Heard on the Street – 7/19/2023

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Welcome to insideAI News’s “Heard on the Street” round-up column! In this regular feature, we highlight thought-leadership commentaries from members of the big data ecosystem. Each edition covers the trends of the day with compelling perspectives that can provide important insights to give you a competitive advantage in the marketplace. We invite submissions with a focus on our favored technology topics areas: big data, data science, machine learning, AI and deep learning. Enjoy!

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Jonah Harris, CTO, MariaDB

“We’re at the dawn of an exciting era, ignited by the transformative power of artificial intelligence. AI, already visible in innovative applications like ChatGPT and DALL-E, is now progressing into the realm of infrastructure, enhancing productivity, and automating intricate tasks. But, we’re merely at the edge of AI’s potential. We see a future defined by on-demand bespoke AI services that create unique learning models based on peoples’ specific data sets. Imagine an AI that’s not just aiding but mastering such database-heavy workloads, delivering rapid and secure insights. I expect we’ll see more investments in this area moving forward.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Vrushali Prasade, Co-founder & Co-CTO at Pixis

“In my opinion, AI is sometimes undervalued as a result of the overhype behind more publicly popular tools. The lack of proper education and awareness around AI has led the public to create false expectations. Consider AI as a heightened form of logical reasoning. Understanding its true power – what it can do, how it can be used, etc. – will help to better manage what should be feasible in terms of expectations or possibilities for projects. AI can only generate outcomes based on input by humans, which is why having the right intent to ensure correct application is crucial.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Dan LeBlanc, CEO at Daasity 

“AI has proven to impact our lives significantly already, but we’re only just getting started. In 5 years, it will cut across more parts of the business beyond marketing copy and images – most likely in the customer service space, helping us track processes and finding out when there are issues with our processes. We will start to see the need for fewer data engineers to manage data but will need more analysts to interpret the data.  We will find that we need fewer people to manage a process but more people to ensure the AI is working and more people to interpret the results to make our businesses more efficient.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Matt Durham, Head of Market Strategy at Digibee 

“There is some discourse within the developer communities as to whether AI can automate, or perhaps entirely eradicate, low-code development. The notion that AI can turn low-code into no-code implies that low-code is for non-developers. Many low-code platforms specifically serve professional coders. Low-code can be a way to attract non-technical (or substantially less technical) talent, but fundamentally low-code tools and platforms increase productivity and reduce errors, important realities for engineers. While AI can help boost low-code efforts, the idea that it can completely wipe out an entire method of development, and in turn take novice developers to pros, is fundamentally incorrect.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Veronica Lin, Head of User Experiences at Playsee

“AI continues to reshape the way we interact and connect with others online, where algorithms personalize content on social media and tailors it to find new creators, meet new contacts, and grow new communities. As a result of the pandemic, people have turned to social media as a means of finding local connections, and reconnecting with IRL experiences. Those community connections are thriving stronger than ever, and ever-evolving social media algorithms continue to bring people from all corners of the globe together online.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Logan Ensign, Chief Customer Officer of Alloy.ai

“There is no doubt that AI is eating the consumer goods industry as a whole and that many of the tasks that occupy sales and supply chain professionals’ time will be automated by AI in the near future. At Alloy.ai our customers are already seeing their sales increase and their out-of-stocks drop as they’re able to use AI to run predictive simulations that pinpoint where inventory levels and retail sales are most at risk and determine what action should be taken to preempt disruption.” 

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Eradj Khaidarov, Chief Technology Officer at IrisCX

“Generative AI is spearheading a new frontier of accessibility in customer experience. We’re seeing emerging CX technologies using AI as a tool to support more people in a more efficient and streamlined manner, enabling greater access to the expert support they may be seeking. At IrisCX, we’re using AI to create brief summaries after customer calls to ensure no details get lost in translation, and the most important or pressing aspects from that conversation are automatically highlighted for the expert’s review post-call. Paired with a user-friendly interface, generative AI tools are helping eliminate barriers to entry (complicated registrations, external apps, etc.) for more positive customer experiences.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Kelly Coplin, Head of Product at Ceres Imaging

“Technological advancements in remote sensing and precision agriculture have generated massive, global datasets reflecting crop health and management practices. These datasets are the fuel that powers AI’s application to the agricultural industry. By combining the outputs of AI with traditional techniques, agricultural businesses can optimize water, chemical, and fertilizer application efficiency while protecting crop yields and improving farm management. AI is playing a vital role in easing the global food crisis by helping agricultural businesses maximize productivity while improving the sustainability of their operations.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Nitzan Shaer, CEO and Co-founder of WEVO

“There is so much to be excited about AI and the opportunities it has to further innovation and creativity, but companies must use AI with caution. With the rapid development of AI we are seeing across all industries, from user research to healthcare, there is a great opportunity for this new technology to allow humans to focus on higher order, more engaging tasks that will accelerate productivity and provide happiness in work. AI will enable us to spend more time being human. It will allow us to focus our efforts on things that we actually enjoy, things that we get true delight from. However, the question remains, can companies leverage generative AI in a responsible and customer centered way?”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Anthony Deighton, General Manager of Data Products at Tamr

“Supervised AI combines the best of the machine with the best a human has to offer. AI is very good at resolving data and data entities at scale and with speed. And it doesn’t get tired. This is a benefit, especially as data volumes continue to grow at a rapid pace. On the other hand, humans are very good at providing feedback and ensuring that the AI’s results are accurate. And the more feedback they provide, the better the AI becomes. Another benefit of human involvement is trust. When humans participate in the process and have a hand in training the AI, they are more likely to trust the data. And when they trust the data, they are much more likely to use it in analytics and to drive decisions.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Raghu Ravinutala, CEO & Co-founder, Yellow.ai 

“This AI Appreciation Day is more pertinent than any other, as generative AI has truly taken the spotlight in 2023. It becomes imperative for business leaders to recognize the vast potential of AI to enhance productivity, elevate user experiences, optimize costs, and drive overall revenue. However, the development of sophisticated algorithms alone is insufficient; we must prioritize transparency, accountability, and fairness in AI systems. 

We need diverse voices at the table, fostering inclusive AI development that reflects the needs and perspectives of diverse populations. Moreover, we must prioritize ethical frameworks and regulations that guide the responsible deployment of AI. Privacy, security, and protection of personal data should be paramount, empowering individuals with control over their information. Interdisciplinary collaboration plays a pivotal role in this journey. The integration of AI with disciplines such as psychology, sociology, and philosophy allows us to explore its ethical implications, societal impacts, and human-centered design. By fostering collaborations among governments, industry, and academia, we ensure that AI becomes a force for good, augmenting human potential rather than supplanting it. 

On this AI Appreciation Day, let us not only acknowledge the achievements of AI but also commit ourselves to actively nurturing an ecosystem that promotes equity, accessibility, and democratization. By doing so, we pave the way for an AI future that benefits all of humanity.” 

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Sara Faatz, Director, Technology Relations Community, Progress 

“The rise in popularity of generative AI among the general population – not just developers and data scientists – has led us to a technical renaissance that is transforming our global society in ways we cannot yet quantify. The applications and uses of AI for developers and DevOps teams are near limitless as we continue to expand our relationship with the technology. Beyond just practical uses, the implementation of AI into business, and life in general, is creating countless new job opportunities in machine learning, data management, software engineering and beyond. What’s more, it is opening new ways for us to learn, to consume information and to share.   

While AI presents many real and potential benefits, now more than ever we need to be mindful of the fact that the power of AI lives with the data models. We need to be vigilant about how those models are being trained, define acceptable use policies and even consider what regulations need to be in place in order to protect intellectual property and proprietary information. And as we discover new ways to leverage AI, as we stretch the boundaries of what is possible, we need to be mindful of the unintended consequences that technological disruptions bring and ensure we are using it for the greater good.” 

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Will LaSala, Field CTO, OneSpan

“There is a lot of uncertainty around AI (some of it for good reason), however on AI appreciation day I think it’s important that we look at all the good AI can, and is, being used for. Generative AI is a tool that can help organizations achieve new solutions beyond chatbots. It can be used by organizations to build completely new solutions that are human described instead of coder developed. This dramatically decreases the cost to entry, speed to entry and technical barrier to entry for many solutions. From a security perspective, this means developers can more easily implement security solutions into applications from the get-go. For security teams, utilizing AI can help teams cut down on tedious tasks, which is especially critical as the cybersecurity talent shortage continues.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Vinay Anand, CPO at NetSPI 

“Every new paradigm shift brings along a specific set of opportunities and challenges, and AI is no different. Abuse and misuse aside, AI has the potential to make cybersecurity issues more addressable in the long run and also help address the industry’s daunting skills shortage. Through the right training models, AI will become a massive force multiplier and extract the tremendous value locked in data sitting in organizations for analysis. Currently, data is too complex and multiplying too rapidly, resulting in threats going undetected and unpatched. AI can get organizations the results they need faster and help find the needle in the haystack that will save organizations millions of dollars from an impending breach. A year from now, if you ask any security leader, they’ll tell you that today’s AI innovations have decisively changed the nature of how we do cybersecurity for the better.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Darron Makrokanis, Chief Revenue Officer, Xage Security

“In the cyber world, while AI is an asset to both adversaries and defenders, ultimately, I believe it will help tip the scales in favor of good. The ideal future state is one where AI-fueled cyber advancements protect the fabric of our society from attacks and threats of high consequence.” 

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Randall Ward, CEO and co-founder, Appfire

“Generative AI is a long-term technology advancement that is going to dramatically transform how business is conducted. For many businesses like ours, AI will reshape how we think about our business, from how we go to market, build products, and hire teams to how we interact with teams across the globe internally and externally and how we interact with vendors. 

Business leaders should look at their evolution with AI as a finely crafted symphony, not a brief solo performance. Sure there exists a degree of hesitancy around the implementation and utilization of AI-based solutions. However we’ve seen this before. Think about mobile computing, for example, and its transformative impact. There was a time when not everyone had a cell phone and phones weren’t small computers, but now mobility is core to the way we live and work. AI will be the same way.

AI brings opportunity and value to organizations, customers and the world. There’s great potential to create more software, employees will be empowered to grow their skill sets, and products will be safer, stronger and more reliable. Ultimately, we’re heading towards an immersive AI world and we have to understand that this is going to be a lasting part of business forevermore.” 

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Carl Froggett, CIO, Deep Instinct

“AI has provided us with great potential to stop attacks, yet it also enables attackers. One of the biggest challenges we will face is getting away from always reacting to attack methods to meet the speed and sophistication of AI-based attacks.

We are seeing threat actors use adversarial AI, data poisoning of machine learning models, and leveraging LLMs like ChatGPT to launch attacks. Yet, there is good news as well. Fighting AI with AI is the way forward. Cybersecurity solutions natively built with deep learning models can be trained to prevent unknown threats before they materialize and land inside organizations, mitigating the volume, velocity, and constantly morphing AI-created attacks. Leaders looking to adapt their cybersecurity strategies with proactive solutions must start to focus on preventing threats over the status quo of the last ten years of assumed breaches. 

There is a pressing need to transition towards an adaptable and proactive approach to effectively combat the dynamic nature of cyber risks. The new era of AI is both exciting and terrifying at the same moment. For cybersecurity, organizations must examine and embrace how AI can be infused throughout the attack chain to combat potential cyber risks in the tremulous threat landscape.” 

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by WalkMe CMO Adriel Sanchez

“AI tools hold promise to significantly accelerate workforce productivity. When deployed properly, AI provides value for organizations by uncovering new data insights and freeing up employees to focus on high-value work while developing new skill sets. Digital Adoption Platforms (DAPs) provide customized guidance and automation across workflows and applications to enable individuals of varying degrees of comfort with technology to fully harness the technologies available to them. DAPs have the power to unlock the full potential of the new AI technologies taking workplaces by storm to achieve a level of productivity that can only be described as hyperproductivity.”

AI Appreciation Day (July 16, 2023). Commentary by Ramprakash Ramamoorthy, Director of AI research at ManageEngine

Artificial intelligence has been revolutionary for IT operations, particularly within the cybersecurity domain. Through AI and machine learning, organizations can identify anomalous activities and maintain a secure environment. AI enables a proactive threat response approach by identifying deviations in tracked metrics and consistently observing user and entity actions to detect internal threats early.

However, as businesses increasingly depend on AI, they must remain on high alert. The same transformative cybersecurity capabilities that make AI indispensable to enterprises can also be exploited by cybercriminals. It’s crucial for organizations to preemptively make appropriate technology investments and policy decisions.

Businesses should arm their cybersecurity defenses with sophisticated threat intelligence systems and behavior-oriented analytics. Collaboration is paramount, both internally and externally within the cybersecurity community, encompassing researchers, professionals, enterprises, and policymakers.

Lastly, business leaders should prioritize ongoing education for themselves and their teams regarding the secure usage of generative AI systems.

Meta’s Commercial LLaMa. Commentary by SambaNova Systems CEO Rodrigo Liang

“Meta launching a commercial version of LlaMA marks a significant shift in the market towards a more open-source approach. This transition opens up possibilities for democratizing AI and enabling enterprises to build custom software on top of the technology. By open-sourcing this model, Meta allows researchers and developers to build on, deconstruct, and learn from its architecture. A community working together will always be more powerful than an individual company. Successful enterprise models will need to be persistent: continually fine-tuned based on new data and new learnings. In that respect, this is welcome news. It’s great to see organizations beginning to engage with the open-source community. Momentum is starting to build, and soon enough we’ll see these actions come to fruition.”

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