A Cognitive Future For Everyone

by Stephen Wright
Ever since my visit to SXSW in 2016, and in particular the time I spend inside the IBM Cognitive Studio I have been fascinated by how SME’s could potentially get into the machine learning space relatively easily.
After a few quick personal questions punched into an iPad you were given entry into the IBM Cognitive Studio with an RFID wristband that personalised each experience based on your responses whilst still being open to the masses. For example a Virtual Reality bike ride alongside the San Francisco bay for me was completely different to a friend who was entered into a downhill road race.

The IBM Cognitive Studio at SXSW 2016

It was pitched as ‘Cognitive’ or machine learning at its best, however I know that in reality it was large scale algorithms that were pre-written that determined the experience we received.

It wasn’t the overall experience or idea of simple personalisation that really excited me, but rather the fact that much of what IBM were showcasing was being made available through their Bluemix platform.
Everything from Personality Insights, Language Translators, Natural Language Understanding, Tone Analyzers to Visual Recognition APIs are available to developers to create whatever takes their fancy.

Uncover insights, engage in new ways, make decisions with more confidence and do your best work with Watson, today.”

Its never been easier for SME’s to trial and test the waters with some of these amazing APIs. Machine learning and AI doesn’t need to remain a game for large companies with huge budgets, and it certainly doesn’t need to just be used to create another chat bot.
The true innovation in this space will come from the tinkerers who are willing to test and learn and maybe find something brilliant in doing so.
IBM’s own website encourages this behaviour by asking users to “Uncover insights, engage in new ways, make decisions with more confidence and do your best work with Watson, today.”

Personalised VR Bike Rides

So, taking heed of my own advice Data Hatch will be exploring all that IBM has to offer in the coming months. We will of course update you on any interesting findings that come out of our experiments.
We are particularity interested to see if we can train Watsons’ Visual Recognition software to identify teams or locations in social media when no tags are used similar to what Ditto Labs currently do with brand recognition.


Let's use data to make confident decisions