The GSV Big 10: Show Me The Incentive, I'll Show You The Outcome
Here's your weekly coverage corner for the top 10 stories, insights, and major plays in learning and skilling.
#1 The Age of AI has begun
In 1995, Bill Gates released the famous “Internet Tidal Wave'' memo. This time around, he’s making a similar prediction on the future of AI and learning. We’re happy to have Captain Gates aboard the Personalized Learning train.
#2 Pearson Sells its OPM Business
Pearson’s OPM Business was on the Trade Block for the past few months. The “Buy Now, Pay Later” craze is hitting PE. Pearson will receive 27.5% of adjusted EBITDA for the next six years, and Pearson will get 27.5% of the proceeds of an eventual sale. The “Buy Now, Pay Later” craze is hitting PE. The only thing that would scream defeat louder is if they closed the business.
#3 GPTs are GPTs: An Early Look at the Labor Market Impact Potential of Large Language Models
1 in 5 American workers could do their job much, much faster. 19% of American workers have at least 50% of their tasks exposed to GPTs, meaning that access to a GPT could reduce its completion time by at least 50%. Faster and cheaper, but not necessarily better…it depends on the data.
#4 Duolingo is working on a music app
Duolingo is becoming a Super App for Learning. Duolingo spent 10 years building the world’s best language learning product; math and music are next. Wall Street is jazzed about the news: $DUOL is up over 90% YTD. The biggest risk we see is what DC does to TikTok and Duolingo’s 6.3M followers.
#5 Education Commentary is Dominated by Optimism Bias
Vietnam has a poverty rate that is 13x higher than the United States, yet Vietnam achieves essentially equal educational outcomes to the United States…who spends 6.5x more per student. Money obviously doesn’t buy you happiness.
#6 Is This the Singularity for Standardized Tests?
When AI started to beat humans at Chess and Go, people didn’t stop playing those games…but they prepared for them differently. The same thing will happen with standardized tests. Just because LLMs can ace an open-note version of the SAT, it doesn’t mean people shouldn’t take these tests. Instead, we should learn the secrets from the new master.
#7 Half of Black Students Can Barely Read
We believe that no race is more talented or has less potential than another. So it’s tragic to see statistics that show how the system is failing. 72% of Black high school juniors in San Francisco cannot read at a proficient level, compared to 20% of Asian students, 23% of White students, 32% of Filipino students and 62% of Hispanic students. By the way, we’re not celebrating that 20% of Asian students can’t read either…that’s unacceptable as well.
#8 Welcoming Rahul Roy-Chowdhury as Grammarly's New CEO on May 1 and Noam Lovinsky as Chief Product Officer
Grammarly is one of the world’s most valuable digital learning companies…on paper. But ChatGPT and OpenAI could represent an existential threat to the business: ChatGPT Plus is only $8/month more, but offers more than just super-charged spell check. We’ll see how the new Grammarly TEAM responds to the challenge.
#9 Can’t Read? Here’s a ‘Barefoot College’ for You.
We’ve talked about the three India’s: Europe India, Brazil India, and Africa India. This is a major opportunity for 1.1 billion Indians. Giving technical skills to illiterate villagers is a “win-win” for India as it develops its people and its infrastructure.
#10 Exclusive: Google to win EU antitrust okay for maths app deal, sources say (Disclosure: GSV is an investor in Photomath)
Google gets the “Greenlight” on their acquisition of Photomath. Integrating Photomath into newly-launched Bard could give Google a leg up in its chase of ChatGPT and Microsoft.