Microsoft’s masterclass explains key AI concepts and using innovative AI solutions effectively to power growth

Microsoft’s latest webinar presented an introduction to Azure AI services to help bring capabilities such as speech, vision, language, decision, and search to your applications, along with best practices followed at Microsoft in deployment of AI tools.
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New-age technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are becoming necessary tools to run businesses effectively, and tech giants like Microsoft have a portfolio of AI services designed for developers and data scientists.

Microsoft’s approach to AI focuses on empowerment, innovation, and responsibility. Azure AI enables businesses to build on their own terms. Businesses can look at building applications using languages and tools of their choice and deploy AI models anywhere. Whether it's to leverage pre-built models, build custom models with code-first or code-free experiences, or do advanced machine learning, Azure is a great place to get started with AI.

Microsoft and YourStory’s latest masterclass explained these concepts in greater detail. Titled Azure AI - Fundamental concepts, the virtual masterclass was conducted by Vivek Shridhar, Senior Cloud Advocate, Developer Relations, Cloud & AI Engineering at Microsoft. Vivek has previously worked for companies such as IBM India, HCL Technologies and BlackBuck. He has also co-founded and was the chief architect at NoodleNext Technology.

AI and its fundamentals

AI is the creation of software that imitates human behaviours and capabilities,” shared Vivek, as he kickstarted the session by explaining the basics of AI.

Vivek shed light on machine learning, which is often considered the foundation for the AI system, and is the way a computer model is trained to make predictions and draw conclusions from data.

Another critical element is anomaly detection, which is the capability to automatically detect errors or unusual activity in a system. Vivek gave examples of this tech being used in identifying possible issues in a car during F1 racing events

He also presented an overview of computer vision (The capability of software to interpret the world visually through cameras, video, and images), neutral language processing (The capability for a computer to interpret written or spoken language, and respond in kind), and conversational AI (The capability of a software agent to participate in a conversation).

Using Azure AI to build apps

Vivek gave the audience an overview of how to build a natural processing app in a text-to-speech or speech-to-text scenario. He also shared a machine algorithm cheat sheet that depicted a pure way of building models.

There are a set of problem statements and it tells you which set of models and algorithms you need to use. If you are a startup and you want to build fast, and if you want to make sure these models are pre-built for you, that’s where businesses can use Azure AI,” explained Vivek.

He further explained different buckets such as AI apps and agents covering Azure service bot and Azure cognitive service; machine learning covering Azure Databricks, Azure Machine Learning, and Azure AI infrastructure; and Knowledge mining that includes Azure Cognitive Search.

Azure Cognitive Search is the only cloud search service with built-in AI capabilities that enrich all types of information to help businesses identify and explore relevant content at scale,” said Vivek as he concluded the session talking about the use of cognitive skills for vision, language and speech.

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