In many of the conversations with our (potential) customers, we discuss the power of artificial intelligence. In many publications the usage of AI is almost promoted as "the land of milk and honey" — but those with a bit of experience will be able to tell you that using AI is not always the answer, and it's not as easy to implement as many try to make you believe. But with the right use-cases defined, it can help your company — or you as a person — make life easier or create specific added value.
I'd like to tell you about how AI improved my personal life in five examples. With each of the examples, I will refer to a business or use-case that could be of value to you.
1. Home Security
As the company I hired to clean my apartment sent different cleaners, each with a different level of quality, I got interested in measuring the quality of labor according to my standards. By using an intelligent door-camera, which could recognize which cleaner had visited my place with facial recognition, I was able to define my favorite cleaner and improve my cooperation with the company.
Facial recognition can be used for physical two-factor-authentication in buildings or on construction sites — an RFID-badge can be cloned or stolen — and a commodity AI-based entrance camera enhances the security.
2. My Photo Library
Since the majority of us are taking pictures with digital cameras and mobile phones, the number of pictures in our library has increased significantly. Finding a specific photo has become a more difficult task. By storing and indexing my photos with an AI-based solution, I simply have to give one or more keywords to find my pictures. "car, France, house" gives a picture of my car parked in front of our summerhouse in southern France.
Finding sensitive data in different kinds of documents or code repositories would be a manual nightmare. Using AI to scan and classify the documents as "clean," "test" or "real" could help you reach regulatory compliance in a faster and easier way.
Long road trips can result in fatigue, and with that, the raised risk of not staying in your lane. Many modern cars have supportive on-board systems that will read the speed limit signs, help the car track in a straight line or even help with active steering on motorways. In the recent past, these systems were based on radar or lidar. Nowadays, AI-based camera systems support the driver.
In heavily congested warehouses, cameras could avoid collisions between forklifts, or even support the driver to turn or stop the truck preventing hitting the high-selves.
4. Fraud Prevention
Did you ever get one of these infamous calls from your bank to ask if you're in such and such region or country? Or even worse, that your card had been blocked due to suspicious activities? One of my credit cards was skimmed a couple of weeks ago, and when it was used abroad, without having booked a ticket to the specific country, or having checked into a hotel there, the AI algorithm detected that this was not a transaction initiated by me and took automated action.
Fraud and risk detection can be done on many levels and in different stages of a customer life cycle. With the right use-case definition, this can also have an advantage for your company when it comes to onboarding, KYC (know your customer) and churn.
5. Music Recommendations
Back to the long road trips: Did you ever get tired of listening to the same couple of CDs in the car and not being able to find a good radio station? With the power of several music streaming services, road trips never get boring (on a musical level at least!). With custom-made playlists and recommendations, you get access to new (to you) or unknown artists with a similar music style as what you tend to listen to. Ever hear of the band French 79?
Understanding your customers or processes doesn't only mean recommending other products to them, like many of the larger e-commerce platforms do. Understanding the normal behavior of a specific customer or process, and based on that behavior, recommending improvement, shows the customer that you understand them. This could create a higher level of customer loyalty. A company that rents out construction equipment and understands that a customer has rented a machine that is too big could recommend a better-suited machine to the customer. The customer would save money and the otherwise occupied machine could be rented out to another customer.
As you see, AI for my private life is not that far away from our corporate requirements and capabilities. Although I personally would love it to screw up the supermarkets' loyalty systems by buying unexpected items, data quality is the most important thing — and filtering out these anomalies should be a standard step in the process.