The Hot New Commodities

24 Jun

“We live on a Smarter Planet, where data, mobile, social and cloud are transforming industries and allowing us to create value in new ways.” This quote by IBM captures precisely what’s happening in the world today. Data is the new hot commodity and it isn’t being used to create value, it’s being used to solve real world problems. For example, big data and analytics solutions designed to handle the volume and variety of data available today are being used to by insurance companies to help them in catastrophe risk modelling. This is according to a white paper published by IBM. According to the same paper, the insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) uses big data analytics to identify insurance fraud.

There seems to be a certain interest in AI by big companies and it is amazing how much they are willing to spend to get a share of the fast growing industry. Tech companies are either busy buying AI companies or have departments dedicated solely to AI. Big Blue (IBM) has a cloud service for its AI – Watson, which allows creation of third party apps that make use of its cutting edge analytics capability. Google spent $400 million dollars to acquire DeepMind, a UK based AI startup. It is worth mentioning that Google’s search engine is itself an AI. Every time you type a search query, you are basically educating Google’s search engine, makes me feel like Google owes me big time. Facebook recently opened an AI lab in Paris, its third. The race is on to build smarter machines that can make better sense of our huge amounts of data (Business Insider). The investments into AI have been increasing at 62% per annum on average for the past four years according to Quid, a business intelligence company which goes to show to the huge potential in AI.

Data is now a new form of capital. According to Neil Mendelson (Oracle Big Data and Analytics Vice President), information about people, places and things will truly differentiate enterprises. Social media, which is hugely successful due to mobile technology, has a wealth of information that businesses could harness to give them a competitive edge and make better decisions. We live in a world of mobile technology, but it’s not the device that’s mobile, it’s you.

Big data has the ability to solve real world problems, including burying the hatchet between IBM and Apple, where the two teamed up to create powerful mobile apps for the enterprise.

Source: Wired, Business Insider

3 thoughts on “The Hot New Commodities

  1. Great piece. It would be interesting to tailor the development of AI to suit not only the needs of big companies but also SMEs in Kenya.

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