June 24, 2016

Friday Finds: Microsoft Buys LinkedIn for $26.2 Billion, Robots as Hospital Receptionists, and Who Knew Art Could Come from Surveillance Cameras?

June 24, 2016

Friday Finds: Microsoft Buys LinkedIn for $26.2 Billion, Robots as Hospital Receptionists, and Who Knew Art Could Come from Surveillance Cameras?

Zoom Pavillion, Acquisition, Pepper the Robot, Marketing Strategy, Microsoft, linkedin

1.     Microsoft Buys LinkedIn — What Can We Expect from This Merger?

Microsoft’s latest announcement? An acquisition of LinkedIn for $26.2 billion. Microsoft will now be able to tap into LinkedIn’s 400 million profiles — a gold mine of quality data that Microsoft can use to gauge their customer base and drive more sales to the business. The transaction will close this year.

Imagine an intelligent newsfeed serving up work-related articles tailored to the project you’re writing up. Or Cortana briefing you on your next business meeting about the details of the person you’re about to meet. The possibilities are endless.

The most powerful companies make decisions backed by data as it gives them a fine-grained and accurate perspective on what it is that customers want — allowing them to create ways to simplify customers’ lives. When was the last time you had a look at your database to see if your predictions and assumptions were accurate?

2.     Pepper, the Humanoid Robot, Now Ready to Greet Visitors in Hospitals

Pepper the humanoid robot has officially been employed by the two Belgium hospitals, CHR Citadelle and AZ Damiaan. With the ability to “understand” and “interpret” human emotions, Pepper will be directing, interacting and accompanying visitors to the department they want to go.

Not only are robots able to handle the menial everyday tasks that require low-level thinking, they are now being built to gain intelligence overtime. This begs the question: Are humans at a risk of losing their jobs?

It is not a question of competition, futurist Ross Dawson pointed out. Jobs for humans are not reducing — they are just evolving. The days of mediocre learning are done. The age of artificial intelligence will impel humans to continuously deepen their knowledge and expertise.

3.     Surveillance Footage Is This Gallery’s Work of Art

Zoom Pavillion — a postmodern artistic installation by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer and Krzysztof Wodiczko, uses independent robotic cameras to capture the gallery’s audience. The art piece sometimes zooms in on individual faces and projects them in real-time to the gallery walls. The purpose: to demonstrate from the viewpoint of surveillance technologies that we all have some sort of a connection with each other.

As the implications of technology deepen in society, we see our values, our culture, and our acceptance of what norms are change and adapt. This artwork demonstrates how engrained technology has become in our society. It’s important for all businesses to recognise this seismic shift in business and technology and find ways to embrace the change and ensure you’re staying ahead.

Watch the amazing video here.

P.S Want more Friday Finds? Catch up here. 

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