The Introduction of Machine Learning Is Changing the Business Search Paradigm for the First Time in over 20 Years, David Seuss Tells Attendees at Data Summit 2018
A generational shift in online business search is occurring as a result of the maturation and commercial availability of Machine Learning technology, Northern Light CEO David Seuss told an audience of business technology leaders at Data Summit 2018 in Boston last week.
“Business search is far more complex than consumer search because it’s about mastering a topic, such as ‘what are our competitors up to’ or ‘what do our customers care about,’ rather than simply finding a fact, like ‘what time will the movie start,'” Seuss said. “Since 1994, when the first search engine was deployed, the business search process is largely unchanged: A user-entered search terms in a field, hit the search button, got a list of documents called search results, reviewed the list to find a few that might be relevant, downloaded one document, manually scanned it to see if it’s on point, and then returned to the list and continued the process until frustrated or out of time.
“Users are overwhelmed and tired, and would love to dispense with search altogether,” Seuss explained. “What people really want is a personal search assistant. They demand to know why the machine can’t just read all those documents for us and tell us what it finds. Well, now it can. Machine Learning can change the entire business search paradigm.”
Seuss went on to describe the deeper insights that organizations and their knowledge workers can glean as a result of a cognitive search, and how the new paradigm specifically supports the work styles and information consumption preferences of Millennials, who soon will represent a majority of the workforce.
Seuss’ talk, entitled “The Path to Cognitive Search,” was part of the Cognitive Computing Summit, a specialized conference track at Data Summit 2018, an intense two-day immersion into the major technologies and strategies for becoming a data-driven business held last week in Boston.