For years I have been reading articles about ways Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools will change the world. Several seem-like good ideas and very exciting. But they most seem so far away or complicated. Some seem like solutions in search of a problem to solve. Or the amount of work to get an AI process to work is too expensive and will take so long to get up and running, technology will change before you could implement. Then I read about Cognitive Search.

At its simplest, if you have a whole bunch of information (contracts, product catalogs, instruction manuals, etc.) and need to be able to obtain specific answers from that data, Cognitive Search AI lets you ask a question and will provide you the answer.  With recent breakthroughs and advancements, implementations have been reduced from sometime years to weeks. The inclusion of Natural Language Processing (NLP) can make the experience interactive and feel like near-human interactions.

This breakthrough for information search can and will have an impact on every organization in the world.  By 2025, global data creation is projected to grow to more than 180 zettabytes. Being able to review, make decisions, and then take action is going to be a herculean task that no one will have the time for in our current state. The use of smart search will be the only way to consume the information available to make the best and most informed decisions.

As an example of AI changing an industry, the financial industry is going “all in” with AI. According to the Business Insider Intelligence report of 2020, 75% of respondents at banks with over $100 billion in assets say they're currently implementing AI strategies. They are confident applying artificial intelligence will generate more than $250 billion in value across the sector, according to McKinsey Global Institute. With tools such as Cognitive Search, Banks can generate investment insights, improve customer services, and make accurate predictions about company sales performance and churn.

The AI world is growing and changing and still complicated. But if we focus on what we need, or are going to need, it can make a lot more sense. Everyone could use a personal helper to read through all the information coming at them. Just asking a question and getting an immediate answer from an expert is a spectacular thought!