CES for Marketers: Alexa Wows, Virtual Reality Underwhelms

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Over the past few years the CES trade show has become a familiar post-holidays pilgrimage for many of the country's biggest marketers. They see the event as a way to get a sneak peek at the latest tech gadgets and technologies that can help them engage with their customers. This year marketing executives from companies such as Coca-Cola, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, Campbell Soup and PepsiCo Inc. made their way to Las Vegas for the gathering. The convention was jam-packed with everything from self-driving cars to robots that play chess to Procter & Gamble's air-freshener spray that can connect with Alphabet Inc.'s Nest home to automatically release pleasant scents in the home. But there was one category that seemed to especially win over marketers: virtual assistants.


Yelling at Amazon's Alexa

The New Yorker

The first time I met Alexa, the A.I. robot voice inside the wine-bottle-size speaker known as the Amazon Echo, I was at my friends' house, in rural New England. "Currently, it is seventy-five degrees," she told us, and assured us that it would not rain. This was a year ago, and I'd never encountered a talking speaker before. When I razzed my friend for his love of gadgetry, he showed me some of Alexa's other tricks: telling us the weather, keeping a shopping list, ordering products from Amazon. This summer, Alexa decided again and again who the tickle monster's next victim was, saying their children's adorable nicknames in her strange A.I. accent.


The Arrival of Artificially Intelligent Beer

#artificialintelligence

The term "machine learning" covers a grab bag of algorithms, techniques, and technology that are by now pretty much everywhere in modern life. However, machine intelligence has recently started to be used not just for identifying problems but to build better products. Amongst the first is the world's only beers brewed with the help of machine intelligence, which went on sale a few weeks ago. The machine learning algorithms uses a combination of reinforcement learning and bayesian optimisation to assist the brewer in deciding how to change the recipe of the beer, with the algorithms learning from experience and customer feedback. Perhaps the most obvious intrusion of machine learning into the physical world is the voice recognition that drives Apple's Siri, or Amazon's Alexa.


Domain Term Extraction and Structuring via Link Analysis

AAAI Conferences

Domain ontologies contain information about the important concepts in a domain, the associated attributes and the relationships between various concepts. The manual creation of domain ontologies is an expensive and time consuming process. In this paper, we present an approach to the automatic extraction of domain ontologies from domainspecific text. This approach uses dependency relations between terms to represent text as a graph. The graph based ranking algorithm HITS is used to identify domain keywords and to structure them as concepts and attributes. Experiments on two different domains, digital cameras and wines, show that our method performs well in comparison to other approaches.


Starbucks launches voice ordering via app, Amazon's Alexa

U.S. News

FILE - This Dec. 20, 2010, file photo, shows signage at a Starbucks store in New York. Starbucks is launching voice ordering though its iPhone app. Starting Monday, Jan. 30, 2017, anyone with a device that has an Amazon device with Alexa, like the Echo smart speaker, is able to place a Starbucks order by just using their voice. Starbucks is also launching a beta test of voice ordering through its iPhone app. The Seattle-based coffee giant says the feature is being rolled out to a limited group of 1,000 people nationwide Monday.