BUSINESS REGION AARHUS: DIGITAL RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW

By Nikola Jachanova

Business Region Aarhus, who is a founding partner of IWDK, is Denmark’s biggest growth centre outside of Copenhagen.

More than 20,000 IT professionals have their workplace here, including experts in big data, data science, AI, Internet of Things, and user experience design, making the region a really interesting tech hub. With the highest rate of IT companies in Denmark, you’ll find that some of the most innovative digital products and services of the future are being built here.

We’ve asked three digital front runners to spill their guts about the most exciting thing they’re working on right now.

 

Digital humans are changing the customer experience

At itelligence, they develop and implement technology in many different types of organizations. The latest “big thing” coming from their innovation team is a digital assistant, or a digital human as they like to call it. Thomas Nørmark, their Director of Innovation & Technology and Global Head of AI practices, explains: “It’s an artificial intelligence that looks very similar to a human being. And at the same time it behaves and talks like a real human. We believe it’s a product that can really change the customer experience, because it can be present during the entire customer journey and engage with the customer’s concerns, must-haves, etc. in a completely new way because it’s not physically bound to one place.”

 

Making an artificial human is not an easy task. They are constantly balancing an ethical fine line and it’s also required hiring a new type of employees, Thomas Nørmark shared: “As 3D technology has made it possible to create something that looks and behaves very much like a real human, we need to be very careful not to create something that freaks people out. Studies have shown that microscopic movements like wrinkles on the forehead, the way the mouth moves, and the timing of a blink with the eye are all hugely important to creating a comfortable experience. That’s why we look into involving linguists, anthropologists, philosophers, and behaviorists to help us develop the technology in the right direction.”

 

Thomas Nørmark, Director of Innovation & Technology and Global Head of AI practices at itelligence

Mixed realities

We live in a 3D world, so why are we still learning complex procedures from 2D text books? EON Reality is on a mission to change that. Whether you’re an established business or teacher with a classroom full of students, you can use their digital AVR platform, Morten Barfod Søegaard explains: “Through augmented and virtual reality, you can visualize things in a way that has never been possible before. And it’s just as easy to use as Powerpoint. You can pull real-life objects into the 3D visualization and work on it with your colleague who might be sitting somewhere else in the world. Or you can create your own training environment like a café to train new employees how to operate everything before they go into the real life café. It’s saves the employer money and time while giving everyone a safer and better experience.”

 

EON Reality recently opened an Interactive Digital Center in Viborg with an integrated ecosystem in conjunction with VIA University College, the municipality, and the business sector, that also contains a state-of-the-art showroom, the software engineering education, and an entrepreneurial environment. “Viborg is a perfect match for EON Reality since they have the vision, the talent and the willpower needed to release the huge potential of the augmented and virtual reality technologies as well as other extended reality technologies like holograms and haptic feedback.”

 

Morten Barfod Søegaard, Business Developer EON Reality Denmark

Sensor-based windows automatically vent your home

VELUX is a great example that you in fact can teach an old dog new tricks. The 75 year old window manufacturer is working with high end technology to develop what they call ‘smart windows’. “Studies show we spend 90 percent of our time indoors and often forget to vent, which create a bad indoor climate. That’s why we’ve teamed up with Netatmo in France to develop the first smart automated control of roof windows. We call them VELUX Active, and through sensors they are constantly measuring the temperature, humidity, and CO2 concentration in the room as well as checks the weather forecast. With all this data it can determine the best time to vent and act accordingly. This type of smart window is groundbreaking in our line of business”, says Peter Bang, CFO at VELUX. The windows are also compatible with Apple’s smart home-system, HomeKit, which allows you to control the windows through an app on your digital devices.

 

Peter Bang, CFO, Velux