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Alibaba launching cloud-based artificial intelligence platform

Alibaba is launching a new artificial intelligence platform, which boasts enhanced data mining and analytics features that could prove useful for enterprise customers.

DT PAI uses complex algorithms alongside machine and deep learning techniques in order to analyse client data. Despite its complexity, the platform will present information in a user-friendly drag-and-drop interface.

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The platform is based on Aliyun’s Open Data Processing Service (ODPS) technology, which is capable of processing 100 petabytes of data in six hours. It could help find hidden trends within data or recommend products to customers.

Alibaba’s cloud computing business Aliyun also believes that DT PAI can help developers predict user behaviour without having to write new code.

"In the past, the field of artificial intelligence was only open to a very small number of qualified developers and required the use of specialized tools. Such an approach was prone to error and redundancy,” explained Xiao Wei, senior product expert at Aliyun. “However, DT PAI allows developers with little or no experience in the field to construct a data application from scratch in a much shorter period of time. What used to take days can be completed within minutes.”

Although Alibaba is not especially well known for its artificial intelligence, or even cloud computing, output, the e-commerce giant has been expanding its technology offering in recent times. It invested $1 billion into Aliyun back in July to help it expand internationally, targeting smaller Asian markets as well as the US.

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Although data mining and analytics are likely to prove increasingly popular amongst enterprise firms all over the world, Alibaba will face stiff competition from the likes of Microsoft and Amazon which already have a stronger presence in Western markets.