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Bumble CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd shares how AI will ‘supercharge’ love with digital matchmakers

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Bumble, Inc. CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd believes the power of AI technology will lead to a better online dating experience for her apps’ users. Speaking at the Code Conference on Wednesday, the Bumble and Badoo exec shared how her company uses AI technology to improve matching and other aspects of the business. While she noted Bumble would not venture into more “sci-fi” areas like using AI to make virtual girlfriends or boyfriends — something other apps like Replika have done — she does see a future where AI could help play the role of digital matchmaker.

Though much of the industry is focused on novel uses of AI — like Meta’s introduction of AI chatbots and generative AI features at its event yesterday — Wolfe Herd pointed out that AI technology has actually been a big piece of Bumble’s business for years.

“I think this is something that is lost on the general public, maybe,” she said. “Because our matching algorithms are AI-driven. This is machine learning. This is how we understand relevance and compatibility,” she said.

She added that various safety measures the app uses are also powered by AI and machine learning and these areas will improve along with AI advances.

But Wolfe Herd believes that AI technology will also help to make online dating even better in the future.

“I would really think about AI as a supercharger to love and relationships,” she explained. “I want to be very clear, we are not intending on replacing humans with bots. We are not intending for people to fall in love in the sci-fi version of a digital boyfriend, girlfriend, [or] partner. What we will do, however, is we will really lead with the customers’ pain points and reducing friction, reducing things that stress a customer out,” Wolfe Herd said.

For example, she wants to leverage AI technology to help people find more compatible matches. In addition, she imagines a future where Bumble could leverage AI to train people to interact in a way that makes them feel more positive.

But the exec also hinted that there are even more innovative ways to capitalize on AI that haven’t yet been built.

“I think that’s where I’m spending a lot of my energy and time. I’m quite obsessed with AI at the moment,” Wolfe Herd said.

One example of something she’s been thinking about is building a personal matchmaker or dating coach for Bumble users that leverages AI technology. Users would tell the bot everything they wanted it to know about what’s important to them in a relationship — like their non-negotiables and values that must exist in a partner, as well as the things they like to do, how they want to spend their summer, what a typical Sunday morning looks like and so on.

This AI matchmaker could then talk to other digital matchmakers to determine two users’ compatibility.

“And only if those other matchmakers triggered a certain level of compatibility would it bring it back to the human,” Wolfe Herd explains. “So now, instead of you having to swipe and match and chat with dozens of people to find someone who’s compatible for you, you can, in fact only talk to the three people that came back as qualified individuals for what you’re looking for. So you can really leverage AI to supercharge compatibility and that’s just on the matching side of things,” she added. 

Other means of using AI could involve image recognition techniques — like being able to see that someone enjoys eating at the same restaurant as you from photos — or using AI to set up dates by placing the reservation.

“I think that we are in a really interesting opportunity, in a moment, that can leverage AI and human connection, and the intersection is really fascinating,” she said.

More importantly, perhaps, is that Wolfe Herd imagines that AI will help boost Bumble’s bottom line by allowing the dating app to offer a premium experience.

Though the CEO wouldn’t put a price on the AI-powered offering, following Tinder’s reveal of a $500 per month tier, she did say that AI will allow Bumble to offer an experience that feels “very curated, very selected” and “it will definitely be at a premium to where we are now.”



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Melting Polar Ice Caps Are Making The Days Longer, New Study Finds

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A new research from ETH Zurich indicates that climate change is significantly influencing Earth’s rotation and axis. As polar ice melts and water redistributes towards the equator, the planet’s mass distribution is altered, causing a deceleration in Earth’s rotation and resulting in slightly longer days.

Historically, the primary cause of the gradual lengthening of Earth’s days has been the moon’s tidal friction. However, the researchers discovered that if greenhouse gas emissions persist at their current rate, the impact of climate change could soon surpass the moon’s influence.

The study, led by Professor Benedikt Soja and published in Nature Geoscience and PNAS, draws a parallel between this phenomenon and a figure skater extending their arms to slow their spin. When mass moves away from Earth’s axis, it increases inertia, thus slowing down rotation.

“Human activities are having a more profound effect on our planet than we realize,” Soja stated.

Visual representation of the Artic and the Antarctic. Image: NASA

Additionally, the melting ice sheets are causing shifts in Earth’s rotational axis. By combining physical laws with artificial intelligence, the research team created models to show how interactions within Earth’s core, mantle, and surface influence the axis’s movement.

ALSO SEE: What Is ISRO’s Mission TRISHNA? Here’s All About The Revolutionary Climate Change Monitor

Lead author Mostafa Kiani Shahvandi highlighted that their work provides a comprehensive explanation for long-period polar motion. Their model accurately reconstructed pole movements since 1900 offering predictions for future changes.

“Ongoing climate change could be affecting processes deep inside the Earth and have a greater reach than previously assumed,” Shahvandi said. Although, there shouldn’t be a cause for concern as the changes are very unlikely to pose a risk.

While these changes may seem insignificant in daily life, they hold considerable importance for space navigation. Small deviations in Earth’s rotation can lead to substantial errors over vast distances. Soja stressed that understanding and accounting for these shifts is essential for precise planetary landings.

“We humans have a greater impact on our planet than we realise and this naturally places great responsibility on us for the future of our planet,” the expert said.

ALSO SEE: Scientists Just Spotted Unnerving Melting Beneath The ‘Doomsday Glacier’

(Image: NASA)





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SpaceX Shares Glimpse Of Spacecraft That Will Crash The International Space Station

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SpaceX has been assigned the job to crash the International Space Station (ISS) into the Pacific Ocean in 2030. To get it done, the former will be designing a ‘deorbit vehicle’ that will tug the orbital lab down from its orbit. SpaceX has now shared an illustration of what the said spacecraft will look like.

The picture features the spacecraft which has a similar build like SpaceX’s trademark Dragon capsule. It also has massive solar panels to power the components of the vehicle. According to SpaceX, it will be four times more powerful and have six times the propellant of today’s Dragon spaceceraft.

In a statement in June, NASA said it has awarded the company a contract worth $843 million (excluding launch costs) to design and build the vehicle. The agency plans to retire the station by 2030.

Crashing the ISS will be a lengthy process

During a press conference on July 17, NASA officials shared details about the deorbiting of the space station which will begin when the new spacecraft docks at one of its ports. According to Dana Weigel, ISS program manager, the vehicle will pull the station down 12 to 18 months after it drifts down from its normal orbit.

The official said that astronauts will occupy the station until six months before the station’s reentry and will vacate it after the ISS reaches about 200 kilometres in orbit. It currently circles the Earth at over 400 kilometres.

Sarah Walker, director of Dragon mission management at SpaceX, revealed the key features of the deorbit vehicle. The spacecraft will have an enhanced trunk section that will have additional propulsion tanks along with engines, avionics and power generation purposes, Space.com reported.

ALSO SEE: Astronaut Gives Tour Of The International Space Station In Never Seen Before Video; Watch

The station is currently being managed by five space agencies from the US, Russia, Canada, Japan and Europe. Its replacement will be filled by commercial habitats that will ensure human presence in the low-Earth orbit and continued experiments in microgravity.

Many US companies like Blue Origin and Sierra Space are together building Orbital Reef and Axiom Space is planning to launch the first module of its Axiom Station later this decade. Currently, China is the only country to have its own space station –Tiangong – and Russia is also working toward developing one for itself.

Steve Stich, the manager of the commercial crew program at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, reportedly said earlier this year that the ISS wil be “out of the way” only if the commercial ones are successful.

ALSO SEE: SpaceX To Launch Historic Private Mission Polaris Dawn On July 31





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NASA Beams Hip-Hop Song By Missy Elliot To Venus For The First Time Ever

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NASA just beamed a song to Venus at light speed. The agency used the massive Deep Space Network (DSN) to transmit the song by hip-hop star Missy Elliot to Earth’s twin, which happens to be artist’s favourite planet.

The experiment was conducted at 10:35 pm IST on July 12 using the 34-meter-wide (112-foot) Deep Space Station 13 (DSS-13) radio dish antenna, located at the DSN’s Goldstone Deep Space Communications Complex in California.

According to NASA, the song “The Rain” (Supa Dupa Fly) travelled about 254 million kilometres and it took the signal 14 minutes to reach Venus at the speed of light. The DSN is managed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and it is used to track space probes, send them commands and communicate with them.

This is the first time NASA has transmitted a hip-hop song into space. The only other instance when DSN was used for such purpose was the transmission of “Across The Universe” by The Beatles in February 2008.

“I still can’t believe I’m going out of this world with NASA through the Deep Space Network when “The Rain” (Supa Dupa Fly) becomes the first ever hip-hop song to transmit to space!,” Elliot stated. She revealed that she chose Venus because it “symbolises strength, beauty, and empowerment.”

ALSO SEE: Despite Titan Tragedy, OceanGate Co-Founder Is Fixed On Sending Humans To Venus; ‘It Is Very Doable’

Although, Venus is named after the ancient Roman goddess of love and beauty.

The idea of sending songs into space is not new and it dates back to the 70s. Arguably the most iconic examples are the Voyager probes which are carrying 27 songs in the Golden Records along with greetings in several languages and sounds from planet Earth.

Meanwhile, Venus has become an interesting subject of exploration and NASA has two missions planned to investigate the planet.

The first is DAVINCI (Deep Atmosphere Venus Investigation of Noble gases, Chemistry, and Imaging) scheduled for launch in 2029 and the other is VERITAS (Venus Emissivity, Radio Science, InSAR, Topography, and spectroscopy) which is scheduled to launch no earlier than 2031.

ALSO SEE: New Study Reveals Venus Might Have Hosted Life Billions Of Years Ago





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