“Alexa, what’s in my fridge?” – Building AI bots at the Oxyma Exploration Days

Artificial intelligence (AI) is about to change the world. In the near future, we’ll see AI in autonomous cars, in our hospitals, and even in the creative industry. Will bots be stealing our jobs? Probably. But AI will also create new opportunities.

We’ve previously written about why we believe AI will change everything. That’s why we’re diving head-first into the future of bots and machine learning. With a future so rich in chances to innovate, how can we become more familiar with the unknown? How can we use AI to improve the user experience of our products?

To answer these questions, we initiated the Oxyma Exploration Days. Last Friday, we co-organized the first edition with our colleagues from Oxyma Rotterdam, Oogst and YourSocial. The key to innovation is often just to start building, so that’s what we did. Put a bunch of bright minds together, come up with some concepts and build prototypes. All in a single day.

Let’s talk to Arthur, our Agile coach, to see how things went.

Hack1

Drawing up new concepts for bots and AI.

Hi Arthur! Can you tell us something about this Exploration Day?

“The idea was to connect people from the Oxyma Group’s different business units. Hackathons are a great way to collaborate, generate new ideas and share knowledge. It was great to see how quickly the teams came together. No one knew what to expect, but things went very smoothly. AI and bots are very promising, so it was exciting to spend a day thinking about all the things we could do with it.”

Hacking away…

One of the teams, hacking away.

How did the day start?

“The morning started slowly with a nice breakfast where everyone got to know each other. Next, we formed teams. Each team got a front-ender, a back-ender, a data analyst, a creative and a concept developer.”

“We then started brainstorming about useful bots and new AI concepts. After lunch, we picked the best ideas and started building.”

What did the teams come up with? Anything crazy?

“One of the teams built the Jukebot. Using a Raspberry Pi and a camera, the Jukebot scans how many people are in a room. Based on the intensity of their movement, the Jukebot plays songs with an appropriate BPM (beats per minute). When the party is revving up, so will the music!”

Jukebot is your party’s personal DJ, using AI to set the mood.

“Another team built Please (don’t) go. It’s an app that predicts whether you’ll have a good time at events advertised on Facebook. It matches your personal data with data about the event. Based on your preferences and who else is going, it’ll tell you where you’re most likely to have a great night. The more often you use the app, the more accurate it will get.”

“Should I go to that party?” This app has an algorithm to help you decide.

“The third team developed a concept for Amazon’s Alexa, called What’s for Dinner? Using data about what’s in your fridge, Alexa suggests what to cook. The recipes are based on which products will expire first, so you can reduce food waste. We saw an impressive live demo. I could see this becoming a real thing.”

"Alexa, what's in the fridge?"

“Alexa, what’s in the fridge?”

Sounds like the teams got a lot done!

“Yes! We were all impressed. It was a long day, but it’s amazing to see what we could accomplish in such a short time. We didn’t pick a winner because the point was to generate inspiration and to work together. But I think everyone was satisfied with the results.”

Will there be more Exploration Days soon?

“Definitely! We don’t have a date yet, but we’re planning on organizing a few more this year. Eventually, it might also be interesting to invite our clients to join in. It’s a great way to get to know each other.”

Wanna learn more? This showcase will show you more of the Oyxma Exploration Days, including the source code of some of the projects.

Interested in what AI can do for you? Let’s talk about the future. Contact ai@afrogleap.com.

Stijn Out
27 February 2017