Azure Every Day mini-series is focused on the different APIs available within Azure Cognitive Services. Today I’ll focus on the Knowledge APIs, which map complex information and data in order to solve tasks such as intelligent recommendations and semantic search.

First up is the QnA Maker API, which distills information into conversational, easy-to-navigate answers. You can use this to set up the type of interaction where you can ask a specific question, set it up against known data and it will go through and present answers that make sense. You can add this QnA API to any type of application. For example, it’s not a bad plan to create a bot that gives people what they need right away, giving you the ability to add an interactive chat until the time it’s necessary to speak to an actual person.

The other knowledge API is the Custom Decision Service API, which is a cloud-based, contextual decision-making API that sharpens with experience. This uses reinforcement learning in a new approach for personalizing content; it responds to emerging trends in both your activity and things that you’re interested in.

This API is actually making decisions for you, using your patterns to present you with more personalized content, and it continues to try to learn more from you as time goes on to do a better job presenting personalized data for you.

There are many cognitive analytics projects out there; here’s 3 specific examples of Microsoft projects around the knowledge services.

1. Knowledge Exploration Service – Allows you to interact with data that’s stored in systems, such as your database. So, it’s structural data with actual language ability to do things like natural language queries against a stored encyclopedia.

2. Academic Knowledge – Goes after academic info that Microsoft has in its academic space.

3. Entity Linking – Will do things to match up additional entity areas of text. For example, it may link basketball with baseball because it’s a sport. So, it links these entities and bring these common things together to produce additional results to you that may be of interest.

I encourage you to check these out, especially the QnA Maker, as it’s a great way to enhance and provide better service (both internally and externally) to your customer base.

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