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Explainable AI: Helping Humans Understand Machines

Moshe Kranc, our Chief Technology Officer, always has his eye on the next wave of potential issues surrounding emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI). In the following Q&A we ask Moshe about explainable AI and how it can address the mistrust surrounding the mysterious ways in which AI works.

What is explainable AI?
To put it simply, explainable AI is when recommendations proposed by an AI-based system can be justified to a human being.

The issue we face today is that many AI algorithms, e.g., deep learning, base their recommendations on patterns they discern in large volumes of training data. While these patterns may work well at making recommendations, in many cases, they are based on statistics rather than on any human-understandable logic. Explainable AI adds transparency to this process.

Can you provide an example?
Consider decision tree algorithms, where the training data is used to construct a logical tree with clearly defined criteria. A classic example would be a decision tree that helps predict whether Joe will play tennis today, given the weather, humidity and wind.

This kind of algorithm, while flawed, is certainly understandable to a person.  Now, contrast that with a deep learning algorithm, which trains a series of neurons by setting the weights of connections to other neurons.

This algorithm may be highly accurate, but it is near impossible for human beings to understand the meaning of each neuron and why the weight from it to a successive neuron is set so high or low.

Fortunately, there have been some recent technological advances that can help humans understand obscure statistical algorithms like Deep Learning, e.g., Local Interpretable Model-Agnostic Explanations (LIME).

Why is this important for our clients?
At the end of the day, people are responsible for any decisions that are made. If something goes wrong, just doing what the AI algorithm recommended will not be a very convincing defense. So, if we’re going to base mission-critical decisions on AI algorithms, we need to understand why the algorithm recommended what it did and what the underlying logic was.

Not only does this build trust in the system, but it also helps flag inaccurate or otherwise problematic recommendations.

What kind of issues can explainable AI help avoid?
For one, the algorithm may be improperly tuned, e.g., an overfit to the training data. Another major problem is if the training data is biased. For example, the data used to decide whether to sell life insurance to a potential customer may be based on data collected from higher-income neighborhoods only. Along similar lines, the recommendation itself could be biased or unethical. For example, it would perpetuate unfair wages to women if based purely on historical wage data. Explainable AI provides transparency into the decision, making it possible to catch such issues.

What are some potential business use cases for explainable AI applications?
The use cases are many – explainable AI can be applied for anything that impacts people’s lives and could be tainted by bias. This could range from determining admissions to a training program or university to deciding how much to insure someone for or whether to issue someone a credit card or a loan based on demographics.


Deliver a personalized customer experience

Customers want digital services that adapt, learn and become ever more useful.

Companies delivering an excellent digital offering outperform competitors.* They leverage data and new technology to provide the most appropriate service at the right time to make us more efficient, productive and happy (a pretty significant and appealing value proposition).

A superior customer experience is achieved through intense focus on the user need and boldly prioritizing efforts to build the right digital platform in a dynamic and complex technology landscape. And it must continue to change, evolve and mature along with the users.

Ness Digital Engineering Acquires Sovereign CRM

TEANECK, N.J. – June 13, 2019 Ness Digital Engineering, a portfolio company of The Rohatyn Group (TRG), has completed an acquisition of Sovereign CRM, a rapidly-growing Salesforce consultancy that specializes in the architecture, implementation, customization and integration of a broad suite of Salesforce products. Sovereign CRM will further expand the capabilities of Ness’s Cloud & Platform Engineering Practice to capitalize on rapidly increasing demand for Salesforce expertise globally.

“Many companies rely on Salesforce as their platform for launching highly complex, digital applications to drive their businesses, and Sovereign CRM has already distinguished itself as an innovator in this area,” said Paul Lombardo, Ness Digital Engineering CEO. “We’ll immediately bring this value-added expertise to existing clients while positioning ourselves to capitalize on new growth opportunities globally.”

Sovereign CRM is a leader in architecture and design for leveraging Salesforce products, including building new solution accelerators that help customers quickly move into production with Salesforce solutions. The company is a Salesforce consulting partner that has earned more than 70 Salesforce certifications. Sovereign CRM provides consulting services around CPQ, Sales Cloud, Community Cloud, Service Cloud, Field Service Lightning, partner relationship management, Mulesoft, and Pardot.

“Our offering is highly differentiated and in demand, and with Ness’s global footprint and complementary software engineering capabilities, we can quickly seize upon this opportunity,” said Eric Borthwick, founder and lead evangelist at Sovereign CRM. “Together, we’ll help businesses turn Salesforce momentum into broader digital capabilities that provide real competitive advantage.”

Sovereign CRM will keep its name and join Linium as a “Ness Digital Engineering Company.” Eric Borthwick will continue to lead expansion of Ness’s expertise in Salesforce solutions and manage its relationship with Salesforce.

Salesforce, CPQ, Sales Cloud, Community Cloud, Service Cloud, Pardot and others are among the trademarks of, Inc.

About Ness Digital Engineering

Ness Digital Engineering designs, builds, and integrates digital platforms and enterprise software that help organizations engage customers, differentiate their brands, and drive profitable growth. Our customer experience designers, software engineers, data experts, and business consultants partner with clients to develop roadmaps that identify ongoing opportunities to increase the value of their digital solutions and enterprise systems. Through agile development of minimum viable products (MVPs), our clients can test new ideas in the market and continually adapt to changing business conditions—giving our clients the leverage to lead market disruption in their industries and compete more effectively to grow their business. For more information, visit

About TRG

Founded in 2002, The Rohatyn Group is an emerging markets asset management firm headquartered in New York, with offices around the globe, including Singapore, Seoul, London, Buenos Aires, Lima, Montevideo, Mexico City, São Paulo, Mumbai, New Delhi, Boston and Rotorua. For more information, please visit

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Media Contacts

Vivek Kangath
Senior Global Manager – Corporate Communications
Ness Digital Engineering
Mobile: +91 97425 65583 | Tel: +91 80 4196 1027

Amy Legere



Experience Engineering is Critical for Success in Digital Economy

A comprehensive and compelling user experience is the competitive battleground of the digital economy. A well-designed experience, enabled and reinforced by technology, is essential when competing to win business in any industry. In the age of the digital native (with infinite choice and short attention spans), a user experience must distinguish itself amongst your competitors (of course), but it must also stand out from competing and attractive user experiences provided by alternative business models and completely orthogonal propositions desperate to divert your customer.Experience Engineering is a philosophy and approach we have crafted to match beautiful design with the best modern technology to create compelling digital propositions.

Creating Seamless User Experience

Users have high expectations for seamless and relevant interactions across all digital channels at all imes.

Successful companies need to be ambitious in improving their products and channels. They must look at them from the users’ point of view to drive digital transformation and remain compelling in a competitive

SAP NOW 2019 byl ve znamení zkušeností

Experience matters, takový byl podtitul letošní konference SAP NOW 2019. v případě technologického giganta SAP je nasnadě, že tím byly míněny především zkušenosti digitální.

V pražském Cubex Centru jsme vystoupili 29. května jako jeden z hlavních partnerů této akce. Věnovali jsme se konkrétně inovativním technologiím a jejich promítnutí do digitálních agilních procesů výrobních podniků.

Digitální transformace a řízení zkušeností

Konference SAP NOW 2019 se nesla v duchu digitální transformace a řízení zkušeností. Protože digitální transformace ovlivňuje nejen jednotlivé elementy podnikání, ale i celá průmyslová odvětví, prochází většina společností procesem přeměny v tzv. Intelligent Enterprise, digitální a plně propojené organizace. Inteligentní podnik se stává symbolem současného podnikání.

Úvodního slova a zahájení konference se ujala generální ředitelka SAP ČR, Hana Součková. Zdůraznila, že podnikání v digitální době je neodmyslitelně spjato se světem dat a světem zkušeností a emocí, které je potřeba propojit. V dopoledním programu se dále představili přední čeští manažeři a podělili se s účastníky o své zkušenosti s výzvami z jednotlivých oblastí podnikání a o svůj pohled na probíhající digitální transformaci.

Odpolední program byl rozdělen na jednotlivé tematické bloky dle profesních zájmů a aktuálních potřeb společností z různých odvětví a oborů. Na účastníky čekaly přednášky, semináře a praktické ukázky věnující se inteligentnímu podnikání, financím, výrobě, lidským zdrojům, konkrétním nasazením řešení u zákazníků z českého trhu a vývoji v prostředí SAP Cloud Platform.

Právě v Customer stories, sekci určené pro zákazníky a partnerské společnosti, vystoupil Petr Mýtina, náš Managing Director. Pohovořil o inovativním propojení vývoje produktů a výroby na zakázku s využitím nových SAP modulů. Účastníci se s námi potkali také u našeho partnerského stánku a virtuálně prostřednictvím mobilní aplikace.

TV of Tomorrow

Martin Focazio, Ness VP of Domains will be moderating a session entitled, “Television is Software”, at 3:25pm on June 13th at the event. The event takes place over two days, June 12-13 in San Francisco and covers issues that are currently important to the industry including topics like Big Data, Personalization, User Interface/User Experience, OTT & Streaming, Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, Attribution, 5G, and more.

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