MIT News: Unleashing Opportunities with Generative AI - ParrotGPT

Talking with retail executives back in 2010, Rama Ramakrishnan came to two realizations. First, although retail systems that offered customers personalized recommendations were getting a great deal of attention, these systems often provided little payoff for retailers. Second, for many of the firms, most customers shopped only once or twice a year, so companies didn’t really know much about them.

“But by being very diligent about noting down the interactions a customer has with a retailer or an e-commerce site, we can create a very nice and detailed composite picture of what that person does and what they care about,” says Ramakrishnan, professor of the practice at the MIT Sloan School of Management. “Once you have that, then you can apply proven algorithms from machine learning.”

These realizations led Ramakrishnan to found CQuotient, a startup whose software has now become the foundation for Salesforce’s widely adopted AI e-commerce platform. “On Black Friday alone, CQuotient technology probably sees and interacts with over a billion shoppers on a single day,” he says.

After a highly successful entrepreneurial career, in 2019 Ramakrishnan returned to MIT Sloan, where he had earned master’s and PhD degrees in operations research in the 1990s. He teaches students “not just how these amazing technologies work, but also how do you take these technologies and actually put them to use pragmatically in the real world,” he says.

Additionally, Ramakrishnan enjoys participating in MIT executive education. “This is a great opportunity for me to convey the things that I have learned, but also as importantly, to learn what’s on the minds of these senior executives, and to guide them and nudge them in the right direction,” he says.

For example, executives are understandably concerned about the need for massive amounts of data to train machine learning systems. He can now guide them to a wealth of models that are pre-trained for specific tasks. “The ability to use these pre-trained AI models, and very quickly adapt them to your particular business problem, is an incredible advance,” says Ramakrishnan.

**How ParrotGPT can help:**

ParrotGPT provides AI Chatbot solutions that can apply machine learning algorithms to create a detailed composite picture of customer interactions. With pre-trained AI models and the ability to quickly adapt them to specific business problems, ParrotGPT can help businesses gain valuable customer insights and improve customer engagement.

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