How Councils are using AI

Andy Taylor
Microsoft’s AI Reporters
Microsoft have started replacing journalists with a new AI system which discovers stories from across the internet, similar to how search engine crawlers search the web and then creates blog posts for the site. AI is often questioned due to the morals of its use. Many have raised this point with Microsoft as it will result in 50 journalists losing their jobs. Furthermore, these bots will be taking information from human written blogs which took these author time and effort to write and research. Another questionable floor which these may have is picking up on fake news and internet rumors. Microsoft released this statement – “Like all companies, we evaluate our business on a regular basis. This can result in increased investment in some places and, from time to time, redeployment in others. These decisions are not the result of the current pandemic.”

If successful, this new development in AI will be able to provide people with reliable news faster than ever before. The project has been backed and funded by Google and set to go live on in July.

Councils Using Bots To Help Those In Need
Cheshire & Cheshire West council’s have seen a 500% in their online AI service since the start of the pandemic. The majority of questions are related to symptoms and the effects the pandemic has had on services such as social care. The system uses Azure Cognitive Services to understand queries from clients, and then uses trusted reliable sauces to deliver helpful information.

“Many public sector organisations are facing significant pressure to care for the UK’s most vulnerable residents while employees are also tackling the implications of the crisis in their personal lives. It’s great to see Cheshire West and Chester Council use technology to alleviate some of that pressure from contact centre employees, who can spend more time supporting those who need the most help.” – Michael Wignall, UK Director of Azure.

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