What is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

What is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?
The tech landscape is changing rapidly and having an AI system in place will certainly help improve efficiency, but what exactly is AI? Dr Janet Bastiman, Chief Science Officer at StoryStream explains:
 
So what is AI and what are its capabilities?
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is intelligence gained by the use of a machine rather than human or animal. It is fundamentally a computer program that appears to make an intelligent decision based on its inputs.  Around since the 1950s, these systems were originally completely programmed by humans, but more recently they have been given the freedom to learn what inputs should result in which decisions, called ‘machine learning’. A subset of this is ‘deep learning’, where the data is far more abstracted and progresses through many layers in a manner inspired by the human brain. New innovations in computer science is challenging and enhancing the ways we work and live.
Image recognition or creation, diagnostics of disease, translation of text into multiple languages etc have all been mastered by some AI systems. AI is excellent at solving tasks that might otherwise be thought too difficult or time consuming and this is where businesses are seeing the biggest benefits and returns.
The nature in which we currently create AI means that it can be very good at a single task, but struggles to cope when the nature of the task is changed to something unrelated. 
 
What does AI mean for businesses?
There are many tangible opportunities to use AI in business today. It’s all about creating better efficiency! The first opportunity is in automating repetitive processes to ease the workload of existing employees, think of labelling large amounts of data, finding similar profiles or even extracting important parts of text from large documents. The second is to use the data you have to do new things, things that wouldn’t be possible with your human workforce.  Whether this is discovering correlations or trends in data that you may not have known were there, or providing a service to people who cannot otherwise access a human operative. There’s endless opportunities to get excited about.
 
What is Leaders in Tech?
It’s a group of managers and thought leaders who regularly get together to discuss current tech trends, share knowledge, learn new things and network. Watch our Leaders in Tech: Reading meetup page for future events.
 

Creating a workplace of the future in our Reading HQ!

The launch of our brand new office refit in our Reading HQ!  
We partnered with design firm Area Sq to create a workspace of the future in our new, Reading-based HQ in Thames Tower. Throughout the initial briefing process, Area really got to grips with our why. They understood that our people are at the core of our business and helped us create a dynamic space, to accommodate our equally dynamic workforce. Our space deliberately encourages collaboration and innovation in the way our teams approach their work and each working day, ensuring our employees the resources and support to truly succeed in their roles. We’ll take you on a tour of our office and the progression of our refit in the video below.
 
Our break out area where we spend our lunch times, monthly meetings and host local Meetups and events
 
Our recent move of our Reading HQ into Thames Tower coincides with our tenth year of business. Over the last ten years we’ve expanded internationally, opening offices across Europe and the USA within the digital, technology, aviation, automation and life sciences industries. As a business, we were keen to set a precedent and create a truly inspirational space for our centralised hub in Reading. We’ve really considered the long term and ensured our space facilitates growth for each of teams to expand into.
We have a versatile range of meeting spaces for our teams to collaborate in
Thames Tower offers a 360 panoramic view of the Thames Valley, a rooftop garden where we regularly host and attend events, as well as a prime position in Reading Town Centre, with access to all the town, has to offer. Our office refit had to maintain these incredible standards and Area accomplished this and made our vision a reality.
 
Our classroom, where we provide immersive training experiences for our staff
 
CEO, Peter Hart says, “We really believe that what Area Sq has created represents the future workplace. It will play a huge role in helping Austin Fraser reach the next level of growth with the right people, technology and environment. It was important for us to have an office environment which offered different types of space to accommodate the different types of people and working practices that run throughout the business. This inspirational workplace will play a key role in helping us to continue to attract and retain the very best talent.”
 

Want to take a look for yourselves? Take a look at this video we worked on with Stanton Media and Area Sq…