"This year marks the 13th anniversary of Double 11. After a cycle through the Chinese zodiac, this year is a new start. Let's Go to Happiness is the theme of Double 11 this year. We not only hope to bring happiness to consumers but also build a green and sustainable business ecosystem together with ecological partners and customers while the shopping experience continues to upgrade. While TaoXi Technology promotes the continuous iteration and breakthrough of e-commerce technology, it has invested in the development of more fun, more valuable, and more future technologies." Tang Xing said.
Pictured on the Left: Tang Xing (Pingchou), Vice President of Alibaba and Business Leader of Tao Product Technology & Platform Ecological
This year, the shopping experience in Double 11 has been upgraded again. TaoXi Technology created a 3D immersive live room based on the world's first film-level augmented reality cloud shooting technology. At the same time, advanced 3D modeling technology has been used to bring the 3D presentation of massive offline products online, offering consumers a new interactive experience in the digital space. The new paradigm of super large-scale and multi-modal learning was applied for the first time in intelligent visual search, which improves the search rate of the same kinds of products. Based on years of TaoXi Technology's AR technical reserve, the first AR virtual watch was launched in China. During Double 11, more than 20 flagship stores of watch brands launched AR watch-wearing products.
During Double 11 2021, brands in different industries, such as Microsoft and FILA, used Taobao Live 3D immersive live rooms. Based on the world's first film-level augmented reality cloud shooting technology, TaoXi Technology created a 3D immersive live room, breaking through the key technologies of cloud rendering, AI, complex light and shadow simulation, and cloud 3D asset library in previous film-level XR live shooting. It also allows streamers to virtualize the live effect of thousands of square meters of a live broadcast venue, nearly 1,000 stage lights, and special camera equipment with only ordinary green screens. It has become the first self-broadcasting and film-level shooting solution with the advantages of low cost, high reusability, low carbon, and environmental protection.
At the same time, Taobao Live uses advanced 3D modeling technology to bring the 3D presentation of massive offline products online and enables the virtual streamers in the live rooms to introduce products according to the full amount of multi-modal products of the merchants with the support of big data and multi-modal technology. They can introduce the products with pictures and texts during the livestream, bringing consumers a new interactive experience of digital space consumption. In the future, Taobao Live will bring continuous innovation of the e-commerce experience to consumers and merchants based on 3D XR, multi-modal, end intelligence, and other technologies.
After years of technology and product polishing, the search by image system of Taobao has become the core product of Taobao's tens of millions of DAU every day, becoming the leading image search algorithm in the industry. The complexity of the business is increasing. For example, the packaging of the same medicine varies significantly from manufacturer to manufacturer. The iPhone of the same model looks the same, but the storage capacity may be different. This puts forward higher requirements for Taobao photography, which conducts precise searches of the same kinds of products as its core ability. Learning how to effectively integrate multi-modal information of product pictures and texts is of great significance. TaoXi Technology has adopted and verified a new paradigm of super large-scale and multi-modal learning for the first time for massive product graphic data. It is based on margin classification and aims to achieve scalable multi-modal algorithm model upgrades and improve the research rate of the same kinds of products. At the same time, multi-modal technology can improve the search rate of the same kind of vertical scenarios, such as medicine, screenshots, and books. Many medicines in daily life have long names, rarely used words, and obscure foreign languages, which add obstacles to finding medicines and affect the experience of purchasing medicines. TaoXi Technology uses the OCR algorithm to realize Query graphic multi-modal understanding and improve the search rate of medicines. At the Double Ninth Festival 2021, the function of buying medicine with an image was officially published. It combines the daily needs of the elderly (and people in general), removing the targeted obstacles.
With the rapid development of the business, the platform capacities of TaoXi Technology are also constantly iterating and breaking through. We have built a cloud + end integrated video editing interactive platform. JIT machine review + intelligent dispatch mechanism has realized a content review mechanism of 5-minute comprehensive processes timeliness. GRTN has been upgraded again to realize bandwidth control and low delay guarantee in the live rooms in a refined and intelligent manner.
Based on the global real-time transmission network GRTN, Taobao Live implemented comprehensive processes Real-Time Communication (RTC) during Double 11 2021. The end-to-end has achieved time delay within 1 second, improving the interactive experience between the streamers and the audience. The number of 100-second lag was reduced by 24%, and the audience can see clearer content faster and smoother.
GRTN's intelligent scheduling system, based on a sensitive algorithm for predicting the number of people online and bandwidth and a second-level control channel, can adjust all live rooms or a single live room macroscopically and supports fine adjustment of different broadcasts in a single live broadcast room, realizing precise control of bandwidth, improving user experience, and ensuring the stability of Double 11 Live.
The JIT machine review is based on the deep learning network and Kalman filtering algorithm, with the least feature calculated amount to identify the content that does not meet the audit rules to achieve machine review acceleration and cost reduction. The machine review time will be reduced from one minute to ten seconds, and the number of feature calculations will be reduced by 40%. At the same time, in the manually content review, the intelligent dispatch mechanism with precise control of the distributed priority queue was adopted. The content to be reviewed is efficiently allocated to the reviewers through the intelligent allocation strategy. This realizes the configurable definition of review priority and takes the flexibility and fairness of dispatch into account, creating the best practice of 5-minute comprehensive processes timeliness for Taobao content review. In the future, it will be further optimized to intelligently match the optimal reviewer for pending content and provide timeliness first, cost first, and dynamic balance optimization dispatch services for different businesses and different stages of development of the same business.
As technology advances business, we are committed to making better technology more possible. In September 2021, at the 2021 World Internet Conference, Alibaba launched two new policies of social responsibility – ESG (environment, society, and corporate governance), helping common prosperity and building a green and sustainable business ecosystem with customers and partners.
Deep neural networks have become the most widely used model in the search, recommendation, and advertising fields due to their accurate prediction. However, the huge computational consumption of deep networks has also become a major problem for the industry. The algorithm engineers from TaoXi Technology have been exploring and applying greener and lower-carbon deep model compression techniques to achieve the same predictive effect. Since 2019, TaoXi Technology has increased the computing throughput of a single server model by three times through continuously upgraded deep quantized model technology, thereby reducing the number of computing servers by more than half. Since last year, a polarization pruning method has been proposed. By cutting off redundant neurons in the neural network, the calculation consumption of the neural network is reduced while the prediction effect remains unchanged. The polarization pruning paper published by TaoXi Technology was included in the NeurIPS 2020, a top-level artificial intelligence conference.
At the same time, this technology has achieved good results in the search and recommendation business scenarios of Taobao, Tmall, AliExpress, and Lazada. After the technology was published, it saved 144,000 degrees of electric energy each day and saved more than 0.1 billion degrees of electric energy over two years.
The Internet and digital technology have opened up new sales channels for small and medium-sized enterprises and promoted the transformation of marketing methods, consumer operation models, and commodity production methods. In the past, small and medium-sized enterprises were limited by their sales scale, research and development capabilities, and market promotion, making it difficult for their high-quality products to be explored by users and for their business to get sufficient growth. Therefore, learning how to use digitalization to help small and medium-sized enterprises reduce costs and improve efficiency in the process of product growth has always been the core problem of e-commerce market mechanism optimization. It is also the foundation for e-commerce platforms to help society achieve common prosperity.
TaoXi Technology has created an exclusive growth path for high-quality products to help small and medium-sized enterprises reduce their costs and improve efficiency through digitalization. First, AI big data algorithms are used to integrate and explore industry trends and find potential high-quality new products that meet market needs. Then, intelligent AI algorithms are used to coordinate with the merchants online to promote the improvement of the whole process of testing, trial sales, and hot selling of high-quality new products across the platform. Finally, the certainty of small and medium-sized business commodity operations is enhanced, and the cost of trial and error is reduced through intelligent diagnosis and the ISV method. During Double 11 2021, TaoXi Technical serviced 100,000 small and medium-sized enterprises with more than 500,000 products, promoted the success rate of new products to increase by more than 100%, and led to billions of transactions.
With the growing size of the elderly population and consumption space, Taobao officially launched the elder model before Double 11, allowing the elderly to shop online without barriers. The transformation of the elder model covers the comprehensive shopping processes. It includes the first-level pages, such as the home page and my Taobao. This area is suitable for elderly-oriented transformation, such as search, a commodity details page, and an order confirmation page, to avoid the situation of elder model without changes as much as possible.
In addition to the visual transformation, the Taobao elder model has launched the intelligent assistant Tao Xiaobao. It provides users with functions, such as voice search for products and a way to contact official customer service in the form of a virtual figure, to help the elderly solve the core pain point problem of cannot search. As an important part of the elder-oriented transformation, TaoXi Technology has the ability and confidence to make good technology that benefits people. Through numerous model training, we have increased the recognition rate to more than 90%. Combined with the ability of the product search algorithm deposited by TaoXi Technology, we have matched the products that consumers want to search from a long text, which simplifies the process of searching for products for the elderly.
Over the past decade, Taobao has launched a number of convenient functions for the daily life of the elderly, so that technology can better serve them. In the first Double 11 after the elder-oriented transformation, smartphones surpassed down jackets and woolen jackets to become the first commodity in online shopping of the elderly. We can't help but sigh and think elderly but vigorous. It turns out that the elderly are also the driving force of the digital trend.
Tang Xing said good technology is the foundation. TaoXi Technology will continue to increase its investment in multi-modal, 3D XR, audio and video, cognitive computing, knowledge graph, and other technical fields in the future, so that technology can be touched, enjoyed, and close to every process in customers' daily use.
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