi Chew should avert this danger at a hearing before the US Congress on Thursday. But some of his comments seem to have confirmed concerns in Washington. The Tiktok boss admitted that Chinese developers currently have access to US user data. The risk mitigation plan, known as “Project Texas,” didn’t seem to address lawmakers’ concerns either.

In addition to fears that US data on the parent company Bytedance could end up with the Chinese Communist Party, it also discussed the app’s potential to harm children through its addictive features and potentially dangerous posts. Chew was unable to placate his listeners during the more than five-hour hearing. “I have not been comforted by anything you have said so far, and I think, quite frankly, your testimony has raised more questions for me than it has answered,” said Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, at one point in the hearing. It’s not clear what the exact implications of Thursday’s hearing might be and how realistic the implementation of a Tiktok ban in the US would be. The focus of some MPs seemed to be on a comprehensive law on digital data protection, which then also US companies like Meta, Google, Twitter and Snap would affect. [Mehr bei Welt, Handelsblatt, CNBC und The Guardian]

On Founder Scene: There are 32 unicorns in Germany. Since yesterday, the newest member of this elite club is the daily money startup Raisin, which has now also been valued at at least $1 billion. But who are the sponsors who supported these German unicorns? So indirectly helped to turn “normal” startups into a billion-dollar company? Our colleagues Alex Hofmann and Maybrit Martschin analyzed it for you. [Mehr bei Gründerszene+]

And here are the other headlines of the night:

Block (formerly Square) had to accept sensitive losses on the stock exchange on Thursday. The shares of Paypal-Competitors plunged nearly 20 percent after the shortseller Hindenburg Research pointed out alleged irregularities on the payment platform. According to the short seller, the firm of Twitter-Co-founder Jack Dorsey glossed over the number of monthly active users of the Cash app. It is also said to take a lax approach when it comes to uncovering fraudulent activity on the platform. The report spoke of a “‘wild west’ approach to compliance”. [Mehr bei The Information und Wall Street Journal]

Investments: The chatbot startup Character.AI has in a new, from Andreessen Horowitz led round of financing raised 150 million US dollars. After only 16 months, the company is now valued at one billion dollars. That of former Google-Founded by employees, the Silicon Valley company is one of the few startups that OpenAIthe creator of ChatGPT, want to compete. [Mehr bei CNBC, New York Times und Wall Street Journal]

Redundancies: The crisis in the tech industry has also reached the consulting world. The world’s largest consulting firm Accenture wants to cut 19,000 jobs within the next 18 months. This corresponds to around 2.5 percent of the total workforce. The company specializes in IT and technology consulting and is therefore also feeling the effects of the weaker business in the industry. [Mehr bei Techcrunch, Handelsblatt und Bloomberg]

Cryptocurrencies: The CEO of Terraform Labs, Do Kwon, is charged by New York prosecutors with eight counts of fraud. The charges follow Kwon’s arrest in Montenegro on Thursday. The South Korean is said to have traveled from Costa Rica with forged travel documents. Kwon is the creator of the Terra Stablecoin, which should be tied to the value of a US dollar. However, the stablecoin crashed to almost zero last year after customers tried to redeem the token. The latter fueled the crisis in the crypto market and ultimately forced several crypto companies to file for bankruptcy. [Mehr bei Wall Street Journal, Techcrunch und The Information]

Cryptocurrencies: Also the founder of cryptocurrency Tron, Justin Sun, faces fraud charges. In addition to Sun, the US Securities and Exchange Commission has also accused eight celebrities, including actress Lindsay Lohan and rapper Soulja Boy. They are said to have promoted the crypto assets without disclosing that they were paid to do so. The SEC is currently very active in combating fraud and wrongdoing in the crypto industry. [Mehr bei The Information]

Our reading tip on Gründerszene: In the competitive business with solar systems, providers resort to questionable tricks. The startup Enpal now attracted attention with a fake comparison portal. [Mehr bei Gründerszene]

Don’t want to miss anything? Then subscribe to our Gründerszene newsletter! It appears every morning at 8:30 a.m. and brings you all the important news straight to your inbox.

Happy Friday!

Your Gründerszene editors

Source: https://www.businessinsider.de/gruenderszene/business/tiktok-chef-anhoerung-us-kongress/

Do you know the history behind the file format [Anzeige]


The PDF will be 30 years old this year! In this article, we will introduce you to the history of PDFs and show you how to test the popular Adobe Acrobat Pro program for free.

Adobe developed and launched PDF in 1993. Back then, nobody realized that 30 years later, PDF would become the most popular file format in the world. The PDF accompanies us every day and still has a special status at Adobe, even after all these years.

The history of the PDF

In the early 1990s, Adobe co-founder John Warnock formed an elite team called Camelot. Its task was to develop a file format with which recipients could read and print out a document exactly as the sender had created it.

The PDF should serve as a universal language for the exchange of documents, across the borders of operating systems, software applications and devices.

Charles M. Geschke and John E. Warnock, the inventors of the PDF (Image: Adobe)

In January 1993, Adobe introduced the format to a broader public for the first time. This was followed in June 1993 by version 1.0 of Adobe Acrobat, the first program that could read PDFs. It was precisely at this point that the success story began and the PDF became one of the most popular formats in the world.

In 2008, Adobe gave the PDF over to the care of the ISO (International Organization of Standardization). At the same time, the PDF was recognized as an ISO standard (ISO 32000). With the ISO release, Adobe makes the PDF available to the public free of charge. And the Acrobat Reader is also available free of charge from this point in time.

Over the 30 years, versions with new functions, plug-ins and browser integrations followed again and again. Today, PDF and Adobe Acrobat are the industry standard for exchanging electronic documents.

Try Adobe Acrobat Pro now for free

30 years of PDF – 30 years of innovation

Links, bookmarks, embedded fonts and RGB images are already supported in the first PDF 1.0 version. By the year 2000, many features had been added to PDF and Adobe Acrobat, including article threads, security features, comments, the search function, and digital signatures. From 2001, the PDF will also be compatible with Microsoft formats and a large part of the Microsoft formats can be converted into PDF.

The last major update brought Liquid Mode, which enables a revolutionary PDF reading experience in Acrobat. Liquid Mode improves PDF layout and offers on-the-fly features that make it easier to read documents on smartphones and tablets. Thanks to AI technology, the function learns over time, constantly improving the Liquid Mode experience.

Adobe has been passionate about the format since day one. The experts are constantly developing it and making it smarter and safer. Adobe has developed an entire ecosystem for digital document management over time. In 2022 alone, more than 400 billion PDF files were opened in Adobe products and more than 8 billion electronic transactions and digital signatures were processed through Adobe Document Cloud. Adobe Scan is the leading scanning app on iOS and Android with more than 150 million downloads and 2.5 billion documents created.

Adobe is PDF: Try Adobe Acrobat Pro for free now

After 30 years of history and development, one thing is clear: Adobe is PDF. No other provider or freely available tool can match the expertise. The security that Acrobat provides its users cannot be compared to any web tool. Even after 30 years, Adobe continues to innovate the PDF format and the Adobe Acrobat application.

Adobe Acrobat Pro

The functions of Adobe Acrobat Pro (Image: Adobe)

You can open and view PDFs with the free Adobe Acrobat Reader. With Adobe Acrobat Pro, you also have many other functions at your disposal, including text and image editing, converting PDFs and other files, and creating and merging PDF documents. When you’re on the go, you can use the associated app for Android and iOS to be able to easily edit your documents from your smartphone or tablet.

Take the chance now to test all functions of Adobe Acrobat Pro for 7 days completely free of charge.

Try Adobe Acrobat Pro now for free

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2023/02/20/30-jahre-pdf-adobe-acrobat-pro/

Set up Google Authenticator: Activate two-factor authentication


With the Google Authenticator app, you can set up two-factor authentication for numerous online portals. You confirm your login with a code. With this you can not only manage your accounts protect, but also prevent fraudsters from gaining access.

The Google Authenticator is suitable as a login method for numerous online portals. With the app you can, for example, activate two-factor authentication (2FA) for Facebook, Twitter and Co. 2FA is now even mandatory for many services, including Google applications.

What is two-factor authentication?

The two-factor authentication offers the possibility to secure online accounts beyond the classic login via user name and password. For example, 2FA can prevent access when fraudsters have stolen login data and passwords.

Two-factor authentication is therefore advisable in principle, but the system also has weaknesses. Because the proof of identity via a text-based 2FA is often unencrypted. The second authentication factor via SMS or e-mail takes place via the mobile network and is theoretically open to read.

How does the Google Authenticator work?

Authentication via SMS can help in emergencies, but is considered the most insecure method of 2FA. It is therefore advisable to set up proof of identity via apps such as Google Authenticator. Because such applications generate a one-time code directly within the respective app.

This code can therefore only be redeemed once. The application also generates a new combination of numbers for each new login. Google wants to prevent fraudsters from gaining access to third-party accounts if they have stolen email addresses and passwords, for example.

This is how you can set up the Google Authenticator

The first step to setting up the Google Authenticator is to install the app. The application can be downloaded free of charge from both the Apple App Store (for iOS) and the Google Play Store (for Android). Then you have to log in with your Google account in the browser.

Via the button “Manage Google Account‘ you then navigate to the tab ‘Security“. There you scroll to the section “Sign up with Google‘ and click on ‘Two-Step Verification“ and select the Google Authenticator. Also, had to choose an alternative sharing option in case you don’t have your device with the authenticator app handy.

Set up Google Authenticator on the smartphone

In order to be able to use the app on your smartphone, you have to set up the Google Authenticator there as well. To do this, proceed as follows:

  1. Google Authenticator-App starten.
  2. Link Google account via QR code or manual code entry.
  3. In the browser again the section “Two-Step Verification” choose.
  4. On the option “Furnish‘ in the section ‘Authenticator-Appclick.
  5. Your browser will now display a code that you can scan with your smartphone camera or enter manually.
  6. Setup with “Add account” conclude.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2023/02/20/google-authenticator-einrichten-app/

Enpal flies up with fake comparison portal


In the competitive business with solar systems, providers resort to questionable tricks. The Berlin provider Enpal has now attracted attention with a fake comparison portal – legally this is tricky.

Sun King: Enpal founder Mario Kohle sees himself as a pioneer in the solar system industry.

The battle for market shares in the rapidly growing business with solar systems is being fought with a heavy hand – and tempts some providers to use questionable tricks. The billion-dollar Berlin startup Enpal has now attracted attention with a fake comparison portal for solar systems.

As the tech portal Trendingtopics.eu reports, interested customers have often come across the “deutsche-solarberatung.net” portal through web research in recent months. There, visitors were suggested to be able to carry out a “solar power comparison” among the “best providers in the region”. Among other things, the portal asked about the federal state in which the visitor currently resides. The portal looked serious: in addition to a logo in the style of a federal authority, the “Deutsche Solarberatung” advertised with 30,000 customers from specialist partners who are known from well-known media such as FAZ, Spiegel Online, ARD or Handelsblatt.

More than half a million views

However, there was no independent provider behind the comparison portal – but the solar startup Enpal itself. According to Trendingtopics, this could only be determined by looking at the imprint of the site. Enpal now has to put up with the question of whether visitors were only recommended the products of the Berlin startup. The portal is no longer accessible. However, screenshots of the site can still be viewed via the archive portal Wayback Machine.

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Are 54,000 euros in solar system costs worth it? My parents experienced this with Enpal

At the request of Gründerszene, Enpal confirmed that it operated the comparison portal. It was a “temporary marketing project” that had “no strategic relevance” for the company, as a spokeswoman said. However, that is an understatement. According to data from the Similarweb analysis tool, the “deutsche-solarberatung.net” website generated more than half a million hits in the past three months.

Such comparison sites are a common method for many startups to collect so-called leads quickly and inexpensively. A lead is a contact address for a potential new customer. Search engine-optimized comparison sites are particularly attractive when there is tough competition with other providers. Especially since the prices for paid ads on Google, for example, are likely to have risen sharply in recent months, especially in the highly competitive business with solar systems.

“One can well imagine that this is misleading and illegal”

Enpal emphasizes that it has meanwhile taken the site offline. “We are also not working on setting up a comparison portal and do not understand or describe ourselves as a German solar consultancy,” says the company. Conversely, legal risks might have arisen.

Because: “The law against unfair competition (UWG) prohibits misleading advertising,” says lawyer Martin Soppe when asked by the start-up scene. The competition lawyer from the law firm Osborne Clarke refers to a catalog of circumstances in the UWG about which untrue statements are inadmissible. This includes, for example, untrue information about the characteristics of a service, the results to be expected from it or the identity of the entrepreneur behind it.

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Millions for solar company Sunhero – this is what the pitch deck of the founders looks like

“One can well imagine that the claim that one operates a (neutral) comparison portal while one actually operates a direct sales portal falls under this standard and is therefore misleading and illegal,” concludes Soppe. This applies all the more if essential information is concealed. “For example, the fact that only one provider – namely you – is listed in the ‘comparison portal’”. In certain cases, misleading advertising is even punishable. From a distance, however, he could not conclusively assess whether this was the case with Enpal. When asked, Enpal stated that it had only recommended its own products.

A similar case recently ended up in court

A similar case in the startup scene was just a few weeks ago. In mid-February, the Cologne district court sentenced the multi-billion dollar tutoring startup Gostudent because the judges believed it had made “misleading” and “non-transparent information” and thus “unjustifiably disadvantaged” its competitors. Among other things, Gostudent had initiated a comparison portal for tutors, which at first glance seemed independent, but only placed the staff of the startup. The founder of another tutoring portal had previously sued against the company’s conduct.

The young providers of solar systems are also fighting each other with tough bandages. In addition to the two Berlin providers Zolar and Enpal, these include the Hamburg startup 1Komma5° and Solarhelden from Munich. The latter quarreled with Enpal over Google reviews. 1Komma5° founder Philipp Schröder in turn accused Enpal boss Mario Kohle at the end of last year of doing improper marketing. Against 1Komma5° a lawsuit should also run.

Source: https://www.businessinsider.de/gruenderszene/technologie/solar-startup-enpal-fliegt-mit-fake-vergleichsportal-auf/

Artificial intelligence is bad for the climate


ChatGPT holds unimagined possibilities. No wonder many big tech companies are integrating AI into their products. But one thing is often forgotten: the enormous data process damages the environment. But what are the effects of artificial intelligence on the climate? And: What does ChatGPT say about it?

Big tech companies like Google and Microsoft seem to be totally focused on overhauling their search engines right now. Billions of dollars flow into the further development or purchase of AI to offer users the opportunity to get answers to even more complex questions.

But the price that corporations are willing to pay is high. Because the use of artificial intelligence on this scale requires an enormous amount of computing power – and the resulting massive increase in energy requirements can have negative effects on the climate.

Climate: Artificial intelligence consumes a lot of energy

As a rule, any computer computing power requires a large amount of energy. This is often associated with strong CO2 emissions. This has always been an issue in the past, especially in crypto mining.

But emissions also occur when artificial intelligence is used. To what extent varies depending on the arithmetic operation and system.

As cybersecurity professor Alan Woodward told the US magazine Wired explained that indexing and searching Internet content already requires enormous resources. The inclusion of AI requires some kind of firepower in comparison.

“It requires both computing power and storage space and an efficient search. Every time online processing evolves, the power and cooling needs of large data centers increase significantly,” said Woodward.

This is how much Co2 artificial intelligence produces

The training alone, which goes into ChatGPT and large language models, requires extremely large amounts of data after the calculation. For this reason, they can only be operated by large technology companies so far.

As estimated by independent experts, the training of the GPT-3 language model integrated in ChatGPT consumes 1,287 megawatt hours of energy. At the same time, this corresponds to emissions of more than 550 tons of carbon dioxide equivalents.

Or to put it more simply, a single person would have to fly back and forth between New York and San Francisco 550 times to generate the same amount of emissions.

Tech companies do not provide any specific information on consumption

However, neither ChatGPT parent company OpenAI nor Microsoft or Google provide information on computing power or its costs. Therefore, experts can only estimate the actual emissions so far.

A user of the open publishing platform Medium published an article in 2022 in which he tried to calculate ChatGPT’s daily emissions. To do this, he gathered the necessary variables from various tweets and other sources. His result: the AI ​​produces around 3.82 tons of carbon dioxide equivalents every day.

Although the calculations are only estimates, they still give a good idea of ​​how the language model affects the environment.

ChatGPT: Millions of users increase energy requirements

Even while the system is running, it requires enormous computing power. The news agency Reuters reports, for example, that around 13 million users use ChatGPT every day.

Bing, on the other hand, currently has around one billion users per month. According to experts, the integration of the language model into the search engine multiplies the demands on the computing power of both systems by at least four or five times.

In addition, a single training of the language models is not sufficient. In order to keep the knowledge of artificial intelligence up to date, it has to be trained again and again.

Studies on the influence of artificial intelligence on the climate

Also the US tech start-up Hugging Face deals with the ecological footprint of language models. The goal is to go beyond the carbon emissions of the electricity used during exercise and consider a larger part of the life cycle, researcher Sascha Luccioni told the MIT Technology Review.

The aim is to help the AI ​​community get a better idea of ​​the impact on the environment and find out how to reduce it.

With a better understanding of how much energy AI systems consume, companies and developers could decide what tradeoffs to make between pollution and costs, Luccioni said.

Influence of artificial intelligence: It’s the crowd that counts

Lynn Kaack, assistant professor of computer science at the Hertie School in Berlin, also points out that companies like Google and Meta use AI models, for example to classify user comments or recommend content.

These operations would consume very little power. But when the processes happen a billion times a day, the amount of emissions they produce also adds up.

Climate: Artificial intelligence leaves a large carbon footprint

It is estimated that the technology sector is responsible for 1.8 percent to 3.9 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.

Although only a fraction of these emissions are caused by artificial intelligence and machine learning so far, the carbon footprint of AI is still very high for a single area within the technology industry, according to the magazine Tech&Nature.

In every tech company, it is now de rigueur to present set climate targets. For example, Microsoft aims to be carbon negative by 2030. Google aims to cover all its energy needs with zero-carbon energy by 2030.

How does artificial intelligence fit into the climate goals of tech companies?

However, by integrating artificial intelligence into search engines, corporations are constantly generating new emissions that they have to offset. So what is the priority? The climate or the turnover of the company?

After all, according to David Rolnick, assistant professor of computer science at Canada’s McGill University, the effects of AI are not inevitable.

“They are the result of the decisions we make about how we use these algorithms and what algorithms we use.”

What does ChatGPT say about climate?

If you ask ChatGPT itself about its views on the subject of climate, the artificial intelligence holds back diplomatically.

BASIC thinking: Do you know how much CO2 you produce?

ChatGPT: As an artificial intelligence, I do not generate any CO2 emissions myself, since I have no physical form and do not consume any resources. However, the data centers I am hosted in and the devices I am accessed through use energy and may cause CO2 emissions.

The amount of emissions generated by data centers and electronic equipment varies by location, power source, and equipment efficiency. However, work is being done to reduce the environmental impact of technology and increase the use of renewable energy sources to power data centers and devices.

How important is the climate to you?

As an artificial intelligence, I have no personal opinion or belief, but I can say that climate has immense importance for the well-being of humanity and the environment. Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time, affecting all aspects of life, from agriculture to health to the economy.

It is important that we work together as a society and as a global community to combat climate change and minimize its impact. This requires both individual efforts and political action at all levels, from the local to the global.

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Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2023/02/21/chatgpt-kuenstliche-intelligenz-klima/