Category Archives: Cloud Computing

How artificial intelligence & machine learning produced robots we can talk to


What is a Chatbot?

You’ve likely talked to a robot already without even knowing it. And you might have even heard the term “chatbot” in the news. But what is a chatbot? How do chatbots work?

Essentially, a chatbot is just a robot chat that imitates human conversations through voice commands, text chats, or both. It’s a virtual conversation in which one party is an online talking robot.

The artificial intelligence feature within talking robots has been used in various industries to deliver information or perform tasks, such as telling the weather, making flight reservations, or purchasing products.

Chatbot Technology

Inside the artificial intelligence of a chatbot is machine learning and what’s known as natural-language processing (NLP). Machine learning can be applied in different fields to create various chatbot algorithms, while NLP has the ability to pick up conversational cadences and mimic human conversation.

The chatbot is trained to translate the input data into a desired output value. When given this data, it analyzes and forms context to point to the relevant data to react to spoken or written prompts. Looking into deep learning within AI, the machine discovers new patterns in the data without any prior information or training, then extracts and stores the pattern.

This machine learning algorithm, known as neural networks, consists of different layers for analyzing and learning data. Inspired by the human brain, each layer is consists of its own artificial neurons that are interconnected and responsive to one another. Each connection is weighted by previous learning patterns or events and with each input of data, more “learning” takes place.


How Chatbots Got Smarter

With the advancements in artificial intelligence and the rapid growth of messaging apps, chatbots are becoming increasingly necessary in many industries. Although bot technology has been around for decades, machine-learning has been improving dramatically due to the heightened interest from key Silicon Valley powers.

Natural language processing mimics human speech patterns to simulate a human tone in computer-human interaction, which creates more intimate interactions. The predictive analytics within bots uses statistics, modeling, data mining and more to generate information proactively, rather than in response to a prompt.

The sentiment analysis in machine learning uses language analytics to determine the attitude or emotional state of whom they are speaking to in any given situation. This has proven to be difficult for even the most advanced chatbot due to an inability to detect certain questions and comments from context. Developers are creating these bots to automate a wider range of processes in an increasingly human-like way and to continue to develop and learn over time.

An indicator of just how human-like these machines can be was actually developed in the 1950s by British scientist Alan Turing. His Turing Test checks the presence of mind, thought, or intelligence in a machine and if it can fool a human to believe that it is a human as well, then it passes the test.

There was a time when even some of the most prominent minds believed that a machine could not be as intelligent as humans but in 1991, the start of the Loebner Prize competitions began to prove otherwise. The competition awards the best performing chatbot that convinces the judges that it is some form of intelligence. But despite the tremendous development of chatbots and their ability to execute intelligent behavior not displayed by humans, chatbots still do not have the accuracy to understand the context of questions in every situation each time.

Chatbots Uses of Today and Tomorrow

Chatbots currently operate through a number of channels, including web, within apps, and on messaging platforms. They also work across the spectrum from digital commerce to banking using bots for research, lead generation, and brand awareness. An increasing amount of businesses are experimenting with chatbots for e-commerce, customer service, and content delivery.

Furthermore, major banks today are facing increasing pressure to remain competitive as challenger banks and fintech startups crowd the industry. As a result, these banks should consider implementing chatbots wherever human employees are performing basic and time-consuming tasks. This would cut down on salary and benefit costs, improve back-office efficiency, and deliver better customer care.

More to Learn

Chatbot technology will continue to improve in the coming years. Chatbot architecture and design will evolve to the point that interactive AI will become standard for customer service. But there are numerous applications for chatbots across a variety of sectors.

That’s why BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s premium research service, has put together a bundle of detailed reports on chatbots:

To get all four reports, subscribe to an All-Access pass to BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report and more than 250 other expertly researched reports. As an added bonus, you’ll also gain access to all future reports and daily newsletters to ensure you stay ahead of the curve and benefit personally and professionally. >> Learn More Now

You can also purchase and download the full reports using the links above.

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Elon Musk just said he's delaying Tesla's semi-truck reveal to focus on struggling Model 3 production (TSLA)

Tesla semitruck

Tesla CEO Elon Musk just announced that the company will delay its electric semi-truck reveal to focus on Model 3 production after missing its target for the much-anticipated car.

Tesla was set to unveil the semi-trailer on Oct. 26 in Hawthorne, California. It will now reveal the battery-powered truck on Nov. 16, Musk said.

Friday’s announcement marks the second time Musk has delayed the reveal of Tesla’s first big-rig. The company was originally supposed to debut the semitrailer in September.

“Tesla Semi unveil now Nov 16,” Musk said on Friday on Twitter. “Diverting resources to fix Model 3 bottlenecks & increase battery production for Puerto Rico & other affected areas.”

Tesla’s truck will have a 200- to 300-mile range and have self-driving capabilities, Reuters reported.

Cause for delay

Tesla will use the extra three weeks to focus on Model 3 and battery production, Musk said.

Tesla only produced 260 Model 3 sedans in the third quarter, widely missing its original target to manufacture 1,500 sedans in September. It was a big miss for the most highly-anticipated car of the year, which secured 455,000 orders as of August.

The Model 3 is Tesla’s first mass-market vehicle starting at $35,000. Musk had said that the first six months of Model 3 production would be “hell.”

The company will also use the extra time to focus on battery production for Puerto Rico. 

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello spoke with Musk on Friday about using Tesla’s Powerpack batteries and solar panels to restore electricity to the island in the wake of Hurricane Maria. The Powerpack is Tesla’s commercial battery and has already been used to power smaller islands like Ta’u in American Samoa

Tesla said it has already sent hundreds of its residential batteries, the Powerwall, to Puerto Rico. The company is currently prioritizing using Powerwall batteries to power medical equipment, Musk said Friday.

SEE ALSO: Puerto Rico’s governor may take up Elon Musk’s offer to use Tesla batteries to rebuild the island’s electrical system

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NOW WATCH: The secret to Steve Jobs’ and Elon Musk’s success, according to a former Apple and Tesla executive

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The head of the IMF says bitcoin is 'too expensive for me at the moment'

Christine Lagarde, head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), attends a conference at the Cannes Lions Festival in Cannes, France, June 23, 2017.                 REUTERS/Eric Gaillard

Bitcoin is too expensive for one of the most powerful women in finance. 

Christine Lagarde, the head of the International Monetary Fund, on Friday told CNBC’s Sara Eisen that bitcoin is “too expensive for me at the moment” when asked if she would ever buy into the red-hot digital currency. 

Lagarde last month gave a soft defense of the cryptocurrency during a speech in London.  She said cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin could “give existing currencies and monetary policy a run for their money.” The IMF is one of the largest supranational organizations and facilitates cooperation between nations on monetary and fiscal policy. 

“Not so long ago, some experts argued that personal computers would never be adopted, and that tablets would only be used as expensive coffee trays,” she said. “So I think it may not be wise to dismiss virtual currencies.”

During the wide-ranging interview with Eisen, Lagarde shared her thoughts on the bitcoin crackdown in China. She said the ban on initial coin offerings, a cryptocurrency-based fundraising method, in China was “done on that on the basis of the analysis that it was at least strongly dominated by…speculation and Ponzi-like schemes, which is certainly showing that they are paying attention.”

ICOs allow startups to raise money by issuing their own cryptocurrencies. They’ve come under scrutiny by regulators because companies can use them to raise quick money without having to disclose substantive information to investors. The Securities and Exchange Commission charged one man with operating two fraudulent ICOs last month

Still, despite the bad actors Lagarde thinks people should pay attention to the market.

“When I look at my own country where, you know, all transactions between … my compatriots and the treasury department is all now on digital support,” she said. “I think there are massive changes taking place at the moment which everybody needs to be attentive to.”

SEE ALSO: Here’s what 6 of the most powerful Wall Streeters have to say about bitcoin

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NOW WATCH: THE RAY DALIO INTERVIEW: The billionaire investor on Bridgewater’s ‘radically transparent’ culture and how to bet on the future

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LIVE: Apple's head designer Jony Ive talks design in New York (AAPL)

Jony Ive

Apple Chief Design Officer Jony Ive will give a rare public talk in New York on Friday.

Ive will be discussing design in an interview with New Yorker editor-in-chief David Remnick. The session, “The Shape of Things to Come,” is part of the New Yorker’s TechFest conference

The British-born designer has kept a lower profile in recent years, but he’s still a massively important person at Apple, and previously led the design team responsible for the look and feel of every major Apple product, including the iPhone and the iPad.

Ive’s talk on Friday comes after his appearance in a promotional video for the iPhone X, and a lengthy interview with Charlie Rose in 2016.

The New Yorker isn’t livestreaming Ive’s talk, but Business Insider will cover it live as it happens at 1 P.M ET.  



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Animated map shows just how far these animals travel to migrate

As far as humans travel, it’s nothing compared to some animals. To put just how large this distance is into perspective, we’ve put together an animation showing these animals and their incredible distances. The following is a transcription.

No matter how much traveling you do, these creatures have you beat. These are the animals with the longest migrations.

In the Yukon, Porcupine caribou travel 3,000 miles. This is the longest migration by land of any mammal on Earth.

Monarch butterflies fly about 3,000 miles each year. Some will travel all the way from Canada to Mexico.

Leatherback turtles will swim 10,000 miles across the Pacific between the US and Indonesia.

The globe skimmer dragonfly has that name for a reason. It crosses the Indian ocean between East Africa and India. The total trip is about 10,000 miles.

Humpback whales travel over 10,440 miles from Costa Rica to Antarctica and back. It is the longest mammal migration on Earth.

Great white sharks migrate 12,400 miles between South Africa to Western Australia and back.

But no one can cover more ground than the birds! The sooty shearwater travels 40,000 miles. It flies between New Zealand and Alaska.

At the top of the list is the arctic tern. It has been recorded migrating over 44,000 miles, flying from the Arctic to Antarctica.

You thought your commute was bad?

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The 9 most high-tech SUVs on the market

Volvo XC90

When it comes to buying a car, consumers continue to say that bigger is better.

SUVs and trucks continued to outsell smaller sedans in September.

But not all SUVs are created equal. We decided to round up all the ones on the market with the most advanced features.

Scroll down for a closer look:

SEE ALSO: Here’s how the newest technology is changing how we watch the Olympics

1. The Volvo XC90 is a roomy and luxurious SUV, but it also has several high-tech features. For example, there are four hidden cameras to provide 360-degree views when driving and parking.

The center display shows the cameras’ views to assist with parking. The driver can select whether to view from the front or rear cameras using the touch-controlled display.

The car also comes with an autonomous emergency braking system and semiautonomous features that allow it to accelerate, decelerate, stop, and steer itself at speeds below 30 mph.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Apple’s Swift is losing developers to multiplatform frameworks

When Apple’s Swift language for MacOS and iOS development debuted in June 2014 as the modern successor to Objective-C, Swift began to gain a foothold with developers. But now Swift is actually slipping in popularity, according the latest Tiobe index.

Why is Swift losing steam? Tiobe attributes it to developers leaving the Apple-only Swift/Xcode development environment for frameworks that build multiplatform mobile apps such as Microsoft’s Xamarin, Apache Cordova, and Ionic. Xamarin leverages C# while Cordova and Ionic rely on JavaScript.

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Microsoft Edge and SEQUENCE partner to highlight traditional artisanal techniques with 3D and AR

Behind every bracelet and tote created by the young artists of SEQUENCE is a compelling story of creativity and lasting community change. At retail stores, this story and its meaning might not be conveyed to customers, so SEQUENCE’s founder, Ariela Suster, partnered with Microsoft Edge to create a web experience to do just that. The new SEQUENCE Collection website launched today brings visitors into the SEQUENCE world, giving each visitor the experience, feeling, and mission of what SEQUENCE is about.


Ariela Suster grew up in El Salvador during the civil war, and her family experienced violence firsthand. Ariela fled the violence, while being determined to one day change it. Ariela went on to forge a name for herself in New York’s fashion industry, holding senior editorial positions at InStyle, Lucky and Harpers Bazaar. Returning to El Salvador, she saw an opportunity to make a difference.

Ariela established SEQUENCE to disrupt the story of violence in her home country by employing – and empowering – a group of at-risk youths to create beautiful, handcrafted artisanal accessory products in their own community. Through employment, young people avoid the influence of gangs, and create a career path for themselves that enriches and supports their culture and community. SEQUENCE invests in the personal and professional development of each artist through educational opportunities in computer literacy and artisanal techniques to expand the business and promote long-term sustainable change. ​

One of the biggest goals for SEQUENCE is to reach more customers across the world in order to create more jobs for at-risk youth. The Microsoft Edge team came to Ariela with many ideas and solutions for this challenge. Working closely with SEQUENCE, Microsoft Edge is bringing 3D and Augmented Reality capabilities  to showcase the craftsmanship, opportunity to create personal designs and virtually try on the jewelry on the website. “The partnership with SEQUENCE is an incredible opportunity for us to amplify Ariela’s vision with Microsoft Edge technology. We wanted to help her create a unique shopping experience for customers to design a custom piece of beautiful hand-crafted jewelry from anywhere in the world. We are extremely proud to contribute to the SEQUENCE project’s mission of disrupting the cycle of violence in El Salvador,” says Leslie Chen, Microsoft Edge Program Management.


Utilizing the native support for 3D and AR technology in Microsoft Edge, the website links the young artisans in El Salvador with people worldwide. Now anyone can customize a bracelet from a palette and view in 3D, plus virtually try on a bracelet using AR, as if they were in the studio. These innovations empower the young artists to give their customers holistic experiences through the web, which in turn will help grow their business and transform their community further. Discover these new features on the SEQUENCE Collection website:

  • 3D Customizer. Create your own bracelet using the new 3D customizer. Choose your four threads and a tie from a palette of colors that reflect the passion and positivity of El Salvadoran culture, and make it unique for yourself or a gift. View your design from any angle in 3D, just as you would if you visited the workshop on a sunny afternoon.
  • Augmented Reality. We believe the world is adopting AR more each day, to provide richer experiences and convey information that previously wasn’t possible. Now you don’t have to wait for your bracelet to arrive to try it on. Simply print a sticker, apply it to your wrist, and see how your design looks on you.
  • Explore our studio. Get to know where the SEQUENCE Collection is created. Enjoy the 360 view of our studio with hotspots pointing out what we’d tell you on an in-person tour.


 3D customizer

Partnering with SEQUENCE offered the Microsoft Edge team a unique opportunity to use web technology to showcase a more personalized and connected experience of the SEQUENCE story, the SEQUENCE Collection pieces, and the workshop where it all began and continues to flourish. We are immensely excited to support SEQUENCE’s work to establish a productive contribution to the lives of young people in El Salvador and their local economy.

Ariela is thrilled with the new website, saying, “Having this website will really help customers connect to the purpose behind our product, feel part of this experience and part of the journey to create change.”

Visit the SEQUENCE Collection website now to try out the new features, and learn more about the individual artists and the SEQUENCE mission.

About Microsoft Edge Web Showcase

Microsoft Edge Web Showcase is dedicated to partnering with organizations around the world to highlight extraordinary and exciting new ventures. This program explores opportunities to contribute to a diverse set of literacy programs and to develop partnerships to showcase web technology.

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Apple is looking into reports of iPhone 8 batteries swelling

 Reports from a few iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus buyers have suggested there could be an issue with the battery inside some of the devices swelling. Apple has now confirmed it is looking into the issue. Read More

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How Ferrari went from a race-car company to a multi-billion-dollar luxury brand (RACE)

Ferrari History

Over the past 70 years, Ferrari has come a long way since its start as a fledgling racecar builder

In 2015, Ferrari’s IPO on the New York Stock Exchange valued the company at nearly $10 billion. Two years later, the company’s market cap has more than doubled to $21 billion. This makes the carmaker one of the most valuable and recognizable brands in the world; its “prancing horse” logo is synonymous with sex, money and the high life. 

Ferrari wasn’t always the global luxury brand that’s now being traded in New York. The company’s early days as a maker of racing cars were rather humble, and it took an Italian-American racing star named Chinetti to begin the transformation into a purveyor of glamorous supercars for the world’s well-heeled.

The company’s success drew takeover interest, and later rivalry, from Ford – before Ferrari eventually became part of FIAT. Here is the story of Ferrari’s incredible 70-year journey: 

SEE ALSO: Porsche turned its most controversial car into the finest sports sedan in the world

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In 1908, A ten-year-old Enzo Ferrari saw his first car race and immediately became hooked. As a young adult, Enzo was drafted by the Italian army to fight in World War I.

After the war, Enzo had a hard time finding work in the auto business. He applied to work at Fiat, but was rejected to due an excess of unemployed war veterans. Eventually, he found work at smaller automakers.

By the early 1920s, Enzo landed a job at Alfa Romeo as a race car driver. Fellow drivers at the company included legendary aces like Tazio Nuvolari, seen here in an Alfa.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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