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Finally, now with $10M, adds AI for better insight into small business accounting

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Finally, a fintech startup helping businesses automate accounting and finance functions, secured another $10 million in venture capital.

TechCrunch previously reported on the company in 2022 when it raised $95 million in equity and debt to roll out small business lending and bookkeeping capabilities. Felix Rodriguez, his wife, Glennys Rodriguez and Edwin Mejia started the company in 2018.

Since then, the Miami-based company has focused more on bringing together business processes, like bookkeeping, expense management, bill payment and payroll, under one automated solution for small businesses, Felix Rodriguez told TechCrunch.

That included the addition last year of an artificial intelligence-powered ledger, offering business banking functions and building a new version of its bookkeeping app. The company also provides a corporate card to help small businesses with their cash flow on top of giving them insight into how they are doing.

Small businesses responded: “The last time we spoke we were at a little bit over 1,000 customers, and now we’re dealing with over 1,000 new businesses per month,” Rodriguez said. He declined to reveal Finally’s valuation or revenue growth over the past year.

Meanwhile, the new capital, led by PeakSpan Capital with participation from Active Capital, will be invested in additional hiring, go-to-marketing and expansion of finally’s tech stack. That includes mobile versions of its bookkeeping, expense management and business banking apps.

“The trick for us is really leveraging AI to give more insights and start highlighting what some of these data points mean,” Rodriguez said. “Not every business owner has that, so we feel like that’s the next breakthrough.”

Now with its three new products, Jack Freeman, partner at PeakSpan Capital, said in a statement that “Finally enters 2024 as a fully-fledged fintech with a portfolio of products supporting small businesses. We are psyched to see what the Finally squad can do with more growth capital and resources this coming year.”



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Dinosaur Fossil Sold For ₹373 Crore, Highest Ever Price At New York Auction

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The largest known stegosaurus skeleton has been sold at Sotheby’s auction in New York on Wednesday for an astounding $44.6 million (approximately Rs 373 crore). This sale sets a new record for the highest price ever paid for a dinosaur skeleton at auction.

The skeleton named Apex has been bought by an anonymous buyer who stated, “Apex was born in America and is going to stay in America,” The Guardian reported.

The Stegosaurus fossil. Image: Sotheby’s

Apex, estimated to be around 150 million years old, is considered “among the most complete skeletons ever found.” The dinosaur remains stand 11 feet tall and stretches 27 feet in length, comprising 254 fossil bone elements out of an estimated total of 319.

This sale surpasses the previous record of $31.8 million, set in 2020 for a Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton known as “Stan.” Sotheby’s initially estimated Apex would sell for between $4 million and $6 million, but the final bid far exceeded expectations.

One notable aspect of Apex is the absence of combat-related injuries or signs of postmortem scavenging, indicating that the skeleton remained largely undisturbed until its discovery. The bones were exceptionally well-preserved in hard sandstone, which prevented them from becoming distorted over millions of years.

Apex was the centerpiece of Sotheby’s natural history auction, which also featured other fascinating items such as meteorites and paleolithic tools. The auction achieved a total of $45.8 million, making it the highest-grossing natural history auction in history, per The Guardian.

ALSO SEE: Discovery Alert: Africa’s Oldest Dinosaur Found In Northern Zimbabwe



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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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