Victoria craft beer, made by your local AI

Plus, listen to some local podcasts on your next commute.

Welcome to this week’s Midweek Memo. In this issue, meet the local brewery using AI to launch its latest craft beer, listen to podcasts from local entrepreneurs, and find out who's joined the Victoria tech ecosystem.

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AI finds its creative spark at local craft brewery

Left, the Whistle Buoy Brewing Company. Right, a can of the AI-generated-recipe Robo Beer. Photo courtesy of Whistle Buoy Brewing Company.

In the food and beverage industry, AI is best known for its upstream applications that can save businesses money, such as optimizing supply chains or tracking customer spending patterns. But the recent launch of ChatGPT, an AI chatbot developed by OpenAI, has led the industry to use the technology in more creative ways. Rather than employing AI to solely crunch numbers and spit out graphs, the technology has been applied to solve different problems in Victoria's craft beer scene.

"We’ve been playing around with the AI chatbot to test its ability to write things like product descriptions for our website, social media captions, or dumb jokes about beer," said Isaiah Archer, co-founder of Whistle Buoy Brewing. But Archer and his team took it one step further and asked the AI for a hazy pale ale beer recipe. It only took 10 seconds for ChatGPT to come up with what is now Whistle Buoy Brewing's Robo Beer.

"This hazy pale ale is a masterpiece of modern brewing techniques, using a combination of pale ale malt, wheat malt, and flaked oats to create a soft, pillowy mouthfeel," says the beer's description on Whistle Buoy Brewing's website. This description, coupled with a promotional video, were both generated by AI.

Nonetheless, the AI couldn't do everything on its own. The recipe needed some tweaking to appropriately scale up to the size of Whistle Buoy Brewing's system, and animator Ryan Steele ultimately had the final creative direction when it came to the artwork generated by the computer. But for AI's first foray into the the creative workings of Victoria's craft beer scene, a solid product launch that's been well-received by the community is a good place to start.

📰 More Victoria innovation news

💸 The state of Canadian venture capital: Chris Carvahlo and Jason Cridge, co-organizers of Health Tech Nights, bring in tech investor Connor Edwards to chat about the state of early-stage investing in Canada on their podcast. Watch on YouTube.

👩‍🔬 BIPOC spotlight: Sahar Sam, co-founder and chief scientific officer at Solaires Enterprises, was featured in Disruption Magazine's 2022 BIPOC Founder's Showcase. Read more.

🌊 More AI for our oceans: Canada's Ocean Supercluster has launched a national call for proposals under its new AI Ocean program. Learn more.

🩺 An entrepreneur's journey: Scott Phillips, founder of Starfish Medical, speaks to his early days as an entrepreneur and shares insights from his personal and career journey. Listen to the Next Great Big Idea.

👩🏻‍💼Victoria tech moves

  • Audette has hired James Boak as its newest decarbonization engineer and Zach Rogers as people operations coordinator. LinkedIn

🕴️ Tech jobs of the week

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📅 Upcoming events

February 22: Intro to VIATEC 101

March 9: StemStruck

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