Daily Tech Digest - July 16, 2020

The Advancements In Real World Artificial Intelligence

Ongoing advances in artificial intelligence have come essentially in zones where information researchers can copy human recognition capabilities, for example, perceiving objects in pictures or words in acoustic signs. Figuring out how to perceive designs in complex signs, for example, sound streams or pictures, is amazingly incredible—ground-breaking enough that numerous individuals wonder why we aren’t utilizing deep learning procedures everywhere. Pushing ahead, as groups become adjusted in their objectives and techniques for utilizing AI to accomplish them, deep learning will turn out to be a piece of each data scientist’s tool box. Consider this thought. We will have the option to incorporate object recognition in a framework, utilizing a pre-prepared artificial reasoning framework. However, at long last, we will understand that profound learning is simply another tool to utilize when it makes sense. Now let’s explore how AI is benefitting the mankind and serving various fields like marketing, finance, banking and so on in the real world. Marketing is a way to glorify your products to attract more customers. In the early 2000s, in the event that we looked through an online store to discover an item without knowing its precise name, it would turn into a nightmare to discover the item.

Using the new normal to break from the past and innovate

Arguably, the big reason for the failure of online sales efforts by traditional automakers was the standard way of selling vehicles as good enough, and the effort and investment required to create an online channel wasn't perceived as worthwhile when no one (aside from Tesla) offered a similar capability. People had been buying cars through dealers for a century, and designing and implementing the technology, relationships, marketing, and execution required to create an effective online sales channel was perceived as throwing money at fixing a process that wasn't broken. A time-tested business model centered around driving customers into an enclosed space full of strangers and ideally getting them to sit in an even smaller space with a stranger, with no idea when that space was last cleaned, suddenly doesn't look that great during a pandemic brought about by a virus that spreads primarily through human proximity. Suddenly, dealer networks that saw vehicle delivery as "too expensive" and online or phone purchasing as distractions were able to implement these practices in a matter of weeks.

Businesses express concerns around ethical risks for their AI initiatives

“As organizations become more invested in AI, it is imperative that they have a common framework, principles and practices for the board, C-suite, enterprise and third-party ecosystem to proactively manage AI risks and build trust with both their business and customers,” said Irfan Saif, principal and AI co-leader, Deloitte & Touche. ”Our study results show that while early adopters of AI are still bullish, their competitive advantage may be waning as barriers to adoption continue to fall and more creative use of the technology grows. “In the era of pervasive AI, where capabilities are readily available, organizations should go beyond efficiency and push boundaries to create new AI-powered products and services to be successful.” — Nitin Mittal, principal and AI co-leader, Deloitte Consulting. As purchasing barriers have dropped and AI is more available, choosing the right technology is more important than ever. Those AI adopters surveyed tend to “buy” their capabilities rather than “build” them. To become smarter consumers, companies should evaluate the landscape, find the most advanced AI and integrate those technologies into their infrastructure.

Tech Sector Job Interviews Assess Anxiety, Not Software Skills

“Technical interviews are feared and hated in the industry, and it turns out that these interview techniques may also be hurting the industry’s ability to find and hire skilled software engineers,” says Chris Parnin, an assistant professor of computer science at NC State and co-author of a paper on the work. “Our study suggests that a lot of well-qualified job candidates are being eliminated because they’re not used to working on a whiteboard in front of an audience.” Technical interviews in the software engineering sector generally take the form of giving a job candidate a problem to solve, then requiring the candidate to write out a solution in code on a whiteboard – explaining each step of the process to an interviewer. Previous research found that many developers in the software engineering community felt the technical interview process was deeply flawed. So the researchers decided to run a study aimed at assessing the effect of the interview process on aspiring software engineers. For this study, researchers conducted technical interviews of 48 computer science undergraduates and graduate students. Half of the study participants were given a conventional technical interview, with an interviewer looking on.

Taking the Pain Out of Buying and Selling Data

Narrative’s SaaS-based application provides a platform to connect buyers and sellers. On the buy side, it helps companies acquire and integrate second- and third-party data, typically for the purpose of AI or analytics. On the sell side, companies that license Narrative’s software have a mechanism for reaching multiple buyers in an orderly and streamlined fashion. There’s a lot of work that goes into buying and using, on both sides of the equation, according to Jordan. There are all the usual questions about the format that the data takes (CSV, Parquet, JSON, etc.), the units of measurement. Once data scientists or analysts have studied a sample of the outside data and decided that it will work for their particular activity, then data engineers are called in to build the ETL pipelines to move the data, which can often take months. On top of the logistical questions, there are legalities that must be taken into account. Buyers and sellers both must take measures to assure that they’re not violating regulations for their particular geography. Finance teams typically gets involved to obtain usage data and make the payments. And if anything changes to the data or the contract, all the engineers, analysts, data scientists, lawyers, and finance folks get to drop whatever they’re doing and revisit the matter.

The Twitter mega-hack. What you need to know

There are a number of ways in which online accounts can get hijacked. These include, for instance: You might have made the mistake of reusing your Twitter password elsewhere on the net. If the other place suffers a data breach, a hacker might try to use that same password against your Twitter account. Two-factor authentication can help protect against this, but the best advice of all is to never reuse passwords; You might have had your password stolen from you via a phishing attack or keylogging malware. Two-factor authentication can also help protect against this. In addition, password managers and security software can also provide a layer of defence; You might have mistakenly told someone your password. Passwords should be secret. It’s hard to believe, however, that someone is big enough buddies with Bill Gates, Kanye West, Uber, and the rest to have had their passwords discussed over a candlelit dinner; Your account could be hijacked by a third-party app that is compromised. If the app had access to your Twitter account it could post tweets without your permission. An attack just like that happened to my Twitter account a few years ago.

How Chase is using AI to update banking

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, the U.S. government launched the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) a couple of months back to ensure money continues to roll into the workforce — this, in turn, led to significant paperwork for banks, which have had to deal with a mountain of applications. The Small Business Administration (SBA) reportedly had to process 75 years’ worth of loan applications in just two months, which gives some idea as to the scale of this undertaking. Faced with such an unprecedented challenge, one that affected the lives and livelihoods of literally millions of Americans, Chase had to come up with a way of classifying documents that its customers were uploading as part of the PPP application process. It did so with a view toward helping its business banking division and underwriters wade through as many applications as possible. “They needed a way to understand what documents our customers were uploading, which we hadn’t yet tagged every single document as part of our workflow,” Nudelman explained. “So instead, after the fact, we worked with the people building the process and technology to use natural language processing (NLP) to ensure the documents that have been uploaded were tagged appropriately, which helps the underwriters’ ability to process those applications, getting customers their loans faster.”

Are we at the tipping point for global biometric payment card adoption?

Well, according to analysis from Goode Intelligence, there are several hurdles to overcome before biometric payment cards can be shipped to users in their millions – including cost and scheme certification. Despite being hailed as the future-tech solution to end our use of cash and cards, mobile payments haven’t reached anywhere near the expected level of public adoption in the UK. As of 2019, only around 19% of the UK population used mobile payments. Of course, the fact that Apple, giants in the payment app space, launched a physical credit card last year, and that Google is set to follow suit is further proof of the customer demand for bank cards over mobile payments. Therefore, it’s clear that the majority of the population still prefer the ease and familiarity of contactless cards. In fact, IDEX research found that six-in-ten (60%) UK consumers would not give up their debit card in favour of mobile payments, so it’s crucial that banks continue to evolve smart bank cards for the next generation of payments. Of course, cost caused by the manufacturing complexity of biometric payment cards has long been seen as the main barrier to mass adoption. 

Open Data Institute releases funding for ethical data sharing projects

Open Data Manchester (ODM) is also set to receive funding, but differs in its focus on helping hundreds of small-scale energy and eco-efficiency cooperatives share data among their members. “With regards to data, cooperatives are in quite a unique space because they’re intrinsically democratic organisations, so there will be some kind of representation or governance process where every member’s view should be represented at a board level, which means that you’ve got already got an environment of enhanced trust,” said Julian Tait, chief executive at ODM, adding that the relationship most people have with their current energy providers is “slightly begrudging” and one of “general dislike”. “If you’ve got an environment where you’re sharing data within the cooperative, they can understand my energy requirements [and]… you can start to design more responsive energy systems – that’s a bit harder to do, or it’s done very opaquely, in regards to the large energy providers.” He added the funding will help ODM work with Carbon Cooperative to design how a data cooperative could look.

Establishing Change Agents within Organisations Using Shu-Ha-Ri

How this can help us to achieve mastery of agile or business agility can be explained with a simple example. Let us take stand-ups, for instance. Shu: We need to make sure that teams start doing stand-ups and communicate the three basics of the stand up: what was done yesterday, what will be done today, and are there any impediments? We need to make sure that teams continue to follow this until they become good at it. Ha: At this stage, teams can come up with certain deviations, like adding "any other business" as a fourth thing or completely changing it to walking the board style to fulfill their requirements. Ri: This is the stage where the flow of information happens naturally and teams do not even need to think before doing stand-ups. This is the stage where this becomes an in-built thing for the team. So with these learning stages or paths, we can see organizations leaning towards agility by getting into the heart of agile by first collaborating to understand the vision and motive, then delivering with actual intent, and then introspecting and improving based on their needs. And when people in an organization start reaching towards the Ri stage, they are then ready to do different things.

Quote for the day:

"Leadership involves finding a parade and getting in front of it." -- John Naisbitt

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