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“I want my AI research to benefit people”

There is increasing demand for research into artificial intelligence. Olof Mogren at RISE uses machine learning and deep learning for everything from predicting blood sugar levels in Type 1 diabetics to helping fashion companies anticipate future trends.

Olof Mogren works at RISE’s office in Gothenburg, where he researches pure AI. The field is growing rapidly within RISE and the institute is constantly looking to engage with new individuals who have knowledge and interest in the area.

“Our focus is on machine learning and deep learning, which means we work with the most exciting and coolest technologies around. The technology is used in, among other things, autonomous vehicles and the virtual assistants in our smartphones like Siri and Google Assistant.”

Olof, who completed his PhD in deep learning for language technology in the spring, feels that research institutes are places where he can do what he thinks is fun, and where he can do the most good. It is important for him to utilise what he has learnt for the benefit of people.

“Our research can help, for example, precision medicine. There are examples, for instance, where deep learning has been utilised in image analysis to classify malignant tumours, and it can also be used – as we did done in one project – to predict blood sugar levels in Type 1 diabetics.

“Our job also involves strengthening the competitive power of Swedish companies. For example, we are involved in a project with companies in the fashion industry where we analyse photos and text that appear on social media in order to figure out what may be trendy in the future.”

What is your favourite innovation?

“Written language. It is believed that writing systems were first invented in Mesopotamia a little more than 5,000 years ago, and writing is the foundation of much of our knowledge and culture today.”