Every AI startup is building you a Second Brain for work or for your personal life. But why?

A Second Brain for work or for personal data

In today's race for the best AI, it's more important than ever for AI products to access information quickly and easily. That's why many startups are building AI tools that function like a second brain. But in reality, the concept of a second brain is not that new, and is very similar to the concept of a Knowledge Base.

What is a Knowledge Base? What’s the difference with a Second Brain?

A Knowledge Base is a tool. It is like a repository or a database of lots of information. Most of the time, this information is organized and shares a common theme. The knowledge base helps capture, store, and organize all types of data. Think EverNote, OneNote, Wikipedia, Notion...

As you can see, the idea of a knowledge base is pretty old. There are already many tools out there for that.

A Second Brain, in comparison to a knowledge base, is more use-case driven. A second brain suggests an analytical layer, that’s able to give meaning to the data that is being fetched from the Knowledge Base.

Second Brain is also a more market-friendly description, but they are fundamentally the same thing. The term second brain helps project yourself in using knowledge bases.

Why AI startups are building tools like a second brain?

Lots of AI startups are using the concept of Second Brain to gather data and extract the right information. There seems to be a strong focus on helping employees be more productive, have easier access to information.

Some of the benefits of using AI tools like a second brain:

  • Increased productivity: help save time and money by automating tasks and providing insights.
  • Improved decision-making: make better decisions by analyzing data and providing insights.
  • Improved customer service: provide better customer service by answering questions, resolving issues, and providing personalized recommendations.

B2B is an obvious choice for creating a smart Knowledge Base. Employees in big companies produce so much data that it’s impossible to catch up with the amount of information that is generated or discussed.

This information is dwelling on many different places, folders, work environments etc… AI startups are helping centralize the data and making it easier for employees to get the right information by simply asking a question.

A second brain becomes an experience where you chat with your own data.

What are the best AI startups offering a second brain?

  • Quivr : “a second brain in the cloud” is open source and quite popular on GitHub. It’s not opinionated, which means you can upload all types of information and use it as you want. It is unclear where this data goes and they are not very reassuring about privacy.
  • Dust.tt is providing B2B teams with a second brain, to help make sense of data. This startup is VC-backed and seems like a serious actor in the B2B space. Their product is not very mature and it’s hard to have a taste of the results they promise. But they are likely to improve this fast.
  • Spheria.ai is the only AI startup that focuses on creating a personal AI for everyone. They turn the second brain into a personal AI that’s always available to give answers, recommendations, or share their user’s life experience. A Personal AI can be very useful for Politicians, Youtubers, Writers or Executives, to give their audience direct access to their mind, opinions and thoughts.
  • Augment is a tool that records your work activity on your computer, to create an AI assistant that can help “do things” as they describe themselves. They are not yet open to general testing, but are taking the AI assistant route.

In conclusion, AI startups have all embraced the Second Brain trend, wrapping it into different use cases.

The use case is pretty old, but the progress in AI makes it possible to extract interesting value from all the data stored in various places. Most Second Brain use-cases are for B2B, creating personal AI assistants or decision making AIs. Others AI products like Spheria offer a personal AI for everyone. Finally, all products give us the experience of chatting with our own data, as a result of the big paradigm shift created by ChatGPT.

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