January 25, 2018 | Written by: Saii Joveini Shanazi
Categorized: Cognitive | Watson
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Humans dare to dream big – machines cannot
On a regular basis, the media landscape is invaded by scare stories about technologies that take our jobs or overtake us. In example, Elon Musk recently took a tour of the media mill with an opinion that a third world war would be about artificial intelligence; however, there is nothing to suggest that this fear is based on facts – at least not in Denmark.
A recent June study by the research institute Epinion shows that only 13% of Danes fear employment issues due to the technological development, which is a five percentage decrease compared to a similar survey conducted last year.
A total of 63 percent of Danes feel that we are able to keep up with the development. At the same time, we see a thriving economy in Denmark, where several companies report growth, and where new technologies such as artificial intelligence can become a key piece to continue this growth curve.
The world’s largest technology research institute, Gartner, has announced its 2020 predictions, highlighting that artificial intelligence creates significantly more new jobs than it eliminates. In fact, 1.8 million jobs are eliminated, with production being severely hit, but across other industries, over 2.3 million new jobs are created.
They are created primarily through cognitive augmentation – that is, a combination of human intelligence and artificial intelligence, where the two complement each other.
One of the industries where technology right now changes the customer experience and creates increased growth is in retail. Here, robots are on the way to become part of the buying experience and will help us with a more efficient purchasing process. This means that we will soon be welcomed by a robot when we are out shopping. Looking for a pair of shoes, for example, or if you want some inspiration for your clothes style, you can ask the robot who will quickly suggest the right shirt and show you where it is in the store.
Will robots then replace the shop assistant? Barely. The results of a test in a Danish retail chain have shown that the number of customer visits rose by 48 percent and sales conversion by 23 percent, when compared to the same period the year before. The shop assistants experienced customers staying longer in the store, since the robot created an entertaining interaction.
Media & Entertainment
Another example of an industry experiencing strong growth through the implementation of new technologies is within media & entertainment. Here, the media investment group GroupM has experienced an impressive growth of 63 percent this year in Denmark. This comes after several years of investments in new technologies such as tapping into IBM’s supercomputer Watson in media planning and execution. Instead of spending several hours analyzing a campaign that takes account of over 100 variables, it can now be done in an hour with the help of Watson.
In addition to a faster analysis, Watson has also contributed with new insights. As a result, the interaction between IBM Watson and GroupM analysts can reduce routine work and release employees to become more productive and creative by doing what they are best at.
Cooperation between humans and machines
The examples illustrate that the ‘machines’ today do not remove jobs, but instead create labor demand that understands how to put ‘power’ into data with intelligent technology.
The cooperation between humans and machines is exactly the same – a cooperation where we use each other’s strengths. Humans’ intuition with machines’ infinite calculation capacity. Humans’ strategic sense with machines’ tactical options. Humans’ experience with machines’ memory. Humans’ passion with machines’ objectivity.
We humans dare to dream and think big – the machines cannot. That’s why I am optimistic about the future in Denmark. No matter how many fright stories the media brings, there are plenty of signs that, in cooperation with the machines, we can create both economically and socially sustainability Denmark.
Sometimes we fear the machines will to dehumanize and take over our world; but in reality, they help us find new perspectives that we humans may have overlooked – after all, we are only humans.
Please do not hesitate to contact me at S.SHAHNAZI@dk.ibm.com for more information or with any questions.