2018: The Year in Swarm AI

The Year in Swarm AI

2018 was a monumental year in Swarm AI. In the last twelve moths, we took our swarms across the globe, stole the show at South by Southwest, worked with some of the biggest brands in the world, and beat state-of-the-art AI algorithms at their own game. The Top 10 list below is just a few of the highlights from an amazing year for the swarm.

Swarm AI Achieves Stunning 94% Accuracy at the Oscars 

LINK: 2018 Oscar Forecast

In what has become an annual tradition here at Unanimous AI, our researchers formed a swarm of movie fans and enthusiasts to forecast Hollywood’s big night. This year’s swarm was a select group of all-stars, carefully curated from the highest performers in the Golden Globes swarm, and the results were remarkable. For the third year in a row, the Oscar Swarm outperformed the average individual. This amplification is, of course, the big idea behind Swarm Intelligence. But the 2018 Oscar Swarm wasn’t content to just amplify fan performance to expert levels. This year’s Oscar Swarm got every single category it forecast correct, with the exception of Best Production Design, which it labeled a toss-up between Blade Runner 2049 over eventual winner The Shape of Water. That 94% accuracy beat every single expert our researchers could find on record.

Unanimous AI Partners with MIT for Moral Machine Study of AI Ethics

LINK: MIT Press Release

Self-driving cars represent one of the most fascinating topics in the field of AI because they offer what could be the most immediate example of an AI being asked to make life-or-death decisions for humans. While many of the concerns about immoral AI exists in theoretical discussions about possible futures, fully autonomous cars are sharing the road with humans right now. In a potentially dangerous collision situation, those cars will rely on their programming to make seemingly impossible moral decisions. So, how can we program those AIs to make the decisions that best represent human values? To find out, Unanimous AI partnered with the MIT Media Lab, creators of the Moral Machine, which challenges people to determine the most moral decision from a large set of macabre hypothetical scenarios. Swarm AI enabled MIT to determine the decisions that best represented the collective intelligence and sensibility of the group. This collaboration is a perfect example of our belief that the best approach to creating a moral AI is to amplify human intelligence, rather than replace it.

Swarm AI Wins Best in Show, AI Innovation of the Year at SXSW

LINK: Unanimous AI Wins 2 Prizes at SXSW

In 2018, the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival announced its first ever prize for Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning at its prestigious Interactive Innovation conference. The Interactive Awards celebrate the “most forward-thinking developments in the connected world” and the team here at Unanimous was first excited to head to SXSW to take part in the showcase, and then humbled to take home not only the AI Innovation of the Year, but also Best in Show. This was one of the most rewarding nights in our young company’s history. And, as proof that we’re delivering on the promises that we made to the SXSW crowd, Unanimous AI has once again been named a finalist, this time in the Health, Medicine, and Biotech category for one of our most exciting research projects of the year. More on that down below.

Unanimous AI Announces its First 5 Patents in 2018 

LINK: Unanimous AI Patents

As the pioneers in the field of Swarm Intelligence and its applications to AI, it’s important for Unanimous to protect our technology with patents. So, it was with great pride that we announced our first two patents in 2018. And then another two were issued a few months later… and another after that, for five in total. This string of successful patent applications is nothing new for Unanimous CEO and Chief Scientist, Dr. Louis Rosenberg, who is veteran inventor who has been awarded more than 350 patents in his lifetime. With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that Unanimous AI has many more patent applications in process.

INC., Magazine: What’s Next for the Startup That Predicted the Kentucky Derby

LINK: INC., Magazine

Unanimous AI first made headlines by correctly forecasting the 541-to-1 Kentucky Derby Superfecta, a feat Newsweek described as the “holy grail of gambling,” with a swarm of horse racing enthusiasts. That story traveled around the world and back to the heartland, with Garrison Keillor opening up that week’s A Prairie Home Companion by noting that “Nyquist might finished first, but the real winner at the Kentucky Derby was Unanimous AI.” A story like that can come to define a company, but as anyone who’s read this blog, or seen Dr. Rosenberg’s TED talk knows, our mission extends far beyond forecasting horse racing. So, it was gratifying to see INC dive into what’s next for Unanimous, profiling how our Swarm AI platform is empowering businesses to make better decisions and generate deeper insights than ever before.

Swarm AI Outperforms Doctors, AI in Stanford Radiology Study

LINK: IEEE Spectrum

In 2018, Unanimous AI researchers break ground on two fronts in a study with Stanford University School of Medicine. The study was a comparison between a small Swarm of radiologists and a state-of-the-art machine learning algorithm in diagnosing pneumonia from X-rays. Since this was Unanimous AI’s first foray in to medical applications, and these types of diagnostics are notoriously difficult, we were thrilled to see the Swarm AI platform was 22% more accurate than the ML algorithm, and 33% more accurate than the individual radiologists working independently. This incredible result also revealed that swarming is able to amplify intelligence even with very small groups, which suggests that business teams would benefit tremendously from Swarm AI technology. The radiology experiment is already starting to make waves within the medical community, and we are thrilled to share that we’ve been nominated for another honor at SXSW in the Health, Medical, and Biotech category of the 2019 Innovation Awards.

Can Swarm AI Solve Humanity’s Largest Problems?

LINK: Curiosity.com

LINK: Compelo

Earlier this year, Dr. Rosenberg sat down with Curiosity.com to talk about his vision for the future of Artificial Intelligence, and how Swarm AI could be the form of AI that successfully bridges the gap between human and artificial solutions. What emerged from their conversation was perhaps the best glimpse yet into what we’re building here at Unanimous AI, and why. The episode remains one of Curiosity.com’s most popular and widely shared episodes to date. Similarly, Compelo published an in-depth profile of Dr. Rosenberg and the inspiration behind Swarm AI technology. If you’re not familiar with Dr. Rosenberg’s impressive background, you can do no better than to read this excellent piece by Compelo.

Season Long NBA Study Shows 57% ROI with 90% Likelihood of Positive ROI

LINK: CICN Study of the NBA Swarm

Our research team worked around the clock in 2018, publishing papers with institutions like Stanford, MIT, Oxford and more to validate the performance of our Swarm AI technology. At the same time, one of the questions we hear most often with respect to our sports swarms is, how did the swarm do over the course of the entire season? With that in mind, we produced a season-long study of the NBA Swarm that revealed some incredible insights into how smart our swarms really are. Gregg Willcox, Director of R&D will present these results at the Computational Intelligence and Communication Networks (CICN) Conference just after the New Year, but you can get a sneak peek at them here. In short, using the NBA Swarm’s weekly forecast produced at least a 25% positive Return on Investment, regardless of strategy. And, using machine learning analysis on previous swarm produced a Conviction Index that made smarter strategies possible that increase the ROI to 57% over the course of the season, with a 90% chance of positive ROI. That means the NBA Swarm not only produced an excellent forecast that easily outperformed its individual members, but also that the Swarm AI platform is also smart enough to know which predictions are most likely to be successful.

Unanimous AI Delivers at Credit Suisse Asian Investment Conference

LINK: Credit Suisse Uses Swarm AI to Power 2018 Market Forecasts

The Credit Suisse Asian Investment Conference (AIC) is widely recognized as one of the most exclusive business and investment gatherings in the world.  So, it was a great honor for Unanimous to be invited to play an important role at the event.  First, Unanimous CIO, David Baltaxe, delivered a keynote presentation at the AIC. He then had the audience of AIC attendees form a live swarm using mobile devices.  As a real-time collaborative intelligence, the group generated an optimized forecast for the APAC market.  Finally, the resulted were presented live on CNBC to Melissa Lee, host of Squawk Box.

Swarm AI Correctly Predicts Mountain Dew and Doritos Will Win the Super Bowl 

LINK: Super Bowl Ad Breakdown

Typically, our swarms are best known for their uncanny predictive intelligence. Last year’s NFL Swarm predicted the final score of the Super Bowl perfectly, but the 2018 Super Bowl Swarm went one better in forecasting the success and failure of the most hotly anticipated Super Bowl ads. Of course, if predicting advertising success were easy, everyone would do it. As Margaret Johnson, Ad Age’s Executive of the Year for 2018 and the creator the swarm’s most highly-rated ad said,  “The concept of Swarm Intelligence is really cool, but I’ll really be impressed if it turns out the AI was able to factor in the difference between mental state of a group of NFL fans participating in a mid-week swarm and that of a nation of chip-stuffed, beer-infused football maniacs on game day.” When the 60-second rap battle between Peter Dinklage and Morgan Freeman was shown to have garnered the most social share on Super Bowl Sunday, the Swarm AI was proven right once again.

About Unanimous AI
Unanimous AI pioneers innovative technologies to amplify the intelligence of business teams, combining the power of AI with the depth of human knowledge, wisdom and insight. Its Swarm AI technology is currently being used by Fortune 500 companies around the world for a wide range of applications, from forecasting sales to optimizing marketing campaigns.  In 2018, Swarm AI was recognized as SXSW’s “Artificial Intelligence Innovation of the Year.” For more about Unanimous AI, see the TED talk, “Hope for Humans in an AI World” or visit http://unanimous.ai

Would you like to participate in future predictions, experiments and studies? Unanimous AI holds several weekly Swarm Sessions across a variety of topics, from the NFL and English Premier League, to elections, the Oscars, and more.

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Want to learn more about our Swarm AI technology? Check out our TED talk below…