16. September 2023

IT meets Art 2023 as a guest at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg

AI-as-a-Service: How humans and machines will change the service landscape in the future

In 2023, the Mannheim-based IT consultancy PTA once again invited around 150 guests to “IT meets Art” under the patronage of Handelsblatt and WirtschaftsWoche – and thus to a varied supporting program between technology, progress, and contemporary art and culture. The range of topics was as high-caliber as the venue for this year’s event was unusual: IT meets Art was held in mid-September at the spectacular Elbphilharmonie concert hall in Hamburg. The focus this year, both in the keynote and in the panel discussion, was on topics and approaches related to artificial intelligence and how AI-as-a-Service can take service quality and customer dialog in companies to a new level. These challenging digitization topics were rounded off with a guided tour through the extraordinary architecture of the Elbphilharmonie, a presentation of digital art by Banz & Bowinkel, a flying dinner and a concluding musical highlight by the Duo Alba.

Taking customer dialog to a new level with AI-as-a-Service

After an exclusive guided tour of the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, the participants gathered in the early evening at the Kai Studios there, where PTA Managing Director Dr. Tim Walleyo welcomed those present and opened the stage program. In his keynote address, Dr. Frank Gredel, Head of Business Development at PTA, provided an outlook on why the digitization of business models and processes is an essential building block for meeting increased customer expectations. He explained how AI-based avatars are already opening up numerous possible applications for companies today, can relieve the workload on service departments, and thus make a valuable contribution to reaching customers emotionally as well, and thus to retaining their loyalty. In his presentation, Frank Gredel also gave an outlook on which AI tools will be available quasi turnkey in the future, are easy to adapt and will thus become standard.

High-caliber panel discussion set substantive accents

Following Frank Gredel’s keynote, Varinia Bernau, Head of Success and host of WirtschaftsWoche’s “Chefgespräch” podcast, led into the panel discussion. Top-class experts provided information here about their view and classification of the future topic of AI-as-a-Service. From different perspectives, the participants ventured a forecast on how AI will change the corporate world of tomorrow and showed which assistance programs they already use in their organization and with what added value. Speakers on the panel included Dr. Michael May, who heads a global AI department at Siemens with fourteen research groups in Europe, the U.S. and Asia. He shared the results of his research and impressively demonstrated how he is driving innovation at Siemens in the field of AI and machine learning. Dr. Philipp Schneemann, who has been employed as manager for corporate strategy at Mainova AG in Frankfurt am Main for five years, reported on how AI can be used profitably in energy supply companies. He presented his insights gained in the course of his substantive examination of complex issues relating to the energy transition, climate protection, and Mainova’s strategic and competitive positioning.

Man in interaction with the (virtual) world

After a lively and intensive technical discourse, IT meets Art 2023 was devoted entirely to contemporary digital art in keeping with its name. Artist Giulia Bowinkel gave an interesting insight into her artistic work with Friedemann Banz. Together they generate scenes of the juxtaposition of nature, texture, body and space, mass, form and substance. The artist duo creates moments that oscillate between moving images, virtual sculptures and snapshots. The source and material are technological tools that have become an integral part of today’s society. In the process, the computer becomes a tool and the interactions with it the subject of her work. The human being, free in his choices, and his computer-technical possibilities – both as a subject and as an avatar – repeatedly form a very central point of reference in the generation of forms in her works. Thus, the work of the artists skilfully formed an arch to the guiding theme of this year’s IT meets Art. For 15 years now, the two have been visualizing artistic motifs and movements with augmented reality.

Duo Alba provided an atmospheric finale

What could be more natural at the Elbphilharmonie than to enjoy the sounds of classical music in the unique room acoustics? And so the participants of IT meets Art were able to enjoy a classic event in a class of its own. The “Duo Alba”, consisting of cellist Belén Sánchez Pérez and pianist Hermann Valdez Fregoso, gave an atmospheric sample of their skills. For this, the two virtuosos rightly earned the enthusiastic applause of the audience. The Alba duo is no longer an insider tip. Both musicians have been giving regular recitals and chamber music concerts in northern Germany since 2015.

As diverse as IT meets Art 2023 was in terms of content, this year’s event at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg was equally extraordinary and multifaceted. The approximately 150 invited guests received exciting tips and suggestions about the technologies that will shape our future. But art and culture were by no means neglected either. And the fact that the future and modernity are not at odds with culture and classicism was impressively underlined by the Elbphilharmonie with its unique ambience as part of IT meets Art 2023.

Robert Fischer

Marketing Manager

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