The news: Spice AI, a new Seattle startup that aims to help developers quickly build AI-powered software applications, raised a $1 million pre-seed round. The backers: There are several notable investors betting on the early-stage company. Madrona Venture Group led the round. GitHub CEO Nat Friedman and Microsoft Azure CTO Mark Russinovich also invested. Other institutional backers include Picus Capital, TA Ventures, Founders’ Co-op, Cardinia Ventures, and Elysium Venture Capital. The tech: The company just launched an open-source project called Spice.ai. The software lets developers create intelligent applications that continuously learn from real-time data and adapt using machine learning.