由高達走向AI 東瀛科技新風

(文章於2017年10月30日在香港經濟日報刊登)

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今年秋天有令本港一眾《機動戰士》迷興奮的消息。東京台場的一比一獨角獸高達啟動,粉絲可近距離接觸。有趣的是,由《機動戰士》這齣橫跨近三十載的動畫作品,到以下提及的一些民用科技發展,我們可一窺科技在日本人心目中的轉型過程:由二戰後崇拜「硬」金屬巨型機械人,漸漸移向「軟」的人工智能。 

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販賣機即時收集數據 精準營銷

(報導於2017年9月28日在香港經濟日報刊登)

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傳統廣告要做到精準營銷,並不容易,但在數碼世界,一切皆可。

從事販賣機業務的SmartRetail夥拍IBM,結合視頻,利用鏡頭收集消費者性別及年齡層作分析及推廣。

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自動售賣機 AI推廣更貼心

(文章於2017年9月16日在 iMoney刊登)

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不論是大品牌或小商戶,要在香港開店,租金都是一大問題,因此近年有售賣各種貨品的自動售賣機出現,「其實我不太鍾意自動售賣機這個名字,因為立即聯想汽水機,其實我是想創造Automatic Retail(全自動零售)的新方向。」SmartRetail創辦人蘇俊豐在2009年創立公司,一改自動售賣機只賣汽水、零食的形象,變成賣健康零食,並配合機上屏幕做不同宣傳活動。貫徹健康的主題,最近他與IBM合作,採用對方開發的人工智能技術,售賣Fitbit產品。客人走近售賣機,機上的前置鏡頭能自動偵測其性別及年齡範圍,介紹相應的商品,客人可即時以信用卡、八達通等電子貨幣付款。配合不同商戶的市場推廣需要,屏幕可有相應的用途,例如客人可選擇觀看廣告以獲取折扣等。

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可愛機械雀進駐日本伊勢丹新宿店,測試 Watson 人工智能

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【科技特搜】日本伊勢丹新宿店最近引入具備 Watson 人工智能的可愛機械小鳥,測試 AI 如何能協助該百貨公司的業務。據了解,伊勢丹希望透過以 IBM Cloud 以及 Watson 技術啓動的機械鳥來擔任店頭小助手,嘗試達到幾個目標:

  • 收集客人資訊及數據,從而協助伊勢丹優化貨品及銷售
  • 分析客人,並提供客人會有興趣的產品之建議
  • 分析店內人流情況,作出相應的員工調動建議

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資訊來源:Cube 新聞發布

向科技徵稅 不如培訓新技能

(文章於2017年7月24日在香港經濟日報刊登)

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放眼現實,機械人與AI,並未到搶走人類飯碗的境況。但比爾蓋茨今年初,提出另類建議:職位流失還未出現,就先向科技徵稅。

徵收科技稅,負面影響是窒礙創新發展。想當年,若我們恐懼新事物,為保護打字機行業,向文書軟件收重稅;為保護黑房沖印技師,向數碼相機收稅;為保護電話機樓線路接駁員,向手機收稅等。今日這些改善大眾生活的科技,可能永不見天日。

今天,科技與產業的變化太急速,終身學習的就業態度很重要。對應的策略,應該是培訓僱員學習新技能,而非向機械人徵稅。

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The Next Generation of Infrastructure Services

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Danske Bank is testing the IBM Watson-based services platform that uses cognitive technologies to help IT service providers improve operations.

With rapidly changing business needs and accelerating business cycles, organizations need consistent and reliable service delivery across a “supply chain” of services from multiple vendors. There is no compromising choice for reliability. Both play an equally important role in a business’s success and they need the services they are using to continuously evolve.

For the IT services industry, it means a shift from system integration to services integration, and from a people-led and technology-assisted approach to one that is technology-led and people-assisted. In other words, most standard tasks and processes will be executed by increasingly autonomic systems that are data-driven, cognitive and automated.

This approach also means the evolution of automation and advanced analytics to cognitive delivery. Like many in the industry, we believe cognitive delivery is the next stage of the delivery lifecycle transformation.

Companies are already taking better advantage of the wealth of operational data and experience to gain insights that trigger automated actions for better business outcomes from IT or advise human experts to make better decisions.

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Cognitive Computing Comes to the Help Desk

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In many organizations, support for IT problems can be somewhat haphazard. The result of a user request often depends on the IT worker responding to it, who needs to ask the correct series of questions to get the answers they need. This may not be a straightforward process, however; what workers think they need to know may not actually be correct. A breakdown in support functions may even lead to the rise of shadow IT, as workers become frustrated and revert to using the tools they understand instead of those approved by the organization.

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