Prepare yourself: here come the newest Chinese career paths

This year’s Single’s Day, China’s biggest online shopping frenzy, set yet another record. Since the establishment of Taobao, a Chinese online shopping website owned by Alibaba, in 2003 a great number of careers have been introduced. They include, for example, occupations such as online store owners, online shop decorators, overseas purchasers or e-commerce models. Over the past three years, another new industry has grown rapidly in China: by now, the live streaming industry has induced the rise of several jobs, including network anchors and anchor brokers.

 What status does live broadcasting in China have today? The following figures are an attempt at answering this question. According to the country’s 42nd Statistical Report on Internet Development, as of June 2018 the number of live webcast users is about 425 million, which accounts for 53% of the total number of Chinese Internet users [1]. In 2017, China’s report on webcast industry development stated that the overall revenue of the country’s online performance market amounted to 4.39 billion dollars, which marks a 39% increase since 2016 [2].

 

„Boring live webcast“ set a precedent for live streaming

If we trace live streaming broadcast back to its origin, Norway’s „slow television“ program could be regarded as the first „boring live webcast.“ As early as in 2009, the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation NRK broadcasted a program called „Bergen Railway: Minutes and Seconds“, which showed the lengthy process of a train departing from Oslo onto a 7-hour journey to Bergen. The program attracted 1.2 million viewers. In South Korea, an eleven-year old boy named Jin Chengzhen started to stream himself having dinner live online. For one particularly popular show Chengzhen earned $ 1,600 in one night. The live broadcast of a US news website proved to be similarly famous when it showed a video of the so-called “watermelon rubber band challenge.” After the video’s spread across social media, it had more than 10 million hits [3].

 

Development of the live broadcast industry in China

Live broadcasting in China has also gone through a stage of dullness; for example, with topics like sleeping, eating or brushing hair. However, after the so-called “thousand live-streaming platform battle” and some serious financing competition in 2016 the live broadcast industry as a whole has become more sophisticated: platforms are increasingly differentiated, the overall quality of anchors has improved, and the contents of live broadcasting have gotten more diversified. One platform, for instance, targets only students by using campus stories as a featured column. Another platform introduced the feature of live sports-related broadcasting, which aimed at increasing viewers’ fun by fusing live watching and simultaneous online interaction [2].

The addition of AI (Artificial Intelligence) applications has taken live-streaming platforms even one step further. Among other applications, companies use AI face, gesture and background recognition on their live-streaming platforms. These features enable them to provide network anchors with services such as beauty retouch, eyes widening or background changing. One technology company has established an algorithm to identify fraudulent users and to store them in their own data network. Another tech company uses AI image recognition technology to review streamed content, as to identify pornographic, violent and politically sensitive contents [2].

 

Do you want to be a live-streamer?

In China Internet live-streaming stars are the new thing. A 2017-published report featuring the new booming industry of broadcasting communicated that streamers belong to the top earners for the past two years. About 35% of full-time streamers earn more than $1,200 a month and 6.6% of them earn more than $4,300. Not only do they get well paid by the platforms, but they also earn additional income through product placements and taking part in promotional events. Unsurprisingly, then, China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security pointed out that more than half of the graduates, list live-streamer as one of their dream jobs [4].

In the realm of digitization, AI will have a major impact on the live-streaming industry. Only recently has the Chinese news agency “Xinhua” together with the search engine “Sougou” introduced its first AI-streamer. They resonate in a human-like manner and have a lifelike image, mimicking facial movements and gestures, almost resembling the real-life streamers. Unlike their human counterparts, however, the AI-streamers don’t have to take breaks and rarely make mistakes given that their text is written correctly. With AI becoming increasingly integrated into our lives, they pose a competitive threat not only to the streamers but also to the job market in general [5].

Because of the leap forward in technology, 65% of children entering primary school today will eventually engage in new occupation types requiring new skills, as a study published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) suggests. It highlights further how the rapid technological change in fields such as robotics, driverless transport, AI, biotechnology, advanced materials and genomics, will act as a catalyst in creating new opportunities for the job market [6]. According to the WEF, 75 million current jobs could be displaced by the end of 2022, while 133 million new job roles may emerge at the same time. New opportunities will arise, all of which will be based on, and enhanced by, the use of technology. Examples include data analysts, software and application developers, and E-commerce and social media specialists [7].

For many years, JANZZ.technology has been working with various actors in the worldwide job market. We offer our know-how and the right data on skills, specializations and general challenges in job market.

Write now to sales@janzz.technology

 

 

[1] CNNIC. 2018. Statistical report on the development of China’s internet. URL: http://www.cac.gov.cn/2018-08/20/c_1123296882.htm [2018.11.12.].

[2] Entbrains. 2018. China Webcast Industry Development Report 2017. URL: http://www.entbrains.com/news/shownews.php?lang=cn&id=70 [2018.11.12.].

[3] People.cn. 2016. Wang Luo Zhi Bo Zhi Wie Gong Xiang Wu Liao Ma Nian Qin Ren Shi Chang Zheng Shou Dao Zhong Shi. URL: http://media.people.com.cn/n1/2016/0528/c40606-28386582.html [2018.11.12.].

[4] GMW.cn. 2018. Anchor professional report 2017 Fa Bu Zhu Bo Bing Fei Yan Zhi Di Yi. URL: http://reader.gmw.cn/2018-01/08/content_27293574.htm [2018.11.12.].

[5] Lily Kuo. 2018. World’s first Ai news anchor unveiled in China. URL: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/nov/09/worlds-first-ai-news-anchor-unveiled-in-china [2018.11.12.].

[6] World Economic Forum. 2016. 10 jobs that didn’t exist 10 years ago. URL: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/06/10-jobs-that-didn-t-exist-10-years-ago/ [2018.11.12.].

[7] World Economic Forum. 2018. The Furture of Jobs Report 2018. URL: http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_Future_of_Jobs_2018.pdf [2018.11.12.].

Cut through the hype: What AI is really all about

The phenomenon of AI is becoming increasingly widespread: At every gathering or conference and in every classroom people seem to be talking about it. The news are also covered with headlines regarding AI, most of them predicting that it will completely change the ways we live and work. Yet, there is also a lot of hype over it simply for the sake of ‘buzz sells’, a danger which many scholars are warning about.

 

Overhyped AI can be dangerous

Countless companies and governmental organizations are raising funds on behalf of AI, which is why billions of capital run into AI start-ups. However, many of these start-ups proved to be economically unsustainable. “People who can do it have no opportunities and resources. On the other hand, people who should not do it waste resources because they are not interested in advancing technologies but simply want to grab some money,” said WANG Feiyue, who is a specially appointed Chinese state expert, at this year’s IEEE International Workshop on Artificial Intelligence and Cybernetics[1]. The hype over AI has created an illusion that can confuse people and misrepresents what AI is really capable of. At JANZZ, we have discussed this issue in a previous article which draws on illustrating cases. Our research leads us to assume that the hype about big data and AI is often more about self-marketing instead of a focus on facts and progress. This can be dangerous, not least because it stimulates workers’ anxiety about being replaced by AI. For further elaboration on this topic, visit https://janzz.technology/even-ado-nothing-hype-big-data-ai-often-self-marketing-facts-real-progress/.

 

What AI is really all about

In public discussion, AGI (Artificial General Intelligence) and specialized intelligence are frequently confused and both referred to by the term AI, says Andrew Ng who is the founding lead of the Google Brain team, a former director of the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory and the overall lead of Baidu’s AI team. AGI refers to human-level intelligence; that is, the kind of futuristic intelligence that we see onscreen and in science fiction literature. Currently, the technology to reach such “human intelligence” is very limited and still far from being beneficial to society. Most of what is covered in the media refers to specialized intelligence such as machine learning, computer vison or natural language processing. Specialized intelligence is thus the real force in the fourth industrial revolution, as it creates value and bears transformative power for all industries.[2]

Although AI has already an impact on many industries — web search, finance, and logistics, to name just a few — its subtypes that are being developed are still quite limited. Andrew Ng explains that almost all the recent progress of AI is thanks to a simple A (input data) to B (simple response) process type called “supervised learning”. Some example to illustrate this: you show pictures (A) to the software and it can identify whether it shows a cat (B); you give both ad and user information to the software (A) and it tells you whether the user is likely to click on said ad (B).  Arguably the best development based on the A-to-B type is the so-called deep learning, deep neural networks that are inspired by the human brain. However, there are two crucial factors playing into the functioning of the A-to-B relationship. One is that A and B have to be carefully chosen; that is, to provide the necessary amount of data. The second one concerns the size of the neural network — the bigger the neural network the higher performance. [2]

 

AI in today’s business world

After establishing what AI really is all about, let’s take a look at its application in today’s business environment. Perhaps you would think that only big companies with a large budget and workforce can benefit from AI. However, AI can also be employed in small businesses. An interesting example offer Fujitsu and Microsoft: both have been working with Japanese dairy farmers to find out exactly when cows are in their estrous cycle in order to optimize artificial insemination. The insemination process is a very tricky task for farmers, as a slight miscalculation in timing can result in failure and delay the process for another month. After incorporating the farmers’ knowledge about the increased movement of cows during their estrous cycle into a systematic data analysis (i.e. by fusing it with AI), the success rate increased to 95%.[3]

In spite of such success stories, the use of AI in businesses is not exactly magic. There are undeniably much more sophisticated cases, but usually “AI runs on data, companies need to know what kind of data they have, what data they have access to or what other data pool they can merge with their data and then they can reason across and surf the insides” [3].Thus, ”to incorporate AI to business strategy requires visionary leaderships in the company to recognize values of AI and to find out where business value is and what’s hard to copy” [4]. Granted, companies cannot have AI teams for all their units as it would be unwise to build everything in-house if it is not very business-specific. This is why the acquirement of solutions that are widely used in the industry should be considered. [2]

JANZZ.technology provides both smart HR solutions for businesses and labor market solutions for public employment services. Since JANZZ’ establishment in 2009, we have been aware of the two decisive factors that ensure a precise performance of supervised machine and deep learning. For the past 9 years, JANZZ.technology has been continuously building the largest occupation-related neural data network in the world, with 300 million neutrals up to date. Our unique algorithm has been trained with large amounts of data from various partners in international corporations and public employment services, hence we are able to offer our services in 40 languages. We strongly advise customers to collect structured and effective data in order to get the smartest matching results.

Write now to  sales@janzz.technology

 

[1] ZHOU, Chaochen. 2018. Gei Ren Gong Zhi Neng Que mei. URL: https://www.huxiu.com/article/247345.html [2018.10.31.].

[2] New Work Summit. 2018. Power Lines with Andrew Ng C.E.O. and Founder, Landing.ai; and Adjunct Professor, Stanford University [Video file]. URL: https://www.newworksummit.com/nws2018/gallery [2018.10.31.].

[3] New Work Summit. 2018. The AI Accelerater with Peggy Johnson, E.V.P. of Business Development, Microsoft and Frank Chen, Partner, Andreessen Horowitz [Video file]. URL: https://www.newworksummit.com/nws2018/gallery [2018.10.31.].

[4] Andrew Ng. 2016. What artificial intelligence can and can’t do right now. URL: https://hbr.org/2016/11/what-artificial-intelligence-can-and-cant-do-right-now [2018.10.31.].

For a secure career in Canada: Three jobs that are a little different from the usual

Free doctor’s treatment and education, well-paid overtime and a safety net that catches you in the event of dismissal – you would think that working in Canada sounds rather convenient. Indeed, the country’s average pay of over 50,000 dollars attracts job-seekers from all over the world [1]. If you are thinking of moving to Canada or if you are a Canadian who is still looking for the dream job we have three occupations that you might want to consider checking out. Apart from being special, these jobs belong to the same, promising and high-paid range of occupations that includes lawyers, CEOs or senior officials [2].

 

Rummaging through mines and forests

Are you interested in finding out what is hidden in mines? Or, perhaps, rummaging through Canadian forests sounds more tempting to you? If you enjoy both motivating a team and working outside we suggest you start thinking about becoming a mining or forestry manager. These manager positions include the oversight of mine operations, sawmills or fisheries. Additionally, they involve team management and the coordination of a secure depletion and processing of natural resources. Furthermore, in such a position you are legally responsible for the safety as well as the environmental impacts of the project. In return, you are rewarded with a salary of 50 dollars per hour [3].

Most of the managerial positions in said industries require a bachelor’s degree in a related domain, for example in engineering or earth sciences for the position in mining or in forest management for that in the sawmill industry. Good opportunities to enter the forestry industry are offered by the University of British Columbia. Queen’s University, on the other hand, has the best reputation for studying geology, geotechnics and earth sciences and, thus, to prepare people for accessing the mining industry [2].

Farewell, pipe break!

You’ve always wanted to prevent and mend faulty pipes?  Do not look any further, start training as a pipe fitter. Pipe fitters build pipe systems and install them at clients’ homes. They assemble armatures, devices and production facilities as well as HVAC systems. On top of that, they take care of the maintenance of such installations.

Now, if your goal is to have an especially secure and well-paid employment in that area (around 45 dollars per hour [3]), your perfect fit (no pun intended) would be to become a pipefitting supervisor. As the leader of the team you guide team members and supervise their workplace safety. Likewise, you ensure good training prospects and a high quality of materials. For this position you need to have patience with advancing your career; that is, you will have to work as a trained pipe fitter for many years beforehand. Of course, strong leadership skills are necessary to climb to the top of the career ladder. Basic training can be acquired in an establishment. However, there is also the possibility to enrol for special programs in colleges such as Eastern College [2].

 

Occupation: Releaser of human beings

All of a sudden, it stands still; nothing works anymore, above all no doors. The elevator got stuck. The only way out: to press the red button. Fortunately, this scenario has become a rarity nowadays, as new recognition systems usually indicate the necessity to exchange elevator parts before the system actually fails. In principle, the elevator mechanic releases us before we even get stuck. Who would have thought, then, that this job counts as one of the securest and at an hourly payment of 40 dollars also as one of the best-paid in that field [3]?

Elevator mechanics are responsible for the mending and installment of lifts and escalators. If you want to repair elevators for a living you will first of all have to go through four years of practical training. The occupation is nevertheless very popular, with many people seeking later employment in this area. Even mechanics who are already experienced are applying to train as an elevator mechanic. Most of Canada’s elevator mechanics are trained in the Canadian Elevator Industry Educational Program; additionally, there is the possibility to participate training sessions at Durham College [2].

 

Intelligent enrichment of job descriptions

With the aid of JANZZ.technology’s ontology, determining what kind of education and skills are required for which job becomes effortless.  Educational institutions and companies alike can easily enrich their resumes by meeting requirements that are important for specific occupations. For many years, JANZZ has been working with various actors in the worldwide job market and therefore knows the many challenges when it comes to describing jobs. We will be happy to advise you.

Write now to sales@janzz.technology

 

 

[1] Eidgenössisches Departement für auswärtige Angelegenheiten. 2017. Leben und arbeiten in Kanada. URL: https://www.eda.admin.ch/dam/eda/de/documents/publications/
AuslandschweizerinnenundAuslandschweizer/dossier-auswandern/20161018-dossier-kanada_DE.pdf [2018.11.02].

[2] Liza Agrba. 2017. Canada’s Best Jobs: What you need to study to land a great gig. URL: https://www.canadianbusiness.com/lists-and-rankings/best-jobs/canadas-best-jobs-what-you-need-to-study-to-land-a-great-gig/ [2018.10.14].

[3] PayScale. 2018. Salaries in Canda. URL: https://www.payscale.com/research/CA/Country=Canada/Salary [2018.10.14].