8 thg 1, 2024

A day without AI

  • Connect and support people
  • How much do we rely on artificial intelligence (AI) in our personal and professional lives? Lucy, a senior campaign manager at a successful IT company, found out the hard way. Read on to learn about the challenges Lucy and her team faced when basic AI technology mysteriously went offline for a day.

    7:31 am

    The first rays of sunshine hit Lucy’s face and she squints as she fumbles around for her phone until she finally manages to turn off the alarm. Strange, the face ID doesn’t recognize her face this morning. It takes her a moment to remember her PIN which she hasn’t used in months. Once she’s unlocked her phone, a window pops up saying there’s been an error in the intelligent visual recognition software that is causing problems with the face ID feature. Lucy dismisses the error message. She goes to check her work emails, as always, and sighs. There must be something wrong with the spam filter in her email app because her inbox is bursting with junk emails today. Another error message – the app’s AI-based filtering system is out of order but will be fixed promptly. It’s too early for this, Lucy thinks and puts the phone down.

    8:27 am

    As usual, Lucy’s colleague Stella gives her a ride to work. There’s construction on their regular route, so Lucy is in charge of navigation. She searches for the office on Google maps and selects the fastest route. As it turns out, there’s a traffic jam on the selected route and they end up arriving at work 15 minutes late. That’s weird, Lucy wonders, doesn’t Google maps factor in AI-generated traffic predictions when calculating the estimated arrival time?

    8:59 am

    Lucy rushes to her desk, powers up her laptop and grabs her headset. She quickly joins her first online meeting of the day: a one-to-one with her intern Milo. As they discuss Milo’s tasks for the week, Lucy notices that his background isn’t blurred (an AI-based feature that separates the image of Milo from his surroundings), and she can see his roommate pass by the door to Milo’s dorm room in his underwear. She manages to keep a straight face and starts talking Milo through the campaign plan for next quarter, but he can’t understand what she’s saying. The noise suppression which uses AI to identify and block out background noise isn’t working and the colleagues in Lucy’s office are particularly agitated today.

    9:30 am

    Lucy gets off her call with Milo and turns around to see what all the commotion is about. It turns out a colleague from the customer support office next door burst in to tell them the support chatbot has a major bug and has started telling all customers that their subscription will be canceled by the end of the month. The fallout is immediate. There’s a backlog of 127 callers and, unsurprisingly, every customer on the line is furious. Since the customer support team was downsized after the successful introduction of the AI chatbot, they no longer have the capacity to handle the unprecedented influx of calls. They now need every colleague in Sales or Marketing to help answer the calls in time.

    1:45 pm

    It’s been a hectic day so far. Aside from helping to answer support calls, Lucy’s been busy preparing for her presentation to the CMO tomorrow and following up with various stakeholders to get the latest performance stats for her current campaign. She’d planned to finalize and rehearse the slide deck for tomorrow’s presentation by this afternoon, but the intelligent design feature and the automated presenter coach in PowerPoint aren’t working. So instead, she reaches out to Sam from the advertising team to see how the campaign ads are performing. He answers immediately saying they’ve had a problem with the AI tool they use to personalize ads and segment the audience which resulted in a drop in ad performance over the course of this morning. Great, Lucy thinks, just in time for my big presentation tomorrow.

    3:26 pm

    Lucy glances at the clock — she hasn’t received the web copy for a campaign landing page from the content marketing team yet, but she promised to deliver it to the web team by the end of the day. She messages Alex, the head copywriter, and asks about the page. Alex informs her that their team has been struggling to create content at the same rate as usual because their AI copywriting tool has been down all week. Ever since the content team became fully remote, the writers have been using AI for brainstorming and proofreading. This has drastically improved the quality of their first drafts and reduced the time needed for copyediting. Without the AI tool, the copywriters have been on and off brainstorming and editing calls, leaving them with less quiet time for focused writing. Nevertheless, Alex promises to deliver the web copy to Lucy before five.

    5:05 pm

    Lucy has finally received the landing page copy and starts a group call with the web team to discuss its implementation. As it turns out, they’ve been having problems of their own. They had planned to perform a search engine optimization (SEO) audit of the homepage today, i.e., an evaluation of how well the page is optimized for search platforms like Google. However, the AI tool they use to identify relevant keywords, assess the readability of existing content, and detect technical issues such as broken links or duplicate content is out of order. While some of these tasks can be done manually, most have to be postponed until the AI is functioning again.

    7: 53 pm

    Back at home, Lucy is pleased to find that her partner James has cooked dinner. Sometimes they watch Netflix while they eat, but they’ve just finished the last season of their show and the personalized recommendations are all over the place (you guessed it – they too, rely on AI), so they turn off the TV. Lucy takes a sip of red wine and says to James: I’ve had the strangest day; I don’t even know where to start…

    Artificial intelligence (AI) refers to the ability of machines or software to think, learn, and execute tasks that typically require human intelligence. These tasks include recognizing faces and physical surroundings, identifying patterns in data, and adapting response behavior based on past experiences.

    In a business setting, AI-based tools help employees make faster data-based decisions, generate ideas, and automate repetitive work. They also unlock a world of possibilities when it comes to bringing digital technology into the non-digital world. TeamViewer’s augmented reality (AR) solutions, for instance, use AI to analyze and enhance complex industrial processes. The underlying AI technology enables these solutions to display digital information as part of the physical world to guide frontline employees in performing manual tasks.

    The above article illustrates that AI already plays a central role in daily business operations. And as leading organizations continue to invest in AI, the potential of what they can achieve becomes limitless.