Artificial intelligence. Speed & progress.

We’re all pretty up to speed with the progress that AI has made in the last four decades. Whether it’s in regard to the state, personal, and professional i.e. in business.

Today, we’re focusing on the merits of AI in business. How a business can transform their workflows to suit the changing landscape, in regard to their industry, and always come out on top -  unphased and still raking in the big bucks, all thanks to our AI buddy.

We read up, looked at a few talks, heard fellows and experts from the big four and finally decided to settle with Kai-Fu Lee and his take on AI in business.

Kai-Fu, AI and business.

From being a venture capitalist, an innovator, technology exec and computer scientist. Kai-Fu Lee, for the last two decades, has pretty much been at the helm and in the thick of it when it comes to artificial intelligence in business.

He was also one of the key people involved when it came to setting up Google China, so he doubles up for our pick on AI in business and AI in business particularly shedding some light in regard to AI in business for China, that can be a tad too, opaque with their information every now and then.

Happiness and innovation through AI

We’re often happiest when we’re solving problems and faced with problems that seem unsolvable. Ask anyone up there that’s got that leverage to make a significant difference within the 4th industrial revolution and you’re bound to get the same answer; ‘starting new things’.

Whether it’s research, the freedom to innovate and create, launch your career onto a trajectory that’s filled with promise and learning, it all begins with the start of something new. It’s also pretty important to understand the start of new things leads to a couple of advances.
Namely:
(a) We understand ourselves better
(b) Learn a lot more
(c) Better our skills and discover new ones
(d) Make use of better technology that surrounds us

Our propensity to start over and approach a problem from another angle means that we’re looking to use different tools and a different fork in the road this time around, at times when we start over on something similar but with a different approach we’ve got a fork in the road staring us in the face that didn’t even exist a year ago. That’s the power of technology, more importantly –the power of AI and artificial intelligence in business.

Innovation ventures.
Technology makes the impossible, possible.

Kai-Fu talks about his time at Google, where he and his team were faced with impossible tasks. From a single-digit market share, he and his team tripled their market share over the course of three years. That’s a sales team's dream come true. From single digits to tripling your market share! $$$!

We’ve seen this story happen time and over. Even with the most widely used OS for mobile phones we’ve got today. Nobody ever thought that android would be as prevalent and the giants they’ve made themselves out to be, Symbian seemed to rule that roost while a select few loved iOS and android just didn’t work. A decade later, AI has connected the dots and made fiction a reality.

What's in it for business?
Artificial intelligence just another buzz word?

“Amazon’s machine learning algorithm has decreased the “click-to-ship” time by 225 percent”
-Forbes

With the adoption of AI by every tech giant and almost every medium-sized business that’s looking to improve their sales and marketing tact – the proof is pretty much in the revenues. Netflix saved a $1 billion this year, credit to its amazing machine learning algorithm that understands user behavior, likes/dislikes and proceeds to recommend personalized TV shows and movies for all its subscribers.

There are advances in medicine too. Google’s Deep Learning outdoes humans when it comes to saving lives. According to Health IT Analytics, Google’s Deep Learning is accurate as much as 89% of the time when it comes to the detection of breast cancer, as opposed to a 73% accuracy rate from a human pathologist.

Data, deep learning and decisions

It’s safe to say, AI is more than a buzz word. It is in fact, a confluence of several things coming together. Kai-fu dates this back to the invention of deep learning that took inception back in 09-10.

Think of deep learning as this black box excel, you can go ahead and toss all your data into it and with the power of deep learning, your block box learns to make decisions. What does this mean though?

Well, if you’re a financial company, go ahead and toss your financial data into this box and it’s going to tell you the best stocks to invest in. Throw loan data into it and it’s going to tell you if it’s a feasible, good/bad loan. This black box, filled with stellar mathematical trained technology Kai-Fu feels is the biggest factor that makes AI what it is.

However, we’ve also got to understand that deep learning works only with adequate sized data. It’s only as good as the amount of information it’s able to understand, assess and finally make an informed prediction based on historical findings in all the data studied and this is what’s happened over the last decade. The advancement in technology has allowed us to feed a lot more data into our deep learning algorithms, allowing us to introduces and more importantly leverage the power of AI in our businesses.

Investment in AI

Kai-Fu talks of his investment in regards to AI. He invested in the largest AI image processing company in China. What does it do exactly? Well, it addresses the need for the hour and most prevalent problem in regard to our pictures; beautifying our selfies.

With over 1.3 billion users, “every time you take a selfie and save it, it’s a positive exemplar. You don’t save it, it’s a negative exemplar. Just keep training it, and it finds way’s to make your selfies a lot more beautiful (what you think)”.

The company Kai’s talking about is officially on the HK stock exchange and at a $6 billion evaluation. Not bad for a couple of selfies coupled with our vanity.

From better investments, higher returns, improved market valuation and solutions to problems that humans can’t seem to get their head around – so far, AI seems to be a whole lot of positives.

-Part 1/2
(Catch up with us next week to read up on part 2 of 2 on how AI makes a difference in business)

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