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Communications of the ACM

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'No-Code' Brings the Power of AI to the Masses

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Just as clickable icons have replaced obscure programming commands on home computers, new no-code platforms replace programming languages with simple and familiar Web interfaces.


Sean Cusack, a software engineer at Microsoft and beekeeper on the side, wanted to know if anything besides bees was going into his hives. So he built a tiny photo booth (a sort of bee vestibule) that took pictures whenever something appeared around it. But sorting through thousands of insect portraits proved tedious.

Colleagues told him about a new product that the company was working on called, which allows anybody to train a computer-vision system to recognize objects. Mr. Cusack used it to identify his honeybees — but also to keep an eye out for the dreaded Asian murder hornet.

"It was just really simple," Mr. Cusack said, adding that the underlying data science was "over my head," despite his title. The Lobe platform allowed him to drag and drop sample photos and click a few buttons to make a system that could recognize his beloved bees and spot unwelcome visitors.

From The New York Times
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