ObEN and Qtum Join Forces to Build Blockchain Lab to Nurture Innovation and Research
This month, personal artificial intelligence company ObEN announced plans to build a Blockchain Research Lab with the Qtum Foundation, creators of the Qtum open-source blockchain project. Earlier this year, ObEN closed 13.7 million in Series A funding from investors including Tencent, Softbank and Rushan Capital. ObEN believes that every person should have their own Personal AI (PAI) that is owned and controlled by the individual and secured on the blockchain, and is adopting Project PAI’s blockchain protocol to deliver the future of artificial intelligence on the PAI blockchain.
Project PAI is currently developing an open source PAI blockchain protocol (PAIchain). The PAIchain is a fork of the Bitcoin blockchain protocol, consisting of three modules: a validation layer, an intelligent network layer, and a data layer. Its core module is an intelligent network. PAIchain applies blockchain calculations to artificial intelligence parallel computing, turning calculations into productive contributions to the AI network. This lowers the cost of refining artificial intelligence algorithms, increases the efficiency of calculations, and turns power once used on “wasted” calculations toward useful ends. ObEN, for example, builds life-like intelligent avatars using artificial intelligence. On the blockchain, the artificial intelligence computations required to generate the avatars are assigned to PAIchain miners via smart contracts in a process similar to Bitcoin mining.
As Adam Zheng, COO and Co-founder of ObEN, explained “both artificial intelligence and blockchain should be seen as a whole, in which the blockchain serves as the underlying structure, with the AI serving as neural networks within the blockchain structure.” Data on the blockchain benefits from decentralization and security, but much of the energy expended on doing the calculations that help build the blockchain are wasted. But if this processing power is directed toward practical ends — say processing data that can help refine artificial intelligence algorithms, then the blockchain becomes eminently more useful. At the same time, artificial intelligence requires large amounts of data to become more refined and accurate. Without the blockchain, such huge amounts of data can only be collected by large corporations or third parties that buy and sell user data — offering minimal benefits to the users whose data are being collected. On the blockchain, where users have more control of their data, they can be incentivized to share and improve the AI through compensation with coins.The PAIchain is therefore unique in that it’s an asset-based blockchain. In addition, each person’s data is the individuals asset and the PAI trained by the data is an asset as well. The more PAI interactions, the better and smarter all the PAIs on the blockchain become.
Development of Project PAI’s blockchain is led by Alex Waters. Waters is famous in the crypto-community, having been involved in the development of Satoshi Nakamoto’s Bitcoin core source code — Bitcoin Core, since 2010. He is also a core team member of the original Bitcoin blockchain algorithm and founded both Coin.co and Bitcoin Validation.
Project PAI’s blockchain is an open source protocol, enabling companies to develop any number of AI focused applications on the PAIchain. ObEN is one of several companies currently working with Project PAI to build on the PAIchain, and plans to release its first commercially available app on the PAIchain in early 2018.