Consumer Products & Services


How Can Artificial Intelligence Transform Businesses?

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How can artificial intelligence transform businesses? We're already seeing a wave of innovation across industries. From real-world data, computers are learning to recognize patterns too complex, too massive, or too subtle for hand-crafted software or even humans. They and the Cleveland Cavaliers, the 2016 champs, use AI to put their teams at the top of their game. Retailers have been among the most active adopters of deep learning-powered intelligence.


Bayesian Reasoning and Machine Learning: David Barber: 8601400496688: Amazon.com: Books

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"With approachable text, examples, exercises, guidelines for teachers, a MATLAB toolbox and an accompanying web site, Bayesian Reasoning and Machine Learning by David Barber provides everything needed for your machine learning course. Jaakko Hollmén, Aalto University "Barber has done a commendable job in presenting important concepts in probabilistic modeling and probabilistic aspects of machine learning. The chapters on graphical models form one of the clearest and most concise presentations I have seen. The book has wide coverage of probabilistic machine learning, including discrete graphical models, Markov decision processes, latent variable models, Gaussian process, stochastic and deterministic inference, among others. The material is excellent for advanced undergraduate or introductory graduate course in graphical models, or probabilistic machine learning.


China races ahead in public use of facial-recognition technology, for good or for ill

The Japan Times

SHANGHAI – From toilet-paper dispensers to fast-food restaurants, travel and crime-fighting, China is taking the lead in rolling out facial-recognition technology. Advocates say it makes life easier, quicker and safer. Opponents say it is another example of how the Chinese government keeps a sinister and increasingly close eye on its 1.4 billion people. Shanghai and other cities have recently started deploying facial recognition to catch those who flout the rules of the road. Jaywalkers at some intersections have their images flashed up on a nearby screen for public shaming and must pay a fine of 20 yuan ($3) to have it removed.


How WayBlazer is Transforming Travel Planning with Artificial Intelligence

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For the past few years, the travel industry has been exploring innovative ways to utilize artificial intelligence (AI), in an effort to unlock the promise of more efficient communications and greater customer service between travelers and service provides. So far, most of that potential has remained largely untapped, despite significant advances in both travel and AI sectors. WayBlazer however, is building an extremely powerful travel recommendation engine, and it's doing it with a little help from AI. WayBlazer's Travel Graph uses artificial intelligence to learn about tens of millions of travel products and thousands of global destinations. It ingests and extracts useful from descriptions, reviews, blogs, images, and videos to develop a frame of travel intelligence that's used to power the most relevant recommendations for today's travelers. By using machine learning models, their travel graph gets smarter with every user search.


h-s-open-robot-themed-hotels-tokyo-urban-areas-around-japan

The Japan Times

Major travel agency H.I.S. Co. will open Henn na Hotels, or "strange" hotels, where humanlike robots greet guests at the reception desk, in Tokyo and other urban areas. Ten such hotels will be launched by the end of March 2019, H.I.S. said Monday. The hotels will mainly target foreign tourists and business travelers, with rooms boasting the latest facilities, including 4K ultrahigh-definition televisions, according to the company. H.I.S. opened the first Henn na Hotel in March 2015 at Huis Ten Bosch, the Dutch theme park in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture, the second in March 2017 in Urayasu, Chiba Prefecture, and the third in August in Gamagori, Aichi Prefecture. The first Henn na Hotel in Tokyo will open in December in the Nishikasai area in Edogawa Ward.


Starbucks Just Made Your Coffee Experience More Innovative

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When Starbucks (SBUX) announced the closure of all of its 379 Teavana stores by the spring of 2018, it came as a warning signal to many analysts. But for long-term investors, Starbucks future growth prospects could look more promising. Acquired in 2012 for $620 million, Teavana stores are set to close due to declining foot traffic in malls. As a result of this retrenchment, Starbucks incurred asset impairment and goodwill charges of roughly $100 million during the third quarter. Following the news, Starbucks shares fell 1.2% to $58.80 in after-hours trading.


Restaurants Tackle Mobile-Ordering Problems

Wall Street Journal

New signs in the store direct customers who placed online orders to the pickup area, and employees were given extra training that includes guiding to-go customers to the right area. Now, during peak traffic periods at certain cafes, a barista uses one machine to make drinks for mobile customers while another uses the second to make drinks for in-store guests. Some companies that have offered digital ordering for years, like Domino's Pizza Inc., are facing new challenges as technology evolves. "If it's a local coupon that's only available in one or two stores, the voice assistant has a hard time figuring out which coupon you're talking about," says Dennis Maloney, Domino's chief digital officer.


Flipboard on Flipboard

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Kind of an employment company run by three humans overseeing 59 robots (actually computers working on algorithms created at the University of Amsterdam to solve problems). Heineken and Unilever are big customers, turning to aigency for specific problems; Stolze in turn hooks them up with researchers and even students from the University of Amsterdam. Malm claims Domino's email open rate increased 27% using AI and language optimization. After all, that man in the procurement office who doesn't have to spend hours running from office to office to settle a mysterious invoice won't want to be using that saved time to tread water.


Who's Afraid Of Artificial Intelligence?

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Stolze was addressing reporters in StartUp Village at the Amsterdam Science Park on the sidelines of the first World Summit AI in Amsterdam October 11-12. Heineken and Unilever are big customers, turning to aigency for specific problems; Stolze in turn hooks them up with researchers and even students from the University of Amsterdam. "We apply our own cognitive bias in writing," says Parry Malm, a speaker at the World Summit AI and CEO of Phrasee, a UK-based company whose vision is "to supercharge digital marketing using artificial intelligence." Malm claims Domino's email open rate increased 27% using AI and language optimization.


Automate Your Home without Breaking Your Pocket - Amazon's Echo Dot

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The days of manually turning off the TV or ordering pizza on the phone are numbered. Citizens can now talk to their devices and ask it to perform tasks. If you want to join the gang but scared of the upfront money, Amazon's 2nd Generation Echo Dot is here to save you. At merely $50, it is as capable as its bigger siblings with only a few features removed.