Artificial Intelligence Grows, with the Help of Human Intelligence by Christine Cignoli October 26, 2016
Filed under: Industry Insights
Artificial intelligence has dominated many IT headlines this year. One theory on why AI is taking off now is that its predictive capabilities are becoming popular in this data-driven world. It’s getting better and more business-worthy, too. Salesforce recently announced Einstein, an AI addition to its product that promises customer personalization via machine learning. The financial trend is positive, too: The AI market is expected to grow from $1.6 billion in 2015 to $16.5 billion in 2019.
We seem to be moving past the stage of worrying about the robots taking over, and instead wondering how we can integrate them into our help desk, customer management and other automated systems.
But I’m betting many in IT are working pretty hard on human intelligence challenges. When an enterprise IT team deploys a new artificial intelligence technology, app or service, the human users are the ones who will make it a success or not. Their adoption rate is essential to the technology being used, and in turn improving productivity and business value.
We hear intriguing stories of technology performance issues from our customers often, and they require humans to fix them—humans skilled at troubleshooting and complex systems. And, of course, the users reporting the problems are certainly feeling human emotions, like irritation, anger and perhaps boredom.
IT Needs Humans
Our customers are the best examples of how modern software tools can bridge the gap between artificial and human intelligence. For performance monitoring, there are still some pretty important human elements involved. I’m thinking mostly of our reporting, produced by software but designed to be read and digested by humans who aren’t technically savvy. One healthcare provider notes that doctors really like AppNeta’s reports, since they’re easy to digest, using simple graphics. I’m thinking also of our technical account managers, who help our customers scale with our tools to monitor performance across every network, app and cloud. Ultimately, we make products that make humans’ jobs easier—and humans aren’t ceding control to the robots just yet.
AI is also bumping up against end-user experience, which keeps becoming more important to businesses providing products and services. Savvy human end users know when AI is clunky or not working right. They also know they want excellent performance across all their tech experiences. And IT teams know that they need help from software to troubleshoot, get to the root of problems and solve them—but as our customers above know, people are the ones who find and fix issues.