Easy To Use Tech Design Tools - Identifying AI Needs
While AI is rapidly becoming a necessity in business, determining which AI platform is still more art than science, requiring careful consideration of the business' needs and even the expertise of one's staff. Where tools do exist, they are thus far built to accommodate the needs of software engineers rather than non-technical staff. This is not an instance where the information requested cannot be found. Rather, our conclusion is that the type of tool described in the project criteria does not presently exist, requiring companies put considerable thought and planning into the adoption of an AI solution.
Below is an explanation of our research strategy, which included two separate interpretations of the request, in addition to our findings. Due to the necessities of this report, we will adopt a more narrative structure than our usual brief format and are unable to provide useful images / screenshots in the attached project document.
The phrasing of the request criteria was ambiguous and after initial consultation with our interpretive team, we began by a quick round of research into what goes into training an AI (one possible interpretation "AI needs" in the criteria), into determining what is needed to build an AI from the ground up for a particular purpose (another possible interpretation), and/or choosing the right AI for one's business needs (see below).
After an extensive search, we did not find any layperson's tools for identifying the type of data the AI requires to function nor how to identify the needs of a custom-built AI solution. We do find a variety of tools for actually training an AI to accomplish its intended purpose. However, it would be difficult to single any out as "easy to use" as they are designed for highly-specialized users and engineers and so do not fit the criteria. Apart from this, there are many articles written for laymen that explain in broad strokes how researchers and software engineers train AIs to do their tasks, but these also did not fit the other project criteria.
FINDING THE RIGHT AI PLATFORM
Since the project criteria and a review of the original transcript made it clear that what were wanted were tools for the layman, we next researched off-the-shelf AI systems in the hopes of finding tools (e.g., questionnaires, guides, toolkits, etc.) which would help the layman determine which was best for their business. We soon found that no AI is truly off-the-shelf. Nearly all are built around certain industries and/or purposes. While the Cloud Machine Learning Engine is intended for a wide range of uses, a company wanting AI analysis specifically for its sales and marketing teams might find Salesforce Einstein to be a much easier fit, just for example.
USEFUL GUIDES TO IDENTIFYING ONE'S AI NEEDS
We found several credible reviews of AI software packages, including:
- Finances Online's Artificial Intelligence review page, which includes an extensive article on how to choose the right AI
- Software Testing Help's "10 Best Artificial Intelligence Software" list for 2019
- GoodFirms' "Best Artificial Intelligence Software" list
- G2's "Best Artificial Intelligence Software" list, which likewise includes and extensive discussion on AI, including trends, issues, and popular categories
- Pat Research's "Top 15 Artificial Intelligence Platforms"
Of the above, Finances Online provides the best guide for how to choose an AI platform from a layperson's perspective, but even this falls short of being a tool per se, and the text certainly does not lend itself to useful screenshots (discounting screenshots of the AI platforms under review, which again seems not to fit the project criteria).
Having exhausted the possible avenues of research, we conclude that the type of tool indicated by the project criteria does not yet exist due to the rapidly-changing nature of the AI sector. At present, the non-technical person must make their decision based on a combination of research (with the above sources being a useful starting point) and guidance by more technically-inclined consultants and/or individuals in their organization.