Category Archives : Artificial Intelligence

02

Jul

Spoken Language Identification in Video Indexer

We are excited to share that Video Indexer has a new capability, Spoken Language Identification (LID)!

A common ask from our customers has been to enable indexing of videos or batches of videos, without manually providing their language. This is especially important for batch uploads. To support this, we have introduced automatic spoken language identification to Video Indexer. The identified language is used to invoke the appropriate speech-to-text model.

LID is based on state of the art Deep Learning applied on the audio. LID currently supports eight languages including English, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Spanish, and Russian. It works with high accuracy for high-to-mid quality recordings. We are working on adding more languages to the list, so stay tuned.

Let’s learn more about LID in Video Indexer.

Using LID in Video Indexer

To use the LID capability, you have two options. If you use the portal, you can now select Auto detect in the language selection combo box when uploading a video.

If you use the API to upload a video, use auto as the language parameter value.

Attribute sourceLanguage in the video index JSON under root/videos/insights is assigned the detected language, and attribute sourceLanguageConfidence:

Note to

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28

Jun

Reasons why retail and consumer goods brands should address Artificial Intelligence today

The digital experience (DX) era is here, and AI is one of the primary technologies to fuel productivity and innovation in the retail and consumer goods industry. Brands that take a wait and see approach may find themselves quickly outpaced by their competitors. And by competitors, I mean not just born-in-the-cloud e-commerce players, but forward-thinking omnichannel retailers who focus on winning customers and evolving retail at scale.

Within the spectrum of digital transformation, AI is not a new technology. It is moving from its research roots to entering the mass market. This is made possible by the growth of cloud computing, availability of big data, and years of improved algorithms developed by researchers. At its core, AI gives computers decision-making capabilities to solve problems in a more natural and responsive way, as compared to the practice of pre-programmed computer routines of today. AI will be an imperative for optimization, automation, scale and most importantly, (gulp) survival.

Cloud computing and big data are accelerating AI technology

According to Accenture, unlimited access to computing power and the growth in big data are creating the right environment for AI. Analyzing data requires massive compute and storage; the cloud provides an efficient way to

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28

Jun

How tech is moving the insurance industry to be more customer-focused

Insurers need to become the home page for their customers. A home page is a source of meaningful, targeted and useful content that the customer seeks out. Technology can now deliver innovative solutions directly to insurance customers. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) are delivering targeted content continually from multiple sources, including data generated from IoT devices owned by customers, in real time. Focusing on the customer will make the relationship more valuable to the consumer, and will increase the number of interactions with the insurance company. Technology is making that happen from the point of first interaction. For example, when a potential customer interacts with a company’s website, or with an app powered by bots. Then the company uses AI to make sure the products are correctly matched and priced for the customer. As the needs of the customer changes, the enterprise delivers continuing, direct support.

A survey by InsuranceNexus in June 2018, titled Insurance Customer Engagement Europe, 400 senior insurance executives were surveyed, 91 percent agreed that the insurance industry must become more customer-centric. With that, Bain reports that insurance companies can boost revenues, improve margins and most importantly, sustain the loyalty of their very demanding customers.

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27

Jun

Microsoft from GeekWire Cloud Tech Summit: New Azure innovations will advance the intelligent cloud and intelligent edge

Today, I gathered with the tech community in the Seattle area at the GeekWire Cloud Tech Summit to talk about how customers are using the cloud and what the future holds. I joined GeekWire’s Todd Bishop and Tom Krazit on stage for a fireside chat to share more about Microsoft’s vision for emerging cloud innovation, but I also got to connect with many of you directly. In those conversations, it became even more apparent just how many of you are turning to the intelligent cloud to explore how emerging innovation like serverless, blockchain, edge computing, and AI can help you create solutions that can change your business — and people’s lives.

At Microsoft, we’re continually releasing technology that’s inspired by our customers and what you tell us you need to make the intelligent cloud and intelligent edge a reality for your businesses. For example, you may need to build applications to work in remote areas with low connectivity. Or you need to store, access, and drive insights from your data faster because of competitive pressures. And, you need confidence that your data and applications will be secure, resilient, and highly available across the globe.

During my time with Tom and

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27

Jun

Microsoft from GeekWire Cloud Tech Summit: New Azure innovations will advance the intelligent cloud and intelligent edge

Today, I gathered with the tech community in the Seattle area at the GeekWire Cloud Tech Summit to talk about how customers are using the cloud and what the future holds. I joined GeekWire’s Todd Bishop and Tom Krazit on stage for a fireside chat to share more about Microsoft’s vision for emerging cloud innovation, but I also got to connect with many of you directly. In those conversations, it became even more apparent just how many of you are turning to the intelligent cloud to explore how emerging innovation like serverless, blockchain, edge computing, and AI can help you create solutions that can change your business — and people’s lives.

At Microsoft, we’re continually releasing technology that’s inspired by our customers and what you tell us you need to make the intelligent cloud and intelligent edge a reality for your businesses. For example, you may need to build applications to work in remote areas with low connectivity. Or you need to store, access, and drive insights from your data faster because of competitive pressures. And, you need confidence that your data and applications will be secure, resilient, and highly available across the globe.

During my time with Tom and

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19

Jun

Enabling Smart Manufacturing with Edge Computing

Smart Manufacturing envisions a future where factory equipment can make autonomous decisions based on what’s happening on the factory floor. Businesses can more easily integrate all steps of the manufacturing process including design, manufacturing, supply chain and operation. This facilitates greater flexibility and reactivity when participating in competitive markets. Enabling this vision requires a combination of related technologies such as IoT, AI/machine learning, and Edge Computing. In this article, we will introduce Edge Computing and discuss its role in enabling Smart Manufacturing.

What is Edge Computing?

Put simply, Edge Computing is about taking code that runs in the cloud and running it on local devices or close to it. Like in a gateway device or a PC sitting next to the device.

To understand Edge Computing it helps to think of an IoT solution as generally having three components:

Things like IoT devices, which generate sensor data. Insights you extract from this data. Actions you perform based on these insights to deliver some sort of value.

With Edge Computing, you move the insights and actions components from the cloud to the device. In other words, you bring some of the code used to process and extract insights from the data,

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05

Jun

Azure is the best place for analytics

The confluence of cloud, data, and AI is foundational to innovation and is driving unprecedented change. This week at Spark + AI Summit, I talked about how Microsoft enables organizations to take advantage of Azure to build advanced machine learning models and intelligent applications virtually anywhere.

As Satya mentioned during our Build conference last month, applications will increasingly require a ubiquitous computing fabric from the cloud to the edge. These applications also require new machine learning and AI capabilities that enable them to see, hear and predict. The driving force behind these capabilities is data. Data is vital to every app and experience we build today. Organizations are using their data to extract important insights to drive their businesses forward and engage their customers in new ways. Customers like Renault-Nissan are revolutionizing their customer experience with connected cars. Rockwell Automation, a leader in industrial automation has built predictive maintenance capabilities on their equipment to save time and reduce cost associated with device failure. Liebherr, a leader in manufacturing, produces intelligent refrigerators that use object recognition to recommend grocery lists based on refrigerator contents. These are just a few examples of customers leveraging their data, wherever it exists, to turn it

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04

Jun

Regenerative Maps alive on the Edge

This week Mapbox announced it will integrate its Vision SDK with the Microsoft Azure IoT platform, enabling developers to build innovative applications and solutions for smart cities, the automotive industry, public safety, and more. This is an important moment in the evolution of map creation. The Mapbox Vision SDK provides artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities for identifying objects through semantic segmentation – a technique of machine learning using computer vision that classifies what things are through a camera lens. Semantic segmentation on the edge for maps means objects such as stop signs, crosswalks, speed limits signs, people, bicycles, and other moving objects can be identified at run time through a camera running AI under the covers. These classifications are largely referred to as HD (high definition) maps.

HD maps are more machine friendly as an input to autonomous vehicles. Once the HD map objects are classified, and because other sensors like GPS and accelerometer are onboard, the location of these objects can be registered and placed onto a map, or in the advancement of “living maps,” registered into the map at run time. This is an important concept and where edge computing intersects with location to streamline the digitization of our

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18

May

Azure the cloud for all – highlights from Microsoft BUILD 2018

Last week, the Microsoft Build conference brought developers lots of innovation and was action packed with in-depth sessions. During the event, my discussions in the halls ranged from containers to dev tools, IoT to Azure Cosmos DB, and of course, AI. The pace of innovation available to developers is amazing. And, in case there was simply too much for you to digest, I wanted to pull together some key highlights and top sessions to watch, starting with a great video playlist with highlights from the keynotes.

Empowering developers through the best tools

Build is for devs, and all innovation in our industry starts with code! So, let’s start with dev tools. Day one of Build marked the introduction of .NET Core 2.1 release candidate. .NET Core 2.1 improves on previous releases with performance gains and many new features. Check out all the details in the release blog and this great session from Build showing what you can use today:

.NET Overview & Roadmap: In this session, Scott Hanselman and Scott Hunter talked about all things .NET, including new .NET Core 2.1 features made available at Build.

Scott Hanselman and Scott Hunter sharing new .NET Core 2.1.

With AI being top

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10

May

Spark + AI Summit: Data scientists and engineers put their trust in Microsoft Azure Databricks

Microsoft will have a major presence at Spark + AI Summit, 2018, in San Francisco, the premier event for the Apache Spark community. Rohan Kumar, Corporate Vice President of Azure Data, will deliver a keynote on how Azure Databricks combines the best of Apache® Spark™ analytics platform and Microsoft Azure Data Services to help customers unleash the power of data and reimagine possibilities that will improve our world.

Azure Databricks, a fast, easy, and collaborative Apache Spark-based analytics platform optimized for Azure, was made generally available in March 2018. To learn more about the announcement, read Rohan Kumar’s blog about how Azure Databricks can help customers accelerate innovation and simplify the process of building Big Data & AI solutions. At Spark + AI Summit, we have a number of sessions showcasing the great work our customers and partners are doing and how Azure Databricks is helping them achieve productivity at scale.

Sign up for training on Spark!

On Monday, June 4, 2018 there are a number of full-day training courses on Apache Spark ranging from beginner to advanced that will enhance your skill set and even prepare you for certification on Spark.

Apache Spark essentials

This 1-day course is for

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