We talk about artificial intelligence a lot on this blog. A lot. And rightly so, right? It’s the future of computing (and maybe, well, everything else too) according to most everyone whose opinion ought to count about these things. We certainly buy into that narrative here at ENO8; we spend an inordinate amount of our time trying to figure out what’s next so we can become subject matter experts in what our current and potential clients are eventually going to come asking about. It’s how our clients can differentiate their app — fold in the latest, greatest technology. So we read voraciously about developments obscure and inevitable alike, get our hands on all the SDKs we can find and start tinkering with every new technology we think could be important in the coming days, weeks, months and years.
A.I. has been on our radar for a few years now (obviously). We’ve been tracking nascent/growing efforts like Siri and Alexa (building Skills for the Amazon platform along the way) while keeping our eye on what Google, Apple and Microsoft are working on behind closed doors, but really digging into what they’re releasing into the market. (Unlike a lot of what we write about, the internal development efforts from Google et al don’t always translate into direct enterprise or consumer products/services; just as often the chip or algorithm is the first step to a public-facing product that will bear fruit down the road).
But when one of the major players in A.I. drops a true enterprise or consumer facing development tool, you better believe we’re all over it. And Microsoft recently released its white paper on its ‘Cognitive Services’ offerings.
According to the release, “Microsoft Cognitive Services expands on Microsoft’s evolving portfolio of machine learning APIs and enables developers to easily add intelligent features—such as emotion and video detection; facial, speech and vision recognition; and speech and language understanding—into their applications.”
It’s not all about Microsoft, mind you, but rather what a release like this represents. The more and more AI tools coming to market, the more and more we can build them into your apps and digital products to differentiate you from your competitors.
What does that mean for you? Well, not necessarily all that much unless you dove deep into A.I. development for the last few years (like IBM’s Watson or Google’s TensorFlow, for instance). Or, it can mean a lot if you’re ready to take your digital products to the next level of efficiency, usability and efficacy by partnering with an A.I. development expert. Because what releases like this really do is put the computing power, algorithms and new tech from giants like Microsoft in hands like ours, so we can translate all their offerings into the apps, services or products you use to make business go.
For instance, according to Microsoft, this release puts proprietary APIs and services at ENO8’s disposal like computer vision, content moderation, custom decision services, custom speech services, custom vision service, emotion, entity linking, face detection/recognition, a video indexer, linguistic analysis, language comprehension, speaker recognition, text analytics, and translation.
Now, some of those things may be obvious additions to what you’re already doing in your digital development efforts. Some of them may not strike your fancy. But, there also could be some things in there you don’t even know you need yet but could be total game changers. No matter where you stand on these particular offerings, it’s worth sitting down with an innovation expert to figure out how you could take all your digital products to the next level by harnessing the staggering advances in A.I. coming out of places like Redmond, Washington.