The word ‘Weapon’ is generally associated with something destructive but was invented by our ancestors as a means to save them from unexpected events and attacks from enemies. Though we have evolved over centuries, now this word still holds the same weight. For businesses, it’s an answer to similar questions asked in different ways like “How can we trump the competition?” or “How should we tackle disruption?” or “How can we stay relevant in our businesses?” If this question is not a part of your boardroom meetings, your leadership hasn’t been exposed to the concept of rapid pace of technology change. Being ignorant about technology change could lead your organization to self-destruction and the only way to make amends is to start harnessing the value of next-gen technologies in your businesses.
Next-gen technologies are innovations that essentially displace or can displace existing technological establishments in some way. Can these next-gen technologies kill businesses? I will say No, but businesses will kill themselves if they don’t adapt to them at the right time with the required pace for the benefit of their end customers.
There are many such technologies but the ones that are making an impact are Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and advanced analytics. The combination of the three technologies has so many business use-cases like prescriptive maintenance, anomalies detection, intelligent recommendations etc.
I would love to borrow the famous tagline from our doctors i.e. “Prevention is better than cure” and would like to demonstrate the same in the form of a use-case.
Artificial Intelligence is the idea that there are tasks which can be performed by machines in place of humans with better accuracy, and these machines are capable of thinking, acting and learning like humans.
Internet of Things is a connected ecosystem of devices, software systems, sensors, internet and platforms that perform better by exchanging information, understanding each other and delivering a seamless experience. Understand Internet of Things as a bunch of devices talking to each other like a family.
Advanced Analytics is the idea of using data and analytics techniques to get insights, which are otherwise not possible or very difficult to take better actions and decisions. Advanced analytics can give better dashboard experience thus improving the quality of decisions.
When these three technologies intersect and work together, they can create wonders for various businesses especially in industries relying heavily on sensors and robots.
Use Case: Proactive detection or prescriptive maintenance of machine failures
What comes to your mind when you think about IoT? We believe you will think about controlling your fan, television and other similar electronic devices using your buddy, cell phone or any remote controller. These are independent devices talking to each other and exchanging data. Prescriptive maintenance is a disruptive shift in the way machine failures are addressed and the intention for such a system is real-time monitoring of the events, learning from the past events using machine learning concepts and acting before any defect impacts the system or the production line. Prescriptive maintenance leverages advanced artificial intelligence algorithms like pattern recognition, identifying trends from the data, production lines monitoring, prediction of future failures, and using advanced analytics to change the outcome promptly.
The essence of the IoT ecosystem is a collection of interconnected devices sending data and talking to each other to improve user experience. Artificial intelligence as a technology is known for the software systems exhibiting human kind of intelligence. Now imagine the power of such a system having a huge amount of data collected from IoT devices and leveraging the collected data for smart insights using artificial intelligence and machine learning. Artificial intelligence components will better interpret the data obtained by the IoT ecosystem and will feed the interpreted results to smart dashboards. These smart dashboards built using advanced analytics components will help to report possible machine failures, equipment dependencies or any mishaps well in advance, proactive defect removal, and proposing intelligent recommendations all without the human intervention.
Remember, the IoT itself is built on AI and ML concepts and adding an extra AI layer will enable such systems to achieve their full potential resulting in business value.
Below is one of the logical ways such a system can work: