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July’s DigitalSurrey event: Artificial Intelligence & The Future of Business

What is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

“The science and engineering of making intelligent machines” John Mcarthy.

We would like to thank Paul Jarrett MD and Founder of Sonin app development agency for giving such an interesting talk on Artificial Intelligence at G Live in Guildford last week. It was a topic that got us all thinking about how we interact with AI every day and the impact it will have on businesses in the future. Paul shared research insights from Forrester which shows that the future of AI is strong and predicted to drive rapid growth by 2020.

Forrester research digitalsurrey

AI is used in most of our lives, extensively and daily without us even realising. Do you have technology in place to make your daily routine easier? Alarms, navigation, set room temperatures and have your favourite music and films suggested to you? For example, the use of Spotify, Netflix, Google voice search, Google maps and Nest are examples of AI keeping us entertained, punctual and very comfortable. But what is planned for the future? AI will develop more sophisticated skills such as detecting fraud, cash management, connecting ecosystems and even writing an opera!

AI is powerful because of consumer demands; more data is required in the world today and it is up to us to ensure the data is used correctly and without human bias. The advances in AI in voice recognition and sentiment analysis is really interesting. The use of chatbots in customer service is something that is becoming more common. There is even a personality test you can run that teaches a chatbot your personality type so it can tailor its communication approach when interacting with you. With all the hype out there on AI, it was interesting to learn the main reason why enterprises currently use AI. With 48.5% using AI to access data that businesses can use to make effective decisions being the top reason in research done by Narrative Science. And 32% of businesses using voice recognition and response solutions.

Narrative Science stats AI

Paul shared many examples of successful uses of AI, one being Amazon Go. Amazon Go is a supermarket being trialed in America for Amazon staff. It is a supermarket with no lines and no checkout. Can you imagine? You simply swipe your card on the way in, shop for all of your items, then leave! Using sensors and image recognition, the products you select are automatically added to your Amazon account. But do not fear, if you change your mind on that delicious treat and return it – the AI is sophisticated enough to remove it from your digital basket. Learn more via this Amazon Go video here.

Another great example was with Wimbledon where AI was successfully used to share match insights in 4 seconds to millions of digital devices globally. As well as the analysis of 17 million pieces of social media content (using IBM Cognitive solutions) and 22 years’ worth of articles to uncover the greatest Wimbledon champions (using Watson).

Top tips from Paul for business owners planning for the future:

  • Understand the business driver
  • Ensure clean and unbiased data is entered
  • Training and development of your team
  • Research and planning
  • Be agile

Now for the big questions often on our minds. Are robots replacing humans? Paul believes the answer here is no. We simply need to change the way we work and focus our skills differently in certain industries. To learn more about AI, follow #digitalsurrey to watch the Periscope video of Paul’s presentation. Also, to catch up on tweets from the event view the storify.

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