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Applications of conversational AI within the organisation

Chris Wiggett, Head of Data and Analytics at Dimension Data, talks ChatGPT, DeepMind, AI and the evolution of intelligence and how this future can shape the potential for business for today and tomorrow.

Johannesburg, 13 Jun 2023
Chris Wiggett, Head of Data and Analytics, Dimension Data.
Chris Wiggett, Head of Data and Analytics, Dimension Data.

OpenAI was established in 2015 and DeepMind in 2010. Both companies have been singularly focused on the potential and power of artificial intelligence (AI) and garnered significant media and consumer interest. OpenAI is associated with Microsoft, which invested billions into the partnership and the highly anticipated AI-powered Bing release incoming. On the other hand, DeepMind is associated with Google, as the tech giant acquired the entity for more than $500 million in 2014. Both these companies are among many investing in the potential of AI, which makes it critical that the organisation start asking questions around AI – what it means for the business, how it can be applied to the business and what are the challenges when it comes to implementing it.

The world is set to profoundly change thanks to the advent of AI that can think, act and reason on its own. While there are numerous experts, papers and headlines talking about how these shifts in AI capability are the most significant human advancements in the past 100 years, it’s important not to get caught in the drama of the moment.

AI is set to have an impact on the business, but it is also a tool, a tool that comes with its fair share of complexities and challenges. AI machines are data hungry and expensive. Consider that Microsoft has spent millions on a supercomputer that connected tens of thousands of Nvidia A100 chips and server racks to create the backbone of ChatGPT – and it still isn’t 100% reliable. There’s also the risk that the outcome of the investment isn’t necessarily clear from the outset, which makes the technology both expensive and untested when it comes to ROI. To see the value of AI, organisations need to implement fast, test faster and see measurable results.

Another challenge with current AI offerings is that even with their impressive capabilities and repertoire, they give the same answers to everyone. The competitive advantage isn’t the AI, not if all those using the same system get the same results.

But what if you can implement your AI rapidly while taking on new metrics and algorithms that allow you to harness the full potential of a transformative AI solution? This is where the business can arrive at the point where the AI provides an entirely different perspective on the input data and variables and immediately delivers on both competitive advantage and value. Organisations need a solution that brings all these benefits together into a cohesive whole while reducing latency and streamlining implementation.

This solution should help organisations manage their bottom line and shift the narrative around AI from a threat factor to an enabler. If AI is given the space and tools it needs to empower the business and allow for teams to undertake highly complex work at a fraction of the time, with significantly fewer errors, then it can be harnessed to enhance potential and better service customers. The business wants an AI that will provide unique insights into their business through algorithms and approaches that are relevant, quick to market and accessible.

After all, the arrival of ChatGPT and the multitudes that now follow in its footsteps have woken up the market to what AI can do, what its potential can help them do. Now, it is time for innovation from within the business to take the reins, leveraging AI technology that creates real value, that delivers a unique IP. And in South Africa, there are solutions like Dimension Data’s Delta that have been designed with the business in mind, bringing algorithms within the business that have multiple applications across different scenarios and that don’t eat bandwidth or compute. Built with real-world applications in mind, it’s another rung on the AI ladder that can help the business shift into AI gear and benefit from what it has to offer.