Black and white computer keyboard keys on the spoon to feed the computer model.
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The idea of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are no longer science fiction. Both provide metadata and require metadata to work, and have become an applied practice and discipline in business. ML is the ability for computer systems to “learn” with continually supplied data without an explicit programming telling the computer what to do. AI is when a computer displays the apparent cognitive ability to think, learn and problem solve in real time.

This is both exciting and concerning, we must recognize that data is the foundation for how this level of computer intelligence is built. We want the machines to learn and do more, but we must provide them with good, quality data in order for them to do that. We need to get our metadata house in order to support this AI-based technology. Good data = smart data = intelligent robots.

It's All About Good Data

“Some people call this artificial intelligence, but the reality is this technology will enhance us. So instead of artificial intelligence, I think we'll augment our intelligence.” —Ginni Rometty

Data is the foundation for content and how organizations conduct business and interact with their customers. Data is proliferating, and that growth is only going to continue exponentially so organizations need refreshed, enterprise-level approaches to systematically create, distribute and manage data. Hand-in-hand with this expansion comes increases in regulation on how organizations must manage and protect the privacy of its information, as well as its customers’ information. Data is intimately associated with business transactions. However, data is not just a technical challenge, the way humans interact with systems and processes must also be considered — good security is designed with this people factor in mind.

Data provides a foundation for digital strategy. Creating the whole solution — and connecting it throughout your ecosystem — means that your digital assets can be part of this innovation by generating revenue, increasing efficiencies and enhancing your ability to meet new and emerging market opportunities for your users. Embrace your content and understand all that you can about what it can do. Never stop asking questions to ensure data integrity, making sure that your information is complete, correct and up to date. It is important that controls are placed on how, when and by whom data can be created, modified, deleted and used.

Related Article: How AI is Transforming Copywriting

Robots Should Be Trusted

“Robots are good at things that are structured.” – Vijay Kumar

Technology is great when it is leveraged to transform data into information and then information into insight that can generate knowledge — something actionable and meaningful. Data provides the meaning upon which processes and the technology can be optimized. But if the data delivered does not match the user expectations, then the efficiencies of a personalized consumer experience are lost.

This technology is a tool capable of being used to achieve a specific goal. The tool’s functionality has the capacity to produce satisfaction when used to perform a particular task. Understanding the needs of users and providing those touch points will increase the perception of personalization and improve the overall experience and allow machines to learn.

The struggle in managing content within the digital world is as complex as the digital workflows underpinning the efforts. This provides the link allowing processes and technology to be optimized, and hopefully where learning and intelligence may begin. The best way for AI to “learn” is by doing; working with good data.

Metadata Matters

“The key to artificial intelligence has always been the representation.” —Jeff Hawkins

Metadata is the foundation of your data and the foundation for your digital strategy. It is needed to deliver an optimized and fully engaging consumer experience. There are other critical steps to take as well, including building the right team, making the correct business case and performing effective requirements gathering — but nothing can replace an effective metadata foundation for your digital strategy. As previously stated, you want your assets to be discovered; they want to be found. Content may still be king, but if you have great content and no one can find it, that content ultimately has no value. Metadata will help ensure that you are building the right system for the right users and representing the data in a meaningful way. Metadata organizes the data that feeds AI.

Content drives brand … regardless of where it comes from and what it is. Think of content for what it does for you, but also for what it does for your users … if digital asset management (DAM) is a journey, then content is the road upon which you travel … metadata is the constant connection between your content and your users. Metadata makes data smarter, better and optimized for use.

Give the Robots What They Need to Succeed

Data integrity is critical to AI and ML, as is trust and certainty that the data is accurate and usable. Be mindful of the people, processes and technologies that may influence data and learning within business. Content is critical to business operations; it needs to be managed at all points of a digital life cycle. Leveraging meaningful metadata in contextualizing, categorizing and accounting for data provides the best chance for its return on investment. The digital experience for users will be defined by their ability to identify, discover and experience an organization’s brand just as the organization has intended. Value is not found — it is made. Make the data meaningful and manage it well. Start with a foundation in data, embrace the transformation and discover the value in content. The “robots” are waiting and ready to go … so let’s give them what they need to do their job — good data.