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Artificial Intelligence

AI and the human factor: CEBIT explores the limits and opportunities

Artificial intelligence (AI) is making ever more inroads into our working and private lives, as self-learning systems are featured as a key topic at CEBIT in June. Numerous showcases and product innovations as well as the latest research findings will focus on the potential of AI – from digital astronautic assistants to intelligent software for customer dialogue.

30 May. 2018
Machine learning

"Machines are already superior to us in a number of areas," explains Dr. Christian Bauckhage, lead scientist for machine learning at Fraunhofer IAIS – one of the many prominent speakers appearing at CEBIT 2018. "One example would be the analysis of complex data – something the human brain was not designed for. But when it comes to other typical everyday activities which we take for granted, say for example climbing the stairs or loading the dishwasher, humans have a long-term edge on machines."

German citizens see key AI potential in medicine and mobility

Market researchers at Gartner Research see artificial intelligence (AI) as the main disruptive technology trend over the next 10 years. Cognitive systems which are capable of independent learning and decision-making will change our lives and the way we work. According to a recent study by the German Bitkom digital association, Germans consider medicine and mobility to be the main application areas for artificial intelligence (at 31 and 28 percent, respectively). "People recognize the enormous potential of this technology," comments Bitkom President Berg. "AI can aid doctors in their diagnoses; it can prevent traffic accidents and even help reduce the amount of energy we consume."

Last year the German Ministry of Education and Research set up the "Learning Systems" expert platform, dedicated to improving cooperation between research and industry in the field of artificial intelligence and to clarifying how learning systems can be made useful to people. The "Learning Systems" platform will present a large number of research projects and findings at CEBIT in Hall 27 on 12 and 13 June.

IBM to feature digital assistant for ISS and new Watson ideas at CEBIT

IBM, one of the pioneers of artificial intelligence, is represented with two different pavilions on the new CEBIT site (P34/P35). As a CEBIT premiere, the computer giant will be displaying the first intelligent astronaut assistant CIMON, which was developed together with Airbus for the ISS space station, as commissioned by the German Aerospace Center (DLR). The medicine ball-sized helper will be deployed on Alexander Gerst’s planned mission in June. The aim is to investigate the workings of cooperation between humans and an AI machine on board the ISS. The zero-gravity CIMON is equipped with sensors, cameras, a screen and software that answers questions in natural language. In addition, new solutions based on IBM Watson will be presented – for example, powerful language assistance systems that can do much more than simply answer the usual FAQs. Mercedes-Benz, for example, is taking advantage of this development leap with its recently introduced AskMercedes service.

Global players and German companies compete over best ideas

The topic of "artificial intelligence" also runs like a thread through the new CEBIT. Europe's most important business festival for innovation and digitization shows what intelligent technologies are already doing for companies today and the business ideas that can be implemented on that basis. For top players like Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Huawei, Intel, Salesforce and SAP, this CEBIT megatrend will play a major role. But even smaller companies are showing up with some exciting innovations: ITyX Solutions for instance will be showcasing its self-learning software that uses a German cloud connection to communicate with customers and staffers. Think Owl can automatically respond to recurring service requests made via e-mail, chatting or messenger services and learn from people in more difficult cases (Hall 27). The software from IS Predict (Saarland joint stand, Hall 17) is of particular interest to marketing managers. This predictive intelligence application takes over the predictive control of sales and marketing activities. Here, too, self-learning algorithms run in the background, capable of recognizing complex patterns and deriving recommendations for action.

AI celebrity Dr. Jürgen Schmidhuber to speak at CEBIT

This award-winning professor at the University of Lugano is regarded as the father of modern artificial intelligence (AI). The learning neural networks he developed with his teams at the Technical University of Munich and the Swiss research laboratory IDSIA are used in billions of smartphones and form the basis for applications involving automated translation or speech recognition. They are thus at the heart of pioneering products from providers like Facebook, Google and Amazon. Jürgen Schmidhuber will speak at the CEBIT Artificial Intelligence Summit in Hall 27 on Wednesday, June 13.


At CEBIT 2018, everything is geared to generating business, leads and bright ideas. With its exhibitor displays, expert conferences and prime networking opportunities, CEBIT is a triple-punch event covering everything essential to the digitization of business, government and society. The innovations on display in the d!conomy section of the show give IT professionals and decision-makers from the realms of business, trade and the public sector the tools they need to streamline and futureproof their operations by leveraging digitization to the fullest. The event’s d!tec showcase puts the spotlight on developers and startups and their disruptive business models, as well as on research institutes giving us a glimpse of tomorrow’s game-changing technologies. The d!talk conference program features visionaries, lateral thinkers, creatives and experts from around the globe. The d!campus is the beating heart of CEBIT – the place where everyone gets together for relaxed networking, street food and live music. CEBIT presents the digital transformation in a totally new way, while retaining its core focus on business, leads and more leads. The first day of CEBIT 2018 – Monday, 11 June – is reserved for conference attendees and journalists, with the exhibition opening on Tuesday, 12 June. The exhibition halls will be open Tuesday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., with the d!campus staying open till 11 p.m. on those days. Opening hours on Friday are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. CEBIT Events Worldwide give Deutsche Messe’s customers even more ways of reaching their international clientele, e.g. in dynamic markets such as China, Australia, Thailand and Spain.

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