Episode #001 - AI in Microsoft's products and the keys to a successful IT project
September 11, 2023
The Power of Microsoft AI: Transforming the world of computing with a low-code or no-code approach
In an ever-changing technological world, Microsoft stands out with its suite of technologies called Microsoft Power Platform. While it may seem new to some, the Power Platform has been around for 5 years. It has always been equipped with a powerful feature: AI (artificial intelligence).
The Power Platform even has a feature called AI Builder. For those unfamiliar with it, this technology is a real game changer. When it was launched in 2019, it caused widespread astonishment due to its ability to simplify the creation of AI models. Previously, customizing or training an AI model was a task reserved for computer experts and data scientists. However, with AI Builder, this complexity is now reduced to a five-step process that resembles a simple wizard-like tool.
For example, let's say you want to create an application that can distinguish a chair from a computer based on images. Simply download 15 images of chairs and 15 images of computers, then use the wizard to train your model. Once completed, the application will be able to recognize these objects without requiring advanced technical skills.
A concrete example of the use of AI Builder is Pepsi in the USA. They have developed an application that enables their distributors to take photos of products on a shelf using the Power App. This app automatically counts the number of bottles of Pepsi, Mountain Dew, etc., based on the captured images, simplifying inventory management. All this was achieved without the need for coding, thanks to the AI Builder.
In 2021, Microsoft introduced OpenAI and GPT-3, which automatically writes code. Programmers can now create applications with 40% less code thanks to this feature. The productivity gains are very impressive.
The three main Power Platform applications are Power Virtual Agent, Power App and Express Design. Power Virtual Agent is a tool for creating chatbots without the need for advanced programming skills. It simplifies the creation of bots, enabling anyone to “code” one without the hassles.
Express Design is a new feature in Power Apps that lets you quickly create an application by drawing its interface on paper and then digitizing it to create the application's basic structure. This saves valuable time in the development process.
Microsoft's AI, combined with these tools, is transforming the way companies interact with their customers. Applications are developed faster, with less code, allowing them to remain competitive in the ever-changing marketplace.
Microsoft continues to innovate and improve its technologies to meet the needs of its customers. With features such as Copilot, the possibilities offered by AI are increasingly promising.
In sum, Microsoft’s Power Platform and its AI capabilities are revolutionizing the world of computing by enabling users to create powerful applications without the need for advanced technical skills. Examples, such as Power Virtual Agent and Express Design, show how AI facilitates the creation of applications, opening up new opportunities for businesses. Microsoft is at the forefront of technological innovation, offering powerful solutions for an ever-changing world.
The keys to a successful IT project
In the 2nd part of the podcast, we had the opportunity to hear our experts discuss the future of IT projects and upcoming trends. This discussion touched on topics such as automation, change management and the importance of putting technology to work for people. Here's a summary of the key points from this part of the discussion.
Task automation in IT projects
Task automation will be one of the major trends in the years to come. With advances in artificial intelligence and the growing availability of data, companies will increasingly plan to automate previously manual processes. This will not only save time but also reduce human error and optimize operations.
The importance of data in a company’s digital transformation
The role of data in a digital transformation project is pivotal. Companies often have a considerable amount of data at their disposal, which, when properly leveraged, can reveal valuable business insights. Data analysis will help guide decisions, identify areas for improvement, and optimize processes. Data becomes an essential asset for boosting overall company performance.
Change management: A key strategy not to be overlooked
Another speaker brought a staff perspective to the discussion, highlighting the importance of change management. He explained that the implementation of new technologies must not only focus on the technical aspects but also on how people adopt and use them. Change management will become crucial to ensure that employees adapt to and benefit from new technologies.
Simplicity and technology adoption
Another speaker added that simplicity will be a key element in digital transformations. Automation and process optimization don't have to be complicated. On the contrary, it's all about making tools and systems more accessible and intuitive for end users. The simpler the technology is to use, the faster and more effectively it will be adopted.
Valuing individuals in an automated world
Another speaker emphasized that automation is about freeing up time for people—not replacing them. Cumbersome, repetitive tasks can be automated, allowing employees to concentrate on higher value-added activities. This enhances a company's performance as well as values the contribution of each colleague.
Overall, the discussion underscored the fact that, while technology plays a major role in the future of IT projects, a people-driven approach remains essential. Change management, the simplicity of tools, and process optimization must all be aligned to ensure the success of future IT projects.
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