Artificial intelligence (AI) promises to make the world better in ways we can’t yet imagine. The possibilities include everything from delivering sophisticated employee training to advanced surgery techniques, or even analyzing data from outer space. These prospects are all great and exciting, to be sure.
But along with all the whiz tech, creative digital agenciesare using AI to find new ways to do simple and routine tasks more efficiently and, maybe, with a little more fun. Like mixing the perfect cocktail.
Bringing AI Behind the Bar
That’s what a group of innovators at a mobile app development agency came up with. Every year, the team takes a break from client work to brainstorm and create something innovative in just 24 hours. The idea is to inspire creativity, encourage cross-team functionality, and look beyond the routine of everyday work.
This year’s winning creation, an AI bartender named Niq, pulls together existing technology and uses it in ways it was not necessarily intended to be used. The team behind Niq utilized existing technologies in voice and facial recognition, codeable circuitry, tablets, and readily available AI services and technology. The system represents how new technology and programming can replicate human behavior in unexpected situations.
How An AI Bartender Works
At first glance, Niq uses Microsoft’s Face APIto identify the customer. Based on its records, Niq knows the names and faces of previous clients and can offer up a personalized verbal greeting.
When a customer voices their drink order, Apple’s Siri voice-to-text translation tech takes over to record the interaction. API.ai,a text-based conversation app from Dialogflow, builds a catalogue of these conversations over time for each individual.
API.ai then feeds the text to Amazon Web Services’ Polly, which translates text into natural conversation. Polly uses deep learning, a multi-layered AI approach to understanding, to interpret communication for better, more natural interactions with people.
Meanwhile, in the background, functions kick in that do the physical, mechanical work of mixing an ordered drink. The popular coding and circuitry system from Arduinotakes the commands from Polly and executes the proper response. For Niq, that means pouring the perfect drink from pre-filed recipes.
No One Knows You Like Your AI Bartender
Once a customer interacts with Niq, it remembers everything. What you look like, said, ordered, and the amount you drank becomes a part of your profile. Plans are underway for the next version of Niq that will use deep learning to produce interesting and useful interactions. By remembering what someone ordered previously, for example, Niq should be able to recommend something new and fun to try.