• I’m number 2,445,190 on the waitlist…

  • The most interesting thing Microsoft has done in the past decade…

  • Amazon’s self-driving car is heading to Seattle…

Dear Reader,

The early efforts in the 1950s to develop a safe and effective vaccine for polio were far from perfect.

Soon after the push for mass vaccination began in the U.S., safety incidents became a concern. Out of 200,000 vaccinations, 40,000 recipients contracted polio, and 10 sadly died.

It took decades of development to get the vaccines to be both safe and effective. The late ‘80s brought about a global effort to eradicate polio, and by 1994, the disease was eliminated in the U.S.

This was possible because the polio vaccines that were ultimately used were either an inactivated poliovirus or a weakened poliovirus. They expose the body to the entire virus so that the body can develop its own natural immunity.

And when an entire population has developed immunity from the actual virus, it is possible to eradicate the virus. It literally has nowhere to go.

As we saw from the research shared in yesterday’s Bleeding Edge, that’s not how the mRNA vaccines work at all. The mRNA vaccines only expose our bodies to the COVID-19 spike protein. They do not “immunize” us.

They do not provide full immunity against COVID-19. Recipients of the mRNA vaccines still catch and spread COVID-19 at the same levels as someone who is unvaccinated.

The public health officials made us believe that the COVID vaccines would stop the spread and immunize us. We now know that was a lie. None of it was true.

And it got me wondering. How has the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defined “vaccination” over the years? Has the definition changed? So I checked, and here is what I found (emphases in bold italics are mine):

  • Before 2015, the CDC defined vaccination as: “Injection of a killed or weakened infectious organism in order to prevent the disease.”

  • Between 2015 and 2019, the definition changed to: “The act of introducing a vaccine into the body to produce immunity to a specific disease.”

  • And since September 1 this year, the definition has changed again to: “The act of introducing a vaccine into the body to produce protection from a specific disease.”

I hope that you will all find these changes made by the CDC as interesting as I did. Straight from the horse’s mouth, as they say…

They are also very suspicious. One would think that such a material change in the definition of vaccination would be something that public health officials would alert us all to.

Where are the public service announcements from Rochelle Wallensky and Dr. Anthony Fauci on CNN and MSNBC providing this critically important information about how these vaccines do not immunize us or prevent the disease? They simply provide us with some level of protection from the disease.

Remarkable. Straight from the CDC, and they aren’t talking about it. They dug their hole so deep that they just have to keep on digging. To be open, honest, and transparent would be an admission that they were all wrong.

The most ridiculous part about all of this is that it is perfectly OK for someone who is “fully vaccinated” who has COVID-19 and is infectious to go to a restaurant, bar, concert, or take an international flight with their vaccine passport. But those who are fully recovered and have developed natural immunity and are no risk to anyone are prohibited from doing so.

That, my friends, is just not right.

For those who are interested, one of the best resources on the internet is the Wayback Machine. It is an archive of almost the entire internet that in some cases goes back decades. In the case of the CDC, the earliest snapshot of the CDC’s website is way back on December 22, 1996.

Websites back then aren’t what they are today, so it takes some digging around. It can be slow sometimes, but for an analyst, a resource like this is invaluable.

And in a world where certain factions are trying to rewrite history, having a “truth machine” like the Wayback Machine comes in very handy.

Coinbase is getting in on NFTs in a big way…

We’ll start today with huge news around non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Coinbase is getting in on the act.

For the sake of new readers, NFTs are digital collectibles. They allow us to cryptographically determine ownership and authenticate the digital asset on a blockchain. And since they are on a blockchain, the ownership of these collectibles can be easily transferred from one owner to another in seconds.

And Coinbase just announced that it is launching its own NFT marketplace. The marketplace will facilitate peer-to-peer NFT trades. And it will also allow users to store their NFTs within a wallet at Coinbase.

This is a major move that has serious implications for the industry.

As we know, Coinbase is a giant in the digital asset space. The company has 68 million users right now. And as we discussed before, Coinbase is incredibly profitable as it is.

In fact, the company expects revenues to hit nearly $7.2 billion this year. And Coinbase estimates it will generate nearly $3.3 billion in profit. That’s impressive.

So the fact that Coinbase is making this move tells us how big the NFT market opportunity really is.

And think about this – the leading NFT platform today, OpenSea, has fewer than 400,000 users. Yet it has facilitated over $9 billion in transaction volume this year. What do we think happens when Coinbase turns its 68 million users loose on NFTs?

Out of curiosity, I signed up for the Coinbase NFT waitlist this week. I wanted to find out how big the list was already. Here’s what I found out:

Click to Enlarge

Over 2.4 million people had already signed up for the waitlist. And it just opened a few days ago.

Clearly, there’s a tremendous amount of interest in NFTs out there, far more than what we’re just seeing on OpenSea. We are still in the early days of this trend.

What’s more, Coinbase isn’t going to simply drive additional transaction volume with its new platform. I’m sure it will be very attractive to the creator community as well. It will be a secure place where artists can design and mint their own NFTs for digital artwork, gaming, or metaverse applications.

So this is a big event. And it’s all happening before the year is out. There will be a lot of buzz around Coinbase’s NFT launch over the next six weeks or so. Stay tuned.

And if you’d like to follow along with my top recommendations in this space in the meantime, then simply go right here for the details.

Microsoft just made a power move in artificial intelligence…

Microsoft just revealed what it calls the Megatron-Turing Natural Language Generation (MT-NLG) neural network. This is an 800-pound, gorilla-sized development by Microsoft. And it is also the most interesting thing Microsoft has done over the last decade. I don’t say that lightly.

The MT-NLG is an AI-enabled text generator very similar to OpenAI’s GPT-3. It can complete our sentences as we type. It can write technical content and short stories on command. And it can even produce computer code just from text-based input.

However, MT-NLG was built on a model that is three times larger than GPT-3. It contains 530 billion parameters, compared to GPT-3’s 175 billion parameters.

To pull this off, Microsoft trained the AI using 4,500 of NVIDIA’s most powerful graphics processing units (GPUs)… and it let them run for a month straight. That’s what it takes to train an AI on 530 billion parameters. And I should point out that this easily cost Microsoft millions of dollars just in electricity.

The MT-NLG is now the largest natural language processing (NLP) model ever built. And MT-NLG has already been proven to be superior to GPT-3 as a result. I have to tip my cap to Microsoft on that.

That said, this was a bit of a surprise move. Microsoft had already invested $1 billion in OpenAI. And it already had an exclusive license for GPT-3’s source code. With that license in place, nobody expected Microsoft to go out and build its own natural language processing model from scratch.

Yet after it saw the power of GPT-3, it clearly felt it could do even better. And with an AI like this, it can be used in a way that is closely aligned with its core businesses.

Microsoft is the dominant provider of workplace productivity software in the world. Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and its other Office Suite products are used by countless people around the globe.

Yet Microsoft’s biggest challenge has been users migrating to free productivity platforms like the ones Google offers. That’s been a major threat to Microsoft’s business.

By incorporating this new text generator into its existing products, Microsoft could make them stand out from all other productivity platforms out there.

For example, what if we could tell Microsoft Word to automatically create content for us around a given topic? When that becomes a feature, Word’s value to users will skyrocket.

And once people get used to these advanced AI-based features, it will be hard to leave Microsoft for a competitor. This is a great way for Microsoft to make its products stickier with its existing customer base.

So this is a great move by Microsoft. It pains me to say this, but I’m very excited to see how the company deploys the technology.

We just got a lens on Amazon’s autonomous driving plans…

Amazon has been quiet on the autonomous driving front for more than a year and a half. The company revealed its plans to launch self-driving vehicles using Zoox’s technology back in January, but nothing has come out since then.

Until now…

Amazon just revealed that it has started to test Zoox’s technology on modified Toyota Highlander SUVs in Seattle. The autonomous Highlanders will have a safety driver in them to begin with.

Amazon’s goal here is to test and improve the self-driving software. And it chose the city of Seattle specifically because it offers a difficult driving environment. There are a lot of one-way streets, narrow tunnels, and, of course, inclement weather. It’s always rainy or foggy in Seattle.

This announcement shows us that Amazon is serious about its autonomous vehicle ambitions. I’m quite sure the driving data gathered in Seattle will rapidly improve the AI.

That said, it’s still not clear whether Amazon is planning to build a marketplace for urban transportation around its autonomous vehicle technology, or if its focus is solely on logistics right now.

Given the ongoing labor shortages, I would not be surprised if it’s the latter.

If Amazon can get to the point where it can deliver packages in major cities autonomously, that would do wonders for mitigating the labor shortage. It could use autonomous vehicles in the cities and focus its human drivers on suburban and rural deliveries.

So this is something we need to keep a close eye on in the coming months. Amazon is accelerating its autonomous driving plans here. I can’t wait to see which direction it goes with them.


Jeff Brown
Editor, The Bleeding Edge

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