Zero to AI
A non-technical, hype-free guide to prospering in the AI era
Nicolo Valigi and Gianluca Mauro
  • MEAP began August 2019
  • Publication in December 2019 (estimated)
  • ISBN 9781617296062
  • 243 pages (estimated)
  • printed in black & white

The best book I've found on realistic AI applications: factual, accurate and hype-free.

Alain Couniot
How can artificial intelligence transform your business? In Zero to AI, you’ll explore a variety of practical AI applications you can use to improve customer experiences, optimize marketing, help you cut costs, and more. In this engaging guide written for business leaders and technology pros alike, authors and AI experts Nicolò Valigi and Gianluca Mauro use fascinating projects, hands-on activities, and real-world explanations to make it clear how your business can benefit from AI.
Table of Contents detailed table of contents

1 An introduction to Artificial Intelligence

1.1 Why this book, why now, why you

1.2 The path to modern AI

1.3 What is Artificial Intelligence after all?

1.4 Your roadmap to learn AI - how is this book structured

1.5 Summary

Part 1: Understanding AI

2 Artificial Intelligence for core business data

2.1 What is core business data, and how can you exploit it with AI

2.2 Using AI with core business data

2.2.1 The real estate marketplace example

2.2.2 The principles of Machine Learning - how to add AI capabilities to a real estate marketplace

2.2.3 The Machine Learning advantage

2.2.4 Beyond the real estate example: applying AI to general core business data

2.3 Core business data case studies

2.3.1 How Google used AI to cut their data centers’ energy bill by 40%

2.3.2 The Data Center energy consumption problem

2.3.3 A Machine Learning approach to Data Center efficiency

2.3.4 ML applied to Data Center optimization gains momentum

2.3.5 How Square used AI to lend billions to small businesses

2.3.6 Case studies learnings

2.4 Evaluating performance and risk

2.5 Summary

3 AI for sales and marketing

3.1 Why AI for Sales and Marketing

3.2 Predicting churning customers

3.3 Using AI to boost customers’ conversion rate

3.4 Let your data speak: performing automated customer segmentation

3.4.1 Introducing unsupervised learning (or clustering).

3.4.2 Going deeper: a practical example of unsupervised learning for customer segmentation

3.5 Measuring performance

3.5.1 Classification algorithms

3.5.2 Clustering algorithms

3.6 Tying Machine Learning metrics to business outcomes and risks

3.7 AI for sales and marketing case studies

3.7.1 AI to refine targeting and positioning - Opower

3.7.2 AI to anticipate customers’ needs: Target

3.8 Summary

4 AI for media

5 AI for natural language

6 AI for content curation and community building

Part 2: Building AI

7 AI product development

8 Implementation strategy

9 What lies ahead

About the Technology

Artificial Intelligence is a broad term for computer systems that make predictions and decisions. Unprecedented access to raw data and affordable computing power, along with incredible advances in AI, put these smart, powerful, machine learning systems within reach of nearly any organization. Businesses in every industry are using AI to streamline processes, personalize marketing, improve customer engagement, and grow their bottom lines.

About the book

Zero to AI teaches business leaders, entrepreneurs, and decision makers how to improve the success and efficiency of their businesses by taking advantage of state-of-the-art AI technologies. After a brief introduction to artificial intelligence, you’ll explore examples that demonstrate how you can use AI for analyzing business data, predicting customer buying trends, deciphering text and images, and much more.

As you go, you’ll learn how Google applied AI models to improve on century-old civil engineering rules to save energy (and money) in its data centers. You’ll look under the hood of the models that power Netflix’s video recommendations and see how they compare with the algorithms that Target uses to prepare their customized promotions. For each case study, the authors discuss the best plan of attack, the necessary resources, the possible risk factors, and the likely business benefits of the specific AI application. When you’re done, you’ll have a complete roadmap for realizing the vast potential of AI in your own organization!

What's inside

  • Identifying opportunities for applying AI in your organization
  • Designing an AI strategy
  • Hiring AI talent
  • Managing an AI project
  • Using AI for boosting conversion rates
  • Content curation and community building with AI
  • Image classification and object recognition
  • Interesting real-world case studies from companies like Google, Square, Netflix, and Target

About the reader

Written for business leaders, entrepreneurs, and decision makers as well as technology implementers looking for a big-picture view of AI. No prior programming or machine learning knowledge is required.

About the authors

Nicolò Valigi and Gianluca Mauro co-founded AI Academy, a company that advises on AI strategy and runs workshops teaching the concepts covered in this book.

Nicolò is a Software Engineer that enjoys making intelligent robots. He has an MBA and also won a Fulbright scholarship for Entrepreneurship. He writes about technology and AI, and is a regular speaker at international conferences.

Gianluca, also a Fulbright Scholar, is an independent consultant who has shared his expertise on innovation and data science with companies ranging from idea-phase startups to multinational corporations. He has been a speaker at venues including universities, multinational corporations, and industry conferences.

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