What Microsoft’s acquisition of Nuance could mean for the Future of Workplace AI

Microsoft’s recent announcement that it is acquiring Nuance could signal a new era of voice-enabled technologies in the enterprise. However, the purchase price of $19.7 billion indicates that Microsoft has plans to bring more voice recognition technology to other vertical markets aside from healthcare. We sat down with Igor Jablokov, founder and CEO of augmented AI company Pryon and an early pioneer of automated cloud platforms for voice recognition that helped invent the technology that led to Amazon’s virtual assistant Alexa, to talk about Microsoft’s move and how intelligent voice technology could impact the workplace

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Microsoft details the latest developments in machine learning at GTC 21

Brains graphic

With the rapid pace of change taking place in AI and machine learning technology, it’s no surprise Microsoft had its usual strong presence at this year’s Nvidia GTC event. Representatives of the company shared their latest machine learning innovations in multiple sessions, covering inferencing at scale, a new capability to train machine learning models across hybrid environments, and the debut of the new PyTorch Profiler that will help data scientists be more efficient when they’re analyzing and troubleshooting ML performance issues.

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[Paper Summary] Researchers from NVIDIA, Stanford University and Microsoft Research propose Efficient Trillion-Parameter Language Model Training on GPU Clusters

In a paper by NVIDIA, Stanford University, and Microsoft Research, a research team has proposed a new parallelization schedule that improves throughput by more than 10 percent with a comparable memory footprint. The paper demonstrated that such strategies could be composed to achieve high aggregate throughput when training large models with nearly a trillion parameters. 

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Intel and Microsoft work with DARPA to solve biggest Analytics and AI at Scale problem

Network infographic

Getting secure global data access to data is a key problem. This problem came up early on as the industry spun up advanced Supercomputers and AI systems like IBM’s Watson to rapidly locate existing medications that could help prevent hospital stays and the loss of life due to the pandemic. The data that could provide the answers the researchers needed was spread worldwide in encrypted databases, uniquely secured, and had little in common with each other.

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State of the Edge report projects edge computing will reach $800B by 2028

State of the Edge report

A battle for control over edge computing environments is expected to drive a total of $800 billion in spending through 2028, according to a report published today by the LF Edge arm of the Linux Foundation. The State of the Edge report is based on analysis of the potential growth of edge infrastructure from the bottom up across multiple sectors modeled by Tolaga Research. The forecast evaluates 43 use cases spanning 11 vertical industries.

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Microsoft Exchange attack underlines how Vulnerable your organizational Data is

Lock on circuit board

It is a little over a week since Microsoft Exchange email servers were attacked by a group which Microsoft as described as a network of hackers it calls Hafnium. It is not clear who these people are, but the attack, which impacted as many as 60,000 companies – and by some estimates 100,000 – has forced Microsoft to release out of-band emergency patches for Exchange Server 2013, Exchange Server 2016, and Exchange Server 2019.

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Microsoft and the AI approach to creating a better company (and World)

At Microsoft Ignite this year, Mitra Azizirad, Microsoft’s Corporate VP of AI and Innovation, gave one of the most exciting presentations. She opened with a story about how the man vs. machine chess match was eventually won by a computer, one that became unbeatable until they figured out how to partner a top player with […]

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Microsoft launches AI-Backed Semantic Search

Azure AI Cognitive Search

Microsoft has been steadily upgrading its enterprise search capabilities, recently targeting previously “unsearchable” unstructured data in the form of PDFs, Word documents, text files and JPEGs. The result was Azure Cognitive Search, a cloud-based service with built-in AI capabilities.

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Say hello to Azure Percept, Microsoft’s Latest Edge AI service

The tech giant has a trump card to leverage it’s AI abilities. Controlling elevators with voice commands, cameras that notify stores when to restock, video streams that keep a tab on parking space availability are some of the many things that are now possible, thanks to artificial intelligence and computing on the edge, via Azure Percept.

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Splice gets $55 million for its software bringing beats from bedrooms to bandstands

Steve Martocci Splice

Splice, the New York-based, AI-infused, beat-making software service for music producers created by the founder of GroupMe, has managed to sample another $55 million in financing from investors for its wildly popular service.

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Shell and Microsoft announce the Open AI Energy Initiative for AI-Based Energy solutions

This month, Shell, Microsoft, C3.ai, and Baker Hughes announced the launch of their collaborative AI initiative, Open AI Energy Initiative™ (OAI). Designed for the process and energy sectors, OAI is an open-source tool that offers AI-based solutions, diagnostics, and monitoring to prevent crucial issues.

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Microsoft details Speller100, an AI system that checks spelling in over 100 languages

Bing

In a post on its AI research blog, Microsoft today detailed a new language system, Speller100, that the company claims is one of the most comprehensive ever made in terms of language coverage and accuracy. Comprising a number of AI models that can understand speech in over 100 languages collectively, Speller100 now powers all spelling correction on Bing.

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Microsoft launches Viva, an AI-powered information hub for enterprises

Microsoft Viva

Microsoft today unveiled Microsoft Viva, an employee experience platform that aims to deliver first- and third-party products across learning, wellness, insights, knowledge, and engagement. . A Forrester survey found that between 60% and 73% of all data within corporations is never analyzed for insights or larger trends. The opportunity cost of this unused data is substantial, with a Veritas report pegging it at $3.3 trillion by 2020 if the current trend holds. That’s perhaps why the corporate sector has taken an interest in cognitive search and robotic process automation products that ingest, understand, organize, and act on digital content from multiple digital sources.

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Microsoft debuts Synthetic Speech Platform ‘Custom Neural Voice’

Microsoft has unveiled the Custom Neural Voice service and begun accepting applications from customers interested in a synthetic voice built on the neural text-to-speech (TTS) feature of Azure Cognitive Services. Custom Neural Voice is already in use by brands like Warner Bros. and Progressive, but any company can now seek to build their own artificial voice actors.

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IBM quantum computing development roadmap envisions applications running 100 times faster

IBM believes it has an achievable timetable to advance its quantum hardware to reach the power and reliability that will allow for commercial applications within 5 years. The challenge then is enabling the tools and the environment to let companies and developers start experimenting with writing the applications that will allow them to harness this power.

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