Artificial Intelligence, a New Industrial Revolution

Artificial Intelligence, a New Industrial Revolution

Christian Watier

Président & Chief Science Officer

Category

Artificial Intelligence

Customer experience

Technology

Article published on

04 December 2018

Artificial Intelligence, a New Industrial Revolution

We are currently witnessing a great increase in efficiency and popularity of artificial intelligence applications, as well as its growing democratization. When we think of the arrival of intelligent personal assistants in our homes such as Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home, we realize the importance that artificial intelligence already occupies in our daily life.

Among the main challenges that this phenomenon raises, a question specific to each era of major technical and technological changes is resurfacing: What about our jobs? Will we be replaced by machines?

Industrial revolutions

Over the past three centuries, three major industrial revolutions have marked history with the arrival of new energies and techniques, leading to significant changes in the jobs which emanated from each of these eras.

Between the end of the XVIII and the beginning of the XIX century, the invention of the steam engine, mechanization and the development of railway networks have resulted in a sharp acceleration of economic, human and material exchanges that have transformed many professional fields and given rise to jobs that were unimaginable up until that point.

Similarly, the mastery of electricity, oil and gas, the communication revolution with the advent of the telegraph and telephone as well as the transportation revolution with automobiles and airplanes have all allowed for great innovation and, once again, the evolution of existing jobs with the creation of new and previously inconceivable disciplines.

More recently, the advent of electronics, telecommunication and computer science has noticeably revolutionized our ways of life and work on a daily basis. A significant portion of the most popular jobs today did not exist just 10 or 20 years ago!

After the mechanization of production, followed by mass production and finally the automation of production, we are now in the age of digitization, which is characterized by the exponential development of a virtual world that allows us to navigate in the physical world and to manage it.

Looking back on this technical and technological evolution, we can see that the various industrial revolutions have allowed mankind to do away with relatively simple or repetitive work that required a lot of time and effort to be able to concentrate on more complex tasks requiring more advanced knowledge and skills or simply to improve (in the facilitating sense of the word) its quality of life. In terms of employment, technical and technological advances have gradually changed the need towards increasingly qualified workers.

AI transforming the way we work

Far from the Terminator that escapes human control to turn against its creators, artificial intelligence, which is an important part of the present Industrial revolution 4.0, offers an infinite range of possibilities to assist humans in their tasks which are becoming increasingly complex with time.

First, it should be stated that artificial intelligence has been a constantly evolving “work in progress” over the last thirty years and all machines that perform tasks are not necessarily endowed with artificial intelligence. Indeed, several systems that may seem “intelligent” are in fact only “expert systems”. Although very useful in many areas or functions, these systems are rule-based or rely on “if-then” commands and are unable to provide a response or result if one of the variables entered does not strictly correspond to the expected rules.

To be considered intelligent, a system must have the capacity to learn in order to make decisions when faced with a new situation. With machine learning, the system receives huge amounts of information to be able to recognize factual elements, without however needing to “think”. It is with deep learning that we get closer to a real form of thinking since we then reach underlying levels of situation analyses thanks to multi-layered algorithms that allow the system to draw conclusions by taking many factors into consideration i.e. ethical issues.

Considering the possibilities of use of these types of technologies, it would be logical to question the future of humans in professional environments. However, the automation of certain aspects of work by expert or intelligent systems does not mean the complete elimination of humans in the process, but rather a modification of the work, since until this point, humans were a bottleneck in the execution of simple and repetitive tasks. By delegating these tasks to machines, humans must now learn to supervise and manage these machines.

Wizper as an intelligent professional assistant

Wizper is a tool which automates data analysis and interpretation processes in order to suggest actions to be undertaken. It can thus base its recommendations on a wide range of existing situations in order to propose the most optimal action. But ultimately, humans remain the ones who make decisions to apply or ignore these recommendations based on their reality; humans take action and serve clients. In this sense, automating part of the work allows for better customization to achieve a more human experience.

According to Wizper’s vision, humans will never disappear completely from the customer experience process. The tool will neither hire nor fire employees. It will simply analyze data, which represents a laborious and very time-consuming task for humans, in order to suggest to managers actions that will optimize operations and the customer experience as well as give them time to manage the most indispensable element of any company: the human.

Contact us to find out how Wizper can help you improve your customer experience.

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