2 min read

Link: Box CEO on how generative AI can turn the mostly unstructured data inside enterprises into valuable knowledge, enabling greater automation of workflows and more (Aaron Levie/@levie)

AI completely revolutionizes how we can work with enterprise information. Since the mainframe era, it’s been relatively trivial to work with our *structured* data in an enterprise. We could query, compute, synthesize, summarize, and analyze anything that could be structured in a database - i.e. the data sitting in our ERP, CRM, and HR systems. But it turns out this is only a small fraction of our corporate information. If you were to “weigh” the amount of data inside of an enterprise (in the form of raw storage), roughly 10% of it would be structured data, and 90% of it would be unstructured data. And our content — things like our documents, contracts, product specs, financial records, marketing assets and videos — makes up the vast majority of this corporate data. Yet for essentially the entire history of computing, we haven’t *really* been able to make sense of this information unless a human is involved. Of course we can store it, send it, share it, and search for it — but deeply understanding what’s inside this information in a way that computers can interact with intelligently has been near-impossible. Well, for the first time ever, generative AI actually lets us talk to our unstructured data. Multimodal models especially allow us to process this content using a computer and essentially perform any task that a human can, but at infinite scale and speed. This is utterly game-changing when working with information in the enterprise. Instantly, our content goes from being digital artifacts that get touched once in a while, to a digital memory that anyone in the enterprise can tap into always. All of a sudden instead of the more information you have making things harder to find and make sense of, the opposite becomes true. And we enter a world where your digital information becomes one of your most valuable resources. When we can turn our content into valuable knowledge, everything about how we work changes. A new employee instantly has access to the same expertise of someone who’s worked at a company for 15 years; when you can understand what’s inside of content — like contracts, invoices, or digital assets— and extract its structured data, you can automate nearly any workflow; and AI can let us classify and protect content with a level of precision that’s never been possible before to prevent threats and risks across the enterprise. This is simply the biggest change we’ve ever seen with how we can work with our data, and this is what we’re building with Box AI. #


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