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Category Archives: Automation

SANS 2020 Automation and Integration Survey Shows Investment on the Rise – Herald-Mail Media

Posted: May 4, 2020 at 11:10 pm

BETHESDA, Md., May 4, 2020 /PRNewswire/ --There is clear progress being made in automation and integration, with many organizations ramping up investments on projects that are geared toward enabling staff to work smarter and more efficiently. This is according to the results of the SANS 2020 Automation and Integration Survey, which will be presented by SANS Institute in two webcasts on May 19 and May 20.

"It's been said many times that people are the most valuable asset to an organization," says SANS analyst and security operations expert Don Murdoch. "The 2020 A&I survey results show that organizations are making strategic investments that will improve day-to-day operations in order to maximize staff, support staff working smarter, and improve both security operations and incident response. Automation is expected to bolster all around improvements for both people and processes in most cases, not used as a method to reduce head count."

The 2020 survey results show a substantial uptick in adoption of dedicated automation solutions, with an 11.8% increase in tool adoption in the past year. This data point is even more significant when coupled with the fact that survey respondents reported increased funding levels of 3% to 10% above 2019 levels.

Higher emphasis is being placed on implementing projects that improve security operations. Projects such as improving incident response (IR) command, managing IR, and cyber threat integration top the list of priorities, with 27% to 30% of survey respondents either currently implementing or planning to implement such projects within the next year.

"There is a learning curve," cautions Murdoch, "and a definite need for organizations to make sure that they apply automation and integration to work activities that improve day-to-day processes. In analyzing the survey results, it's clear that organizations are applying automation and integration to many project areas that will maximize overall security spend."

Webcasts Details

Full results of the SANS 2020 Automation and Integration Survey will be shared during a webcast on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. EDT (17:00 UTC), sponsored by CloudPassage, Devo, DomainTools, Siemplify, Swimlane, and ThreatConnect, and hosted by SANS Institute. Register to attend the webcast at

Get additional perspective on the survey results in a second webcast on Wednesday, May 20 at 1:00 p.m. EDT (17:00 UTC), in which representatives from CloudPassage, DomainTools, and ThreatConnect will join a panel discussion to dive deeper into the results with survey author Don Murdoch and survey advisor Barbara Filkins. Register to attend this webcast at

Those who register for either webcast will be among the first to receive the associated whitepaper written by Don Murdoch, SANS analyst, instructor, and security operations expert.

About SANS InstituteThe SANS Institute was established in 1989 as a cooperative research and education organization. SANS is the most trusted and, by far, the largest provider of cyber security training and certification to professionals at governments and commercial institutions world-wide. Renowned SANS instructors teach over 60 different courses at more than 200 live cyber security trainingevents as well as online. GIAC, an affiliate of the SANS Institute, validates a practitioner's qualifications via over 35 hands-on, technical certifications in cyber security. The SANS Technology Institute, a regionally accredited independent subsidiary, offers master's degrees in cyber security. SANS offers a myriad of free resources to the InfoSec community including consensus projects, research reports, and newsletters; it also operates the Internet's early warning system--the Internet Storm Center. At the heart of SANS are the many security practitioners, representing varied global organizations from corporations to universities, working together to help the entire information security community. (

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Robotic process automation rides the Coronavirus hype cycle – but where exactly are the use cases? – Diginomica

Posted: at 11:10 pm

With the possible exception of blockchain, can you think of a technology with a more turbulent ride on the hype cycle than Robotic Process Automation (RPA)?

Given our Corona-predicaments, our obligation to wade through the RPA hype has jumped through the roof. Remote work and emergency conditions have pressed the need for all types of robots and workflow automation.

But my lingering question is: what are the exact use cases - and what are the pitfalls? Coincidentally, I just experienced another rarity: an incisive PR pitch, this one from Nintex:

More businesses are looking to bring RPA into their business processes, but where do they start? Enterprises are in the dark about how to integrate bots into their existing processes, and those that go into the buying process with tech tunnel vision will meet roadblocks.

My RPA biases:

RPA use cases are popping out:

However, not all of these implementations are going swimmingly. The Horses for Sources team recently critiqued a problematic implementation by the U.S. Small Business Administration.

EnterChris Ellis of Nintex, who agreed to wade through my my RPA skepticicm. Nintex pitches itself as"The market leader in end-to-end process management and workflow automation. Easily manage, automate, and optimize your processes with no code."

That's a pretty smooth pitch - perhaps too smooth for this grouch - but what about project realities? So I asked Ellis, who is Nintex's Manager, Tech Evangelism, APAC region, What are the biggest mistakes enterprises make when implementing RPA? Ellis responded:

Project scoping is a frequent problem. So is incorporating the human element. Ellis:

Businesses underestimate the time it takes to implement, and I don't just mean from a 'creating the bots' point of view, but also training the bot to handle exceptions when it comes to changes in underlying applications or sites, popups, errors and sanitizing data.

Customer example? Ellis says pushing data into a "single source of truth' is a popular use case:

I'm seeing a trend in RPA's ability to collate information across many disparate and disjointed data sources from local folders to cloud storage to email, and bringing the information into a single source of truth.

How about a remote work RPA scenario?

Invoice sanitization seems to be a hot topic for this particular example. We saw one Australian council replace a manual folder, email, scan and print solution with RPA and OCR, before passing invoices on for a 'four eyes' review process.

The need to replace the existing manual process was accelerated due to the remote work requirement, as printing invoices meant they stay in an in-tray for internal mail, something which is now obsolete as everyone works remotely.

Another example was provoked by Excel hell remote work urgency:

I was approached last week by a large mining company to verify if RPA would be a fit for part of their onboarding process where there is a break in the automation chain to allocate a security pass to the employee. The door pass register is held in Excel, so it required a manual update for each new user. We're able to leverage the Nintex Gateway to automate this task, calling a Nintex RPA bot to replace the human-centric 'to-do' task in workflow.

When you run into "sprinkle this tech on everything" marketing over-saturation, I like to ask the reverse. So what is RPA not a fit for right now?

This goes back to my first point about underestimating the time to implement where a target system is dynamic and changes. Sometimes those changes can be so wholesale and granular it's almost a requirement to rewire the entire bot. The more moving parts in a system, application or data source, the harder it's going to be to continuously learn the changes for that bot.

Ellis thinks that issue can be solved by integrating a digital process automation workflow tool, which essentially merges a "human-centric review-and-approval overlay" with RPA.

RPA tech is mature enough now: you don't get to blame the tech if your project goes south. But even a valid RPA use case can prove problematic in execution. As the Horses for Sources team wrote in SBA: Please stop spanking bots:

It's too easy to say RPA failed. It's more complicated than that. Really RPA was a blunt instrument here for its speed to solution and ability to swiftly process loan applications and it worked remarkably well. Too well. It swiftly overwhelmed SBA's E-Tran system which was doomed to be overwhelmed anyway by these unprecedented volumes in a short period of time. But RPA exacerbated it and potentially gave access advantage to automation-savvy firms...

Automation always lives in an ecosystem with upstream and downstream impacts and these were not adequately addressed.

I don't know about you, but I find this type of sensible project talk encouraging. I worry about the phrase "Robotic Process Automation," as I think it somehow implies that there is some type of advanced machine intelligence going on with these projects. The vast majority of the intelligence in today's "intelligent process automation" is being provided by the humans that design proper RPA scenarios.

And here, I think we're all still on a learning curve. Example: I don't care for the type of chatbot on the Nintex home page, which forces human visitors who want to interact to choose between a set of brand-defined, limited responses. As a result, I get annoyed by another "dumb" bot, and the company doesn't get to find out a journalist was on their page, and what that journalist was looking for.

If an RPA firm is still working this out, I'd say we have a long way to go. But in the meantime, helping quarantine-challenged businesses with process automation is about as worthy a business project as I can think of.

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ISG Forms Automation Partnership with NICE Nasdaq:III – GlobeNewswire

Posted: at 11:10 pm

STAMFORD, Conn., May 04, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Information Services Group (ISG) (Nasdaq: III), a leading global technology research and advisory firm, today announced it has expanded its automation ecosystem by forming a global partnership with NICE, a leading provider of attended automation solutions.

The partnership with NICE further extends ISGs capabilities into cognitive automation by leveraging such NICE products as NEVA (NICE Employee Virtual Attendant), NICE Reading Robots and Automation Finder. ISG partners with the worlds leading automation software companies to bring the benefits of business process automation to ISG clients.

An ISG Insights study, Enterprise Automation Capability Improves, but RPA Wall Still Looms, found the automation technology landscape continues to expand, with enterprises of all sizes and geographies working to accelerate their automation programs, though only 7 percent have reached ISGs highest level of maturity Bot 3.0 with automation in multiple functions across the enterprise.

Our partnership with NICE, a leader in automated solutions for contact centers and back office functions, expands our ecosystem and range of offerings to help our enterprise clients rapidly scale their automation programs, said Chip Wagner, CEO of ISG Automation. By forming strategic partnerships with such expert solutions providers as NICE, we can help our clients benefit from the cost savings, reduced cycle time, improved data accuracy, reduced time to market and improved customer experience that come with successful automation programs.

Todays customers dictate how they want to interact with brands, and customer loyalty is highly dependent on the quality, speed and relevancy of experiences delivered, Barry Cooper, president, NICE Enterprise Group, said. "Via this partnership, ISG's enterprise clients can access the full benefits of NEVA, the world's first employee-focused virtual attendant, and take their workforce engagement and customer service to the next level. Our cutting-edge automation discovery and development solutions are also available to them, all within a single platform. We are proud to partner with ISG, one of the top automation advisory and enablement firms.

As companies advance their automation capability, their goals focus on increased productivity, data accuracy and customer experience, rather than cost savings, Wagner noted. The market-leading capabilities of NICE will help support our clients progress towards the contact center of the future, which lies in personalized services and empowered agents, he said. To transform the customer experience and deliver world-class service and engagement, enterprises must adopt the right tools, business models and technologies, including automation and advanced analytics, to enhance human interaction.

ISG is a market leader in automation and digital business solutions. The firms ISG Automation business helps clients navigate the myriad challenges, risks and opportunities of automation, from software selection to building their bot workforce to leveraging the technology to transform and improve business outcomes.

ISG Automations portfolio of services includes automation assessments and strategy, proof-of-concept deployments, implementation and integration of software bots, establishment of Centers of Excellence to scale automation across the enterprise, training and organizational change management and ongoing training, technical support and managed services.

About NICE

NICE (Nasdaq: NICE) is the worlds leading provider of both cloud and on-premises enterprise software solutions that empower organizations to make smarter decisions based on advanced analytics of structured and unstructured data. NICE helps organizations of all sizes deliver better customer service, ensure compliance, combat fraud and safeguard citizens. Over 25,000 organizations in more than 150 countries, including over 85 of the Fortune 100 companies, are using NICE solutions.

About ISG

ISG (Information Services Group) (Nasdaq: III) is a leading global technology research and advisory firm. A trusted business partner to more than 700 clients, including more than 75 of the world's top 100 enterprises, ISG is committed to helping corporations, public sector organizations, and service and technology providers achieve operational excellence and faster growth. The firm specializes in digital transformation services, including automation, cloud and data analytics; sourcing advisory; managed governance and risk services; network carrier services; strategy and operations design; change management; market intelligence and technology research and analysis. Founded in 2006, and based in Stamford, Conn., ISG employs more than 1,300 digital-ready professionals operating in more than 20 countriesa global team known for its innovative thinking, market influence, deep industry and technology expertise, and world-class research and analytical capabilities based on the industrys most comprehensive marketplace data. For more information, visit

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The Time is Ripe for an Alternative to Automated Hazardous Drug Compounding – Medical Device and Diagnostics Industry

Posted: at 11:10 pm

As technology has progressed, automation has been successfully introduced into several areas of healthcare practice, such as surgery and data processing, providing a range of benefits from greater efficiency to cost-saving opportunities. However, one area in which automation is not currently being utilized to its fullest potential is with the compounding and preparation of medications, particularly hazardous drugs (HDs).

Working with such drugs often chemotherapy medications without the correct protective measures has been shown to increase the risk of healthcare workers developing a range of negative health outcomes, from infertility and birth defects to some forms of cancer. Personal protective equipment (PPE) such as protective clothes and goggles are used, and recent years have seen the introduction of Closed System Transfer Devices (CSTDs) for manual drug compounding, preparation, and administration. However, these are currently not being used at all in automated compounding systems.

If HDs are compounded in automated systems using standard syringes, the entire compounding environment can become contaminated by drug vapors, aerosols and droplets escaping from these syringes, putting healthcare workers at considerable risk of HD exposure, and acting counterproductively against one of the potential benefits of automation namely, increased safety.

The origins of drug compounding robots

Offering an extra layer of protection previously lacking, the first CSTDs successfully reduced HD exposure, and within a decade became a core component in HD handling, recommended by leading organizations including the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). The natural next step in increasing safety and efficiency was to create a compounding robot. However, the original concepts were flawed from the outset.

Conceptionally, compounding robots should act as a CSTD in reducing environmental contamination. Yet, while the original robots were created to improve accuracy and reduce errors, they were not designed to prevent leakage. This led to drugs contaminating the IV bags, membranes of vials and connectors and to the escape of vapors, contaminating the compounding environment within the robot that must be regularly accessed by healthcare workers and support staff for cleaning and maintenance. The result was that the final products, usually an IV bag or syringe, were also contaminated.

Isolators, which utilize a pass-through box or cabinet to (theoretically) maintain complete separation from the outside environment, encounter a similar issue if a CSTD is not used. This is because the final products are not shielded from drug leaks and vapors that may escape while inside the isolator, resulting in contaminated IV bags being removed from within the isolator and spread around the facility.

There are other significant issues associated with compounding robots in their current state, such as inefficiencies of time and wastage. A lack of uniformity in vial sizes and shapes slows down the entire process as the robot has to locate the needle space and gauge the depth of each vial it grabs with its mechanical arm. Additionally, the varying shapes of vials can mean that the robot is unable to remove the entire contents of medication, losing significant amounts of costly medication in the process. These points may seem insignificant but are of paramount importance, as each treatment can cost tens of thousands of dollars and are patient-specific, not for general mass use.

Why the inclusion of completely closed systems is essential for robotic systems

For robotic systems to be viable options for compounding hazardous drugs, they need to be fully closed. Therefore, the safety measures recommended when humans are manually compounding HDs must also be integrated into automated systems. In particular, integrating CSTDs within the robot for the compounding process would provide health workers handling the products a higher level of protection than is currently offered.

Other advantages of CSTD-enabled robots will follow, such as increased compounding efficiency as all vials become uniform with vial adaptors on each bottle, allowing the robots to grab any vial, regardless of size, via the adaptor piece. Additionally, automated systems incorporating CSTDs, if designed with efficiency in mind, can offer higher throughput because not tiring as humans do, they can safely maintain a high rate of compounding for prolonged periods.

Closed automated compounding systems can also be used to protect both patients and healthcare workers operating elastomeric pumps or cassettes which are used for infusing medication, ranging from antibiotics to chemotherapy drugs. Robots can prepare these doses and inject drugs directly into the pumps within a fully closed system, avoiding all human contact with the drugs until necessary.


Compounding safety standards have increased in recent years, after much research and education and as governing bodies have championed the use of better and more rigorous safety equipment such as CSTDs. The next step for compounding will be the common use of automation, which must include CSTDs as a central part of the compounding process. This should be used in tandem with current protective principles for manual compounding to guarantee that healthcare workers and patients alike are kept safe, while simultaneously increasing productivity and lowering overall cost.

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The Time is Ripe for an Alternative to Automated Hazardous Drug Compounding - Medical Device and Diagnostics Industry

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CyberPeak Adds Automation to Managed Security Services – Channelnomics

Posted: at 11:10 pm

May 4, 2020

By Jeffrey Burt

CyberPeak Solutions is adding Respond Softwares Respond Analyst automated security software to its portfolio of managed security operation services, boosting its capabilities for quickly analyzing security alerts and data.

The Lowdown: The two companies on Monday announced a service and reseller partnership after CyberPeak gave Respond Analyst a tryout that saw it able to monitor and investigate more than 104,000 events over a few hours from a customers intrusion prevention system (IPS) and web gateway.

The Details: The addition of Respond Analyst enables CyberPeak to help customers get the most out of their existing security tools. The managed security service provider (MSSP) can use the tool which leverages robotic decision automation (RDA) capabilities to analyze in near real time the massive amounts of security-related data that flows through a range of sensors, including IPS and intrusion detection systems (IDS), web gateways, endpoint protection platforms (EPPs), and endpoint detection and response (EDR) solutions.

The Impact: Enterprises and SMBs facing increasingly complex cyberthreats are turning to MSSPs to help them manage the challenge. According to a study earlier this year by Response and the Ponemon Institute, enterprises spend an average of $2.86 million every year on their on-premises security operations centers and $4.44 million if they outsource it to an MSSP. Of those that outsourced their SOCs, 58% said their MSSP was ineffective. Response officials said adding greater automation to monitoring and decision-making can improve that effectiveness.

Background: The MSSP space is expected to continue to grow. A MarketsandMarkets report is forecasting the global managed security service market to expand from $24 million in 2018 to more than $47.6 million by 2023.

The Buzz: The Respond Analyst delivers the 247 cybersecurity monitoring and investigation that MSSPs need to confidently support the corrective and preventative services their customers expect, said Mike Armistead, co-founder and CEO of Respond Software. As a next-generation MSSP, CyberPeak leverages our intelligent automation for new efficiencies and better results to set a new benchmark for speed, consistency, and scale in cybersecurity monitoring. This opens up a strong competitive advantage for CyberPeak as they deliver upon their promise to the businesses they serve.

CyberPeak sees tremendous opportunity to help customers in the adoption of RDA to weed out the noise and better protect the network, CyberPeak founder and CEO Travis Abrams said. Adding the Respond Analyst into our managed service offering will bring powerful economies of speed, scalability, and intelligence to financial service operators that increasingly expect rapid and measurable return on their technology investments. Early indicators have proven that we are equipped to build and showcase truly comprehensive, consistent, and reliable cybersecurity monitoring with the Respond Analyst and the future is bright.

Related Links: CHANNELNOMICS: Turning an MSP Into an MSSP

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Bain predicts business automation activity to double over the next two years –

Posted: at 11:10 pm

In its latest survey report into the state of business automation, leading management consultancy Bain & Company has forecast that the scaling of projects will double over the coming two years.

With millions of people currently stood down from work across the world and mass ongoing unemployment likely on the cards, the long-term economic impact of the global coronavirus pandemic is still far from clear. Numerous commentators have suggested far-reaching business and social consequences stemming from the sudden outbreak, includingMcKinsey & Company boss Kevin Sneader, who previously shared his belief that nothing would be the same.

Now McKinsey competitor Bain & Company has added to the chorus of concern for the worlds working class by predicting a doubling of automation activities among companies over the next two years. The strategy and management consultancy came to this conclusion after conducting a survey of 800 executives worldwide, many who have had no other choice but to turn to automation to keep business running throughout the crisis due to social distancing mandates.

The ongoing crisis forced companies to move their operations remote within a matter of days, underscoring a greater need than ever for automation technology to help maintain business continuity, said Bains global Automation Center of Excellence leader Michael Heric. As companies adapt to new routines and prepare for a pending downturn, automation solutions that might have been years away a few months ago, are suddenly right around the corner.

But the firm warns that strategically redesigning the roles most immediately impacted by automation will be key. This fresh tilt toward automation is of course an acceleration rather than emerging trend. Dating back two years ago Bain was already predicting that automation of business processes could eliminate up to a quarter of current jobs by the end of this decade, while McKinsey has stated that half of all current jobs are automatable with existing technologies.

According to Bains most recent research, compiled in the report Intelligent Automation: Getting Employees to Embrace the Bots, companies report cost savings of approximately 20 percent over the past two years through the implementation of automation. Close to half however (45 percent) state that their automation projects have not delivered the expected savings, with major barriers including competing business priorities, insufficient resources, and lack of skill.

As per the report, some business functions such as customer service, IT, finance and accounting, human resources, real estate and facilities management have higher, multiple automation potential than other areas like legal which require more targeted opportunities, but Bain is clear on one point; companies lacking a rigorous automation agenda risk falling behind while those which address execution barriers will get a ready break on their competition.

Based on its analysis of the survey responses and experience in the field, Bain forwards three key principles for companies executing their automation plans; ground automation in corporate strategy and customer experience, rather than setting up a standalone exercise; spend as much time, if not more, on what follows implementation; and treat automation as a major change to be actively managed from the start, including demonstrating the advantage to employees.

Automation, when executed properly, can free up space in the budget for more high-impact, strategic work, improve the customer experience, and allow up-skilled employees to take on more ambitious roles, concluded Heric. This requires a clear-eyed self-appraisal of the entire organisation, understanding and clearing implementation hurdles, and aligning closely with your teams about the positive impact this will have on their day-to-day activities.

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COVID-19 Highlights the Need for Automation in Shareholding Disclosure – Finextra

Posted: at 11:10 pm

Shareholding disclosure, the requirement to report holdings in publicly traded companies to regulatory agencies, has been a regulatory obligation for decades. But like most regulatory obligations, firms try to manage the burden with manpower first. So, between OMS reports and excel spreadsheets, compliance officers try their best to determine what needs to be reported to the regulators in the countries where they are investing. As you can imagine, the reporting regulations can vary from country to county; having a reliable regulatory resource that provides insight to the local regulations is critical in determining reporting obligations. From there, local outside counsel may be called upon to create the actual disclosure filing to submit to the regulator. Although this is fraught with human error, firms, for the most part, have been able to manage this process with some success until now.

Just like in 2008, after the market downturn, when we saw changes to substantial shareholding reporting obligations, we are now seeing a global event that is driving regulators to implement stricter trading regulations. Across Europe, countries (such asAustria, Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey) are implementing temporary bans on short selling. In Asia,South Korea has done the same and the Philippines had suspended trading and has only now reopened its market under a shortened trading day. And Italy, one of the hardest hit by COVID-19, has lowered itsreporting threshold and has implemented an additional disclosure obligation. All of this and others not mentioned, have led to an increased demand for complete end to end automation of the substantial shareholding disclosure workflow. Financial institutions, of all sizes, are seeking ways to automate their process to ensure timely, reliable and accurate reporting.

Whether you are a mid-size asset management company or a global bank, its times like this that underscore a firms vulnerability when it relies on manual processes to meet shareholding disclosure obligations. This vulnerability is magnified when workflow participants are working remotely and need to coordinate work output; especially when it is time sensitive as is the case with shareholding disclosure. And while this has been a back-burner project for many firms, weve already seen more enforcements this year than last year and were only in the 2nd quarter. All of this may lead to one of those times when compliance gets some of the technology and resources it needs to do their job more efficiently and reliably.

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Now Is the Time to Rethink AI, Automation and Employee Rights – BRINK

Posted: at 11:10 pm

We are seeing AI technologies increasingly deployed across many parts of society. Around the globe, governments are rushing to mobilize vast amounts of capital to invest into AI innovation.

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The COVID-19 pandemic prompts us to rethink what is considered high- or low-skill work. Whose skills, whose labor and whose hours, exactly, are of value to society? What and who do we value and deem essential, and how do we compensate these workers (e.g., care work or teaching)?

These questions are particularly pertinent in the context of artificial intelligence and automation.

We are seeing AI technologies increasingly deployed across many parts of society. They are embedded into loan decisions, insurance policy decisions, government services like benefit distribution, spam-folder and auto-correct software, education, search engines and web recommendations, autonomous driving, navigation, precision medicine, policing, security and surveillance, immigration enforcement, military, supply chain management, industry and production and much more.

Around the globe, governments are rushing to mobilize vast amounts of capital to invest into AI innovation. This is often tied to the narrative of AI being central for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. A bulging landscape of national AI strategies has emerged over the past three years that sees vast funding pots being made available for AI research, innovation and national security projects. The federal government of Germany alone has committed 3 billion euros ($3.25 billion) for this purpose, with state governments pitching in additional funds for regional research institutions and public-private partnerships.

When we look at this global AI landscape, there is something important to note: We see a narrative of AI built on vast (and frankly overstated) expectations of its capabilities. The idea that artificial neural network architecture (and with it, deep learning) is the breakthrough technology for creating conscious, or even sentient, machines fuels the looming fear of robots taking our jobs. It prompts us to picture the Terminator, rather than a server farm, in our head.

The Terminator narrative of AI and automation very often depicts low-skill or blue collar workers as the most likely victims of automation. This framing is not only incorrect, but it is also a strategic distraction from the policy decisions that frame what we see as skillful work and what kind of labor we value.

This is thrown into sharp relief in the current global health crisis: If we truly had robots for all our essential low-skill services, then these services wouldnt be on the edge of breaking down to the extent they are now, which shows us how important these job roles really are.

For example, Amazon warehouses are automated to a significant degree, but they are not fully automated. Humans and machines work together and many crucial tasks, such as delivery, are still completed entirely by humans. The key part is that these humans are undervalued and at a much higher risk.

Their precarity is not only unevenly distributed along the fault lines of well-known inequalities, but it puts us at risk as a society at large. Not having health insurance or not being provided with protective gear fuels the spread of the virus among those workers who form the backbone of what is left of our economy.

There is a bigger context to this that we have to consider, and that often gets pushed to the sidelines by the AI hype. First, there is a systemic issue around wage stagnation and automation that extends into important questions around AI. Productivity growth (the proportional change in output growth per unit change in labor output) over the last three decades in the United States has indeed increased due to the introduction of labor-saving technologies, not just AI. Productivity used to grow in tandem with labor compensation; however, that has changed dramatically since the 1970s. Productivity has continued to grow, but wages stagnated.

This means that that laborers lost their stock in productivity and in infrastructure, but they did not necessarily lose their jobs. This shift has coincided with the dismantling of unions, leading to a decline in collective bargaining power and the rise of the gig economy.

In the meantime, employers have increased their own stock in crucial infrastructure just think about Amazons cloud empire but these developments are hardly entirely due to technological innovation and automation. They are the results of policy decisions.

In the U.S., automation is incentivized via tax breaks while human labor remains expensive. So we end up with a situation in which low-skill does not equal likeliness of automation ease of automation does.

Tax-incentivized ease of automation is a very different framing than low-skill. Contrary to many stories that we hear, tasks that we traditionally value as high-skill are just as much at risk of automation. For example, automating large-scale text analysis through natural language processing technologies is an attractive business proposition for law firms. Writing code, a skill currently valued highly and compensated accordingly, could also be automated.

This is how automation and the rise of inequality are linked: not through technological change, per se, but political and economic decisions made upstream. Not seeing this relationship clearly pits certain humans not all humans against machines in ways that have us focus too much on the machinery and make the wrong decisions around workers rights and well-being.

This change provides a window of opportunity for reconfiguring how we think about society, technology and the economy. Now is a good moment to draw out strategies for change. We need to stop talking about large-scale work replacements caused by robots, and remind ourselves that technological innovation and change follows policy and investment decisions. The state, not just the private sector, plays a central role here, as economist Mariana Mazzucato has reminded us.

We need public buy-in (quite literally) for the idea that successful, equitable automation means a sociotechnical system in which workers play a central role, whether through directly or indirectly working with machines, and are compensated accordingly.

This is not just a matter of doing the right thing. It is also a matter of getting society and the economy to a point of resilience, which is needed not least to secure the democratic process.

At the most basic level, wages need to be required to rise in tandem with productivity especially when it comes to low-skill work that keeps the most crucial parts of our economy afloat. This means deploying tools that are widely known and yet underused, such as minimum wage and universal health care, as well as worker unions (reestablishment is well underway in the tech worker movement), considerations of universal basic income and public investment in infrastructure.

Now is the time to make these changes.

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Rockwell Automation has Acquired Kalypso, LP, Expanding its Connected Enterprise Consulting Expertise – Business Wire

Posted: at 11:10 pm

MILWAUKEE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Rockwell Automation, Inc. (NYSE: ROK), a global leader in industrial automation and digital transformation, has completed the acquisition of Kalypso, LP. Based in the US, Kalypso is a software delivery and consulting firm specializing in the digital evolution of industrial companies with a strong client base in life sciences, consumer products and industrial high-tech.

Kalypso offers a full suite of consulting, digital innovation, enterprise technology and business process management services that enable the transformation of product design and development, production management, and client service models.

Rockwell Automation is best positioned to bring Information Technology (IT) and plant floor technology (OT) together. This acquisition within our Control Products & Solutions business segment will combine the convergence of plant-level and enterprise networks with Kalypsos capabilities, further enhancing the companys ability to implement and deploy technology and deliver even greater value to its customers.

Rockwell Automation announced its intent to acquire Kalypso in February 2020. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

About Rockwell Automation

Rockwell Automation, Inc. (NYSE: ROK), is a global leader in industrial automation and digital transformation. We connect the imaginations of people with the potential of technology to expand what is humanly possible, making the world more productive and more sustainable. Headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Rockwell Automation employs approximately 23,000 problem solvers dedicated to our customers in more than 100 countries. To learn more about how we are bringing The Connected Enterprise to life across industrial enterprises, visit

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Rockwell Automation has Acquired Kalypso, LP, Expanding its Connected Enterprise Consulting Expertise - Business Wire

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The Global Factory Automation Platform as a Service Market is expected to grow by $ 2.92 billion during 2020-2024 progressing at a CAGR of 20% during…

Posted: at 11:10 pm

New York, May 04, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- announces the release of the report "Global Factory Automation Platform as a Service Market 2020-2024" - 92 billion during 2020-2024 progressing at a CAGR of 20% during the forecast period. Our reports on factory automation platform as a service market provides a holistic analysis, market size and forecast, trends, growth drivers, and challenges, as well as vendor analysis covering around 25 vendors. The report offers an up-to-date analysis regarding the current global market scenario, latest trends and drivers, and the overall market environment. The market is driven by the ease of IT and OT convergence, shift from CAPEX model to OPEX model in manufacturing industry, and increasing number of investments in smart factories. In addition, ease of IT and OT convergence is anticipated to boost the growth of the market as well. The factory automation platform as a service market analysis includes service segment and geographic landscapes

The factory automation platform as a service market is segmented as below: By Service Platform Professional service

By Geographic Landscapes North America APAC Europe South America MEA

This study identifies the increasing focus on edge computing as one of the prime reasons driving the factory automation platform as a service market growth during the next few years. Also, increasing number of strategic collaborations, and virtualization of industrial automation will lead to sizable demand in the market. The analyst presents a detailed picture of the market by the way of study, synthesis, and summation of data from multiple sources by an analysis of key parameters. Our factory automation platform as a service market covers the following areas: Factory automation platform as a service market sizing Factory automation platform as a service market forecast Factory automation platform as a service market industry analysis

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The Global Factory Automation Platform as a Service Market is expected to grow by $ 2.92 billion during 2020-2024 progressing at a CAGR of 20% during...

Posted in Automation | Comments Off on The Global Factory Automation Platform as a Service Market is expected to grow by $ 2.92 billion during 2020-2024 progressing at a CAGR of 20% during…

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