As underscored in Axios’s Login newsletter today, Microsoft is gearing up for a series of AI initiatives. One of them is the acquisition of Lobe that enables organizations to build AI apps and interfaces without needing to know how to code. Imagine how many departments’ ideas can now come to life more easily — from employee training, customer service communication to patient monitoring. Watch this trend as AI becomes the underlying technology in b-to-c and b-to-b service.
Beautiful voices and percussion are intertwined in this song by the Argentinean all-female group La Colmena’s song. The mini groups diverge with slightly different tunes and beats and then converge. Amazing harmony.
You may wonder what’s so different about a Blockchain, having already used so many peer-to-peer networks. The biggest hope is that it will bring transparency to connections in a supply chain. And each block player will have ownership of its own data – which will be cemented in time, unchanged once entered to the chain. The hype is its security – it is not, as evidenced by cryptocurrency crimes.
Illustration credit: Greg Kessler
Artificial Intelligence… 5G…Blockchain… no matter what the buzz word du jour might be, content will always be the differentiation point. Yes we need smart distribution strategies but content is what holds the audience’s attention.
Immersive experiences communicate deeper and help convert viewers into donors, shows the most recent study from Nielsen on potential VR adopters (paVRr). The study gauged attitudes of 1,000 paVRrs aged 18-54 about 134 charities. The group appeared to be advocates of technology and education in general, with 49% supporting increased technology access and 41% supporting universal primary education.
To further measure the effectiveness of VR as a donation tool, Nielsen created an experiential setting in its Las Vegas research labs focusing on 14 pieces of charity VR content: about 100 US consumers viewed a 360 video in Samsung Gear, while another 100 viewed a piece of midroll (i.e.,digital ad that appears in the middle of a video) on a tablet as a comparison. The experiment showed that those who viewed the VR content were significantly more likely to recall the brand than those who viewed the midroll (84% vs. 53%). They were also more likely to seek additional info about the brand (48% vs. 37%). Just as impressively, 48% of those who viewed the 360 video indicated they would donate to the viewed causes afterward vs. 38% of those who watched the midroll.
The same efficacy in communication can be brought to any ‘pitch’ — social or commercial. It’s a tremendous opportunity for anyone looking to stand out of the crowd while asking for donations for a cause, seeking start up funding, or asking to be a brand’s agency of record.
The hopeful summary on voice technology from Digiday ends on a somewhat low note: It’s hard to get return users on voice apps. In fact, only 3 percent of those who used Google home app skills in late December were actively using these skills in the second week. Holiday effect? Maybe. This trend signals a utility problem. Technologies take off because they help us save time, money. Or they entertain us. No matter what the creative wrap around a voice technology might be, it needs to do these things efficiently or it will not stick.
I am fascinated by VR and related technologies that can speed up time to market. Imagine if your brainstorm sessions were more fruitful, you could demo the ideas more effectively and sell more and quickly. VR programs such as Tilt Brush, Quill, A-Painter give users the tools to illustrate and collaborate on ideas. Powerpoint – move over! These programs help convey ideas in immersive settings and allow for ideas to flourish vs. forcing things into quadrants.
Once you draw up the ideas, then you can illustrate in fine detail with 3D modeling software. My colleagues Harry Brisson and Matt Price recommended I check out Blender 3D and Autodesk, maker of Maya and 3D Studio Max. There is also Unity — an open source platform where majority of current VR/AR apps are created.
Majority of use cases for VR/AR/3D software are in entertainment (e.g., animation), education (e.g., training) and healthcare (e.g., doctors training on surgical procedures). They all underscore how we can create both efficient and higher quality storytelling/learning environments.
What if we were able to quantify how VR enabled groups to come up with more and better ideas, got agencies and clients to see eye to eye and overall just converted better? Any other ideas on which VR features or programs can be used in business?
If people can get emotional about content, why should we be surprised about emotional connections with robots that have life like features and voices? Hasbro’s robotic cat that keeps Alzheimer patients company is a micro example of how AI can be social and part of everyday life.
Here’s my SIL’s robot cat– whom she claims calms her down, doesn’t come with vet bills and has a lifetime renewable by batteries. And here’s another NYT journalist who agrees with her on the soothing qualities of robocats.
As we step into the post-real era, there are a growing number of industry reports on how artificial intelligence (AI) is poised to replace human labor. The Obama Administration’s report on the topic noted a broad range (nine to 47 percent) of the US labor force can be threatened by AI — especially if new jobs are not created at similar or higher rates than lost jobs. Spreading news of his latest AI-based initiative, Neuralink, Elon Musk even professes that digital super intelligence will surpass that of humans and take over.
Ultimately institutions look for efficiency – AI will take over in cases where it’s cheaper than the real life alternative.