Chatbots to replace humans at customer support very soon

AI and Chatbots Are Transforming The Customer Experience.

Artificial Intelligence is dramatically changing business as chatbots fueled by AI are becoming a viable customer service channel. The best ones deliver a customer experience in which customers cannot tell if they are communicating with a human or a computer. AI has come a long way in recognizing the content – and context – of customers’ requests and questions.

Studies and reports show that customers want quick, frictionless solutions to their problems and answers to their questions. No doubt there are acceptance issues for AI and chatbots. Some customers have always used traditional phone support and have a hard time accepting anything else. But, there is a growing contingent of customers who are increasingly open to new technology, especially if it can enhance their customer experience. As the technology improves and acceptance grows, chatbots, powered by AI, will have a strong role in customer service and support.

Salesforce first launched an SMS chatbot product in 2014 and has since expanded it to include Facebook Messenger. The company also offers a product called Live Agent Chat, which facilitates human-to-human interactions. Meredith Flynn-Ripely, vice president of mobile messaging at Salesforce predicts that by 2020, the average person will have more conversations a day with bots than they do with their spouse.

“We really see bots as changing the job description and turning agents into intelligent problem solvers”
– Meredith Flynn-Ripely

Leveraging its vast amount of user data, Facebook opened up its messenger platform to developers and businesses in April 2016. Like Salesforce, Facebook already has a lot of data about its users. Artificial intelligence and chatbots are only as smart as the data they have access to. Chatbots built on top of Facebook’s system will likely have more advanced conversation abilities than chatbots built from scratch.

Shop Spring’s Assistant

Many consumers would rather handle customer service issues by chat than over the phone – 56% according to a Nielsen study commissioned by Facebook. But this doesn’t mean the future of chatbots is limited to words. Soon human-voice generating machines would gain popularity in a number of industries as an important customer service tool.

Using artificial intelligence to communicate with customers can lead to better engagement and understanding. Yet there are some technological barriers that need to be overcome before the technology is as seamless as its engineers dream it could be. Once these hurdles are overcome, chatbots could have a much bigger role in our day-to-day lives than they do now.

Let us know about your views in the comments section below!

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AI vs ISIS: The Pentagon working on AI project to wipe out terror

AI vs Terror

When we talk about the military application of Artificial Intelligence, the first thought that comes to our mind is The Terminator. Sure everyone loves watching Arnold single-handedly destroying thugs and looking insane while doing it. But the reality is far from it. This month The US Defense Department announced that it was taking a huge leap towards the regular use of AI. The Pentagon also announced the completion of it’s program. the program to bring State-of-the-art AI technology to American military.

Project Maven is helping US Special Operations Command intelligence analysts to identify objects in footage from ScanEagle AI drones. They are using special algorithms to determine potential threats in the battlefield like improvised explosive devices and car bombs.

Project Maven has been operationally deployed in the Middle East to aid in the fight against ISIS. The AI machine is currently operating at 80% accuracy and has correctly identified people, cars and types of building. The team plans to extend the algorithms to smaller tactical drones before incorporating medium-altitude Predator and Reaper drones by next summer.

This marks the first time the military has fielded AI systems using Deep Learning and Neural Networks om the battlefield. Project Maven is nothing like the “Skynet” in Terminator. This AI possesses only narrow intelligence. It can only accomplish the task of monitoring feeds from the drones and virtually nothing else.

“What we’re setting the stage for is a future of human-machine teaming up” – AF LT Gen

Air Force Lt Gen John NT Jack Shanahan told Defense One: “What we’re setting the stage for is a future of human-machine teaming. “This is not machines taking over. This is not a technological solution to a technological problem.“It’s an operational solution to an operational problem.”Shanahan described the mechanism as “prototype warfare”. The team trained the AI by going through hours of archived battlefield footage. The algorithm has been paired with a system called Minotaur, a “correlation and georegistration application”.

Would you like to see The Terminator in action? You know where the comment section is!

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Google AI Generates Human Voice – Artificial intelligence to replace human interaction?

Google has been excelling in the AI sphere for a while, and its Assistant is proof of how far it has come.

Not only does it perform most actions through voice recognition, but it also provides text feedback in a voice that is ever so close to sounding as natural as humans. From stiff and unnatural to smooth and life-like voice generation, Google has come a long way.

After investigating a recently published Google research paper (via Quartz), it looks like we might be closer to this reality than you might think. A research paper published by Google this month talks about a text-to-speech system they call Tacotron 2. In it, the researchers claim the AI can imitate human voice with excellent accuracy.

The system is the second official generation of the technology by Google, which consists of two deep neural networks. The first network translates the text into a spectrogram (pdf), a visual way to represent audio frequencies over time. That spectrogram is then fed into WaveNet, a system from an AI research lab. It reads the chart and generates the corresponding audio elements accordingly.

In the last section, Google provides side-by-side examples of a human voice alongside the AI created one — with outstanding results.

Here’s the AI generated voice and also the human version of the same.

“George Washington was the first President of the United States.”

 

The Google researchers also demonstrate that Tacotron 2 can handle hard-to-pronounce words and names, as well as improvise it. For instance, capitalized words are stressed, as someone would do when indicating that specific word is an important part of a sentence.

Yet there is still a vast gap between an AI that can read aloud like a human and one that can converse like a human. However, the system is only trained to mimic the one female voice. To speak like a male or different female, Google would need to train the system again.

Let us know about your views in the comments section below!

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Haven: Edward Snowden backed counter surveillance Android app

The most recognizable whistleblower on the planet, Edward Snowden, is launching an app designed to give users more power in protecting themselves and their stuff. The app, called Haven, turns any Android smartphone into a powerful security device that uses all of the device’s capabilities to protect against attacks on privacy.

It records video, sound, vibration, and detects motion and changes in light, and effectively turns a spare Android smartphone into a watchdog device that can be placed just about anywhere.

Haven
Counter Surveillance in your palm

Haven is an open source app that will run on any Android phone, particularly inexpensive and older devices. It operates like a surveillance system, using the device’s camera, audio recording capability and even accelerometer to detect movement and notify a user. The idea is that, even with the best encryption in the world, a device is vulnerability to physical, in-person tampering — also known as “evil maid” because literally a hotel maid could access it.

“Haven is for people who need a way to protect their personal spaces and possessions without compromising their own privacy,” – Official Website, Haven

The app was developed by The Guardian Project, Freedom Of The Press and Snowden to offer eyes and ears to prevent, or at least increase awareness, of whether a device has been tampered with. “We designed Haven for investigative journalists, human rights defenders, and people at risk of forced disappearance to create a new kind of herd immunity.”

The application works a lot like smart home security systems. It can be customized to detect whatever you want, making it useful as everything from a motion-detecting camera to a discreet audio recorder.

“You shouldn’t have to be saving the world to benefit from Haven,” said Snowden, but acknowledged that the people most likely to be using Haven were paranoid developers and human rights activists in the global south.

Download the app from your play store(beta)!

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Self-healing Glass Discovered By Accident – The end of a Cracked Screen?

A cracked screen can ruin your day, and not having the right repair options could ruin your month.

Gone are those days of Nokia 3310, when dropping your phone was no big deal. You pick it up, dust it off, and put it back in your pocket. These days, however, dropping your smartphone gives you that mini heart attack because (gasp!) you just might end up with a cracked screen. If you’ve ever had to deal with that, you know what a hassle it can be. Slapping a screen protector is the only stopgap until you have to have the screen replaced, which might burn a hole in your pocket. A team of Japanese researchers say they’ve discovered the holy grail of mobile computing. A new type of glass that can heal itself from cracks.

Types of Smartphone Damages – Statistics

Titled “Mechanically robust, readily repairable polymers via tailored non-covalent cross-linking,” the research promises a unique hard glass-like polymer called “polyether-thioureas” that can heal itself with only hand pressure with a temperature of 21 degree Celsius . This makes it different than other materials that need high heat to heal up from a break.

According to The Guardian, a graduate student, Yu Yanagisawa discovered the special glass polymer by mistake. The student thought the material would become a type of glue. He found that cut edges of the polymer would stick to each other. It formed a strong sheet when compressed by hand at 21 degrees Celsius. Further experimentation found that the healed material regained its original strength after a couple of hours. Yanagisawa said that he didn’t believe the results at first and repeated his experiments multiple times to confirm the finding.

“I hope the repairable glass becomes a new environment-friendly material that avoids the need to be thrown away if broken.” – Yanagisawa

This isn’t the first time we’ve seen self-repairing phone tech, of course, with screen protectors that heal themselves and a Motorola patent for a self-repairing screen. LG’s G Flex 2 (2015) came with a coating on its back that was capable of healing minor scratches over time. It failed to completely repair heavier damage. However, new breakthroughs like this may help make cracked screen and costly repairs a thing of the past.

Let us know about your thoughts on this self-healing polyester in the comment section below.

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Kaspersky Lab asks US court to overturn Trump govt ban

Moscow-based security software maker Kaspersky Lab said on Monday it has asked a U.S. court to overturn a Trump administration ban on use of its products in government networks. The firm said the move deprived them of a just process. The Russian Cybersecurity firm has vehemently denied the allegations. They also agreed to have their source code inspected.

In September, the US government gave federal agencies three months to remove the firm’s security software. It came amid mounting concern among U.S. officials that the software could risk Russian espionage and threaten national security.

Kaspersky
Kaspersky Lab has denied any involvement with Kremlin

 

The US ban cited “the ties between certain officials and Russian intelligence and other government agencies, and requirements under Russian law that allow Russian intelligence agencies to request or compel assistance from the firm and to intercept communications transiting Russian networks”.

“DHS has harmed Kaspersky Lab’s reputation and its commercial operations without any evidence of wrongdoing by the company,” Eugene Kaspersky

KasperskyKaspersky, which was founded by Eugene Kaspersky, a former software engineer in the Soviet intelligence service, is based in Moscow. The company has repeatedly denied it has ties to any government and said it would not help a government with cyber espionage. Further investigation is pending.

 

It comes two months after the Cybersecurity firm offered to submit source codes for its software to be inspected by an independent party, a move US officials said was welcome but was deemed insufficient. The lawsuit was filed in the US District Court for the District of Columbia.

The Department of Homeland Security did not immediately respond to requests for comment. It’s also unclear whether the company still has plans to open offices in Toronto, Chicago and Los Angeles.

Kaspersky users: Leave us your thoughts in the comment section!

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The death of Net Neutrality

Net Neutrality – hearing this word a lot these days? Here’s what all the fuss is about!

It is a day after the FCC voted 3-2 to end net neutrality rules, and the world has not ended. For those still hazy on the issue: net neutrality ensures that internet service providers, or ISPs, must service websites with equal speed. Without it, smaller companies
like nonprofits and startups may not be able to afford higher costs for adequate speed while ISPs — like cable companies now — could
sort internet activity into prepaid packages.

“It is time for us to restore internet freedom, we are restoring the light-touch framework that has governed the internet for most of
its existence.” – FCC Chairman Ajit Pai

By now you must have seen posts in your Facebook feed from your liberal friends, and even some of your not-liberal friends buying
into the notion that net neutrality being gone is going to kill the internet. But guess what, ending net neutrality isn’t going to
have any effect on your life at all.

Net Neutrality - FCC

The posts that say the evil internet corporations are going to throttle certain websites and are going to say you can only see content they approve of. Some also say removing government regulation will make it hard to create an internet business. None of this is true. None of these apocalyptic things are really going to happen.

What may happen? Yes, you may have to pay more to get video on the internet, because you use more resources. The net neutrality
argument is akin to people wanting to pay exactly the same for fuel to drive a 100 kilometers, no matter which vehicle you drive. Drive a
compact hybrid? Sorry, you’re going to pay the same to drive 100 miles as the guy who drives a Suburban.

You also may pay less if you don’t heavily use video services on the internet, like you already do now. Internet providers offer
tiers of internet service. You’re already paying a lower amount if you want a lower bandwidth, and a higher amount if you want a
higher bandwidth. Under the net neutrality rules, some providers even have data caps.

Within the next few years, 5G mobile data is going to become a reality across the nation. Beyond that, T-Mobile has already announced that they will be rolling out “Gigabit Class LTE.” That’s right, never mind needing a fiber optic cable to your home, you’ll be able to get gigabit service over the air. With multiple carriers offering that service, and customers pushing to remove data caps for
service, competition will bring better service.

After net neutrality, the internet, how we use it, and how we pay for it could be wildly different within one year. What’s certain is that now is perhaps the most crucial time for the internet since its inception.

Let us know your views on Net Neutrality in the comment section below!

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Nvidia’s New Titan V aimed at speeding up AI processing

The CEO of Nvidia, Jensen Huang showed up at a gathering of artificial intelligence researchers in Long Beach, California. He started this week with a couple of big surprises.

One was an orchestral piece of music inspired from the Star Wars franchise, but composed by an AI program from Belgian startup AIVA. It obviously relies on Nvidia chips. The music was an instant hit among a crowd of AI geeks attending the Neural Information Processing Systems Conference, known as NIPS. This included some giants in the field like Nicholas Pinto, head of deep learning at Apple, and Yann LeCun, director of AI Research at Facebook.

Huang started off by mentioning how competitive the AI chip market has become. Analysts say sales of specialized microprocessors for use with AI programs like machine learning and image recognition will grow astronomically. The expected growth is from about $500 million last year to $20 billion to $30 billion within five years. Nvidia has the edge over it’s competitors Intel and Advanced Micro devices. With the former developing AI-focused chips from its 2016 acquisition of Nervana Systems.

Nvidia Titan V
The new Titan V offers unparalleled performance in AI computing

 

Planning to stay ahead of them , Huang had a new graphics card called the Titan V to show off in Long Beach. Suitable for installing in ordinary PCs, the Titan V contains Nvidia’s latest “Volta” chip design with some 21 billion individual transistors. Priced at $3,000, the Titan V comes just eight months after Nvidia unveiled its Titan Xp design. It was based on its earlier “Pascal” chips.

“Our vision for Volta was to push the outer limits of high performance computing and AI. We broke new ground with its new processor architecture. instructions, numerical formats, memory architecture and processor links.” said Huang.

“With TITAN V, we are putting Volta into the hands of researchers and scientists all over the world. I can’t wait to see their breakthrough discoveries!” – Huang.

The new card is a little more than double the price but offers up to nine times faster performance. It was tested on major AI apps like Google’s TensorFlow software, Amazon’s MXNet and Facebook’s Caffe 2, Nvidia said. The older Nvidia card competed head on with AMD’s similarly priced Vega Frontier Edition, but the Titan V may prompt the need for a higher-priced, higher-performing AMD reply if it catches on.

Leave your thoughts about Nvidia’s Titan V in the comments below!

 

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ONNX building an Open Source AI framework with the help of AWS.

AWS (Amazon Web Service), subsidiary of Amazon.com, has become the newest member of deep learning community’s alliance on the ONNX (Open Neutral Network Exchange), and recently came out with advanced artificial intelligence environment.

Facebook and Microsoft led the effort of the framework.

Part of the collaboration, AWS made it’s own open source Python Package, and other side ONNX-Mxnet already available as a deep learning framework that offers application programming interfaces across multiple language including Scala, Python and open source static software R.

The ONNX design will help the developers to build and train models for other frameworks, like PyTorch, Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit or Caffe2, AWS Deep Learning Engineering Manager, Hagay Lupesko and Software Developer Roshani Nagmote wrote in an online post last week. It will let developers import those models into MXNet, and run them for inference.

 

For Developers

Microsoft and Facebook launched support for ONNX this summer, a shared model of interoperablity for the enhancement of the AI. Microsoft committed its Cognitive Toolkit, Caffe2 and PyTorch to support ONNX.

“Cognitive Toolkit and other frameworks make it easier for developers to construct and run computational graphs that represent neural networks,” Microsoft said.

Inceptive versions of ONNX code and documentation were made available on Github.

AWS and Microsoft Introducing Gluon a new library for machine learning, a new interface in Apache MXnet that helps developer to build and train deep learning modules.

According to Apache MXnet community earlier released a version 0.12 of MXnet, which extends Gluon functionality for it’s new research,

Framework Method

“This looks like a great way to deliver inference regardless of which framework generated a model,” said Paul Teich, principal analyst at Tirias Research.

“This is basically a framework-neutral way to deliver inference,” he said LinuxInsider.

AWS and Microsoft and others cloud providers are under pressure from customer to be able to train on one network while dispatching on another, in order to advance AI, Teich Said.

“Framework interoperability is a good thing, and this will only help developers in making sure that models that they build on MXNet or Caffe or CNTK are interoperable,” Tractica’s Kaul quote.

Open Source

These companies like ONNX, AWS, Facebook, Microsoft they’ll know that they owe a significant amount of their triumph to the software development and open source, quoted Jeff Kaplan.

“The Open Neural Network Exchange is committed to producing similar benefits and innovations in AI,” he told LinuxInsider.

Numerous major tech companies have announced their plans to use and speed up the development of AI collaboration, In order to create uniform framework for development and research.

aws framwork

Let us know about the AWS AI framework in the comment section below.

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Google AI learned how to make cookie recipe and baked it.

Smart Cookie:

Artificial Intelligence tremendously growing into the world and now world depends on it, Recently published articles state that in future years AI bot will run the elections and now this, Google AI created the cookie recipe and baked it.

On recent blog post, Google notes that a small research team from Pittsburgh working on artificial intelligence to experimental desigIn the end, the cookies turned out to taste good.n.

For testing the technology, team set out to design,

the best possible CHOCOLATE cookies using given a set of INGREDIENTS

By Using Bayesian Optimization, team load the ingredients which they found in a cookie recipe. Then AI created the recipe which google employee tested itslef, and provide a “numerical score relative to store bought some cookie samples.”

We fed that rating back into the system, which learned from the rating and adjusted those “knobs” to create a new recipe. We did this dozens of times—baking, rating, and feeding it back in for a new recipe—and pretty soon the AI got much better at creating tasty recipes.”

Later programmers introduce cookies to their in-house chef and local bakers:

Working out of the Goat Bakery kitchen, Chef John and Jeanette mixed and matched some unusual ingredients like cardamom and szechuan pepper, using the measurements provided by Google’s system.”

The algorithm was created to speed up the process, It takes a set of directions, like numerous recipes, various methods and performs with different changes, also called as Hyperparameters.

The algorithms then persistently performs the orientation until it creates the recipe, AI using every ingredients like baking powder with some butter or soda until the perfect was accomplish.

As it turns out the algorithm worked, over the period of two months, the duo and AI created the 59 batches that evaluate with ingredients like cardamom and szechuan pepper before arriving at “a new take on the classic chocolate chip cookie: The Chocolate Chip and Cardamom Cookie.”

The chocolate chip and cardamom cookie recipe is available below:

Chocolate Chip and Cardamom Cookie

Taste the cookie and let us know in the comment section below:

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