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Photo: CalypsoAI

CalypsoAI, a machine learning startup with its roots in the defense industry, has raised $13 million to help make government and corporate AI systems more secure and free of bias.

Why it matters: Making AI systems that are free from bias, secure and explainable are all key goals as the technology gets used for increasingly important tasks.

Details: Calypso, which has 17 employees, has had paying customers for about a year, with a focus on the federal government and financial services sectors.

  • The company aims to help businesses and government agencies figure out how they want to use AI while also ensuring their approach is bias-free and secure against attacks.
  • The financing round was led by Paladin Capital Group. Other investors included Lockheed Martin Ventures, 8VC, Frontline Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Manta Ray Ventures and Pallas Ventures.

Our thought bubble: From its team photo, Calypso appears to be overwhelmingly male and white. Experts say a diverse team is important to spotting bias in AI systems.

What they're saying: "CalypsoAI is working on the issue of diversity like the rest of the tech community as they continue to scale," Calypso said in response to Axios' question about the number of women and non-white employees.

  • The company said it is in the process of hiring a woman for a senior leadership position and noted that two of the general partners participating in this Series A are women.

Go deeper: Fresh concerns about AI bias in the age of COVID-19

Go deeper

What the 2020 election means for science

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The 2020 presidential election presents two stark paths for the direction of future-focused scientific research.

Why it matters: Science is a long game, with today's breakthroughs often stemming from research carried out decades ago, often with government help. That means the person who occupies the White House over the next four years will help shape the state of technology for decades into the future.

Trump says he plans to launch new social media network in 2022

Photo: Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Trump on Wednesday announced plans to launch a social media network called "Truth Social," and that it would go public via a SPAC.

Why it matters: Most ex-presidents are focused on their legacies, by creating presidential libraries or engaging in philanthropic endeavors. Trump, however, remains consumed by social media.

Beauty giant Coty Cosmetics looking to sell its own branded products

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi. Photo: Axios on HBO

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi tells Axios the beauty giant will “probably” introduce Coty-branded products one day.

Why it matters: Coty produces some of the world’s most popular fragrances, skin care products and color cosmetics on behalf of other well-known brands, but has shied away from producing its own branded products.