But what is AI?
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is an emerging technology that is accelerating the digital transformation of small and medium-sized businesses.
With the help of AI, businesses can offer higher quality services to their customers, saving time and money.
In this guide, we will explore how businesses can leverage AI to gain a competitive advantage, understanding the history of AI, who provides AI, how it can be integrated, how much it costs, and what are the possible applications with real use cases.
Humans have always sought to create intelligent machines, not only to simplify work but also to realize the idea of artificial beings. The history of artificial intelligence dates back to ancient times when philosophers imagined the creation of mechanical men and automata.
The evolution of AI has been remarkable, moving from early theoretical reasoning to modern advances in machine learning and robotics.
The birth of theoretical artificial intelligence dates back to the period between 1940 and 1960, when Norbert Wiener, a pioneer in cybernetics, focused on unifying mathematical theory, electronics, and automation.
John Von Neumann and Alan Turing also contributed to the evolution of AI, formalizing the architecture of our contemporary computers and demonstrating that they were universal machines capable of executing what is programmed.
The acronym "AI" was coined by John McCarthy of MIT, who defines AI as the creation of computer programs that perform tasks currently done more satisfactorily by humans, as they require high-level mental processes such as perceptual learning, memory organization, and critical reasoning.
Despite the technology still being fascinating and promising, its popularity declined in the early 1960s due to the very limited memory of machines, which made it difficult to use a computer language.
AI became a reality in the 1970s with the advent of the first microprocessors and expert systems such as DENDRAL and MYCIN, based on an "inference engine" programmed to be a logical mirror of human reasoning.
In the 1980s and 1990s, programming such knowledge required a lot of effort, and it was not clear how the machine reasoned. Development and maintenance became extremely problematic, and the term artificial intelligence had almost become taboo.
At the end of the first decade of the 2000s, we find a new exciting AI boom caused by two key factors that have propelled the industry: access to massive volumes of data and the extraordinary efficiency of computer graphics cards in speeding up algorithmic calculations.
Therefore, today, thanks to the efficiency of graphics cards and the almost infinite amount of data available, we have reached the peak of interest and possibilities in the evolution of AI-related technologies.
In 2023, there are many providers of artificial intelligence services, but it is important to distinguish between those who actually manage the models and those who only resell them. Checking the terms of service to ensure that third-party AI platforms are not used can be helpful in identifying simple intermediaries. Only major players in the industry can afford to hold AI hardware and models.
The most famous platforms are OpenAI, Stable Diffusion, MidJourney, and Llama.
OpenAI provides models for writing and analyzing textual content, audio recognition, and image generation. Its system is completely closed source and can be used through API calls or by subscribing to Chat-GPT.
Stable Diffusion, on the other hand, is an open-source deep learning text-to-image model, which makes it completely free, except for the need for suitable hardware. It is mainly used to generate detailed images conditioned by textual descriptions but can also be applied to other tasks such as inpainting, outpainting, and generating image-to-image translations guided by a textual prompt.
MidJourney is one of the recently emerged AI image generators. Unlike its competitors, it offers a more dreamlike artistic style to your requests and aims to "explore new means of thought and expand the imaginative powers of the human species." It is also worth noting how it is improving in photorealism with its version 5.
Finally, Llama is the OpenSource alternative proposed by Meta to compete with OpenAI's GPT models. LLaMA allows other members of the scientific community to study these models in a more accessible and democratic way, even for those who do not have large amounts of infrastructure.
Artificial intelligence (AI) offers infinite possibilities for application thanks to its ability to learn and continuously improve.
There are six main ways in which AI can be used:
Text generation is one of the areas of AI that has seen increasing attention in recent years.
By processing large amounts of data and learning from existing models, it is possible to create software capable of producing high-quality texts that appear to be written by humans.
This has led to the creation of systems that provide various functionalities such as:
- FAQ or Q&A response generation
- Text classification systems
- Creative generation
- Text analysis and transformations
Another field of application for artificial intelligence is Audio Processing, particularly it is possible to:
- Filter background noise
- Distinguish voices
- Translate conversations in real-time into different languages
- Create new forms of sound and music art
- Convert audio to text and vice versa
The last field of application that artificial intelligence has revolutionized is that of images and how they are processed, analyzed, and generated.
Thanks to deep learning techniques, neural networks can learn to recognize objects, faces, and patterns within an image and create new ones. AI can be used to generate images from a prompt, recognize text and objects in images, and transform images to improve their quality or modify their content.
There are many examples of AI models that improve our daily lives, such as translation systems, automatic video subtitles, and speech recognition systems on mobile devices.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is an increasingly widespread technology in many fields, but how can a company integrate it into its processes? There are different integration techniques, each suitable for different types of situations.
If a company has a competent development team, it can decide to create a custom AI solution for its needs using API interfaces or on-premises programs.
However, API interfaces have some disadvantages, such as the fact that data resides on third-party servers.
While on-premises implementation allows for full control of systems and sensitive data, it requires advanced technical knowledge and careful planning.
Additionally, automation software like Zapier, Make, or Pabbly can be used, but it requires paying multiple subscriptions and may not fit real needs.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is changing the way we work, but implementing this technology remains an expensive endeavor for many companies and consumers.
If you were to create a new artificial intelligence from scratch, the challenges to be faced would be:
- Gathering large amounts of data
- Classifying information
- Designing and developing the machine learning model
- Training and managing the model with data
- Implementing and exposing the model with its functionalities and connecting it with new or existing programs.
There are many expenses to consider, including hardware, data analysts, machine learning experts, and software houses. To create a minimum viable product, a small to medium-sized business can spend between €50,000 and €100,000.
Fortunately, there are ready-to-use AI models, both free and paid, that companies can use to save costs.
The price of models depends on their functionalities and the size of the training dataset.
Integrating the AI model with existing business systems requires the assistance of expert development teams. This is an unavoidable cost for companies that want to benefit from the advantages of AI, but it is still an affordable price. Some examples, like the BloggerAI project, show how this cost can be kept to a few thousand euros.
Here is a list of possible real-world applications for artificial intelligence:
Writing quotes and contracts requires significant time and effort for businesses. However, technological advancements now offer us the opportunity to simplify this process with the help of artificial intelligence.
Imagine having access to personalized software that can efficiently and quickly process information. To create such software, a database of existing contracts and quotes needs to be prepared, and a custom AI model needs to be trained.
The end result is an effective solution that reduces the time it takes to create and edit quotes and contracts. With just a few clicks, the system generates a complete document ready to be presented to the client.
These are the benefits it brings:
- Improves the efficiency of the entire operation
- Enhances professionalism in document presentation
- Improves time management
- Provides greater accuracy in document preparation
With the help of artificial intelligence, it is possible to offer an automated, fast, and efficient customer service. A personalized software can be created to generate professional and customized responses to customer inquiries.
To create a personalized artificial intelligence model, a database needs to be prepared with all the questions and answers provided in the past. Subsequently, the AI model can be trained and optimized through iterations with simulations.
The benefits of this type of implementation are:
- Reduced response times
- Increased accuracy in providing answers
- Faster response production
- Enhanced professionalism in presenting responses to customers
This type of software represents an excellent tool for improving the efficiency of customer service.
AI is used in various ways to help website owners create higher-quality content and reach a wider audience.
AI-powered content creation tools can be used by bloggers to:
- Content Generation: AI content creation tools automatically generate content, helping bloggers save time and energy in content creation.
- SEO Optimization: AI-powered SEO tools provide recommendations for keywords, titles, meta descriptions, and more.
- Automatic Translations: AI-based automatic translation technology can provide accurate and nuanced translations that go beyond literal translation.
- Automatic Rewriting: AI-based automatic rewriting technology can adapt the tone and style of an original article to make it more suitable for a different target audience.
The benefits of using software like this are:
- Time and energy savings in article creation
- Optimization for search engines
- Automatic translation and rewriting of articles to make them accessible to a wider audience
Artificial intelligence is already transforming the blogging industry, offering bloggers powerful tools to create higher-quality content.
If you want to discover how artificial intelligence can revolutionize your business, you are in the right place. Colibryx is a company specialized in creating customized solutions for businesses of various sizes and industries.
We are experts in software development and constantly updated on the fascinating world of artificial intelligence. We are ready to help your business improve productivity, reduce costs, and increase customer satisfaction.
Our team of experts is available to discuss your specific needs and find the best solution for your business. Contact us today for a free consultation and discover how artificial intelligence can bring success to your business.