Microsoft’s goal: Democratizing artificial intelligence

With all the talk here at Microsoft’s Ignite conference around the cloud, office productivity and collaboration (and all that goes with that), CEO Satya Nadella took the keynote stage yesterday afternoon to discuss what he sees as the next horizon of digital transformation: artificial intelligence. This, to be sure, is not about AI for the sake of AI. “We don’t want to pursue AI to beat humans at games,” he declared with a winking swipe at IBM’s Watson supercomputer, which won a Jeopardy Tournament, and Google’s AlphaGo, which defeated a world champion at the game of Go. “We want to empower people with the tools of AI so they can build their own solutions.” (Related: Technology leaders strive to advance AI) Microsoft’s approach to AI, Nadella went on, is about…

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