A resource to help foster responsible innovation with AI in manufacturing
It’s hard to imagine an area of technology that holds more promise than artificial intelligence right now. But as it becomes more pervasive in our business solutions, so too do the ethical, societal, and policy considerations that come with it. In 2018, Microsoft published the forward-looking book, “The Future Computed,” which took a realistic look at the potential of AI, considered its implications for the workforce and society, and suggested an ethical framework to guide its development and use. In our continued effort to provide relevant resources that help bring AI services into your practice portfolios, we want to highlight “The Future Computed: AI and Manufacturing,” the follow-up book focused on AI in the manufacturing sector. Manufacturers are using AI technologies to increase productivity, reduce downtime, improve workplace safety, and reinvent business processes. We know because Microsoft is a manufacturer, and we’ve been using AI technologies to help drive our own digital transformation. AI doesn’t just impact your business, though—it’s changing processes across your customer organizations, too. We’re already seeing talent shortages as manufacturing jobs increasingly require new skills. Those shortages have a broad impact. The demand for data scientists and other skillsets needed to implement AI solutions is fierce, and the disruption in recruitment—among many other things—is providing an opportunity for our partners to help their customers build new capabilities, systems, and processes. In “The Future Computed: AI and Manufacturing,” you’ll find a resource that responsibly addresses the complexities of AI’s newfound ubiquity. Industry, government, education, and labor organizations will all play major roles in defining how we discuss, implement and advance AI technologies. Knowing this, Microsoft Research is collaborating with Stanford University to advance a human-centered approach to AI. The university recently launched the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence to propel AI research, education, policy, and practice with the goal of improving the human condition. Because that’s the point, right? Everyone will interact with AI to some degree, so let’s make sure it’s working for the good of us all. Microsoft is aligned with the institute’s goal of becoming an interdisciplinary global hub for AI thinkers, learners, researchers, developers, builders, and users from academia, government and industry, as well as leaders and policymakers. We’ve also partnered with global colleges and universities to address the technical skills gap by aligning and integrating Microsoft’s technical skills programs and credentials to provide cost-effective choices for students looking to build skills in AI, data science, computer science, and cybersecurity. The AI Opportunity is too big to not stay abreast of the innovation and debate (or better yet, add your voice). Doing so can only help position you as a thought leader in your market. That opportunity is detailed in our AI Practice Development Playbook, which offers valuable guidance and resources to help Microsoft partners optimize their AI-focused practice. Informed by surveys and interviews with 555 global partners, the playbook offers insights on successful strategies for building, marketing, and selling AI services and acquiring the technical skills, systems and tools your team will need along the way. If you’re just getting started or discovering new ways to build AI into your offerings, check out our AI guided experience for partners. It includes step-by-step guidance on the partner opportunities, introductory-to-advanced training courses, marketing guides, and demos. Speaking of training, visit the AI School for learning materials and resources to start building intelligence into your solutions. For the business side, we created AI Business School to share insights and practical guidance from top executives on strategy, culture, and responsibility when applying AI in an organization. Our commitment to AI technology is strong and growing. We hope that AI does for you and your business what it has for so many others and creates a newfound passion for innovation. Let’s move forward together, with care and responsibility.