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August 6, 2019
It's the first episode of the new style of AI in Industry, in which we spend a month at a time on a specific theme. This month is AI adoption. This week we speak with Vlad Sejnoha at Glasswing Ventures, an AI-focused VC firm. Sejnoha spent many years as the CTO at Nuance Communications. He talks to us about the table stakes AI insights the C-suite have to know and the dangers of relying entirely on consulting firms and vendor companies for these insights. In addition, Sejnoha discusses the need for a "BS-o-meter" for when someone is making a claim about AI to determine if it's real or hype. Lastly, Sejnoha discusses how he would go about choosing a first AI project.
August 2, 2019
This episode of the AI in industry podcast is all about where the rubber meets the road for AI in Insurance. We interview Jerry Overton, Head of AI and a Fellow at DXC Technology. He speaks to us about his experience implementing AI in insurance, about where there's real traction with AI in insurance, and where there's only hype. In particular, Overton discusses how anomaly detection technology is a natural fit for AI in the insurance sector. This is the last episode of its kind on AI in Industry. Starting next Tuesday, we'll be kicking off a new format for the show. Each month, we'll focus on a specific theme, and in August, we're focusing on AI adoption in the enterprise. We hope you'll join us.  
July 25, 2019
When we polled our audience about what they were interested in, the most selected response was "business intelligence." As a follow-up, we asked them what business intelligence meant to them, and their responses boiled down to anything about understanding the data businesses are already collecting. That kind of broad definition gets to the heart of the confusion surrounding the differences between business intelligence and artificial intelligence. The line is starting to get blurry.  Our guest this week is Elif Tutuk, Senior Director at Qlik. Tutuk talks about how business intelligence is evolving and how we might define it now that a lot of BI is becoming AI. Tutuk discusses where AI is making its way into business intelligence and what that might enable for businesses. Read our comprehensive definition of machine learning for business leaders here: https://bit.ly/2Ya2NxK
July 18, 2019
This week, we interview Jay Budzik, CTO at ZestFinance, about where AI applies to the world of auto-lending. We speak with Budzik about how underwriting and credit scoring is evolving as a result of advances in machine learning. In addition, we talk about how companies might solve the "black box" of machine learning in finance, particularly how ZestFinance is focusing on transparent models. The financial sector has to contend with complex regulations that prevent certain information from being leveraged in credit models. It can be near impossible to determine how machine learning comes to the conclusions it does, but ZestFinance claims their software in part solves this problem.
July 12, 2019
Some say that the competitive dynamics between the US and China in terms of AI are overblown, but there's a lot of truth to them. The US has access to more of the base research, but China can orchestrate various organizations (corporations, government bodies) and secure government funding. That said, very few people talk about K-12 education and what countries are doing to prepare their future workforce for AI. David Touretzky talks to us about just that. He is a research professor in the Computer Science Department and the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition at Carnegie Mellon University. He's heading up an initiative for K-12 education, and he discusses what countries should be doing to secure their positions and technological leadership in the 21st century.
July 5, 2019
While AI is certainly finding its footing in finance, we still find most of our subscribers are in a phase where they're trying to catch up in terms of data and data infrastructure and figure out where there's real traction with AI in finance: in banking, investing, or insurance. In this episode, we explore AI use-cases in a number of these areas of the financial industry. We interview Carlos Pazos and Anwar Ghauche at Spark Cognition about how to maximize a smaller data science team at a financial institution, how AI and alternative data is being used for quantamental investing, and how AI is automating some financing and underwriting processes.
June 28, 2019
Building an AI strategy - there's hardly anything more vague and open-ended than that. Business leaders have probably gotten the idea that they should develop one, but where should they start? That's what we talk about this week with Charles Martin, PhD. Martin talks about how to go about starting an AI strategy, what to avoid, and the challenges and struggles of applying AI at existing businesses. Also, Martin discusses what business leaders should ignore and what business leaders should tune into and prioritize for an effective AI strategy that will propel them toward success in the coming years.
June 21, 2019
One of the best conversations I ever had on the topic of AI business strategy on the podcast was with the guest I've brought back this week: Madhu Shekar, Head of Digital Innovation for Amazon Internet Services in Bangalore. I wanted to do a deeper session with Madhu, who has seen a lot of companies go from no AI to beginning with AI, about where to start with AI adoption. How do companies build the expertise and experience with AI that lets them scale it to their organization? He also talks about how to prepare realistically for AI, including data requirements, integration times, and more. 
June 14, 2019
As it turns out, often times terms like predictive analytics and data science are used incorrectly. By the end of this podcast, you'll have greater clarity on five potentially vague AI and data science terms that are sometimes overused in conversations about AI in the enterprise. This week, I introduce you to German Sanches, who focused his PhD on NLP and has done a lot of AI work in business. He also helps us with our research projects. This episode is all about addressing use-cases in reference to five terms that a lot of folks get wrong.
June 6, 2019
This week, we interview Arnab Kumar, Founding Manager, Frontier Technologies for the NITI Aayog, the wing of the Indian government focused on rolling out AI into areas like healthcare and agriculture. In this episode, we talk about critical factors for applying AI at the national level, such as where to begin applying AI and what the low-hanging fruit is for gaining traction, leverage, and data assets that are going to transfer elsewhere. We also talk about how governments, much like enterprises, need a future vision for critical capabilities they're going to enable with AI. Finally, Kumar discusses what he thinks are the most transferable lessons for the enterprise from his experience building out a national AI strategy.
May 31, 2019
Erin Knealy is the portfolio manager of the cybersecurity division of the Us Department of Homeland Security. She is the interface between the US government and the startup and tech ecosystems. We speak with her about transferable lessons from the AI use-cases in the public sector into the private sector. How does an existing organization pick the right first AI project? How should look through a lens of opportunity when it comes to AI? In this episode, we discuss how these lessons learned in the public sector can apply to the private sector.
May 24, 2019
It's curious to see how much more there is of sensor tech and internet of things than there was 18 months ago. This week, we speak with Cormac Driver, PhD and Head of Product Engineering at Temboo, an IoT vendor. We talk about how to spot AI and IoT opportunity where sensors and equipment in the physical world can actually deliver ROI and drive value for an enterprise. In addition, Cormac discusses how to get the most out of an IoT project and what's involved in terms of data and infrastructure. Finally, I ask Cormac in what sector IoT will become ubiquitous first.
May 17, 2019
There's an entire artificial intelligence ecosystem for enterprise search. Most of this is in a purely digital world. Most vendors help with a layer of AI-enabled search that understands terms or phrases and is able to return the results or answers to questions that someone types in. But the problem is compounded when it comes to searching the physical world. That is the topic of this week's episode of AI in Industry. Our guest is Anke Conzelmann, Director of Product Management at Iron Mountain. Iron Mountain is a four-billion-dollar physical and digital storage company based in the Boston area. They handle the records of some of the largest financial, health care, and retail brands around the world. IConzelmann speaks with us about the future potential of artificial intelligence for search within an enterprise, not just of digital files, but across formats.
May 10, 2019
The AI in Industry podcast is all about transferrable lessons. Today we speak with Andrew Byrnes, an investment director at Comet Labs in San Francisco about the competitive edge with AI. What does it look like when companies adopt AI in a way that gives them a competitive advantage? Byrnes breaks down the idea into two categories: automation and augmentation.
May 7, 2019
We did a lot of focus on healthcare for the World Bank, and we presented a lot of that research in South Africa. When I was there, I interviewed DataProft cofounder Frans Cronje about the intersection of AI and manufacturing. We talk about what's possible with AI in manufacturing today and just how instrumented and challenging it is to add a layer of AI insight into a manufacturing environment. This is much harder than a lot of other domains where data is maybe more accessible, and in some cases it's also higher risk.
April 26, 2019
This week we speak with founder and CEO of Aidoc, Elad Walach, about the challenges of adopting AI to become part of a workflow in healthcare. We speak to him about what it is that makes it so challenging to get these tools to become part of the process of treating patients.
April 17, 2019
This week, we speak with arguably one of the best-known folks in the domain of neural networks: Jurgen Schmidhuber. He's working on a lot of different applications now in heavy industry, self-driving cars, and other spaces. We talk to him about the future of manufacturing and more broadly, how machines and robots learn. Schmidhuber uses the analogy of a baby learning about the world around it. He has a lot of interesting perspectives on how the general progression of making machines more intelligent will affect other industries outside of where AI is arguably best known today: consumer tech and advertising. If you're in the manufacturing space, this will be an interesting interview to tune into. If you're just interested in what the next phase in AI might be like, I think Schmidhuber actually frames it pretty succinctly.
April 11, 2019
The AI In Industry podcast is often conducted over Skype, and this week's guest happens to be one of its early developers. Jaan Tallinn is recognized as sort of one of the technical leads behind Skype as a platform. I met Jaan while we were both doing round table sessions at the World Government Summit, and in this episode, I talk to Tallinn about a topic that we often don't get to cover on the podcast: the consequences of artificial general intelligence. Where's this going to take humanity in the next hundred years?
April 4, 2019
In this episode of the AI in Industry podcast, we speak with Marshall Choy, VP of Product at SambaNova, an AI hardware firm based in the Bay Area. SambaNova was founded by a number of Oracle and Sun Micro Systems alumni. We speak with Choy on two fundamental questions: How will business models fundamentally change with respect to new AI hardware capabilities? How can business leaders think about their AI hardware needs? SambaNova is one of many firms that's going to be advertising at the Kisaco Research AI Hardware Summit in Beijing June 4th and 5th.
March 30, 2019
Danny Lange heads up the AI efforts at Unity, one of the better-known firms in terms of simulations and computer graphics. They work in several different industries, but this week we speak mostly about automotive. This is a man that has been in the AI game since before it was cool, and now he is working on some cutting-edge projects with Unity. In this interview, we speak with Danny about where simulated environments are becoming valuable. We hear about simulations mostly in the context of video games, and of course, Unity does apply their technology in that domain, but what about a space like automotive, where navigating within an environment is important? Certainly we need to have physical cars on the road to drink in data from physical roads and physical environments, but is it possible to splinter some digital cars into digital environments that model the physics, that model the roads, that model the same number of pedestrian risks, and see how well they succeed in all these different environments with no real physical risk of damaging an actual vehicle or an actual person on the road? As it turns out, there's value there.
March 28, 2019
Have you ever been frustrated with how Alexa or Siri don't always understand your verbal requests? If so, then you already understand the problem that our guest this struggles with. He's Tom Livine, co-founder and CEO of Verbit.ai. Verbit is a company that focuses on AI for transcription. They use a combination of machine learning and human experts to transcribe audio in different accents, in different noise environments, with different diction, to give people more accurate results and hopefully help the process scale. In this episode, Levine explains five different factors that go into getting transcription right and getting AI to be able to aid in the process. In addition, Tom talks about some of the critical factors for where transcription will come into play in terms of bringing value into business.
March 22, 2019
I hope that by the end of this episode of the AI in Industry podcast, you'll not only be able to hire better data scientists who will be a fit for your business problems and build better data science teams, but also pick the AI applications and use cases that you should bring into your business versus those that you shouldn't. This episode, we interview Brooke Wenig, the machine learning practice lead at Databricks. Databricks was founded by the folks who created Apache Spark. Those of you who are technically savvy with AI will be familiar with Apache Spark as an open source language for artificial intelligence and distributed computing. Wenig works with a lot of companies with Databricks. Databricks is now close to 700 folks and helps implement AI applications into, oftentimes, large enterprise environments. Wenig speaks with us this week about what to look for in an actual data scientist and how to find data science folks with the right skills to be able to communicate to business people, not just to work with models. What should people be capable of; how should they be capable of thinking? Hopefully, some of you will have better interview questions by the end of this podcast. In addition, we ask Brooke about what the value of covering the cutting edge applications of AI is, looking at what's working in industry. How does that help us in our own business make better decisions? Read the full article on Emerj.com
March 21, 2019
If you want to understand the international competitive dynamics of artificial intelligence, particularly the US and China, starting with the United Nations is probably not a bad move. This week, I spoke with Irakli Beridze, the head of the Center for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics at the UN, particularly under the wing called UNICRI, the organization's crime and justice division. Irakli was kind enough to invite me to speak at a recent event in Shanghai held by the UN and by the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies on national security, and when we were there, we talked a good deal about China's unique AI-related strengths. I spoke with Irakli about the strengths of the ecosystem in China for artificial intelligence and how that stacks up against the US. In addition, I asked Irakli about what it's going to look like to encourage more and more multilateral action. In other words, how do we get countries to be on the same page so AI doesn't become an arms race?
March 14, 2019
Discover how so-called autoML, or automated machine learning, could bring AI to more businesses by allowing users to build AI models faster and cheaper. Read the full article, where we go into further detail, at Emerj.com. Search for "AutoML and How AI Could Become More Accessible to Businesses"
March 7, 2019
AI has numerous use cases in legal, from document search to compliance and contract abstraction. This week, we speak with Lars Mahler, Chief Science Officer for LegalSifter, about what's possible with AI for legal departments today and how AI applications for legal teams, such as natural language processing-based contract analysis, work. In addition, Mahler discusses how lawyers at companies and data scientists work together to train machine learning algorithms. He provides some insight into how a company has to make its way into the legal space and the challenges of training an NLP system and collecting data for it. Read more about AI in legal at Emerj.com
February 28, 2019
There's a lot of venture money pouring into artificial intelligence in healthcare. From pharma to hospitals and beyond, the potential applications in healthcare are promising.  Late last year, we spoke for The World Bank about our proprietary AI in healthcare research, and speaking with governments, it's clear that there are hurdles that healthcare companies have to overcome to access data for training AI systems.  Broadly, most of the folks that we speak with who are innovating in AI and healthcare are frustrated with how hard it is to streamline the data to make use of it for applications such as diagnosing illnesses. But why is that? That's a question that we asked our guest this week. Our guest this week is Zhigang Chen, and he speaks about why this problem exists and how it can be overcome. In addition, Chen talks about the AI ecosystem in China and how it differs from Silicon Valley.
February 21, 2019
Saying that your company does artificial intelligence might still have a slightly cool ring to it if you're talking to one of your peers at a conference, but it doesn't mean very much to venture capitalists today, who've been battered with machine learning and artificial intelligence in every pitch deck they've seen for the last three or four years. I wondered, from a venture capitalist perspective, what makes an AI company's value proposition actually strong? What is it that makes an AI startup actually seem like a company that maybe could use AI to really win in the market? Not just to be another company that says they're going to do it or says they are doing it, but where can it actually provide enough of that competitive edge to make a VC want to pull the trigger? Getting a grasp of the answer to that question seems pretty critical. This week, we speak with Tim Chang, partner at Mayfield Fund in Menlo Park, California. Chang and I both spoke at the Trans Tech Conference, held every year in Silicon Valley, focused on wellness and health-related technologies. Chang talks about what it is about an AI company's pitch, product, and market that actually makes AI an enhancement to the business in a way that's compelling to someone who wants to invest potentially millions and millions of dollars.
February 14, 2019
If one wants to start a general search engine, they're going to have to compete with Google. If one wants to start a general eCommerce platform, they'll have to compete with Amazon. But the same dynamics play out on a smaller scale. There are going to be some established players, some big tech giant, be it IBM or someone else, who already has a product. When it comes to getting a new AI product out to market, how does one compete with the big guys? This week's guest is Mike Edelhart, who runs Social Starts and Joyance Partners, seed stage investment firms out in the Bay Area. Edelhart has invested in a number of companies, and in this episode, we get his perspective on not only the patterns among successful AI startups and where AI plays a role in their competitive strategy, but what a "land and expand" strategy looks like for a new product that already has larger and more established competitors.
February 7, 2019
A lot of AI in the press is CMOs or marketing people talking about what a company can do in a way that really is aspirational. They're speaking about what they can do, but in reality, the things that they're talking about, the capabilities won't be unlocked for maybe a year or more. These are just things on the technology road map, but people speak about them like they exist now. This week, we speak with Abinash Tripathy, founder and Chief Strategy Officer at Help Shift. They've raised upwards of $40,000,000 in the last six years to apply artificial intelligence to the future of customer service, and we speak about the hard challenges of chatbots and conversational interfaces, as well as how long it's going to be until those are actually robust. This in opposition to how people at large companies might put out a press release touting their own chatbots that simply aren't capable of doing what they say they can to any meaningful degree. We also talk about where AI can augment and make a difference in existing customer service workflows.  Even if we can't have all-capable chatbots to handle banking or insurance or eCommerce questions from people, where can AI easily slide it's way in and actually make a difference today? In this episode, we draw a firm line on where the technology currently stands. Overall, though, this episode is about the challenges of actually innovating in AI. We talk about why it really is the big companies that do a lot of the actual cutting edge breakthroughs of AI and why others are going to have to license those their technologies from large firms like Google and Amazon. We also discuss why companies maybe need to have a realistic expectation about where they can apply AI, as well as why actually innovating and coming up with new AI capabilities on their own might just be wholly unreasonable given their data, their company culture, and their density of AI talent. Read the full interview article on emerj.com
January 31, 2019
This week we interview a leader at Facebook. Jason Sundram is the lead of World.ai at Facebook, which is one of their efforts to work with public data around roads and population and other projects of that kind. But Sundram is also highly involved in the Boston office here, where Facebook will soon have around 650 employees. Many of them focus on data science and artificial intelligence. Last time we talked about personalization in AI with Hussein Mehanna, who was Director of Engineering at Facebook at the time. This time, we'll talk about two topics that all established sectors need to be focusing on: How does one build ML and data science teams? How does one pick an AI project? For business leaders who are considering hiring data science talent or thinking about how to start with AI in terms of making a difference in their bottom line, this should be a useful episode.
January 24, 2019
One of the promises of artificial intelligence is aiding humans in making smarter decisions. Whether it's in pharma, retail, or eCommerce companies, the idea of being able to pool together streams of data and coax out the insights that would help make the best call for the organization to reach its goals is the promise of artificial intelligence. As it turns out that same dynamic is sort of happening in the public sector where AI is now being used to inform policy. This week we interview Professor Joan Peckham at the University of Rhode Island. Previously, she was Program Director at the National Science Foundation. PhD in computer science and she runs the Data Science Initiatives at URI. The University of Rhode Island is home to DataSpark, an organization that helps policymakers inform the decisions that they're going to make about the economy, the environment, the opioid crisis, a variety of social issues, based on deeper assessments of the data. The ability to find objective insights might help policymakers make better decisions about where they allocate budget and what decisions are made. Right now, policymakers are beginning to tune into artificial intelligence as a source of informing their decisions. The same dynamic will likely play out in the C-suite, particularly when the data is actually there. For more on AI in government, visit Emerj.com
January 17, 2019
Sales is a big part of any sort of B2B firm. We speak this week with Micha Breakstone, co-founder of Chorus.ai. He holds a PhD in Cognitive Sciences from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and prior to starting his own company, he studied for a few years at MIT and was working on NLP at Intel. He speaks with us this week about where AI is being applied to sales, answering questions such as: How can managers better train salespeople? How can salespeople better find the patterns that lead to closing a deal? The next appointment? A bigger contract? This is a nascent domain. There are very few companies are actively leveraging artificial intelligence in their sales process, but in the two years ahead we'll likely see more and more firms who are. For more information on Ai for sales enablement, go to emerj.com
January 10, 2019
Close to a year ago, we had an interview here on the AI in Industry podcast with Jeremy Barnes of Element AI. We visited their headquarters in Montreal, and we'd interviewed Yoshua Bengio a couple years before that. Jeremy had brought up one point in that interview that I really like and that transfers its way into this conversation, which is that businesses should think not just about being more efficient with artificial intelligence, but places where they can actually make a real difference in the bottom line for the company beyond shaving off some savings. In this week's episode, we focus on compliance and analyzing contracts. At first, one might think about such an application in terms of cost savings. We speak with Shiv Vaithyanathan, an IBM fellow and Chief Architect of Watson Compare & Comply, about the following: What's possible with AI when it comes to analyzing contracts, and, most importantly Where is the business upside for AI as it relates to contract analysis. How can we analyze contracts not just in a way that saves money, but that allows us to optimize our deals for revenue, for the likelihood that they'll go through?  What's that farther vision?
January 2, 2019
Episode Summary: Recently, we were called upon by the World Bank to do a good deal of research on the potential of applying artificial intelligence to health data in the developing world. Diagnostics was a very big focus of the information that we presented. It appears as though diagnostics is an area of great promise with regards to AI, and that's what we're focusing on in this episode the podcast. This week, we speak with Yufeng Deng, Chief Scientist of Infervision, a company that focuses on computer vision for medical diagnostics. We speak with Deng about the expanding capability of machine vision, including what kind of data one needs to collect and what is now possible with the technology. In addition, Deng also speaks about how Infovision found a business problem to solve using AI, and in that he provides transferable lessons to business leaders in a variety of industries.
December 27, 2018
Artificial intelligence plays a role in the future of retail in terms of a deeper understanding of customers going beyond intuition. This week, we speak with Pedro Alves, CEO of a company called Ople, based in San Francisco. Alves was previously the Head of Data Science at a number of companies in addition to being Director of Data Science at Sentient Technologies, one of the best known AI firms in the Bay Area. Sentient has raised upwards of $200 million. We talk with Pedro about the future of retail, the future of understanding customers with artificial intelligence. Essentially asking under what circumstances would a retailer need to go beyond intuition in order to inform their understanding and their ability to influence the actions of their customers or their users. In addition to that, Alves talks with us about what has to happen to AI as a technology to become more accessible and within reach of existing enterprises. Knowing now all the points of friction for bringing AI into an existing business, he talks about the transition points that he thinks are going to have to happen over the course of the years ahead in order to make these technologies more accessible to companies.
December 20, 2018
A lot of machine learning applications in business can be boiled down to some form of decision support. There are big decisions like deciding whether or not to merge or acquire another company, and there might be smaller decisions like whether or not a tumor has enough traits that make it seem like it's worth a surgical procedure or if it's worth leaving alone. In this particular interview, we talk about the domain of decision support, specifically in tax and accounting. There are few firms that know more about tax and accounting than Ernst & Young, and there are few people at Ernst & Young who know more about artificial intelligence than Sharda Cherwoo. Cherwoo is a partner at EY, and she is also the Intelligent Automation Leader for the Americas division of its tax practice. Cherwoo talks about where decision support is being influenced by machine learning in accounting and tax today, the initial experimentation traction, and results. She also paints a picture of bigger decisions that might be automatable by machine learning software. The focus of this episode may be on tax and accounting, but here are transferable lessons for business leaders in all industries that revolve around how machine learning can help inform decisions made by human experts.
December 18, 2018
We spoke with Robert Golladay, General Manager, Europe at CognitiveScale, which offers AI software that helps both wealth advisors personalize insights and identify new opportunities for clients. According to Golladay, AI is being applied to wealth management services in two areas today: Personalization: Helping financial advisors identify the investment preferences of a client and provide personalized advice to a degree that was not possible before. This might involve taking into account factors such as declared, observed, and inferred information around client goals or attitude towards risk. Engagement: Helping wealth advisors communicate the most relevant insights for a client at a preferred time and channel.
December 16, 2018
This week, we're going to be talking about the defense sector. We interview Ryan Welch, CEO of Kyndi, a company working on explainable AI. We focus specifically on the unique data challenges of the defense industry, as well as the general use case of AI in defense writ large. Many of the challenges that the defense sector has to deal with transfer to other spaces and sectors. Business leaders that deal with extremely disjointed text information, what is sometimes called "dark data," and information in various languages or different dialects, will be able to resonate with some of the unique challenges talked about in this episode, and maybe even gain some insights for how to handle them.   Read the full interview article on Emerj.com
December 7, 2018
Whether we're talking about customer service, marketing, or building developer teams, what we try to do on our AI in Industry podcast is bring to bear lessons that are transferable. There are few more transferrable ideas than what makes a company ready to adopt AI. When it comes to the willingness and the ability to integrate AI into a company strategy and to fruitfully adopt the technology to really see an ROI, what do the companies that do so successfully have in common? What do the companies that are not ready or too fearful to do it have in common? There are probably few companies in the AI vendor space that are aiming to sell AI more ardently into the enterprise than Salesforce, and there are few people that know more about how that process is going than Allison Witherspoon, Senior Director of Product Marketing for Salesforce Einstein, which is their artificial intelligence layer on top of the Salesforce product. We speak to Witherspoon about the telltale signs of a company that understands the use cases of AI in their industry and that have a good chance of driving value with AI. We also talk about the common qualities of companies that might not ready for I adoption. Read our full interview article on Sunday at Emerj.com
December 2, 2018
Episode Summary: This week we talk to Alejandro Giacometti, the data science lead at a company called EDITED, based in London. The company claims to help retailers with inventory optimization, and we speak with Alejandro about how artificial intelligence can be used to search the web for the product clusters and individual products of major retailers to help inform other retailers on what products might be popular. There are two primary takeaways from this episode. The first is the broad capability of monitoring the competition with artificial intelligence, something that can be applied across industries, not just in retail. The second is that EDITED is generating information from what is freely available on the web, and so it would seem their software doesn't require businesses to integrate it into inventory management systems in order to train the algorithm behind it. I'm not necessarily lauding the company; I haven't used their product nor read all of their case studies. That said, it's worth noting simply because its approach is fundamentally different than most AI vendors. Read the full interview article on emerj.com
November 25, 2018
Some businesses are going to require a sea change in the way that their computation works and the kinds of computing power that they're leveraging to do what they need to do with artificial intelligence. Others might not need an upgrade in hardware in the near term to do what they want to do with AI. What's the difference? That's the question that we decided to ask today of Per Nyberg, Vice President of Market Development, Artificial Intelligence at Cray. Cray is known for the Cray-1 supercomputer, built back in 1975. Cray continues to work on hardware and has an entire division now dedicated to artificial intelligence hardware. This week on AI in Industry, we speak to Nyberg about which kinds of business problems require an upgrade in hardware and which don't.
November 18, 2018
We speak this week with Aneesh Reddy, cofounder and CEO of Capillary Technologies. Capillary is a rather large firm based in Singapore. Aneesh is in Bangalore himself. The firm focuses on machine vision applications in the retail environment. How do we instrument a physical retail space so that, with cameras, we can pick up on the same kind of metrics that eCommerce stores can? Retail stores, as Reddy talks about in this episode, have to focus on the data that they get from the checkout counter, such as what kind of purchases were made, and potentially some kind of data about how many times the front door was opened or closed. That doesn’t really lay out that much detail about who came in, what percent of them converted, and what the average cart value was for different people. A lot of that is completely greyed out when looking at the numbers that are accessible to brick and mortar retailers. But some of that is changing. Reddy talks about what’s possible now with machine vision in retail, and what it opens up in terms of possibility spaces for understanding customers better in a physical environment. More importantly, Aneesh paints a bit of a future vision of where he believes retail is going to be when not just computer vision is included, but when audio and other kinds of sensor information are included.
November 11, 2018
In this episode of AI In Industry, we interview Nick Possley, the CTO of a company called AllyO, based in the San Francisco Bay area. We speak with Nick about where artificial intelligence and machine learning are playing a role in recruiting today and how picking the right candidates from a pool is in some way being informed by artificial intelligence. Whether a business leader is hiring dozens and dozens of people or whether they ’re just interested in understanding how AI can engage with individuals on more of a one-to-one basis, this should be a fruitful episode. In addition, the fundamentals of what we discuss in this episode, in terms of taking in data from profiles and responding and engaging with applicants, could be applied to all sorts of cases, such as customer service and marketing. Read the full interview article here: https://www.techemergence.com/how-to-use-ai-to-hire-and-recruit-talent
November 4, 2018
What makes a chatbot or a conversational interface actually work? What kind of work does one need to do to get a chatbot to do what one wants it to do? These are pivotal questions and questions that for most business leaders are still somewhat mysterious, but that’s exactly what we’re aiming to answer on this episode of the AI in Industry Podcast. This week we speak with Madhu Mathihalli, CTO and co-founder of Passage AI. We speak specifically about what kinds of tasks conversational interfaces are best at, what kinds of word tracks, what kind of questions and answer are they suited for and which are a bit beyond their grasp right now. In addition, we speak about what it takes to train these machines. In other words, how do we define the particular word tracks that we want to be able to automate and determine which of them might be lower hanging fruit for applying a chatbot or which of them might not? Read or listen to the full podcast here: https://www.techemergence.com/how-to-get-a-chatbot-to-do-what-one-wants-in-business/
October 26, 2018
Episode Summary: In this episode of the AI in Industry podcast, we interview Rajat Mishra, VP of Customer Experience at Cisco, about the best practices for adopting AI in the enterprise and how business leaders should think about the man-machine balance at their companies. Mishra talks with us about how the executive team should be able to imagine the future of specific work roles that might integrate AI technology or envision how those roles will shift in the short-term. In other words, how will AI affect workflows?
October 21, 2018
In this episode of the AI in Industry podcast, we interview Nikhil Malhotra, Creator and Head of Maker's Lab at Tech Mahindra, about how artificial intelligence changed the nature of IT services and business services in general. Malhotra talks about what businesses should consider to make themselves relevant for the future. In addition, he discusses the philosophy shift that has to happen for people to be appreciative of the process of problem-solving, and to see profit and growth from AI. We hope business leaders in the IT services industry will take from this interview the low-hanging fruit applications in the IT services industry.
October 14, 2018
Episode Summary: Prominent technology companies like Google and Amazon lead the way in the B2C world, having access to streams of searches, clicks, and online purchases. They have access to large volumes of consumer data pointss numbering in the billions that can be used to train machine learning algorithms. B2B companies operate under a different model: "propensity to buy," as it's called. A typical B2B company might at most make a couple hundred sales per year, and many B2B companies make only dozens. In other words, every sale matters. In this episode of the AI in Industry podcast, we interview Kiran Rama, Director of Data Sciences Center of Excellence at VMWare, about purchasing external data and to leveraging internal data. Rama also talks about using data to determine how likely certain leads are to turn into high-value customers. In addition, he discusses with us the "propensity to buy." We hope that this interview can help business leaders determine if and how AI can help their organizations identify which leads could yield the highest ROI and which customers are the most primed for reselling.
October 12, 2018
For business leaders who are thinking about integrating AI into their company or who are just in the very beginning of that journey, this may be a useful episode of the podcast. Many times, people think that finding the right talent is the biggest challenge when it comes to integrating AI into the enterprise. Much of our own research and  conversations with machine learning vendors and the consultants trying to sell AI into the enterprise actually think there's another, bigger problem: combing the expertise of subject matter experts and that of data scientists to leverage information for future initiatives in business. This week, we interview Grant Wernick, CEO of Insight Engines in San Francisco. We speak with Grant about the initial challenges of organizing data and setting up a data infrastructure a business can use to leverage AI. We also talk about using data in leveraging normal workflows so that non-technical personnel can use it to drive better product innovation to help the company.
October 12, 2018
One of most fun parts about doing our geolocation pieces at TechEmeergence is that we are able to interview so many people within a given country or city. Recently we did a huge piece on AI in India. We got to interview folks from the government and the bigger existing businesses, as well as a handful of people at the unicorns in Bangalore. One of those companies is Fractal Analytics. Fractal Analytics works in a number of spaces. One of them, consumer packaged goods, is an area on which we haven’t done much coverage. Many of our readers are in the retail space, but CPG has some pretty curious AI use cases. This week, we interview Prashant Joshi, Head of AI and Machine Learning at Fractal Analytics, about the different applications of machine learning in the CPG sector: doing chemical tests or finding new buyer segments within existing groups of consumers to determine who is buying from a company and who is buying from competitors. Hopefully, for those in retail, this interview will not only highlight some of the interesting use cases of AI in the CPG world but also provide some ideas about winning market share from what some of the bigger CPG firms are doing with Fractal Analytics.
October 7, 2018
In this episode of the AI in Industry podcast, we interview Grant Ingersoll at Lucidworks, about enterprise search. Ingersoll talks about how companies have massive amounts of siloed data, making it difficult to find within enterprise systems. We hope businesses might take away from this interview what is required and what is involved in building search applications to make corporate data more accessible and structured. Ingersoll will also discuss how data strategies are going to evolve and how scientists and data experts might come together to build an enterprise search application.
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