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Vendor Newsmaker Q&A Tilak Kasturi

Friday, February 10, 2017 - 09:00
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We’re just beginning with the ability to quickly diagnose and form prognostic predictions, but the sky is now the limit with that data – we believe that in the next few years we’re going to see wearable diagnostic equipment (AR glasses, etc.) as well as natural-language based AI assistants that technicians (and even consumers) can speak repair and maintenance questions to and receive voice guidance – and this will then start to lead to dynamic ordering systems and such.  

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Q: How does your collaboration with Snap-on improve your system?

A: Snap-on is a dream partner and customer to work with because they have an unprecedented database of vehicle service knowledge. There’s nothing else like it. How does it affect our system? It helps us train our platform. Any form of Artificial Intelligence is only as good as the training it receives. As our systems gets smarter, technicians are able to continuously get the latest and greatest repair strategies for ever changing vehicle year, makes, model and engines types.

We are very proud to be powering products for one of the leaders in the automotive market.

Q: How does your system assist technicians in diagnosing problems and completing repairs in a timelier manner?

A: Up until recently a technician has relied on a few years of trade school and/or apprenticeship experience, and perhaps a few years of workshop experience. Sometimes they will get easy problems (e.g. bulb not working). However, in most cases there is a process of diagnostic problem solving – testing systems, sub-systems and components systematically to find a fault, followed by testing fixes and replacements to find a solution. If they aren’t sure what to do they might pore over OEM manuals or call other mechanic buddies for ideas. So each time they see a new problem they are doing guesswork, process of elimination, and using various available diagnostic tools.

Now, imagine if we took the collected wisdom of millions of technicians, who have documented every labor operation, every part and vehicle they ever worked on since modern cars existed. We are basically taking all this data and making it usable by the technician. We’re not aiming to replace the technician; we’re just making their tools smarter.

Q: Does your system link to parts distributors for ordering parts?

A: Our product doesn’t have a “UI” (user interface) per-se. It’s simply a powerful system processing platform for big data and making that data usable in real world scenarios. Our software makes it possible to know what is failing or likely to fail, then predict the most likely solution (either labor operation or part replacement). Now having said that, this could easily be extended to include a feature that obtained quotes and brokered the orders for parts.

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