Article | February 17, 2020
The social media giant Facebook has always been at the forefront of AI advancement. Amid all the controversies and roadblocks in its strive to attain AI leadership, the company is moving forward with innovation and tech developments. These developments are a major result of its acquisitions; small but significant. Facebook’s M&A activities are proving to be quite beneficial in its AI journey. Recently, the company acquired Scape Technologies which is a London-based computer vision startup working on location accuracy beyond the capabilities of GPS. Full terms of the deal remain as yet unknown, although a Companies House update reveals that Facebook Inc. now has majority control of the company (more than 75%). Further, a regulatory filings show that Scape’s previous venture capital representatives have resigned from the Scape board and are replaced by two Facebook executives.
Article | February 17, 2020
Machine learning — a branch of artificial intelligence that gives computer systems the ability to automatically improve and learn from experience — has been making serious waves for the last few years. More recently, though, the applications for smartphones and other small screen experiences have started to take shape, driving the way millions interact with their mobile devices.
Yes, Your Mobile Devices are Becoming Smarter
So what do these innovations means for your business? Machine learning can, essentially, make your smartphone “smarter” by improving a host of functions and processes instantly. In fact, most smartphones are already using some type of machine learning or intelligent automation application that aids mobile devices in becoming more efficient and effective. Predictive text messaging, for example, is one such application that’s already become part of the mobile vernacular — chances are, you use it daily without thinking twice.
As a whole, businesses are ramping up their machine learning investment, meaning we’ll be seeing more of this technology — and more accessible versions of this technology — in the coming months and years. For each generation, there’s an added level of intuitiveness when it comes to mobile technology — your current smartphone is smarter than the computers that helped bring man to the moon, in many ways. From that end, how advanced will our mobile devices be in another 10 or 20 years? Smartphones could be paving the way for Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and evolving the very way many industries work.
What’s Next for Mobile Machine Learning
Historically, machine learning requires a tremendous amount of power — power mobile devices simply didn’t have. However, businesses can now install special chips in drones, automobiles and smartphones enabling them to consume 90 percent less power. As a result, mobile devices — even without an internet connection — can perform a variety of once-complex tasks, including:
Virtual / Augmented Reality
Smarter Camera Functionalities
Improved Device Security
Going forward, envelope-pushers are driving towards even bigger, better, more sophisticated applications — think motion control and navigation, diagnosing and analyzing sensory data and more. Interactivity or perceptual interfaces are also capabilities that the new applications are expected to be equipped with, giving mobile devices seemingly endless capabilities.
Due to these unique benefits, machine learning on small devices is clearly becoming a priority for businesses.
Article | February 17, 2020
Storytelling is an art. It brings out the best of the teller and the listener. For centuries storytelling has been proved to be a successful way to reach out to the masses. However, a myth about storytelling is that it is considered only as a subject of literature. Well, we are here to break this myth.
The art of telling a story belongs to every field. Be it literature or science, electronics or computers, every field has its own story, even astronomy. Likewise, every little particle has a story to tell.
There is a story in every line of code written by software developers. The user tells a story, and the software developer writes it in a computer code language. Read further to understand more about storytelling in software development.
The Art of Storytelling in Software Development
When a user comes across a problem that needs to be simplified digitally, he explains the problem to the developer or salesperson.
For example, a shopkeeper needs to digitalize his inventory; he will talk about the problems he is facing while manually managing the inventory. This manual management could be handwritten or a basic excel sheet.
Now, when he tells his issue, he says that “I need software that easily tells me about the things I have in my inventory, goods that are to be stocked and also the goods that have and do not have demand.”
When the shopkeeper elaborates his problem and tells them in a story-like manner, the concerned person understands it better. Now imagine if they would say that, “I need software to know about the goods in the inventory.” Unfortunately, this simple sentence does not convey what exactly they are looking for. As a result, the salesperson would not be able to give them appropriate solutions.
Once the story behind the work is understood, the entire team puts in the effort and comes up with perfect solutions. From coding to the visuals of the software, everything works in synchronization. Thus, the story behind the work is of great importance.
Storytelling in software development has a structure. It has a beginning, middle part, climax, end, visuals, and imagination. The only difference in the storytelling tool is that it is known as understanding the need of the user (beginning), designing the solution (middle part), CTAs and ways to reach the target audience (climax), visually appealing and adequately working software delivery (end).
The success of storytelling in software development depends on how well the developer connects with the user’s problem. Once the entire team is on the same page, emotionally and practically, they deliver the most reliable solutions.
The Process of Storytelling in Software Development
Storyteller software is a tool that listens to the thoughts and ideas of the customer, understands their audience, and then transforms them into concrete solutions. Storytelling software uses the following steps.
● Understanding the user story
● Implementation of the story
Understanding the Story
As described earlier, understanding the story is learning the background of why the solution is being developed. Once the digital storytelling software is understood, the implementation of the solution becomes more apparent.
When the user tells his problem, there is always a story in it. When this story is told to the team, they give a set of solutions to the user. It is like giving them the menu to select the dish they like to be served.
Once they select the dish, it becomes an easy job to make it. But you need to ask the user why he is selecting the particular solution. Because the ‘why’ will answer almost every question that is needed to design the appropriate solution.
Implementation of the Story
The implementation of the story is the ‘show, don’t tell’ part. You need to display the solution on the screen for the user to understand. The user does not know the coding language, but he will understand that if I click this, this happens. And that understanding for the user is the implementation of the story.
We can also say that the implementation of the story is the architecture of the software. A well-built architecture will convey the story to the users. For example, when HRIS software is developed, the HR departments will know that the story behind the development was to ease out their tasks. These tasks could be anything from attendance to salary management.
Always remember, only a well-understood story can be implemented most dependably.
The conclusion of the story is the delivery and installation of the visual storytelling software. The user should be able to find all the answers to his problems in the best possible way. Their story that started with ‘once upon a time’ should end happily ever after’. And this is possible only when the entire team is connected emotionally and practically while working towards the solution.
The conclusion should also convey the climax of the story. The climax implies the CTAs or the final work that the software does after getting the desired data.
Only after you have reached a conclusion and the user is satisfied you will know that you have written an excellent story. This good story is the incredible software you built by gathering the plot, characters, problems, and other raw material from the user!
Benefits of Storytelling in Software Development
We know the process of storytelling in software development, but what do we gain from it? You must be thinking, can’t we listen to the demands, design a solution, and give the user what he wants? So, what is the need to understand the story behind the software?
Well, software delivered without understanding the story is merely a puzzle created. In the future, the software would not be able to answer the most important question -WHY? And that could prove that the software is a failure.
Here are some benefits of storytelling in software development.
● Straightforward Approach
Instead of beating around the bush or designing complicated solutions you will deliver the solutions in simpler steps. And this is because you have well understood the story behind creating the software.
● Understand the Big Picture
The user's story will let you understand what outcomes or expectations the user has from the software. The vision of the user and their expectations from the product can be understood only when the whole team has clarity on what and why they are working.
● Emotional Attachment
When software is developed practically and empathetically, the user also connects well with the software. People have to be given an emotion to get clicks on CTAs or use the software.
A survey was taken wherein people had to donate to a cause. As a result, two types of causes were created. One group was asked to donate food for an underdeveloped country, and the other group was asked to donate for a hungry child. The second group donated more, and many of them stated why they felt emotionally connected to the child.
Thus, the emotional connection of the team to design software is essential.
● Give Better Outcomes
Stories assure better results and excellent outcomes. They make sure that the team works best and the customers are motivated to take action. The story behind the software helps build the software in precisely the way it is asked for.
Thus, You Need to Tell a Story
Building a great story and connecting it with the user’s pain points is the best way to develop a creative solution. This helps paint a picture in the team's minds as to what is being built and why.
Storytelling in software development is essential as each software should convey an incredible story.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is storytelling in software development?
Storytelling in software development understands the story as a tool to design the software more accurately. The thoughts and requirements of the user are used as raw materials and utilized to create an efficient solution.
The story also helps in understanding the audience for whom the software is being developed.
What is the importance of storytelling in software?
Stories create better solutions and excellent outcomes. They motivate the audience to react in a certain way. They connect with the user and the audience on an emotional level. They are impactful and even let developers learn a lot.
They help create better software by keeping the team connected through the story.
What are the software storytelling tools?
Software storytelling tools are the elements that help implement the solution most productively. These are the user's point of view, emotionally connect, purpose, and the answers to the questions- what and why.
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The story also helps in understanding the audience for whom the software is being developed."
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Article | February 17, 2020
Imagine an age where you can read the thoughts of a person via telepathy like Professor X of X-Men comics and uncover their anarchical plans or a tech that reads the thoughts of a mute person or your pets and helps you have better communication. Well, a team at the University of California, San Francisco, performed this experiment and put us a step closer to the dream. Joseph Makin, co-author of the research team says, “We are not there yet, but we think this could be the basis of a speech prosthesis.” The university developed the AI to decipher up to 250 words in real-time from a set of between 30 and 50 sentences. The university recruited four women participants with a history of epilepsy and already had electrode arrays implanted in their brain to monitor epileptic seizures. These participants were asked to read aloud from 50 set sentences multiple times as the team tracked their neural using electrodes while they were speaking. The sample included “Tina Turner is a pop singer”, “the oasis was a mirage”, “part of the cake was eaten by the dog”, “Those thieves stole 30 jewels”, “how did the man get stuck in the tree” and “the ladder was used to rescue the cat and the man.” The largest group of sentences contained 250 unique words.