What if you could run infinite permutations of a product design until you found the one that was fully optimized in terms of materials, price and production methods? With the power of AI (artificial intelligence) and machine learning, this is not only possible — it’s happening now. Experts project that 2019 is the year that these advanced technologies truly enter the mainstream and become a part of our everyday culture, instead of simply a fascinating case study in the future. Manufacturing and design are only a few of the industries that are expected to feel the impact of artificial intelligence and machine learning, as business leaders and marketers are prepping for the changes that will come. From the rise of the digital workers to real-time optimization and personalization, see how these two far-reaching technologies are likely to change the game in 2019.
Data is the Name of the Game
If you’re not comfortable with handling Big Data (yes, capitalized!), then you better start brushing up on how to deal with the complexities that are heading your way. Hundreds or even thousands of data points will need to be distilled into reporting that makes logical sense to individuals before it is useful. While the overabundance of data seems like a “good thing” at first blush, when you look deeper you will see many organizations becoming paralyzed by the sheer magnitude of information that is heading their way. Machine learning can help sift through the various permutations, but it requires individuals with a firm understanding of data structure and how its interrelated before reports can even be written. Organizations who are able to nail their data structures and leverage machine learning will be the ones to win at business and marketing in the future.
Telecommunications (and Marketing) Will Thrive
A well-written chatbot may be the customer service person of the future — endlessly positive, never becoming frustrated and always helpful to their human users. Machine learning has truly revolutionized chatbots, making them more accessible than ever before. Relatively simple interfaces allow humans to interact with machines in ways that are much more natural than they have been in the past. Amazon Alexa, Google’s Assistant, and even the much-maligned Siri are making serious strides towards becoming a truly usable solution for search and interaction with data and brands. Users can now place orders, check status, register for events and more by using these ML-driven assistants.
We may not be ready for robot doctors or surgery quite yet, but there are some indicators that Google is headed in that direction. They have created an AI interface that allows them to predict the likelihood of a patient’s death by analyzing billions of data points across others that are found in its database. Then, machine learning kicks in to hone predictions over time as the actual patient outcomes are fed back into the system. Some of the data points utilized include health history, demographics and more. There are also promising applications for this type of machine learning with laboratory tests, where machines are taking the places of lab rats to reduce animal testing.
The majority of these applications are still in a testing phase, but 2019 is expected to see some breakout new uses that will enter the mainstream awareness. AI and machine learning are used in marketing, too — as a way to predict the actions that a user will take based on their demographics and browsing behavior. These models often take into account how similar users have acted in order to encourage a preferred outcome.