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Box Skills Unveiled

October 13, 2017

Box Skills is a framework for applying state-of-the-art machine learning tools such as computer vision, video indexing, and sentiment analysis to content stored in Box. With Box Skills, enterprises will be able to uncover insights and reimagine business processes that have traditionally been too costly or impractical to digitize and automate. At BoxWorks 2017, Box showcased skills powered by IBM Watson, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud, as well as Box Skills Kit, a set of developer resources for building custom skills.

“We are in the midst of a revolution in enterprise software driven by artificial intelligence and machine learning, and we are making Box the most intelligent cloud content management platform in the world,” said Aaron Levie, cofounder and CEO of Box. “As businesses continue to drive digital transformation, they need to realize more value and intelligence from their content. Box Skills is a first-of-its-kind framework that will make it possible to digitize almost any business process on Box.”

At BoxWorks 2017, Box previewed three initial Box Skills currently in development, leveraging state-of-the-art machine learning tools from IBM Watson, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud to solve common business use cases, including:

• Audio Intelligence: Uses audio files to create and index a text transcript that can be easily searched and manipulated in a variety of use cases; demonstrated at BoxWorks using technology from IBM Watson.

• Video Intelligence: Provides transcription, topic detection and detects people to allow users to quickly find the information they need in a video; demonstrated at BoxWorks using Microsoft Cognitive Services.

• Image Intelligence: Detects individual objects and concepts in image files, captures text through optical character recognition (OCR), and automatically adds keyword labels to images to easily build metadata on image catalogs; demonstrated at BoxWorks using Google Cloud Platform.

“IBM has shown how data-intensive industries are being transformed through the use of Watson,” said David Kenny, Senior Vice President, IBM Watson and Cloud Platform, IBM. “Now we’re enabling enterprises across the globe to combine the rich content in Box with the AI power of Watson to reimagine critical business processes and how they get work done. Box Skills is an extension of our strategic partnership with Box aimed at helping businesses work more efficiently, solve challenges and seize opportunities for innovation.”

“Box Skills brings together Box’s cloud content management and Microsoft Azure’s industry leading AI services to deliver intelligent insights for customers,” said Scott Guthrie, EVP of Microsoft’s cloud and enterprise division. “We’re excited to see how the general availability of Box on Azure, that starts November 1st, will help benefit customers in their digital transformation journey.”

Box Skills Kit

Box also introduced Box Skills Kit, a set of developer resources for building custom Box Skills. Custom Skills can include chaining together multiple skills to enable intelligent business processes, leveraging third-party machine learning solutions for a specific workflow, or training a skill to handle data unique to a business or industry.

The company demonstrated several examples of potential future custom skills at BoxWorks, including:

• A skill that combines IBM’s Watson Speech to Text and Natural Language Understanding services on the IBM Cloud to process customer service recordings and automatically surface priority issues or identify product names that generate positive or negative customer responses. The ongoing IBM and Box partnership is helping organizations large and small better leverage their data.

• A skill developed by Ephesoft to detect information in a form or document – such as a legal contract – and extract it into a custom metadata card in Box that helps automate a process – such as employee onboarding or a loan application.

• A specialized image recognition skill that uses a company’s proprietary data stored in Box to train its own machine learning model for recognizing images of its own products.

Box Skills Kit will enable an ecosystem of cloud services providers, independent software vendors, systems integrators, and enterprises themselves to create custom Box Skills implementations.

Box Graph

Also at BoxWorks 2017, the company showcased its Box Graph technology. Box Graph is an intelligent network of content, relationships, and activity that Box will leverage to power new experiences and services for both individual Box users and enterprises. Box Graph will be continuously enriched by machine learning techniques and governed by Box’s built-in permissions, security, and compliance standards to ensure all data always stays in a customer’s secure Box instance and that users can only see and interact with the files and content they are allowed to access.

The company debuted the first new experience powered by Box Graph, called Feed, a personalized activity feed that curates and surfaces the most relevant updates, insights and content for each Box user. With Feed every employee will be able to:

• Immediately see what requires their attention and always be informed on the content that they are collaborating on with their teams.

• Discover content recommended to them based on their activity and network of collaborators.

• See trending content that is currently popular within their company.

Feed is just the beginning of how Box Graph will enable new intelligent experiences and services in Box. Other anticipated applications will include enhanced search, personalized file and app recommendations, and new security services like automatic anomaly and threat detection.

“The power of cloud content management is that you have one, centralized and secure place for all your business content in the cloud – no data siloes, no fragmented systems, no shadow IT,” said Jeetu Patel, Chief Product Officer for Box. “Box Skills and Box Graph represent a truly practical application of intelligence for the enterprise, ensuring our customers can realize incredible value from every piece of content they have in Box.”

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