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There are a number of technologies that higher education CIOs should have on their radar this year, especially as they look to enhance their competitive advantage and support emerging business models. “Institutions looking to thrive in the expanding education ecosystem must leverage technology early on that enables them to become more innovative,” said Glenda Morgan, senior research director at Gartner. The top 10 strategic technologies impacting higher education in 2019 are: 1. Next-Generation Security and Risk Management There are a variety of factors — global regulatory compliance, growing Internet of Things (IoT) landscape, expanding software as a service (SaaS) portfolio — that are starting to force higher education institutions to address security and risk matters with a multidimensional strategy. “Next-generation security must offer new approaches that support digital business and the institutions’ academic, research, and business objectives,” said Morgan. “The average modern-day student expects seamless personalized experiences, so the typical security objectives of confidentiality, integrity, and availability must expand to include privacy, safety, and reliability as institutions become more digital.” 2. Artificial intelligence (AI) conversational interface AI conversational interfaces are a subset of conversational user interfaces (CUIs), in which user and machine interactions occur in the user’s spoken or written natural language. CUIs place responsibility on the machine interface to learn what the user wants, rather than the user having to learn the software, saving user time, increasing student satisfaction, and being available to use 24/7. “CUIs have seen an explosive growth in higher education,” said Morgan. According to the 2019 CIO Agenda Survey , the percentage of higher education institutions that have deployed or have plans to deploy the use of CUIs jumped from 18 to 38 percent in just one year. 3. Smart campus A smart campus is a physical or digital environment in which humans and technology-enabled systems interact to create more immersive and automated experiences for university stakeholders. Smart campus initiatives are still in the early stages, but there has been a rising interest across higher education institutions. “The smart campus will drive growth in markets like robotic process automation (RPA) solutions and augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) in the higher education space. Campus efficiency will be enhanced and student learning will be enriched with the new capabilities they bring. It’s a win all-around, except for the data security implications that come with most technology initiatives today,” said Morgan. 4. Predictive analytics Predictive analytics use historical data to recognize patterns and assess likely outcomes using statistical or machine learning techniques. They can assist in everything from calculating student demand for a certain course or identifying students at risk of failing, dropping out, or transferring. “Predictive analytics can be a particularly powerful tool for CIOs in higher education,” said Morgan. “Skeptics might claim the outcomes of predictive analytics — such as identifying a potential student drop out — could have been otherwise determined, but their real power comes from the way these analytics systems socialize the prediction at hand among a range of stakeholders to remedy the issue at hand.” 5. Nudge tech Nudge tech is a collection of technologies — cloud, mobile, social, and data — that work together to achieve timely personalized interaction with students, staff, and faculty, such as a just-in-time text (SMS) reminder for class. “The idea behind ‘nudging’ is for institutions to use data to impact behavior, like establishing good studying habits or making time for fitness in between classes,” said Morgan. “Above all, nudge tech is a concrete example of how to achieve personalization at scale, which is becoming a key competitive advantage in an increasingly global and digital education ecosystem.” 6. Digital credentialing technologies Digital credentials are a natural evolution from traditional credentials in eliminating fraud. The maturity of technologies like blockchain and data encryption, coupled with the evolution of professional networking sites, are driving a change in the delivery of higher education credentials. Students, faculty, and the higher education institutions they are a part of are starting to expect the ability to quickly and freely exchange credentials to enhance the verification and recruitment process. “In many ways, credentials issued by an education institution are the only tangible evidence of higher education. They should be considered the currency of the education ecosystem,” said Morgan. “These technologies really enable universities to leverage technology to improve the student experience by giving them more control over their information. The only hurdle is a general lack of understanding of digital credentialing technologies and risk-averseness in the high-stakes nature of the higher education market.” 7. Hybrid integration platforms Educational institutions are increasingly adopting cloud-based business applications, resulting in a hybrid portfolio of cloud and on-premises systems. Adding to the complexity of the multiple integration capabilities that the hybrid approach requires is the presence of the educational institution’s customer relationship manager (CRM) and learning management system (LMS) tools. A hybrid integration platform (HIP) leverages the best in-the-cloud and on-premises integration approaches, and it is rapidly becoming the reference framework for next-generation integration infrastructure. 8. Career software The importance of career software has peaked globally as educational institutions become increasingly accountable for their students’ outcomes after graduation. “Historically, career software was found in the career offices in professional schools, such as business or engineering, but we are seeing institutions explore the option of deploying a single enterprise level career-focused tool,” said Morgan. “The market for career software is large and diversified, so universities must take the time to invest in the tools that fit its needs and specific ecosystem.” 9. Student cross-life cycle CRM Student cross-life cycle CRMs create a campus-wide, 360-degree view of a student across his or her major educational phases, beginning with precollege and moving through prospect, applicant, enrolled, graduated and alumni statuses. Historically, most higher education CRM deployments have been driven from the functional needs of individual departments without enabling a single view of the student. 10. Wireless presentation technologies Wireless presentation technologies allow users to project material from a computer or mobile device onto a screen using a wireless network, rather than hard-wired connections like a projector. Wireless presentation technologies are likely to become more important, as higher education institutions move to bring your own device (BYOD) and as the use of mobile technologies, such as tablets, increases. Upcoming IT symposium Learn more about CIO leadership and how to drive digital innovation to the core of your business at Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo 2019 . The next one will be held June 3-6 in Toronto, Canada. Article published by icrunchdata Image credit by Getty Images, Johnny Greig Want more? For Job Seekers | For Employers | For Influencers
(This is Part 2 of a Sports Analytics series. Read Part 1 .) Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski didn't want to look ahead to the future immediately after his defeat against the State of Michigan in the top 8 NCAA Tournament on Sunday evening, March 31, 2019. Zion Williamson was asked whether the Elite Eight loss to the State of Michigan was his last match in Duke uniform. Michigan State defeated Duke for the final in the eastern Region to reach the Final Four since 2015. I didn't write any of the above. Artificial Intelligence did. It might not seem that impressive as it is simply a statement that Duke lost the big dance. However, what is impressive is the article above is a tiny excerpt from a much longer 1000-word article that Artificial Intelligence wrote. The focal point is how Artificial Intelligence scoured the internet for reasons why they lost only five minutes after the game ended. This AI technology is from a suite of new Artificial Intelligence Content Services from Qualex Consulting Services as an international collaboration. This suite includes: AI-Writer – an automated written content creation and curation service to help with writing blogs, research papers, articles, and more. AI-Communicator – a personalized audio and video broadcasting service using brand approved ambassadors and talent. AI-Signature – preventing AI deep fakes that could maliciously hijack your brand, ruin your reputation by using the same AI technologies above, but making sure it's human and agency approved and the consumer of the content knows it has been given the originators thumbs up. All thanks to a San Francisco startup company called Blocksigned. AI-Writer by Inventor and Founder Fabian Langer didn't set out initially to create an AI wordsmith. "I just wanted to make money on the internet without a lot of manual work," Fabian admits. "I saw the success of advertising online which was based on making content. So I thought, what if I created a technology that automated content." Hear the entire his AI-Writer backstory on @thebotbabybook podcast . Note AI-Writer doesn't automatically do everything without instruction and slowly take over the world. Humans have ultimate editorial control via a Wordpress plug-in or Chrome extension. Humans can change the order of the paragraphs, words, delete, add their own, or simply use the content as research for the human to write their own article. AI-Writer doesn't get its power from plagiarism. AI-Writer protects intellectual property by making sure it cites any content – blog, article, or RSS feed it learns from while including every URL link. If the human editor is still concerned about originality, they have the ability to change the percentage of rewording. It begins with a minimum of 54% of rewording to a full 68% at its maximum ability. Why can't it offer 100% rewording? Every thought, sentence, or idea starts with a core idea. You can't go 68% left without going right. So content needs to hold a shape of the context that needs to be said. Fabian found that 54% is that happy place between originality and getting the point across. Writing sports articles wasn't AI-Writer's first focus. This month Esquire Singapore magazine debuts the six articles that AI-Writer contributed for its April 2019 “AI” issue. AI-Writer also wrote its own letter from the editor in the April Issue. Why? Because it also became one. For the issue, AI-Writer decided on the articles that humans would write based on trending topics. "It basically was a digital version of me," joked Norman Tan, Chief Editor of Esquire Singapore on the latest The Bite podcast . Esquire Magazine Singapore is one of first in the world to debut AI-written articles for a print magazine. But writing articles and becoming an internationally-recognized sports pundit seems thousands of miles apart. That's where AI-Communicator comes in. Using AI-Communicator, a brand can use its talent and brand ambassadors content library to create video and audio messages that are tailored to fans. Using direct integration to an IQ-Sports Solution on Snowflake, AI-Communicator can create thousands, millions of videos using the first names or volunteered nicknames to wish them a happy birthday on the actual day. These messages can be emailed, SMS'd, or sent via the social media platform they prefer. A brand can even personalize the message with specific details based on fan volunteered data and put it in their preferred language using subtitles. AI-Communicator is already branching out from sports and dabbling in politics. It is being positioned for the upcoming United States 2020 election as politicians on both sides – Democratic and Republican – are readying personal messages to potential voters. But with the AI content services above, there is also some apprehension. If you as the owner of the brand can create AI content – written, audio, and video – can’t others? Especially those who mean you harm. And the answer, sadly, is yes. Enter Deep Fake. Wikipedia describes Deep Fake as, "The combination of existing and source videos with Artificial Intelligence to depict a person or persons saying things or performing actions that never occurred in reality." AI-Signature, using a new technology from San Francisco startup Blocksigned, uses blockchain in a proof of work that AI content is indeed approved from the human or humans depicted in a video, the voice that is used in a podcast, or the content posted on a website. More importantly, the technology allows for royalty payments, licensing contracts to piggyback on top of this authentication at creation service. Other add-on services include true analytics about the honest value of views, social platforms that share it instead of having to rely on third-party tools to sell the data before you as a person, brand, or agency know what’s going on. Is this AI tool suite the first battle humans have lost to machines? No. With these tools, writers and content creators have been given back time. AI-Writer’s Langer said he created a technology that doesn't waste it.  "Being German," he pauses before going on, "I know something about efficiency." Procrastination has always been the crutch of writers.  Scheduling has always been the pain point of producers and commercial filmmakers getting all talent in the same room when they want to update content based on a new trend. And in a world of fake news, it's important to know if what you are reading, listening, and watching is truly a reflection of the person it represents. With humans having the final say on what gets published, streamed, and put out there from AI around sports branding, political beliefs of a candidate, or conveying a last minute sale on sports branded clothing, humans get more time to be human. Have face to face conversations. Also let fans know that they are appreciated. That after the email from your parents, the next email you get to wish you a Happy Birthday is from Ronaldo himself. So the first battle humans have to fight is not with machines, it's with the humans themselves who support the opposing sports team. "The main thing to do is relax and let your talent do the work." — Charles Barkley Article written by Gary Jackson Image credit by Getty Images, E+, Vertigo3d Want more? For Job Seekers | For Employers | For Influencers
Organizations looking to get on board with the big data movement are hiring the best and brightest to analyze and influence business decisions. Data scientists, architects and business intelligence professionals can get expensive. After hiring the best people and selecting state-of-the-art tools, the failure rate, according to Gartner, is more than 70 percent. For mathematicians reading this, that leaves a mere 30 percent success rate for analytics programs. What gives? You just hired the best talent outside of the organization to change the way you operate, so why can’t they do it? Inertia. You brought in a group of outsiders to crunch numbers and show other professionals in your organization how to do their job better through analytics. See the problem? You alienated the very professionals that you brought in to change the organization. These intelligent individuals will soon know how it feels to change the direction of a speeding locomotive – they can’t. Constraints Law of Inertia: Even the smartest individuals in an organization can be cast aside if they upset the natural order within. Law of Experience: Don’t underestimate the knowledge of a seasoned veteran. Law of Security: Deep down inside, everyone wants job security. However, people display this in different ways. Knowledge hoarding is one of them. Given the constraints listed above, how do you create success in an analytics program? The solution might sound simple: Gain inertia through enabling the experienced professionals by enabling them with analytics tools and knowledge making them more secure in their jobs. Do not tell the workforce what to do and how to do it. Enable each and every department to make their own analysis, come to their own conclusions and make their own decisions. Empower them! This solution may not work if some common barriers are not removed. Barriers Vague Vision: Figure out what you are trying to achieve with the analytics program. What does success look like? Make a clear and concise vision with measurable objectives. Clear Roles and Responsibilities: Every member within the analytics program must be aware what their role is and how they will complete their objectives. Ability to Act: Every program will fail if the end users look at the data and do not act on it. Ensure proper delegation of authority to show success. By removing barriers and enabling a workforce, analysts within the organization will earn a spot as trusted advisors that are enabling success – rather than individuals pointing out how others should best do their jobs. Organizations that do not focus on removing barriers and enabling their staff will be just another statistic in failed analytics projects. Article written by Gabriel Gaultier Image credit by Getty Images, Hiya Images/Corbis/VCG Want more? For Job Seekers | For Employers | For Influencers
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