Intelligent Automation

Automation Strategy

Process Automation is not a simple replacement to the current manual processes followed. Intelligent Automation is aptly illustrated by EY in this report, “Intelligent Automation – Reshaping the future of work with robots”

  • At the beginning of this transformation is the collation of the current process and clustering them into Functions.
  • The next step of Standardization involves identification of differences within each process step and unifying the process based on best practices.
  • Optimization involves a critical review of the end-to-end process as well as a deep review of each process step to make it lean and streamlined. This step requires individual owners to discard their prior notions and adopt a new lean principle.
  • At the final stage of evolution is the application of Automation to the optimized process
Intelligent Automation Snapshot

Organizations often resort to shallow record-playback approaches to Automation. Automation, in itself is a Software. Automation needs the same rigor of Architecture and Design considerations as that of Software. Functional and Technical modules derived in the Optimization step above needs to be designed separately. Concepts such as Open Interfaces and Loosely Coupled Design are important. Every process step like Data Entry, Data Retrieval, Web Login, Web Scraping, HTML Parsing etc should be designed as individual building blocks controlled by XML metadata for configuration. This will allow the reuse of each module across multiple websites and data schema during custom implementations. The output of this design exercise is a collated library of Automation Modules. Each customer implementation will involve a review of the process steps and stitching together of the right modules in the necessary sequence, setup with appropriate XML parameters.

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Base Tenets of Automation

  1. Modularity – Automation must be modular and allow for easy improvements and extension without redoing the whole project. Wherever possible, API and callback hooks should be provided in the core modules
  2. Extensibility – Each module must be designed with extensibility and Configurability at its core. Effort must be placed to externalize variables, data, messages and errors that will need to be modified with each implementation
  3. Maintainability – The single most point of failure of Automation is maintenance. Since Automation projects are usually hard-coded without attention to future change management, it keeps breaking for too often to justify its value. This is where rigorous software design principles are required
  4. Cleanliness and Hygiene – Much like complex software, Automation needs to be cleanly separated with code comments and Source Control Repository for maintenance and  versioning

Usage of Tools

Automation uses many organic technologies like Seleniun IDE, which is a time-tested UI Automation framework. There are other similar open source tools like UIVision. Commercial Automation tools include big players like AutomationAnywhere, BluePrism and UIPath.

In this Video, Edureka has compared these three commercial tools along fifteen-point criteria


In conclusion, Process Automation is a special project that requires the best process experts, lean thinkers, and software architects to come together to build a lasting and valuable Automation platform. Automation is as complex as building the right software and organizations should champion it the same way as they do complex software projects.

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Cloud Futrlabs Futureshift

Web-based Augmented Reality (AR) on Mobile

Augmented reality on mobile phones is set to drive new business and attract new customers. This comprehensive, lucid read for executives explains the basic concept of AR, its implementation options available, relevant web technologies and challenges faced by the implementation of a Web-based AR platform.


Augmented Reality to smartphones is bringing about a new wave of innovation after the widely successful location-aware search over the last decade. AR allows mobile users to interact virtually with their surroundings. Augmented Reality refers to a technology that superimposes computer-generated content over live images viewed through cameras.

The AR technology has been extensively used in gaming and military applications for many years on powerful computers. With the advent of sophisticated mobile devices, faster communication networks, plummeting data charges, and new developments in nanotechnologies that power micro-chips, AR has become inexpensive enough to put into smartphones and tablets. Such universality has spurred the demand in the new consumer-led companies who are looking at this to enhance the online shopping experience from apparels to eyeglasses.

AR is as sunrise technology for new e-commerce start-ups and is poised for a big take-off over the coming decade. The following are the critical components of a web-based Mobile AR.

Concept of Mobile AR

  1. Capturing the subject, the background environment at real-time via a Mobile device
  2. Depends on the speed of the Mobile hardware device and camera features
  3. The ability of the Mobile device to track subject and background and perform superimposing rendering of the final video in a seamless manner

Implementation Concepts

  1. Sensor-based mechanism – Based on accelerometers, gyroscopes, compasses, magnetometers, GPS, and similar sensors on the Mobile Device. Risk of irremediable cumulative errors across multiple sensor inputs
  2. Vision-based mechanism – Camera-based Frame-by-Frame tracking requires immense computational work in real-time to provide a closed-loop system involving subject and background. The marker-based mechanism relies on pre-defined marker pattern as a guide to reduce real-time computational load on the device.
  3. Hybrid Tracking – Combination of Sensors and Camera to track the movement of the subject regarding the background. Example: Use Gyroscope data in conjunction with Camera images to process real-time image tracking.
  4. Embedded AI Chip – Devices with enhanced Integrated Artificial Intelligence Chips. Ex: Intelligent Camera + Gyroscope inbuilt in a single sensor.

Relevant Technologies

  1. WebRTC – Technical Specification Standard for Browsers to handle real-time communication including Media signals
  2. Native Web Assembly – Compiled Binary code support in native format (for multiple programming languages) included in Browsers
  3. Web Workers – Multithreading support on browsers to distribute computational load across multiple browser processes
  4. WebGL – Browser supported JavaScript library for high-performance Graphical computation and rendering

Challenges with AR on the Web Mobile

  1. Realtime Compute Capability on the Browser or Mobile device
  2. Network and Data Transmission delays
  3. High energy requirement for complex sensors and application.  Includes heating of Integrated chips
  4. Diversity of Operating System, Browser, Mobile platforms, and lacking standards
  5. Environment and lighting impact on accurate capture of images to enable non-lossy digital image processing in real-time.

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