DC daily roundup: Music industry takes up AI on the hill; tech to help public benefits; TikTok sues the US

Plus, a taser company acquires a drone developer.

The Tiny Park on T Street. (Kaela Roeder/

Welcome to the daily roundup of the latest from DC's tech and entrepreneurship scene. Want this in your inbox? Subscribe for free.

Recording Academy panel zones in on AI

At a recent forum in downtown DC, leaders in the music industry noted how AI is ideal for inspiration and efficiency in music production

“The marriage of music and tech has always existed,” said Dani Deahl, a DJ and the head of communications creator insights for audio and music tool company BandLab. “It’s part of my artistic identity.”

But, simultaneously, regulations are needed to curb deepfakes and protect artists. Musicians and industry-affiliated leaders discussed all this and more at the Recording Academy’s first-ever Grammys on the Hill Future Forum.

➡️ Read more about the forum in my latest article.

Nava, Google and Gates Foundation partner for benefits assistance

The public benefit corporation and software developer Nava is researching how generative and predictive AI can lessen caseworkers’ burden, especially by helping people enroll in n government assistance programs like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC).

The hope for this new collaborative project is to make lives easier and provide a blueprint for responsible use of AI within the government, one of the project’s leaders told

➡️ Read more about the collaboration and its goals in my report here.

News Incubator: What else to know today

• The Sterling-based drone defense company Dedrone is going to be acquired by Axon Enterprise, an Arizona-based company that produces tasers and body cams for police. [Washington Biz Journal]

• MITRE and Nvidia are partnering to speed up the deployment of AI across the federal government. The collaborators’ planned supercomputer will be based in Ashburn. [Washington Post]

• NEXT powered by Shulman Rogers (which, transparently, has sponsored events) is launching a tool to help founders raise capital. The firm is calling on founders to sign up for the platform’s launch. [NEXT powered by Shulman Rogers]

• TikTok is suing the US government, claiming the new law forcing it to sell the app or face a ban is unconstitutional. [The Verge]

🗓️ On the Calendar

• The Special Competitive Studies Project, a nonpartisan think tank, is hosting an AI expo on May 7 and 8. [Details here]

• DC Central Kitchen CEO Mike Curtin and others discuss social entrepreneurship in the nation’s capital on May 9. [Details here]

• Spot DC-area tech and innovation leaders at’s Builders Conference on May 9. [Details here]

• There’s a planned breakfast on May 16 for recently laid-off tech industry workers. [Details here]

Before you go...

Please consider supporting to keep our independent journalism strong. Unlike most business-focused media outlets, we don’t have a paywall. Instead, we count on your personal and organizational support.

3 ways to support our work:
  • Contribute to the Journalism Fund. Charitable giving ensures our information remains free and accessible for residents to discover workforce programs and entrepreneurship pathways. This includes philanthropic grants and individual tax-deductible donations from readers like you.
  • Use our Preferred Partners. Our directory of vetted providers offers high-quality recommendations for services our readers need, and each referral supports our journalism.
  • Use our services. If you need entrepreneurs and tech leaders to buy your services, are seeking technologists to hire or want more professionals to know about your ecosystem, has the biggest and most engaged audience in the mid-Atlantic. We help companies tell their stories and answer big questions to meet and serve our community.
The journalism fund Preferred partners Our services

Join our growing Slack community

Join 5,000 tech professionals and entrepreneurs in our community Slack today!


Major state funding boost means more Maryland college students can get tech internships

Cal Ripken Jr. essay: The MLB legend explains his drive to build STEM centers in schools across the nation

The end of software as technology

From quantum to biotech, meet this year’s Maryland Tech Council ICON nominees

Technically Media