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How Google plans to bring AI and machine learning to the enterprise

Matthew Finnegan | March 24, 2016
Google launched new machine learning capabilities at its Cloud Next conference this week

One example is online hosting firm, Wix, which is using the Cloud Vision API. The technology is based on the image recognition that allows Google Photos to categorise photos of mountains or beaches, for example.

Dean explained: "Wix allows people to easily use websites and clients upload imagery. They want to be able to understand what kind of imagery it is so that they can suggest the most appropriate content of that website."

He added that there are also some that "can make pretty good use of the already trained APIs that we have released".

Ocado's Donkin says that the ease of use of the pre-trained APIs means the company could extend access to machine learning tools from its team of data scientists to developers.

"One of our goals is to move beyond just data science using machine learning," he told ComputerworldUK. "So some of the new Google APIs - where normal developers can use machine learning - [could be] something we would do."

"We are looking at the structure we need to do that. So you have the PhD specialist groups and you have software engineers, and how we can organisationally let that knowledge spread out will be."

Future plans

Like many of Google's cloud services - such as BigQuery and Hadoop-based DataProc - its machine learning services originate from technologies that it builds to run its massive operations. This includes Maps, Gmail, Android, as well as its robotics research.

"Machine learning is now used in lots and lots of Google products," said Dean. "Some under the covers - so YouTube has lots of machine learning in it but it is all in the recommendation engines."

Google plans to continue to offer up its AI tools to its enterprise customers.

"We think there is a lot of opportunity to introduce more and more of these pre-trained APIs, and example models for particular kinds of settings. So recommendations might be a particular type of model," Dean said.

That said, there are some areas which Google is unlikely to make available to a wider audience, in particular the algorithms helping power its search business.

"It is generally a business decision about which ones make sense to release," Dean explains. "We have been pretty open about the ones we have released. I would say things like search ranking we will probably not release but other than that most things [we would consider releasing].

"We want people to use this to build their own cool products as well."

Source: Computerworld UK 

 

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