Based in Singapore for several years, Pierre Robinet, Senior Partner at Ogilvy Consulting Asia, decided to commit himself into Artificial Intelligence at the end of 2017 with Live with AI. A leading figure in talks about artificial intelligence, he published a report intended to stimulate debate around AI and encourage actions that will allow everyone to live better with this technology: AI at work, AI in health and AI in society (soon a TED talk will be online, keep posted!). His universe, almost diametrically opposed to ours, arouses our curiosity ... @BrumeOrpin, we are passionately attached to meaning, olfaction, beautiful encounters, traditional know-how, a perfume industry not always up to date ... how can we imagine a bridge between our worlds ?! A friendly conversation started on the Touquet beach in 2018 continues with you below.
On a daily basis, you anticipate how the world of tomorrow will be with Artificial Intelligence. What parallel would you make between our two professions?
Artificial intelligence is already fully a part of our lives, sometimes without even being aware of it, fully integrated into the majority of the tools we use daily several hours a day. I like to think that an AI can have a job because we can imagine a world in which certain tasks can be entirely performed by AI. However, a profession is made up of a multitude of tasks and this is what makes it unique. I am deeply convinced that we will collaborate more and more with the machine in order to be "augmented" and more efficient. Some tasks will be replaced by the machine, others will still be in human hands, and most will be shared. And I think I can say that man will have a job, intelligence will help him to be successful in this job, the reverse is less certain 😊
Given the range of ingredients available for our perfume creation, do you think that AI can accelerate our research and assist our perfumers (provenance, means of extraction, quality, response adjusted to specifications) ?
Perfumers have access to a range of materials to amaze us. AI have access to a range of data to support us in our daily lives and help us to discover certain “patterns” or “combinations” that we could not really conceive without their help. AI should therefore very quickly surprise us in its ability to anticipate consumer trends and discover the fragrances trends of tomorrow. Some companies are already identifying the plants, ingredients that are making the social networks “screening” trend and allow mass distribution players to develop new products (tea, smoothies, etc.). AI should of course also allow robotics to become more precise and extract perfume essences in an unequaled way, it is already possible to optimize production chains and ensure a quality that will become a new commodity tomorrow.
If you had the mission to accelerate the integration of AI into the perfume industry, what would be your first step? Being passionate about consumer studies, I will undoubtedly seek access to new signals that allow me to better understand the evolution of their olfactory senses, and find that "note" that will make the difference. How can we imagine together, in the time of COVID 19, an olfactory discovery optimized thanks to AI? One of the fairly recognized symptoms of COVID19 is loss of smell in some patients, which is quite frightening, our senses being our most precious asset as human beings and the way of distinguishing ourselves from the machine. Even if some AIs allow you to see or even smell, they don't do it the same way humans do, and we need to preserve those senses that make us unique. So I tend to hope that we can quickly train AIs to understand these reasons that affect our senses, to find better ways to protect them, and who knows how to better develop them. Let us not forget that our sense of smell is our most impactful sense and a key access to our souvenirs, even if it is the one we never take enough into account and which is too often put aside.
Please, share your best scented memory with us. Personally suffering from chronic sinusitis for many years, I am unfortunately one of those people who are not so lucky to be transported by scents most of the time. By the way, the return to the seaside in the north of France, and the smell of the haze, the sea, the sand and this invigorating north wind are without a doubt my best scented memories. Find out more about artificial intelligence: http://livewithai.org/
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