Challenges, AI-based behavioral biometrics & global AI insights, from Bucharest, Romania

Alexandra Petrus
Nov 3, 2017 · 8 min read

Notes from the Bucharest.AI Meetup 4.0

👌Super thank yous to our friends @TechHubBucharest that were rockstars in supporting us with the venue location.

Powerful things happen when like-minded people connect.

This edition we focused on:

  • Challenges from our local community, as part of our first Community Open Space;
  • Demo: AI-based behavioral biometrics solution of a recently awarded Best Newcomer CESA Romanian startup;
  • World Summit AI in a nutshell.

Challenges from our local community. It starts with you!

We intro-ed our Community Open Space section, and we didn’t figure it in full. Yet, this will be an opportunity for you, our community, to articulate your challenges. We’d then further support, connect or pair you up with someone that could lend a helpful hand.

As we take your feedback, we’re considering using a stopwatch at our next edition. With a bit of experimentation, we’ll get the best setup so that we deliver the challenges to you on time and to the point.:) In the meantime, bear with us, continue offering feedback and supporting the local presenters to show up and speak. It’s always hard to speak about your challenges and ask for help, so keep being empathetic, offer impartial feedback and be a giver if you have the knowledge (we can all contribute).

1. AI for and with ENERGY ⚡️

Cornel Barbut -Trainer, consultant and integrator (turn-key projects) with innovation approach (Fiber Optics, Telecom & Energy junction/Smart Meters & Smart Grids, Smart City) passionate about redesigning the telecom and energy businesses. Entrepreneur for more than 13 years focused on businesses in Telecom and Energy. Cornel started IOTIFY Solutions this March, a startup providing IoT B2B2C solutions.

Cornel asked the community: Can we better use the data from the Energy sector with AI?

👆 Click for slides deck.

This topic is so important as AI-powered IoT devices will change the way we do business.

Moving on, we jumped into the world of digital assistants and some challenges they hold from our local perspective. Conversational Interfaces are to be the future of chatbots, as Jiaqi Pan puts it in his piece on the Chatbots Magazine.

Our local take showcased two challenges where the local owners, of the challenges presented, believe in the above statement.

2. Meet Second, the AI assistant that replies within a second 👂

Andra Bria - a Product and service designer with a creative background, spends her time between advising early stage startups on how to communicate and innovate, and growing her own entrepreneurial endeavors. Her previous gig was Replika.ai that focuses on B2C, while Second focuses more on the B2B.

Andra asked the community: What is the most efficient tech solution for building a conversational agent that helps companies connect to their customers, potential employees or partners in a meaningful and engaging way?

👆 Click for slides deck.

3. Developing the inward facing digital assistant 💬

Virgil Ilian - a Robotics AI researcher with more than 10 years experience in consulting for companies and research projects that also teaches about programming, AI and the crypto ecosystem at the Polytechnic University and Police Academy. Joined a team focusing in making a digital assistant that allows sharing private information to third parties over a blockchain.

Virgil asked the community: How can you do learnings while keeping the user data private?; How do you make your team bond when you’re distributed? And ‘Ethics of privacy by design’.

👆 Click for slides deck.

Where we at with our new Community Open Space format? The admin side. 🐾

Thinking of presenting a challenge as part of the Community Open Space? Fantastic! Sign up by filling this form.

Important: Note that presenting your challenge has time constraints. To send the right message and word your challenge with the proper context, why not start with the end in mind and plan your presentation in reverse? Think about the statement you want to end with that will encapsulate the entire presentation. Then figure out what needs to come before that, to give the necessary context so that you receive the best help.

We also recommend you do a quick timed rehearsal before you actually present your challenge. This will help prevent getting over your allocated time slot and deliver a concise presentation to keep the audience engaged.

Optional: Have a clear KPI in mind that improves if you solve that challenge. Furthermore, from a business perspective, try to find the one KPI of your business or idea that stands out and makes a difference in the big poll of other various ideas and businesses. This may be for example Time to Value (time till your users/clients take value out of your product or time till you take value out of that, in the context of your objectives). Identifying core business objectives early on is always a differentiator. Always remember to have some sort of top down approach. The direction and clarity always comes from the top.

❔ Why we’ve introduced a Community Open Space section? The goal was to speak to those attracted to your message, leaving besides the ‘skeptics’. We do not encourage opposing positions and we’re in this for the learnings and for helping shape tomorrow. This is what we stand for and we invite you to come along and join us at future Community Open Space by registering to present your challenges or by being part of the audience that gets to help or listen out.

One of the pillars we’ve created Bucharest AI on is the ‘show up to give’ attitude. We won’t get it right from the start, as any business or task, but having the right attitude is very important. As Simon Sinek puts it:

‘When we agree to speak only for the money or in hopes that we’ll make connections that can benefit us in the future or to impress our superiors in hopes of promotion, we won’t be as effective in inspiring others. That’s not to say that financial compensations, connections, promotions and other benefits don’t have value. They absolutely do. However, they are simply by products of the service we give, not the reason we show up.”

💙 Give back o’clock: Thank you for reading thus far. This article is packed with resourceful reading material. Here’s what we found on Creating a terminal ChatBot using RiveScript (a simple scripting language for chatbots with a friendly, easy to learn syntax) and NodeJS in 10-ish minutes, by Hackthenorth.

Typing DNA, one hot Romanian startup that thinks global 🌱

The recently awarded ‘Best Newcomer’ startup at the Central European Startup Awards, Typing DNA, is working on AI-based behavioral biometrics solutions that use typing behaviour. They address a few business verticals from Financial Services to eLearning. During their demo at Bucharest AI, Tudor Goicea walked us through the macro view on how their biometrics solution works for authentication/login and invited us to test it out for ourselves, from our mobiles.

The statistics gathered, following the quick test, showed a good ability of the algorithm to distinguish different users. If you’re curious for yourself, give their solution a go by visiting their demo section on the website.:)

Note that you can use behaviour biometrics as a continuous authentication method, not just at log-in. The log-in test was the one picked for the demo during Meetup 4.0.:) We trust we’ll see more of TypingDNA in the future. We are watching them closely as we trust AI-based behavioral biometrics is here for the win, a solution that safeguards security without cutting cost on customer experience and that could soon become a standard.

👆 Click for slides deck.

World Summit AI, through the lens of Bucharest AI 🔎

If you followed our streams and channels you are already up to date with our involvement with World Summit AI (WSAI) and who we talked to. Our very own Raoul and Mircea, from Bucharest AI, walked us through what they found most interesting to share from all the insights presented on the Amsterdam scene, a few weeks ago. 👆 Click for deck slides.

Tune in the World Summit AI’s Youtube channel for video streams recorded at the event or browse through our own highlights from one of the best AI events of the year.

Who attended Buc AI 4.0?

  • 👀 70% developers, 10% product people, 5% marketing people, 5% business people, 10% others.

Some of you came and showed an interest in finding more about ‘AI in Business’ / ‘Business applications and use cases of AI” / “Applications of AI in real world to improve business’‘; ‘AI, with a focus on human interactions, quality of life, but also risks. We’re listening and will focus on helping you benefit of more business focused approaches soon.

As for, what does our audience want to hear, here are a few highlights from those of you that attended this edition:

  1. Why are some algorithms used
  2. RNN and NLP
  3. ML & training GANs
  4. Automation with AI
  5. Reinforcing learning in real time strategy games & general ML
  6. CNNs and NLP
  7. Predictive models, classifiers build-up
  8. Stock trading predictions through AI
  9. Consumer behaviour and AI
  10. APIs and SaaS services that can make apps smarter through AI
  11. Chatbots, IaaS providers for ML & local marketing readiness for chatbots & other ML engagement models
  12. Deep Learning

We are listening and considering your needs for our future editions. Stay tuned, follow us and why not get in touch. Let’s build it up together. We are currently 600+ that are part of the local community.

Where to find us?

That’s us.:)
Here’s where to find us.:)

📥 Feedback keeps things going

Have your say about Meetup 4.0.

💙 Give back o’clock: thank you for reading thus far. We won’t go the truism path and state how awesome of you to offer us your time, and for contributing in helping shape our local community and our tomorrow (btw, here’s a fine short read on how Daniela Rus is building tomorrow’s Robots). We want to say: it matters, thank you! Here’s a little presentation from Xavier Amatriain (@xamat) about Machine Learning @Quora: Beyond Deep Learning & a little resourceful list on Learning ML & NLP from 187 Quora Questions as collected by Robbie Allen. Hope you find it useful.:)

🎯 That’s all folks!:) Don’t hold it, ping us and let’s start sharing learnings and building up collaborative knowledge to solve unthinkable human problems.

Happy Autumn & see you on December 5th 📅! :) ✋

Bucharest AI

Cluster for Romanian AI practitioners and enthusiasts…

Alexandra Petrus

Written by

New Tech Product Strategist & ENFJ-T | @BucharestAI |@Women_in_AI | ex-VP Products @reincubate | ❤#products #innovation #emergingtech #AI

Bucharest AI

Cluster for Romanian AI practitioners and enthusiasts, startups, academia, curated global AI use cases, challenges and lessons learned. Join us to understand, ignite and refine transformative ideas, products and services in the applied Artificial Intelligence sphere.

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