The market for artificial intelligence is ballooning, and breakthrough innovations that once seemed abstract and alluring are now materializing at incredible speed. But even as these technologies grow increasingly sophisticated, we have the opportunity at SAS to make them more accessible than ever.
One of the key efforts of the Americas Artificial Intelligence team is to get these technologies into the hands of more SAS employees, enabling them to build AI applications to solve their customers’ unique business problems. We work to democratize the field of AI and to show that the technology doesn’t have to be intimidating, even for newer users.
Recently, we hosted two weeklong AI Hackathon events for associates in the SAS Customer Advisory Academies, allowing them to get hands-on with the technologies that SAS has to offer. For the first half of the week, members of our team provided instruction and training to associates, teaching them how to create applications with six different types of AI technology. Then, associates were challenged to team up, build their own applications in just one day, and present their work to a panel of judges.
The AI technologies and respective instructors were as follows:
Though AI technologies can be used for a broad range of functions—sometimes involving sensitive issues like bias and employment, other times simply frivolous or downright silly—associates were challenged to meet specific criteria with their solutions.
They were tasked to create applications that weren’t only flashy and fun, but also demonstrated true business value to organizations. At the same time, they needed to keep their solutions relatively non-controversial and reasonable enough to complete within a single day. In other words, applications were to be tangible in value, innocuous in scope, and feasible in production.
The Customer Advisory associates’ efforts yielded some seriously impressive results. Here’s a look at the winning team projects from the last two AI Hackathons:
We are also excited to announce that six upcoming articles, written by the talented teams above, will be published in a new series called Hackathon Highlights Monday! Every Monday, one team will share more about their experiences during the AI Hackathon and provide us with details on the applications that they created.
Check back on Monday, January 20, 2020 for the first post! Even better, get email notifications when posts go live by subscribing to the Artificial Intelligence label in the SAS Communities Library:
Don't forget to congratulate the teams and offer your thoughts in the comments of each post!
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