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AWS seeks to teach executives about generative AI

The cloud provider is releasing five courses that will help developers understand how to use some of its applications. It's also providing two courses for executives.

AWS wants to make it easy for enterprises to understand and use generative AI.

Ahead of its AWS Summit New York conference, a networking event on July 26 for IT professionals, the cloud provider revealed seven new free and low-cost generative AI courses for executives, AWS partners and others who want to learn about generative AI.

While anyone can take the courses, they are aimed mostly at engineers and data scientists, AWS partners, executives, and developers who want to use Amazon CodeWhisperer -- a tool that uses generative AI to help generate code. Five courses are for developers and technical users, while the other two are for business and nontechnical audiences.

The new courses come as the generative AI market continues to boom. Dozens of vendors are releasing and planning new AI chatbots and large language models after OpenAI with ChatGPT and Dall-E, Google with Bard and other generative AI vendors such as Stability AI opened up the now crowded market.

It also comes a month after AWS introduced a new Generative AI Innovation Center that connects machine learning experts with AWS customers.

Understanding generative AI

The courses for developers and those who want more understanding of AWS' products are aligned with AWS' mode of operation, said Mark Beccue, an analyst at Futurum Group.

"They usually offer quite a comprehensive range of things, which makes sense that the more people understand how to use what they offer, the better it is for everybody," Beccue said. "It's a win-win for everybody."

We are moving so fast as to how these things are changing -- what you need is this fundamental foundational understanding.
Mark BeccueAnalyst, Futurum Group

Meanwhile, a course called Generative AI for Executives, which provides videos to C-suite executives to understand how using generative AI can address business challenges and drive business growth, responds to new market demand, Beccue continued.

"This is so needed because it will take the temperature down on how people think about this stuff," he said. "We need basic education about what generative AI is. We are moving so fast as to how these things are changing -- what you need is this fundamental foundational understanding."

A recent report from IT consulting firm Capgemini exploring the technology in corporate settings across different sectors revealed that out of a worldwide survey base, 40% of organizations had established generative AI teams and budgets.

"The United States is moving very quickly in this space," said Doug Ross, national insights and data leader for AI and generative AI at Capgemini.

Despite the adoption rate, the level of understanding varies, he said.

"Depending upon their level of understanding, they really need some education first, and they need to maybe understand the art of the possible," Ross added.

However, organizations can't know what is possible if they don't know what generative AI can do, Beccue said.

"You don't need to know how to work with it yet -- you need to know what it can do," he said. "There's layers, and what AWS is doing with this is they've got layers for developers that are sandboxing and doing that kind of thing, but they have another layer, which is, 'What does this thing do?'"

Esther Ajao is a news writer covering artificial intelligence software and systems.

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