Do you remember the first time that you saw R2D2 and C3P0 from Star Wars? These two robots exhibited human-like behavior as they interacted with people and the world around them. How about when the whole world was subject to machine control in The Matrix? That's a pretty frightening concept. These movies, like many others, have their own depictions of what Artificial Intelligence looks like, and means to us as a society.
Check out the "Media, entertainment, and advertising" sessions at the Strata Data Conference in San Jose, March 5-8, 2018. Hurry--best price ends December 8. Subscribe to the O'Reilly Data Show Podcast to explore the opportunities and techniques driving big data, data science, and AI. Find us on Stitcher, TuneIn, iTunes, SoundCloud, RSS. In this episode of the Data Show, I spoke with Christine Hung, head of data solutions at Spotify. Prior to joining Spotify, she led data teams at the NY Times and at Apple (iTunes).
You don't even need to make a purchase or visit a website for data science companies to collect information about you. There are all kinds of public data, from property tax records to company and university information, aggregated through startups such as Enigma while Thasos and Reveal Mobile sell pedestrian geolocation data. "I can show that someone saw that ad [online] and actually went into the store," Reveal Mobile CEO Brian Handly told the audience how his startup makes user profiles to map diverse data about individuals at the Artificial Intelligence & Data Science conference in New York City. "Then using that to enhance the advertising targeting." Reveal Mobile passively collects data from more than 50 million phones per month through local news apps, weather apps, travel apps such as Roadtripper and many more.
In an effort to make its mountains of data available to musicians and their managers, Spotify just launched the Spotify for Artists app that provides mobile access to analytics--everything from which playlists are generating new fans to how many streams they are getting overall. Think Google Analytics for musicians. It was originally launched in a web version earlier this year, but the mobile app allows musicians to access the info from the tour bus and the geographic streaming data can be instrumental to musicians and their teams to plan tours more effectively. Artists also have more control over their presence on Spotify including selecting the "artist's pick," and they can update their bios and post playlists.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning are two phrases that are thrown around a lot in the tech world these days. It has gotten the point where every company has to say they're an AI company, even if they really don't have AI capabilities, just to be taken seriously. The problem is that the best data scientists all want to work for the same few companies: Google, Facebook or Apple. So what are the smaller companies to do? That's the problem that H2O.ai is solving.
The Verge reported that the news around Ebola was wreaking havoc in Texas towns. It was spreading like wildfire on the social landscape and these were messages from sources that sounded like newspapers. This happened in 2014 and what followed were trails of fake news sending shock waves across the media and user world. As per The New York Times, just before the presidential elections in the US, fake news and memes became the tools for perpetrators to influence the outcome of elections. Fake news is rearing its ugly head time and time again.
Spotify, the largest on-demand music service in the world, has a history of pushing technological boundaries and using big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning to drive success. The digital music company with more than 100 million users has been busy this year enhancing its service and tech capabilities through several acquisitions. Industry watch dogs predict the company will launch an IPO in 2018. When you have tens of millions of people listening to music every minute of the day, you have access to an extraordinary amount of intel that includes what songs get the most play time, to where listeners are tuning in from and even what device they are using to access the service. There's no doubt Spotify is a data-driven company and it uses the data in every part of the organization to drive decisions.