ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE FOR FASHION
AI has surged over the past few years. It’s impacting our lives and transforming the way we interact with each others every day. If you think AI is some sort of fancy future robots and drones with a Minority Report that will appear in 2200, you’re wrong. AI is already here and is here to stay.
Let’s talk first about what AI is.
Artificial intelligence or AI is a task performed by a program or machine that if carried by a human, we would say the human had to apply intelligence to accomplish it (Minsky & McCarthy 1950). This obviously is a broad definition but think about tasks such as planning, reasoning, solving problems, social intelligence, creativity etc… Anything where we use data and apply our intelligence in order to execute or achieve. The fuel for AI is data. And the task AI excels at is data analytics. In this world where everything is connected, all our devices are getting smarter and smarter (phones, watches, cameras etc.) you will understand that we are contributing to the boom of AI.
Ultimately, the goal of an AI is to mimic the human brain/human behaviours and facilitate, improve some of the tasks we perform every day.
Scary isn’t it? Not so much.
Today AI is already everywhere. When you post a picture on Facebook and you get suggestions as to which friends are in this picture, this is AI. When you listen to music on Spotify and you get suggestions of music in similar genres, this is AI.
So, AI is already here and we are using it without realizing but the real question is, does AI have a play in fashion?
Let’s look at some existing and potential use cases of AI in our dear fashion world.
A simple example to use when looking into AI use cases for fashion is ecommerce.
That opens the door for your favourite e-commerce websites to try and improve the search engines powering your shopping experience. You could see that evolving into chatbots on websites or personal shopping assistants that recommend you similar items that the ones already in your shopping basket.
What the stores are getting out of it are things such as understanding the most popular items and automatically featuring them more prominently on the website to increase sales.
AI for fashion design
Another potential use of AI in fashion would be to enhance creativity and generate new designs. Amazon as an example, is on the verge of creating the first AI designer, with the development of an algorithm that designs clothes by analysing images, copying popular styles and using them to build completely new designs. Impressive but, will it be to our taste?
So the real question is, can AI forecast fashion trends?
Can it give designers insights about what is the next big things that will have success with fashionistas? Well, we’re not there just yet. As much as AI can analyse data today, it becomes difficult when it comes to running tasks that require any type of emotional intelligence. See, creativity requires to feel and that’s something that AI today is incapable of doing.
AI is here now, but we still have barely scratched the surface of its potential. So brace yourselves, it will still be a long way before AI could replace our dear designers.