Dr Jacques Ludik is a smart technology entrepreneur, AI expert, investor & ecosystem builder and currently Founder & President of Machine Intelligence Institute of Africa (MIIA), Founder & CEO of Cortex Logic, Founder of Bennit AI, Founder of SynerG, The Talent Index, & aiTRADE Systems, and investor in The Student Hub (ERAOnline). He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science (AI) with many publications and has 25+ years’ experience in Machine / Artificial Intelligence (AI) & Data Science and its applications. MIIA is an innovative community & accelerator for Machine Intelligence & Data Science Research & Applications to help transform Africa, whereas Cortex Logic is an AI company that provides an AI Engine for Business, advances AI and builds end-to-end AI solutions for a range of industries. Bennit A.I. is an intelligent virtual production assistant/advisor for manufacturing.
Jacques was Vice President of Data Science & Chief Data Officer at JUMO, a company that provides the next generation mobile money marketplace for emerging markets. Jacques has also founded an Analytics/AI software company, CSense Systems where he was Executive Director (Joint MD, CTO, & COO) for about 14 years, that provides software, services & solutions to customers world-wide in a range of industries (financial, mining, chemical, manufacturing, etc.) via an international reseller & solution partner network. The company was sold to General Electric (GE) in 2011. At GE he held various leadership roles for 4+ years including Big Data & Analytics Leader and Director of GE Intelligent Platforms.
Jacques was also Senior Lecturer & Researcher at Stellenbosch University, where dozens of his papers on AI were published in Journals and International Conferences as well as a book published by Cambridge University Press (UK). He also has a patent filed for Knowledge Fusion. Jacques holds a B.Sc (Cum Laude), Hons.B.Sc. (Cum Laude), M.Sc. (Cum Laude), and PhD degrees from Stellenbosch University.
Jacques is also the Founder & President of the Machine Intelligence Institute of Africa (MIIA), a nonprofit organization that aims to help transform Africa by being an innovative community and accelerator to help address Africa’s problems and unlocking its potential through Machine Intelligence, Data Science, and Internet of Things technologies. MIIA’s membership has been growing at a significant rate over the last few months (1800+ as of February 2018). See http://machineintelligenceafrica.org for details.
MIIA aims to achieve this by networking together the critical mass of resources, promote and sponsor learning activities, and strengthen scientific and technological excellence, mentoring & collaboration on the continent. A core focus of MIIA’s activities is to accelerate and deliver breakthrough Machine Intelligence and Data Science research and practical applications to solve African problems, support entrepreneurial activity, and help drive long-term inclusive and sustainable scientific, technological and socio-economic development on the continent. For maximum impact, MIIA is working with a range of partners where there is synergy with MIIA’s vision and mission and includes other nonprofit organizations, universities, research organizations, startup incubators, business & government organizations.
Some key African problems include poor education & skills development, poor healthcare, lack of financial inclusion, lack of sustainable governance systems, poor infrastructure, energy shortages, food shortages, ineffective agriculture, lack of technology and manufacturing competitiveness, increasing water stress, poor sanitation, rising pollution, and weakening of representative democracy. MIIA’s current projects are organized into application, research and technology related projects to help address these problems, support entrepreneurial activity, support community building, learning & collaboration, as well as advancing the state-of-the-art in Machine Intelligence.