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Spanish Companies are Convinced: Machine Learning is the Present and the Future

by on May 16, 2017

As we have been covering in our previous blog posts, the premier Machine Learning event in Madrid, 2ML took place on May 11.  Having experienced a great day filled by presentations from distinguished Machine Learning experts, the 2ML audience of 300 Spanish decision makers are now keenly aware that the time to apply Machine Learning in their diverse set of industries has already arrived.  It’s increasingly obvious that companies disregarding this trend will be gradually losing their competitive edge in the coming years.

Panel with the speakers of 2ML’s morning sessions. From left to right: Sari Heinonen from Barrabés Napapiiri (moderator), Fernando Vidiella from Banco Santander, Poul Petersen from BigML, Ed Fernández from NAISS.IO, Susanna Pirttikangas from the University of Oulu) and Luis Martín from Barrabés.

For starters, Alexa (the virtual assistant by Amazon) gave the starting signal of Madrid Machine Learning to the audience gathered at the Fundación Pablo VI by explaining what Machine Learning is. Then came Carlos Barrabés, president of Barrabés.biz, and Francisco J. Martín, Co-Founder and CEO of BigML, who gave the opening remarks, emphasizing the importance of Machine Learning in the current economic climate.

During the morning sessions, Machine Learning experts such as Susanna Pirttikangas (University of Oulu), Ed Fernández (NAISS.IO), Poul Petersen (BigML) and Fernando Vidiella (Banco Santander) focused on the potential of Machine Learning by sharing their own experiences and explaining how to apply this technology according to the specific context and needs of each company. This was followed by BigML’s Poul Petersen, who showcased three live demos with Alexa. This was further testament to the emergence of a new generation of APIs serving as the building blocks for developers to seamlessly construct smart applications encompassing custom Machine Learning models.

Luis Martin’s (CEO of Barrabés.biz) speech strengthened the point that it is impossible to “abstract from the digital environment” today so companies need to adapt by employing Machine Learning in a way that augments existing human expertise.

In the afternoon, we had four parallel tracks that focused on the application of Machine Learning in select sectors: Finance; Telecommunications and Technology; Marketing, Sales and Sports; and Industry. In the Finance track, Jean-Marc Guillard (Stats4Trade), Auke IJsselstein (ABN AMRO) and Hans Hjersing Dalsgaard (Danske Bank) spoke about investments, Human Resources and credits. In Telecommunications and Technology, Joan Serra (Telefónica), Libor Morkovsky (Avast) and Darren Brown (VMware) discussed the topics of Deep Learning, malware and event analysis. In Marketing, Seamus Abshere (faraday.io), Raúl Peláez (FC Barcelona) and Nick Mote (Vacasa) talked about other sectors that are benefitting from insights driven by Machine Learning such as football or vacation rentals. In Industry, with Perttu Laurinen (Indalgo), Laura Viñolas (Gestamp) and Dragos D. Margineantu (Boeing) as speakers, key aspects such as Scalability were discussed.

For more on this Machine Learning event, please follow 2ML in Facebook and Google+.

The BigML Team and Barrabés, are already looking forward to the next edition!

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