Good Stuff from Sanjay v2.0

Good Stuff from Sanjay v2.0 — I’m Sanjay Chopra, Co-Founder and CEO of Cognistx. Welcome to Cognistx’s second installment of Good Stuff from Sanjay, series, where we dive into a topic each month that’s top-of-mind for me (and our company). Hopefully, this will become a resource for you as well, as you look to AI (with Cognistx as your go-to AI partner) to solve for your company’s specific business problems.

For this month’s Good Stuff series, I wanted to discuss some thoughts on how AI can be a great solution for businesses within the manufacturing industry, as well as share a few updates regarding a project we’re working on with PPG:

First up, a few ways AI can use data to help solve for common hurdles within manufacturing:

Knowledge Retention: Employees with decades of valuable experience are retiring from the workforce, and their critical knowledge has not been saved or codified. AI tools can be used to codify that expert knowledge and distribute it across sites so it can be leveraged company-wide.

  • Simulations: capture expertise and use it to train new skills
  • Testing: virtually test workers in safe environments and with less time and offer remote training

Production Decision Making: Manufactured items are more complex than ever, and they require hundreds of people, dozens of supplies, thousands of pieces, and countless decisions. Consumer demand and competition means just-in-time manufacturing, faster design improvements, and global sourcing. That’s where AI can swoop in to save the day, offering:

  • Intelligent Information Retrieval: reduce information overload by finding relevant information addressing the current need of the individual
  • Automated Data Collection: diminish the effort in collecting information such as pricing, availability, standards, and timing, so decision-making can happen quickly and with confidence
  • Scheduling and Coordination: coordinate multiple suppliers to reduce delays, inventory, reduce costs
  • Automated, Real-time Projections: make manufacturing and logistics more efficient than ever by allowing proactive risk management

Design Research: Creating new products is an expensive process, and one that often results in them falling flat. With thousands of specifications, regulations, and customer insights to navigate, information can be hard to quantify and share company-wide. Let AI help with this tricky process by introducing:

  • Customer Insight: mine product tests and specifications to provide insight from previous design research
  • Regulation Changes: traverse regulations and identify areas that need to be edited to address updates
  • Simulations/Prototyping: simulate scenarios and use cases to gather feedback efficiently

Product Support: Manufacturing and just-in-time delivery means people can customize their products, which is great for the end user but often causes headaches on the manufacturing side. Bring AI into the mix to provide:

  • Configuration Support: identify how a product would need to be altered to meet the customer’s order, knowing that computers will achieve this more efficiently than humans
  • Efficient Warehousing: use vision and indoor positions to aid robots in warehouses

We’ve loved getting to partner with PPG to optimize a portion of their manufacturing process as they work to save money and time in their paint production. For them, any marginal improvement in the paint formulation or adjustments process means thousands of dollars in savings.

Interested in learning more about how we can help you meet your manufacturing business goals? Get in touch with us today by contacting Jill Zoria, our SVP of Enterprise Development. Or request a consultation and one of our team members will reach out to you.

– Sanjay

Why Progressive Businesses In Any Industry Should Be Turning To Cognitive Computing

Why Progressive Businesses In Any Industry Should Be Turning To Cognitive Computing

Winston-Salem, NC | March 6 — That’s right, we at Cognistx firmly believe that cognitive computing should be on the radar of any forward-looking business (and that’s not just because we happen to build artificial intelligence technology!). It’s because we’ve seen the value of this technology up close – and we don’t want you to miss out on its game-changing potential.

Let’s start by breaking down cognitive computing a bit, though. After all, you’ve probably heard the terms “cognitive computing,” “machine learning,” “big data,” and “artificial intelligence,” or “AI,” thrown around a lot by now, but if you’re a business professional you might be looking to better understand how the technology that powers IBM’s Watson or Amazon’s Alexa can help you from a business standpoint.

In reality, the answer is: AI can help you solve for just about any business problem as long as there is the right kind of data to learn from.

You see, AI feeds off of big data and your category knowledge, and uses that information to help you gain efficiencies, understand consumer behavior, individualize retail offers, increase the value of your database, and so much more. You should be asking, “Which of my business problems can be solved with AI?” (And we’d love to help you answer that question!)

Cognistx wants to be sure businesses understand AI so they can stay ahead – and we’re here to help you jump into the cognitive computing game with complete confidence. To help with that process, we’ve reduced cognitive computing to a set of best practices, and have set ourselves up to help you solve real-world business problems regardless of the industry you’re in.

In the healthcare business? AI can help you track effectiveness of care with more reliability, helping reduce your re-admission numbers.

Are you a supplier? AI is great at helping you divert resources when inventory needs change at the last minute.

Is retail your game? Cognitive computing can individualize offers for customers and learn their specific behaviors, getting them to a conversion quickly based on their habits.

Whatever your industry, AI is relevant. It’s time to pay attention to those buzzwords floating around out there – and to realize it’s about far more than just technology. It’s about relationships with consumers. It’s about peace of mind for business leaders. It’s about staying ahead of the curve among your competitive set.

We’d love to set up time to talk to you about how your company can partner with Cognistx to help solve your most perplexing business problems. Get in touch with us today by contacting Jill Zoria, our SVP of Enterprise Development. Or request a consultation and one of our team members will get in touch!

The Democratization Of A.I.

Winston-Salem, NC | February 23 — Not too long ago, the concept of Artificial Intelligence existed only in Sci-Fi books and movies. Then, all of a sudden, it seemed, this once fictional technology became a reality.

But still, it felt distant. AI was high-profile, expensive tech, relegated to mammoth industry leaders like IBM.

Cognistx is out to change that model. Our mission? Democratizing AI.

We want to make this technology available to the masses — because it’s RELEVANT to the masses. It’s industry agnostic and able to be applied in countless forms depending on what questions you’re trying to answer or which issues you’re trying to solve. This isn’t just technology for technology’s sake.

At Cognistx, we’re different because we’re fast, efficient, and have crafted flexible pricing models to allow us to work with companies of virtually any size or budget level. We do great work with a stellar team, and we’re able to scale things up or down depending on how much money and time your company has to allocate to this form of technology. We are obsessed with AI and want to share its magic with as many company partners as we can.

AI (also known as “cognitive computing”) is a good fit for any company that collects data. Got data? Let’s talk.

“By providing fast, effective ways to develop intelligent analytics from customer data, Cognistx makes it possible for small to mid-sized companies to leverage big data,” said Eric Nyberg, Co-Founder and Chief Data Scientist at Cognistx. (Fun fact: Eric was the lead academic researcher behind IBM’s Watson)

Cognitive computing helps take your data to the next level, and it automatically gets smarter the more it’s used and the more feedback it receives from humans.

For example, if you’re a retail company sending out offers to consumers, AI can help you start to hone your approach for each individual shopper. Consumer A might continually decline a $10 discount but regularly accept a $15 one. What would happen if we instead offered that person a $12 discount and they began to bite at that level? (You just saved yourself $3, retailer.) That’s the beauty of AI — it gathers and learns this information and can start to customize offers to bring in the best results for your bottom line.

For non-retailers, cognitive computing can complement the work humans are currently doing to help increase your company’s efficiencies, reach, and reliability. For example, AI is ideal for warehouse optimization, and can be put in place to create customized pulling/order processing plans printed daily for each employee. These plans would take into account employees’ individual speeds and other factors to make things move more smoothly and allow employees to have a daily customized game plan that works well with their approach. You wouldn’t just gain efficiency at the front end, either, as you’d be able to continuously gather data on ongoing performance, speed, etc.

We’re thrilled AI technology has reached a point that it can be a viable option for any business across several industries, and Cognistx is dead set on making sure as many companies as possible not only know about AI but know how it can work for them. Welcome to the cognitive era!

Good Stuff from Sanjay

Good Stuff from Sanjay v1.0 — I’m Sanjay Chopra, Co-Founder and CEO of Cognistx. Welcome to Cognistx’s Good Stuff from Sanjay* series, where we dive into a topic each month that’s top-of-mind for me (and our company). Hopefully, this will become a resource for you as well, as you look to AI (with Cognistx as your go-to AI partner) to solve for your company’s specific business problems.

For this month’s Good Stuff series, I’d like to touch on what our focus is here at Cognistx and what makes us different. We’re proud of the way we’ve intentionally set up our business to make us unique within the AI space.

*The name for this monthly series — Good Stuff from Sanjay — was born when I was brainstorming potential options with some colleagues. They pointed out that I have a catchphrase that I use pretty frequently. That phrase? You guessed it. “Good stuff!” (Nothing like having a team that knows you better than you know yourself!)

More specifically:

Our focus at Cognistx continues to be taking our clients’ apps and systems and making them even smarter and more efficient.

  • #SmartDataIngestion: We make those apps and systems smarter by deeply immersing ourselves in and learning to truly understand our clients’ data.
  • #SmartDataFit and #DeepQA: We then apply the right AI models based on the data and the QA (Question Answer) needs we learn from our clients.
  • #SmartCogs: Once we have the models trained, we’re ready to apply them, starting to get to the heart of answering our clients’ questions and business needs/goals.

Our models — which are self-learning and get smarter the longer they’re in place — use clients’ data as a foundation, and are able to answer countless questions for our clients, such as:

  • “Which customers are likely to defect?”
  • “Is this customer loyal?”
  • “When and what offer to present to a customer to keep them engaged?”
  • “Will this manufacturing job run result in the desired output?”
  • “How likely is this customer to try our new offering?”
  • “Will this new product be a big hit in the market?”
  • “What are the optimal promotions to keep our customers engaged?”
  • “Where does this new file fit into our big data cluster?”
  • “What is the biggest risk for this patient as he/she is discharged?”
  • “Is this transaction fraudulent?”
  • “What is the risk associated with underwriting this insurance?”

We have other areas of expertise that help keep us ahead within the cognitive computing space:

  • Our speech interfaces make it easy for customers to interact with clients’ apps and our tech knowledge.
  • We hold strong expertise in DeepQA, Speech, Videos, and Really Big Data Analysis, making for even more user-friendly and customizable AI solutions.
  • Cognistx’s strong partnership with Carnegie Mellon University — a leader in the AI space since the field was invented in the 1950s — keeps us ahead of the curve when it comes to trends and know-how within the industry.

If you’re looking to solve business problems and think Cognistx — through the use of cognitive computing — could be a good way to go about it, please reach out to us to set up a conversation. We’d love to hear from you and to start brainstorming ways to leverage your data to really move the needle for your business!



Cognistx Debuting SmartCourse™ at PGA Show

Orlando, FL  |  January 24  —  Cognistx will introduce SmartCourse™ with their partner, Club Prophet Systems, at the 2017 PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando from January 24-27. SmartCourse is the first AI-powered mobile engagement platform for golf courses, designed to drive member engagement and incremental rounds of play.

SmartCourse uses the latest in machine learning technology — artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics — to understand a golfer’s preferences and behaviors and deliver a customized experience for each individual. Golfers can book tee times, track their scores, receive individualized offers and tee time recommendations, and stay up-to-date on course happenings. Pittsburgh-area course Birdsfoot Golf Club will be the first customer to benefit from SmartCourse.

Stop by the Club Prophet Systems Booth 1765 from January 25-27 for a demo, or check out for more information.



What’s Trending in AI



Winston-Salem, NC | January 12 — For years retailers have been forced to compete with the Amazons of the world. The result has been astonishing. Sure, we’ve seen companies shutter their doors, but we’ve also seen companies improve their digital prowess to deliver more relevance and offers. Each New Year brings predictions and trend reports, and this year, AI makes appearances as one of the most promising and disruptive innovations for 2017 and beyond. Here’s a quick glimpse:


5 Bleeding-Edge Brands That Are Infusing Retail With Artificial Intelligence Starbucks, Lowe’s and others roll out robots

January 2, 2017  |  The next time you’re in a Lowe’s hardware store don’t be surprised if a robot zooms up to ask if anyone needs help. And when you order your morning joe, a programmed bot may be whipping up that venti skim macchiato at Starbucks.

Watch out, folks, the age of artificial-intelligence-powered retail is upon us, promising an unprecedented amount of data and information that can help merchants grow their businesses. Once the stuff of sci-fi novels, AI is poised to juice up everything from customer service to merchandising—except jobs for humans.

“AI is going to be like electricity or the internet—it’s going to be foundational technology [for] which most things are built,” says Kyle Nel, executive director of Lowe’s Innovation Labs. “It becomes so interwoven into robotics and everything. It takes CRM, it takes all of this other stuff that we’ve been doing for so long and it makes it better than the sum of the parts.”

Read the full article


3 big trends for AI in 2017
Venture Beat

December 20, 2016  |  It seems the entire world of people and things are connecting to the internet, with projections of 6 billion active smartphones and 50 billion connected things in use by 2020.

We’ve seen great strides in using customer identity to personalize experiences and to make better use of people’s time and attention. However, relevance is the currency of the digital economy, so it’s no longer enough to deliver personalized customer experiences — those experiences need to be smarter, faster, and in the right context.

Thanks to dramatic advances in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning over the past several years, we’re already seeing new AI applications for improving customer service and other areas of customer experience. For instance, chatbots powered by AI are able to field and respond to questions from customers on a variety of subjects. AI will be crucial in delivering these next-gen personalized experiences for customers, and as the conductor of the customer experience, marketers must embrace it in order to succeed.

Read the full article


5 tech trends that transformed retail in 2016
Retail Dive

December 15, 2016  |  Retailers investing in new technologies during 2016 did so in many cases to keep up with the competition, often represented most specifically by Amazon — the company that influenced how many of them pursued e-commerce, and now is prompting them to consider innovations in the emerging area of conversational commerce.

Retailers also pursued new innovations this year in the name of enabling better interactions and stronger relationships with their customers. That notion is the common thread running through what we believe were the five most significant areas of retail technology innovation in 2016.

1. Artificial Intelligence
It’s very likely a lot of retail folks feel AI was the biggest and most broadly impactful innovation to shape the retail sector in 2016. And it’s not just a single innovation, but a vast field on innovation, affecting everything from chatbots (more about those little guys shortly) to other forms of virtual shopping assistants to mobile and visual search to mall directory services.

Read the full article

Cognistx Named “Tech Company to Watch” in 2017

Pittsburgh, PA | Jan 10, 2017 – Cognistx was named a tech company to watch in 2017 by local tech insiders, reports NEXTpittsburgh. “As Pittsburgh’s tech sector continues to grow, the selection of rising startups becomes more diverse. Over the course of 2016, our universities, accelerators and entrepreneurs have produced an array of impressive companies working in a variety of industries, from healthcare—with groundbreaking work in stroke detection and cancer treatment—to ever-important cyber security.”

From NEXTpittsburgh:
Founded in 2015 by tech entrepreneurs Sanjay Chopra and Jeffrey Battin and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) professor Eric Nyberg, Cognistx develops programs designed to help retailers better engage with their customers. Last year, the company made a major deal with the automotive repair giant Monro Muffler & Brake, who are using Cognistx’s SmartCognitives-branded platform to provide a more efficient, personalized mobile experience for its customers. They recently partnered with the Cheswick-based software company Club Prophet Systems to develop an AI-powered intelligent app able to deliver customized content and offers to avid golfers. The app will debut later this month at the PGA Show in Orlando.

NEXTpittsburgh is an online publication that focuses on creativity and innovation in Pittsburgh. Their aim is to, “figure out what’s next, who’s leading the charge and where we’re all headed.”

Read the full article

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