April 25, 2019

Why We Love AI Conferences: A Product Marketer’s Recap of the 2019 O’Reilly AI Conference

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(Featured photo taken by Ben Hider for O'Reilly Conferences)

Last week’s O’Reilly Artificial Intelligence (AI) Conference in New York saw professionals across the industry coming together to share their knowledge on how AI is changing the business landscape. Our CEO and founder Matt Zeiler had the opportunity to share his expertise on Clarifai maintains quality long-term AI results with our computer vision models. However, today, we hear from Clarifai’s very own Kia Edwards, our Product Marketing Associate, to find out what she learned from her experience at this year’s event how this wondrous technology is changing different business sectors across the world.


Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do at Clarifai.

 I work at Clarifai as a product marketer, which involves analyzing the market to determine customer needs and potential targets, then determining how to bring a product to market. After figuring out who needs the product, we create a strategy to figure out the best ways to reach them. I’m drawn to it because it requires researching and reading the trends in the market, which can change rapidly. The job is less likely to become stagnant if done properly.


Was this your first AI conference? What excited you about it?

Yes, this was my first AI conference, and I loved it. As a person who is new to the industry, it was a great way to learn about the ways AI can be employed to solve the mundane and complex issues in the world. Whether we want to recognize emotions on faces to determine somebody’s experience with your product (facial recognition), using imaging technologies, like computer vision, to scan for cancer or catching poachers, AI really has integrated itself in several industries.




Did you notice any common trends during the event?

 In truth, the applications of AI are vast. The relevant trends change based on the industry you are interested in. That said, it was great to see how different sectors were applying AI. The finance industry, for instance, is trying to leverage AI to mitigate risk when building models or to detect fraud and money laundering more effectively. A bit over my head, but still cool to hear about.


Were there any key learnings you took away from this year’s event? Any favorite panels or speakers?

 I most enjoyed learning about how the healthcare industry is trying to employ AI and hearing about the challenges they were facing. My favorite talk was a short keynote with Olga Troyanskaya, a professor from Princeton University, about harnessing AI in bioinformatics as a way to determine a connection between one’s genes and a predisposition to certain disease states in children. I’d love to explore that topic more.





Any standout moments from the conference?

Everybody was so friendly that you forgot you were in the middle of Manhattan (no offense to New Yorkers, I’m one of them too). The people there are very eager to learn and tell you about the work they are doing, which really enhances the conference experience. It was great trying out new products that companies are working on and, as a product marketer, another good way to see how other companies are responding to market needs.


From free food to cool swag, there are many things to love about AI conferences. However, if we had to choose the one thing we enjoy most, it would definitely be the chance these events give us to not only share our knowledge about AI but to also learn about its real-world impact from experts across the tech industry and beyond.


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