The Mobile & Artificial Intelligence Campus (MAIC)
CEWE always focusses on the fact that any new technology must be useful and a help for its customers. One measure taken to ensure this, was the establishment of the Mobile & Artificial Intelligence Campus (MAIC). Since February 2019, our dedicated staff members have been working towards developing new digital solutions for CEWE and its customers at our company headquarters in Oldenburg-Kreyenbrück, as well as at the technology and venture centre (TGO) near Oldenburg University.
The MAIC team that is not involved in the operating business, is active in a number of research areas, developing applications that are intended to simplify order and design processes. Planning provides, for example, for systems based on artificial intelligence to help search and select images. It can be a great challenge for consumers to get an overview of the flood of images on their smartphones, hard drives and other storage media. Artificial intelligence can be used to spot aesthetically pleasing pictures and to use them when preparing a design suggestion for a CEWE PHOTOBOOK. Visually similar or poor quality photos can be automatically weeded out, as can so called convenience photos (e.g. pictures of parking spots or price tags).
Smart photo management search functions have also been developed at the MAIC, and these are already available for use by all customers of the CEWE MYPHOTOS cloud software. If desired, customers can benefit from face, place and object recognition that can be applied to their uploaded photos. While only a name must be added to the recognised faces, the artificial intelligence tools can automatically identify objects in photos and they also read the images’ geodata. This allows even for very complex searches such as ‘Aunty Karin beach Spain 2016’ that will retrieve the desired image from thousands of photos within just a few seconds.
The MAIC is working on new digital possibilities, not only for order processes and photo product design, but also for the entire CEWE universe. One example is the integration of a chatbot for our customer services. It is currently being developed and intended to answer simple customer questions, such as regarding the status of an order. This means that human staff members will have more time to consult customers in matters such as photo product design.