Ed McLaughlin – President, Operations & Technology
AI will eliminate toil
” AI is a huge topic. I mean, we could probably spend the rest of the day on it. And I think this is a great example of technologies that have been around for a long time, that are now coming into the fore. And what we think about in that [indiscernible] time is applied research, right? How do we take these new capabilities? Not for what they do, but to apply them to what we do to make them better. So broadest thing that I could give you around the topic as big as AI, machine learning, automation, a lot of these new capabilities that we can now leverage.
I think about the three broad categories; the first, is how can we use it to eliminate, what we call, toil, and that’s to separate it from work, all right. Work is how you add it. Work is what you make and create and where productivity and economic growth come from. Toil is just doing the same thing over again and over again and over again. And I think there is a whole trend in the industry, the idea is you take your toil and try to package it, try to offshore it, try to get to the lowest cost location as possible, and for me, that’s pretty much over.
Now we have the ability to eliminate it entirely. And so, Andrew Ng, a Stanford Researcher, was with Baidu for a while, calls it the one second rule. Pretty much today, any decision will take you about a second, is it blue [ph]? We can use AI to automate. So we are going through relentlessly each of the workflows we have and say what our longest running, what our most expensive process is, and you can begin applying these technologies to eliminate net [indiscernible] to free our resources up for more value added work.”