Microsoft Demonstrates the Power of AI at GITEX

Microsoft today introduced GITEX Technology Week 2017 delegates to its Workplace Safety Demo. The solution  has been built on the company’s industry-leading Cognitive Services platform, with significant contribution from its cutting-edge AI capabilities to deliver workplace safety.

Using existing commodity cameras, and advances in AI, the workplace safety solution brings the digital and physical worlds together to help make everyone more safe, secure and productive. The Demo showed visitors how any existing CCTV camera can be transformed into a safety and security tool, by the perfect union of the intelligent cloud and artificial intelligence capabilities.

The demo was built around a live feed from a staged workplace setting, and focused on a series of scenarios, revealing how the AI vision, deep learning tool and cloud computing can enable organizations to apply business policies that recognize the relationships between people, places and things and ultimately turns these places into AI-driven safety zones. That technology and platform can enable similar solutions in areas where safety is a top priority from hospitals to petrol stations and manufacturing plants.

“As the UAE continues to have a strong tradition in heavy industry, from steel and chemicals to ship-building and aerospace – workplace safety is becoming a top priority” Said Sayed Hashish, Regional General Manager, Microsoft Gulf. “Microsoft has long been at the forefront of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, where the lines between the digital and physical world are being blurred by technologies such as the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence. GITEX is an ideal venue for us to showcase our Cognitive Services platform and extraordinary source of innovative solutions, ushering the workplace into a new era.”

The manufacturing sector is now Dubai’s third largest, and the emirate’s Department of Economic Development (DED) expects around $19 million to be spent on R&D by manufacturing companies, as the sector expands from a current value of $11.2 billion to $16.1 billion by 2030. Attendees watched a live AI-powered chatbot act as a security and safety officer identifying in unauthorized personnel, objects and safety threats while providing real-time alerts for necessary actions.

The demo also covered safety-monitoring, showcasing how you can automatically detect threats such as fire, and workers not wearing the appropriate protective gear. The solution demonstrated how people in the real world can take action in real time to improve safety and well-being. That demo can be easily expanded to identify objects placed in hazardous positions or do asset tracking. For example, in an event of a dangerous spill in a chemical plant, cameras can automatically recognise the incident and information about the spill would be shared with people who need it the most, enabling them to protect other employees from coming in contact with the hazard.

Although, for the purposes of demonstration, Microsoft representatives staged the scenarios in an environment made to resemble a construction site, delegates also gained insights on the applicability of the Cognitive Services and Deep Learning solutions across a broad range of industries, worksites and warehouses, including hospitals, banks, petrol stations and supermarkets.

Built with the Microsoft Cognitive services platform, the workplace safety solution also showcased its use in scenarios where people who need special tools, are spread out across multiple areas or floors of a site. With the use of intelligent cloud, the cameras can identify a specific tool, as well as the closest authorized person who can deliver it, saving everyone time and keeping the workflow moving.

Microsoft’s Workplace Safety Demo showed attendees how organizations can tap into the advancement in its Cognitive Services Platform to optimize operations and empower employees, by reducing workplace incidents and streamlining compliance monitoring.

“Our mission at Microsoft is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more,” said Hashish. “We have been proud to participate in GITEX over the years and try to address the issues that matter most to our regional partners. As Dubai, the wider UAE, and indeed the entire GCC, expands their heavy industry sectors, safety will become a prime concern. But other sectors should also consider that the intelligent cloud is capable of making any workplace safer and more secure.”