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Augmented Intelligence – Combining Humans and Machines

August 4, 2017
Posted by Mark Henderson


We recently attended the AI Summit taking place in Hong Kong. This was the world’s first and largest conference and exhibition to look at the practical implications of Artificial Intelligence (AI) for enterprise organisations and the solutions transforming business productivity. There was a bustling atmosphere as over 400+ business CxOs, AI start-up innovators, press/media and acclaimed researchers all gathered to hear the insights from some of the leading AI solution providers.

AI has been around since the early 20th century, yet only now is it really coming to the forefront. Although traditionally considered to be just a combination of algorithms, knowledge, data and machine, AI goes beyond automation. Today the opportunities that exist for both productivity and consumption gains are huge.

A quick recap on some of the statistics shared by Prof. Andy Chun (City University of Hong Kong) specially on how AI is empowering the business of tomorrow right now in the APAC region is worth noting as below:

  • China plans to create a US $150 billion domestic AI industry by 2030
  • The forecast gains in GDP from AI for between 2017 and 2030 are for $7 trillion additional GDP in China, compared to $3.7 trillion in North America
  • According to a White House report published in October 2016, China has already overtaken the US for the number of publications produced on Deep Learning
  • The number of AI patent applications between 2009 and 2014 has increased by 186% in China

Cognitive/AI systems enhance digital intelligence exponentially, they understand, they reason, they learn and they interact, but to get the value out of AI the implementation must be accurate, transparent and reusable. In order to do this Chris Maier – Managing Director of analytics, research and insight at Sapient Razorfish suggested the seven steps below to transforming your processes and successfully applying AI:

  • Assess what is possible
  • Define your data needs
  • Define the services
  • Align to technology platforms
  • Execute real-world solutions
  • Incorporate experience design into everything
  • Iterate, iterate, iterate

AI has great abilities when it comes to gathering data and implementing it accordingly, however there is something that AI is missing. AI lacks the attributes that make humans different, ingenuity, adaptability and empathy, and this can prove crucial when it comes to problem solving, customer service and implementing fast emerging trends or changes. Rather than letting AI lead the way, companies should combine human and machine. By doing so they will be able to make better decisions, generate better outcomes and put themselves in a better position for the future. With this in mind the overarching message of the AI Summit was to reconsider the meaning and use of AI, rather than Artificial Intelligence, it should instead be ‘Augmented Intelligence’ combining the best of machine and man.

Did you attend? Let us know what you thought of the event @adjunosolutions

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Mark Henderson, Senior Platform Manager, Adjuno
Mark is the technical lead for the Adjuno Hong Kong team. He helps to deliver a range of cloud based B2B software solutions to retail customers in the Asia-Pacific region.