Running a business can suck sometimes. You stay up all night, inputting numbers and ripping your head off when the result doesn’t match what you expected. Then you repeat it all over again, double checking everything every step of the way.
Frustrating, I know. With recent advances in the AI industry, however, everything’s about to get easier. Replicating the human brain is proving to be an extremely useful field of study. As businesses turned to smart process automation (SPA) software like WorkFusion, new opportunities continued to open up with the development of AI.
From automating manual tasks, digitizing and sorting data, to processing and displaying them, it’s all easier with SPA on your side. Let the data take care of itself (yes, even the messy ones) and let SPA take care of the bots!
One of the most crucial thing in digitizing data is a developing component of AI, Natural Language Processing (NLP). Although a small part of AI, NLP has proven to be something extremely useful in our lives and we will be seeing how NLP for business is revolutionizing
A Little Bit About NLP
NLP is a component of AI used to study human language. Spoken, written, or otherwise, the development of NLP can already be seen throughout our lives. Aside from interpreting, NLP is also used to let computers communicate with humans, creating better interactions between human and computer.
Although it may sound simple, NLP is a complex process. Teaching computers about human language is not easy. Computers use structured logic to communicate, while humans form messy sentences riddled with distractions. Effective communication between human and computer seem almost impossible.
Fortunately, with the help of machine learning and other technologies, NLP is advancing quicker than ever. Now, joking with Siri is a common occurrence you can see every day.
Development of NLP
NLP has developed a lot in recent years, with each invention a step further than the last.
Using OCR, digitizing data got easier. But with NLP, sorting them out is as easy as they come. OCR or optical character recognition is a tool used to digitize written words. Scanning a word then determining how to read it is a little bit harder than that.
Different handwritings make digitizing a little harder for computers since some of the more… undefined ones threw them off.
In this case, the support of NLP is needed to recognize words and interpreting data to mean something. By using NLP and AI in general, you can process data more accurately and faster.
This feature is one of the most commonly seen in 2017. A lot of apps and software launched voice commands and voice activation features. Siri, Cortana, and Google Voice are just a few examples of this, along with Alexa, Google Home, and a lot more.
Recognizing spoken words are almost as hard as recognizing written ones. With lots of noises, recognizing speech is hard to achieve. Recent developments show how the accuracy of this feature is getting closer to that of humans’.
Comprehension (Reading and Spoken)
Now they have learned how to read things, our computers have to learn how to understand the data they just got. As said before, the language structure between us humans and computers are really different. Our conversations and stories are full of emotion and different styles. Meanwhile, computers are more straightforward than that.
Recent developments show that AI can perform pretty well incomprehension. It may be still far away from human skills, but it’s enough to understand common passages and requests. Imagine what they could do once they understand how to understand these pieces of information!
With a lot of data storage and excellent comprehension, computers can easily become the best scholar out there. What it needs now is a way to parse its results in a form acceptable to humans. Communication is still a two-way street, after all!
Even for most of us, forming legitimate sentences are hard to do. Following a set of rules is actually what our computers are good at. Most of us botch them and make-do with what we have, that’s why it’s so hard for computers to form simple conversational sentences. Impressively, the most recent developments told by AI Index show how computers can form decent sentences with an F1 score nearing 95%.
Translation is one of the trickiest things to learn. This is because it’s compromised by a lot of things, including comprehending sentences in more than 1 languages, knowing how to translate all information precisely without losing any, and reforming that very same information in different forms.
One of the ongoing projects in NLP for this is German to English translation. It’s still far from perfect, but you can see improvements working its way up the BLEU scale in AI Index’s 2017 report.
This is how NLP can help your business
Using combinations of NLP and other features, you can effectively decide which functions work for you. Some of them may be far from fruition, but it’s worth watching their developments, so you’ll be ready once they’re usable.
Data Processing Using OCR
Using NLP, you can quickly sort your data, even written ones. By using OCR to input data to a computer, you can categorize and process your data efficiently. Cut down your stress level and improve your precision by outsourcing to those machines created for this purpose!
Understanding what your customer really wants
With a combination of OCR, speech recognition, and comprehension, you can process feedbacks in seconds. Categorize them into one report summing up what your customers really want. This will make it easier for you to improve your company by taking in your customer’s needs and adapting to them.
Providing amazing user experience and customer support
In the future, stores will have lots of robot as workers. Well, at least that’s how I imagine it to be. Customers can ask for information on the help desk and the computer will point them to the items they are looking for. These workers will be able to talk to your customers and convince them to buy your products. How cool is that?
Catering to people all over the world
Translation makes it easier to bring your products all over the world. Translate your product descriptions to different languages faster and spread your business further. This has been already done using the internet, but don’t you want to reach your customer on a whole new level? Make them identify with your brand quicker by using their native languages.
Truthfully, the combinations above are just a few examples taken from a myriad of possibilities. Using NLP in your business is surely a game changer. With a way to communicate easier with computers, you can improve your business tremendously.