Cognitive

Co-worker

Forget about robots and Artificial

Intelligence (AI) taking over your

jobs - for now, at least.

While the automated workforce is well on its way, the current trend is for electronic brains that work alongside us, to augment our own abilities, rather than force redundancy upon us. This doesn’t mean that you do not have to behave nicely with your new computerized colleagues and not show them a degree of deference in certain situations. Failing to see eye-to-eye (or eye-to-sensor) with the new generation of AI assistants, advisors and instructors, to descend en masse on workplaces, will be a surefire way to limit your own opportunities for advancement.

Don’t expect (yet) to walk into work one morning and be greeted by a walking and talking humanoid robot, sitting at the desk next to yours.

Don’t expect (yet) to walk into work one morning and be greeted by a walking and talking humanoid robot, sitting at the desk next to yours. That sort of a generalized AI is still a long way-maybe decades from becoming reality, according to most of those who forecast such matters. The machine-learning, neural-networked technology will be embedded in machinery, handheld terminals, wearable devices and server rooms where all the data is pulled together-as well as in the omnipresent Cloud. These specialized, applied AIs are all tasked with helping us carry out a single job more efficiently. At a car production plant, this means monitoring the efficiency of every piece of machinery on a production line, to predict faults before they even occur. At a high street fashion retailer, it means arming the shop floor staff with smartphone apps that will predict what a customer walking into the store wants to buy, before they say a word. At a major US hotel and casino chain, it means predicting whether a customer, who has just won big on the roulette table, should best be directed to the shopping gallery or the restaurant, to make sure that his or her winnings aren’t spread too far and wide.

Increasingly, in our work and business lives, we will be asked to defer to the decisions of AI devices, swallowing data in real time, to regurgitate it as predictions based on solid, measurable facts. Learning to work alongside this new wave of predictive, smart and analytic technology is the key to success in this brave new world. Businesses shouldn’t be thinking about how they can save money by replacing humans with robots, but rather how AI can complement and augment a team’s abilities. Learning to accept them as well as to challenge and improve them are likely to become increasingly prominent parts of our lives.

1.1

Retail Mirrors to View and Pay

Oaklabs.is, a start-up, has found a unique way of addressing problems with brick-and-mortar retailers. Using cutting edge technology, it has built some incredible retail mirrors that will be able to read things and recommend complementary product pairings. Currently, Ralph Lauren and Rebecca Minkoff are some of the upmarket fashion retailers that are utilizing this technology to enhance customer experience. An additional feature will soon be added to these smart mirrors, allowing customers to just wave their phones before a mirror and make a purchase using Apple Pay or Android Pay. In case a product is not available in-store, shoppers will be directed to the retailer's website so that they can make the purchase online via the retail mirror's touchscreen.

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Source: trendhunter.com

1.2

Smarter, Faster Employees

Finding the right person to answer your questions in a large organization is a tedious task. This usually ends up in never-ending searches or annoying dead ends. Computer software, called Starmind, uses machine learning to understand queries and then sources answers from previous staff conversations on a subject or tracks down experts within the company who are able to help. It uses artificial intelligence to automatically route any employee’s question to the right expert within your organization. New hires, seasoned experts with knowledge gaps, shy employees-all get their answers from the best source.

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Source: starmind.com

1.3

AI Makes Auto Claims Easier

Estimating the severity of vehicle damage in times of an accident involves a somewhat long procedure for insurance companies. Tractable, a London-based startup that develops proprietary AI algorithms, has built a completely automated, visual recognition AI that can appraise the seriousness of vehicle harm. The fundamental AI network has been prepared by examining a huge number of auto claim images and data policy. These images gave a standard baseline, which enabled the Tractable AI to assess the seriousness of harm displayed within any picture. Mitchell International, a leading provider of technology, connectivity and information solutions to Property & Casualty (P&C) insurance industry, intends to integrate the technology into its proprietary automobile and physical damage platform. Once actualized, it will empower clients to settle on better choices and quicken the handling of vehicle administration and cases.

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Source: the-digital-insurer.com

1.4

Caffeinating Your Bean Business

According to Fairtrade Foundation, about 125 million people make a living growing coffee. However, most small-scale coffee farmers or smallholders struggle to make a decent living. Now, a Denver-based startup called Bext Holdings Inc., wants to make it easier for these farmers to get a fair price, and get paid instantly for their beans. Bext360 is a complete coffee ‘suppl(ai)’ chain solution that uses machine vision and AI to obtain superior agricultural products straight from the source. It enables coffee buyers to quickly analyze the quality of and evaluate a farmer’s product in the field. A mobile robot uses optical sorting to understand what percentage of coffee cherries in a lot are good or ruined. The robot then grades the lot, which is typically a 30-40 lb. bag. The grades are then shared with the buyers and the farmers, on the spot. In the next stage, Bext360’s mobile app helps them negotiate a fair price and close the deal. The startup’s app and cloud-based software uses blockchain technology to record the source of the beans, and who paid what for them. Moreover, it offers a comprehensive RESTful API that enables wholesalers and retailers to embed the technology into their own websites, marketing, point-of-sale systems and supply chain management tools.

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Source: bext360.com

1.5

Hello, Humans! May I help you?

The LoweBot is an automated, retail benefit robot that is, at present, being utilized across select Lowe's home improvement retail locations in California. The LoweBot, a NAVii robot from Fellow Robots, offers an extraordinary measure of assistance to both clients and workers. It answers essential inquiries, helps customers explore the store and finds items in numerous dialects. LoweBot additionally offers ongoing stock-observing innovation, which helps the administration to survey designs in the retail condition, as they happen. As far as the look of the robot goes, it stands tall and gloats with the capacity to move openly, all through the store's walkways.

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Source: lowesinnovationlabs.com/lowebot

1.6

Your Super Colleague

Administratively challenged! Here is an analytics venture that can fetch information and make reports for you-a tedious task that could otherwise take you hours. Enabling employees to free up their days, German startup Baxter has created an AI service, which can acquire information from anywhere, including Google Analytics, Mixpanel, SQL databases, Amplitude, Stripe, CSVs, Excel and more. So, instead of investing your energy copy-pasting, downloading CSVs and running SQL queries, Baxter can create reports for you and send them to your teammates on Slack.

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Source: baxterai.com