by Dr Jerry BergmanUnder the headline The Y chromosome is disappearing – so what will happen to men?, two genetics professors, Dr. Griffin and Dr. Ellis write, “The Y chromosome may be a symbol of masculinity, but it is becoming increasingly clear that it is anything but strong and enduring.” One wonders what evidence they have for making this prediction. Actually, none. Then where do they get this idea?As most adults know, in most mammals two X chromosomes produce a female, and an X and Y produce a male. Thus, it is the presence of the Y chromosome that determines a male. Although the Y chromosome influences over 200 different traits, one area of this chromosome, specifically where the SRY genes are located, triggers the major traits that produce males. If the SRY genes transpose from the Y chromosome to the X chromosome, an XX female will develop into to a male. This condition is very rare, but it does happen occasionally.Without the Y chromosome there would be no males, and thus no reproduction, so why do some scientists conclude it is disappearing? The reason is the X and Y chromosomes are thought to have evolved from a pair of identical autosome chromosomes that diverged from 100s of millions ago. 300 million years ago is another estimate, and a newer estimate puts the number at closer to 166 million years ago. Given such wide guesstimates, it is obvious that no one has any idea when they diverged, assuming they did.Even the divergence theory itself is not based on evidence, but on assumptions that in turn are based on Darwinian assumptions. The theory goes like this: over eons of time, genes that were beneficial for males either evolved by the accumulation of mutations on their Y chromosome, or were acquired through translocation (the movement of genes from other chromosomes to the Y chromosome).X and Y. Credit: Science Photo LibraryThe question of how mammals reproduced before this is answered by looking at all life forms and realizing the most primitive, such as bacteria, reproduce asexually by cloning, and other, more advanced life forms, reproduce sexually. The relatively puny human Y now contains only 78 genes and the human X has a whopping 1,098 known genes. This means human females have over 1,000 more genes than males.Because the Y chromosome is a small fraction of the X, from the primate genome which it is believed to have evolved, it is assumed the human Y chromosome has lost 1,393 of its 1,438 original genes over the course of its existence. Linear extrapolation of this 1,393-gene loss over 300 million years produces a genetic loss rate of 4.6 genes per million years. Extrapolating this forward means, Professors Griffin and Ellis claim, in 4.6 million years the Y chromosome would lose all of its functions.It is the creationists that predict degeneration of the genome from Adam’s perfect mutation free genome to our modern human. Humans suffer from over 5,000 diseases caused by the accumulation of mutations in our gamete genome. Furthermore, the human Y chromosome is exposed to high mutation rates due to the fact that it is passed on exclusively through comparatively unprotected sperm, which undergo multiple cell divisions during gametogenesis. Each cell division increases the risk of mutations, and the more cell divisions, the more mutations that result. Additionally, sperm are stored in a highly oxidative (thus mutation prone) environment compared to the cells inside the body that are protected by several mechanisms. These two conditions put the Y chromosome at a greater mutation risk than the rest of the genome. All this supports the creation view, not the Darwinian view which teaches that evolution improves the species and evolves it to more advanced levels of evolution.Because the current estimate is that a 30 percent difference exists between humans and chimps, it is assumed that the Y chromosome was, and thus is, one of the fastest-evolving parts of the human genome. In the terminal stages of the Y chromosome degeneration, the story goes, other chromosomes will take over its genes and thus its functions. Thus, evolution will take us all the way back to the pre-Y chromosome stage of development that existed 100s of millions, 300 million or 160 million years ago! In the end, the Y chromosome they predict will disappear entirely, and a new sex-determining system will arise like the one that existed 100s of millions, 300 million or 160 million years ago. As is obvious, this is rampant speculation based on the varieties of reproduction existing in some animals.On the other side, comparisons of human and chimpanzee Y chromosomes indicate that the human Y chromosome has not lost any genes since the hypothetical human and chimpanzee divergence, estimated between 6 and 7 million years ago. One 2012 report claimed that only one gene had been lost since humans diverged from the rhesus macaque 25 million years ago.These facts provide direct evidence that the linear extrapolation model is seriously flawed, and the human Y chromosome is either no longer shrinking, or shrinking at a much slower rate than the 4.6 genes per million years estimated by the linear extrapolation model. In short, this topic, as is true of much of Darwin theory, involves massive speculation and illustrates the need to examine the data used to determine some conclusions in evolutionary tales. It also illustrates the problem the public has when it uncritically accepts a claim when scientists make authoritative sounding propositions supposedly based on a select few scientific facts.See also Dr Bergman’s earlier post on this subject, “The problem with males: Y chromosome degeneration” (1 Nov 2017). https://theconversation.com/the-y-chromosome-is-disappearing-so-what-will-happen-to-men-90125. Rice, W. R. 1996. Evolution of the Y sex chromosome in animals. Bioscience. 46, 331–343. Warren WC, Hillier LD, Graves JA, et al. (2008). “Genome analysis of the platypus reveals unique signatures of evolution”. Nature. 453 (7192): 175–183 Graves, Jenny. 2016. Evolution of vertebrate sex chromosomes and dosage compensation. Nature Reviews Genetics, 17 (1) 33-46. January. Kettlewell, Julianna. 2005. Female chromosome has X factor. Females are genetically more varied than males, an analysis of the X chromosome has revealed. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/4355355.stm Graves, J. A. M. (2004). “The degenerate Y chromosome—can conversion save it?”. Reproduction Fertility and Development. 16 (5): 527–534 Graves, Jenny. 2004. “The degenerate Y chromosome—can conversion save it?”. Reproduction Fertility and Development. 16 (5): 527–534. Graves, Jenny. 2006. “Sex chromosome specialization and degeneration in mammals”. Cell. 124 (5): 901–914. Wade, Nicholas. 2010. “Male Chromosome May Evolve Fastest”. New York Times. January 13. Hughes, Jennifer F.; et al. 2005. “Conservation of Y-linked genes during human evolution revealed by comparative sequencing in chimpanzee.” Nature. 437 (7055): 100–103. Callaway, Ewen. 2012. The human Y chromosome is here to stay. The male sex-determining chromosome has lost only one gene in 25 million years. February 22. https://www.nature.com/news/the-human-y-chromosome-is-here-to-stay-1.10082. Hsu, Christine. “Biologists Debunk the ‘Rotting’ Y Chromosome Theory, Men Will Still Exist”. Medical Daily. http://www.medicaldaily.com/biologists-debunk-rotting-y-chromosome-theory-men-will-still-exist-239833 Hughes, Jennifer F.; et al. 2010. Chimpanzee and human Y chromosomes are remarkably divergent in structure and gene content. Nature. 463, 536-539. January, 28.Author Jerry Bergman, PhDDr Jerry Bergman, professor, author and speaker, is a frequent contributor to Creation-Evolution Headlines. He is currently a staff scientist at the Institute for Creation Research (ICR). See his Author Profile for his previous articles and more information.(Visited 1,547 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
10 June 2015West Coast One has reached commercial operation.The 94 megawatt (MW) wind project located 130km north of Cape Town is owned by Engie, together with partners Investec and Kagiso Tiso Holdings.The consortium was selected as preferred bidder for this project in May 2012 and signed a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Eskom, the electricity parastatal, in May 2013. Construction of the wind farm, which consists of 47 turbines of 2MW turbines, started in mid-2013.Gerard Mestrallet, the chairman and chief executive of Engie, said: “South Africa is an important market for Engie and we are a committed long-term investor in the African continent.“The West Coast One wind farm supports South Africa’s objective of increasing renewable generation and promoting local economic development. This project demonstrates Engie’s ability to deliver important renewable projects and underlines our commitment to developing sustainable sources of energy.”Investment in the wind farm was €160-million (R2.2-billion), funded by a mix of equity and debt, which has been provided by local banks. West Coast One will offset an estimated 5.6 million tons of carbon dioxide over the 20-year duration of its PPA.This project follows the start of operation of the 300MW Tarfaya wind farm in Morocco in 2014, Africa’s largest wind power project. It is owned by Engie in partnership with Nareva Holding.South Africa is implementing a 20-year plan that makes provision for 42% – 17gigawatts (GW) – of new generation to come from renewable energy, with 8GW allocated to onshore wind. The successful Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) is in place, with a number of projects already closed.In addition to West Coast One, Engie is actively developing further projects in South Africa. In 2013, the group signed PPAs for two greenfield open-cycle gas turbine power plants of 335MW (Dedisa) and 670MW (Avon), which are located in Eastern Cape and in KwaZulu-Natal, respectively. This year, an Engie-led consortium with South African partners, was nominated as preferred bidder for the 100MW Kathu Solar Park in Northern Cape.Engie currently has 19GW of renewable generation capacity in operation worldwide, of which more than 4GW is wind. It holds a 43% equity interest in West Coast One, while Investec owns 34.5% and Kagiso Tiso Holdings has a 20% interest. The remaining 2.5% will be allocated to a community trust, with the purpose of developing and sustaining the surrounding community.Engie, which is based in Paris, develops its businesses (power, natural gas, energy services) around a model based on responsible growth to take on the major challenges of energy’s transition to a low-carbon economy. It has expertise in four key sectors: renewable energy, energy efficiency, liquefied natural gas and digital technology.Source: Engie
SharePrint RelatedHow to host the best New Year’s event for Last/FirstNovember 28, 2017In “Community”Out with the old, in with these two new souvenirs!November 8, 2018In “Geocaching.com Souvenirs”How to throw an awesome New Year’s geocaching bash in 5 easy stepsNovember 10, 2015In “Community” Special thanks to Natalie for her event-organizing expertise on this blog post!Share with your Friends:More New Year’s Eve is an opportunity to celebrate the end of one year and the beginning of the next. While end-of-year traditions come in many shapes and sizes, this year you can start a new tradition by hosting an event with your geocaching buddies while earning two new souvenirs.This year, we invite you to say ‘Thanks’ to 2018 and welcome 2019 with two new geocaching souvenirs. Earning the souvenirs is easy:Find a geocache or attend an event on December 31 to earn the Thanks 2018 souvenir.Find a geocache or attend an event on January 1 to earn the Hello 2019 souvenir.Without further ado, here are five easy steps to hosting a great New Year’s Eve geocaching bash!Step 1: Choose a themeLike creating a GIFF film, all great Event Caches start out with a theme. We’ve brainstormed a few ideas to get you inspired:Throw a “geocaching resolutions” party. Have everyone choose a geocaching resolution to complete in 2019 (“Complete my Difficulty/Terrain grid,” “Hide my first cache,” or “Invite someone new to geocaching”). Bonus points if everyone meets again at the end of the year to see who followed through with their resolutions!Keep things “Hygge.” Pronounced hue-guh, the Danish word Hygge is the state of being warm, cozy, or charming. Plan a daytime event on January 1 at a coffee shop or cafe so geocachers can warm up (or cool down) after finding their first geocache(s) of the year.Step 2: Select the date and time of your eventThis is an easy one: plan your event for December 31 or January 1 so it qualifies for a souvenir. When selecting a time, remember some guests may bring young kids, so you may want to plan your event earlier on New Year’s Eve or even schedule a daytime event on January 1.Reminder: The geocaching guidelines prohibit event stacking. To avoid this, Event Caches must be:Held at different timesOrganized by different geocachersHave a minimum duration of 30 minutes, andTake place at different locations than other events.The last day to submit your event is December 17th! Check out the geocaching guidelines for more information.Step 3: Find a venueYou can host Event Caches anywhere available to the public—a restaurant, park, or even your house. Be sure to find a place that has enough space for activities! Don’t forget to provide a description of your event in the Cache Details. This is a great place to explain any limitations with the venue such as whether it’s dog friendly. You can also add a reminder here to dress warm for an outdoor event.Step 4: Plan fun and engaging activitiesA great way to make your event fun for all is to schedule activities to help your guests meet each other. Here are four ideas to get you started:Do a polar plunge. There’s no cooler way to bond with fellow geocachers than by jumping into freezing water together at the height of winter! For lucky geocachers in the Southern Hemisphere, host a picnic on the beach and enjoy the warmth of summer.Create a geocaching bucket list. As a group, make a bucket list of geocaches you want to find in 2019. Make plans throughout the year to find them together!Play geocaching bingo. Create a bingo card based on geocaching achievements (“Earned a new country souvenir” or “Found more than 100 geocaches”). Guests must find other geocachers at the event who have completed the achievements to fill in their board.Bake a lucky trackable into a cake. In Greece, coins are baked into bread or cake, and whoever finds the coin has good luck for the entire year! Give your guests the gift of geocaching luck by hiding a trackable in the dessert. Make sure to mention this to them before they take a bite!Step 5: Invite friends, new and old!Now that you’re feeling inspired, create a new event on Geocaching.com. Remember, events must be submitted at least two weeks prior to the event date. Once it has been published, share the GC code with your local geocaching organization.Whether you’re already a well-established social butterfly or a first-time attendee, geocaching events are a great way to meet new people who share your love for geocaching. We hope these tips help you host a rockin’ New Year’s Eve geocaching bash!What tips do you have for throwing an unforgettable geocaching New Year’s event? Tell us in the comments below!
Nearly 150 drugs and surgical device suppliers are planning to stop supply to government-run hospitals if their pending dues worth over ₹23 crore are not paid immediately. The All Food and Drug Licence Holders Foundation (AFDLHF), an association of suppliers, in a letter to the State government on Wednesday, stated that their dues have mounted for the last three years.“The overall dues had mounted to nearly ₹95 crore, some of which were cleared over the last few months. But we still have pending bills worth over ₹23 crore,” said Abhay Pandey, president of AFDLHF. The 150-odd companies under the association supply essential drugs, implants, surgical devices and other hospital requirements like masks, gloves and gauzes to 17 State-run hospitals attached to medical colleges. These suppliers are selected through the tendering process of the lowest price offers. For example, a pair of gloves that costs ₹45 in retail is sold at about ₹9 to the government, a face mask costing ₹10 in retail is sold at ₹0.70 to the government.“The Chief Minister had sanctioned ₹120 crore to clear the pending bills at State hospitals. But instead of clearing our dues, the hospitals began clearing their local purchase dues with that money,” Mr. Pandey said. In his letter, he mentions bills worth over ₹28 lakh from GT Hospital, ₹2.73 crore from St. George Hospital, ₹40 lakh from Akola Medical College and ₹31 lakh from Nanded Medical College, pending for approval at the Mantralaya. Additionally, bills of over ₹6 crore from Cama Hospital are yet to be sent for approval either to Directorate of Medical Education and Research (DMER) or Mantralaya. “The bills at Cama are pending only because the Administration Officer has not found the time to sign them,” he said. Till six months ago, the drugs and devices would be supplied to DMER, Directorate of Health Services (DHS) and the Haffkine Institute and further be distributed to the State hospitals. Now, Haffkine has been appointed as the only purchase point by the government. “We hope this changes the scenario on the ground level for us as well,” Mr. Pandey said.Dr. Prakash Wakode, joint director of DMER said that the State is looking at clearing the dues as soon as possible. “Once the bills extend to a certain amount a clearance process has to be followed. For example, the dean of the hospital can sanction only a certain amount. If the amount is beyond what the dean can approve, it is further sent to the director and then to the Mantralaya. This process takes time,” he said. He is yet to see the letter sent by the AFDLHF.
OTTAWA – Gender equality and a national pharmacare plan are expected to be two of the cornerstones of the federal budget when it is presented in the House of Commons Tuesday afternoon by Finance Minister Bill Morneau.He has already hinted at efforts to boost the participation of women in the workforce as part of an overall plan to promote so-called inclusive growth.One measure expected in the spending plan is dedicated paid leave for new fathers — or, in the case of same-sex relationships, the non-birthing parent. The goal is to allow parents to handle the task of raising children more equitably.The focus on gender equality — a key priority for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government — could also mean federal dollars to help close the gender wage gap in federally regulated workplaces.The budget will also include plans to take the first steps toward a national pharmacare plan — a strategy which would outflank NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, who has made such a program one of his top priorities.Senior government officials have told The Canadian Press on condition of anonymity that former Ontario health minister Eric Hoskins will be tasked with leading the effort to breathe life into the pharmacare plan.Hoskins hinted at his new position when he abruptly resigned both his cabinet position and his seat in the Ontario legislature Monday, saying he was leaving “to continue building better health care for all Canadians.”The parliamentary budget watchdog calculated last fall that a national, universal pharmacare program would cost more than $19 billion, but could still slash the overall cost of drugs in Canada by more than $4 billion a year.The federal budget is not expected to balance the books, nor is it likely to include a revised timeline for erasing the deficit, which the Liberals initially pledged to do by 2019.The budget is instead expected to unveil major investments in basic scientific research and environmental conservation.It is also expected to include nearly $80 million over five years to build and run a computer system aimed at ending no-fly list mismatches and $50 million over five years to support local journalism in underserved communities.Investments in child welfare and housing for Indigenous communities, expanding a tax credit for low-income earners and spending to help Canadians upgrade their skills for a rapidly changing job market are other expected budget measures.
On October 18, 2015, “Glee” star Max Adler will host the Ghostly Gala to Vanish FSHD at the historic and elegant Cicada Club in downtown Los Angeles.Video: Ghostly Gala to Vanish FSH muscular dystrophyThe event is open to the public and all net proceeds benefit research and education programs at the FSH Society, an award-winning non-profit and global leader in the quest to treat and cure Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy (FSHD).The Halloween costume ball will feature dinner, big band music, magic, a live auction, and a costume contest judged by Adler and friends. Costumes are optional, but cocktail or vintage attire is requested. Adler, whose family has been directly affected by FSHD, appears in a public service announcement to promote the Ghostly Gala.FSHD, one of the most prevalent types of muscular dystrophy, is a degenerative muscle disease that causes progressive weakness, and may render its sufferers unable to pursue their livelihoods, smile, blink, or even hug their kids.Adler’s mother and grandmother were among the close to one million men, women, and children who battle the disease. The condition is hereditary and patients face a fifty percent chance of passing it on to each child. “I watched my family try to cope with FSH Muscular Dystrophy, and it broke my heart to see how it changed their lives and the lives of everyone who loved them,” Adler says.“There are thousands of people in southern California who are affected by FSHD and we’re so grateful to Max and our other advocates in the entertainment industry for using their celebrity to raise awareness” says June Kinoshita, Executive Director of the FSH Society. “This is a watershed moment, when we are embarking on the era of drug discovery. Much greater public visibility and resources are needed now that we are so close to having the first effective treatments for FSHD.”Ghostly Gala Event Details: • What: FSH Society’s Halloween Costume Ball hosted by Max Adler of “Glee” • When: Sunday, October 18, 2015; Doors open at 5:00 p.m. • Where: The Cicada Club at the Historic Oviatt Building, 617 South Olive Street, Los Angeles, California 90014 • For Tickets: Visit this link, call (781)-301-6651, or email email@example.com
The National Pan-Hellenic Council of Northern Virginia will host its annual Black Scholars Awards program May 17, at 3 p.m. at Mount Vernon High School, 8515 Old Mount Vernon Road. This program provides a platform to recognize and support Blacks students in the Northern Virginia community for their academic achievements. To date, over 5,000 African American students have been honored. For more information, contact www.novanphc.org
“We are the first state government in the country which has decided to legalise hawking. This will ensure you are not evicted by anybody. We have formulated a policy for the hawkers. We are the first in the country to start the process of registering vendors and hawkers,” Banerjee said after a meeting with hawkers. Banerjee said the process of registration will begin on July 15 and continue for three months, and dedicated counters will be set up for the process.”The process of verifying the applications will be carried outfirst. Once, verified, you will be given a registration certificate and free trade licence. But this facility is available only for the existing hawkers,” announcedBanerjee. Also Read – Need to understand why law graduate’s natural choice is not legal profession: CJIThe whole process will be monitored by a committee comprising the KMC, the state Government and the police. The Chief Minister also urged the hawkers not to encroach on the shop keepers or inconvenience pedestrians. About 5000 licensed shopkeepers—on strike in the New market area–have been contending that it was becoming difficult for them to stay in business as hawkers, apart from competing with cheaper goods, block shop facades preventing the entry of shoppers in the market.
The handicraft industry in India had propelled in the recent past and to acknowledge that an award ceremony has been planned out. The awards for outstanding performance in exports of handicrafts for the year 2013 – 14 and 2014 –15 will be distributed on the January 9, to 66 and 68 exporters respectively involved in handicrafts production and exports from the country to the world markets at the Convention Hall, Hotel The Ashok, Chankayapuri, New Delhi. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfWhile Smriti Zubin Irani, Union Minister of Textiles will be the Chief Guest, Ajay Tamta, Minister of State for Textiles (Independent Charge) will also grace the export award ceremony. KK Jalan, Secretary, MSME and Additional Charge of Ministry of Textiles will be present during award function beside luminaries from the trade and industry, exporters of handicrafts, said Rakesh Kumar, Executive Director – Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts. The institution of export awards on yearly basis has evolved and is being implemented by Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH), which is an apex body for development and promotion of exports of handicrafts from the country. The export awards are given based on the export performance of the exporters and are selected by Export Awards Selection Committee chaired by Development Commissioner (Handicrafts) or his nominee (Addl Development Commissioner – Handicrafts) and members of Committee of Administration of the Council. Five types of awards are given to the exporters of handicrafts based on their highest export performance which are duly attested by their Chartered Accountant viz top export award (all handicrafts) and top export award (product categories); Women entrepreneur award; and Regional export award. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveRakesh Kumar also informed that the objective of giving away export awards is to create a sense of healthy competition amongst the exporters and to encourage wholesome competition through the institution of such prestigious awards. The awards have become a coveted recognition amongst the handicraft exporters as more and more exporters strive to receive this award. There will be 53 recipients of trophies ( including hat trick) for 2013 – 14 and 2014 – 15 under each product category. Eight companies which are totally run and directed by women will be given trophies as women entrepreneurs for the two years. 42 merit certificates will also be given to those who stand second in the export performance in each product category. 28 merit certificates for excellent export growth in specific product categories and 11 merit certificates regional awards will also be distributed. Apart from above, life time achievement awards for outstanding contribution towards handicraft sector will also be given.
Register Now » September 25, 2017 6 min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global The rapid growth of technology is transforming businesses every day, and no technology is more poised to revolutionize nearly every industry in the next decade than artificial intelligence (AI).Related: Why Small Business Should Be Paying Attention to Artificial IntelligenceSince 1956, when it was introduced as an academic discipline, AI has generated both optimism and disappointment. However, it has been on a relatively upward projection since 2000, finding particular vigor in leveraging statistical approaches to machine learning, which in turn has rendered many previously used tools and schools of thought obsolete.As the field of AI continues to innovate, and machines and systems become more capable, technological solutions that used to be considered as futuristic AI, like optical character recognition, have become routine — effectively losing their “AI” status. Other technologies yet to be conquered — like driverless cars, and the artificial re-creation of human speech — are still being developed as AI.Many futurists have talked about the dangerous possibility that AI machines will eventually take control of humanity and destroy the world. Even though most of these prognostications mix speculation and superstition, this school of thought has persevered — consider the news of some successful Turing Test exercises.However, many AI researchers and scientists have refuted this stance, saying that, ultimately, AI is simply a very effective tool for processing, analyzing and comprehending massive amounts of actual human data.One thing is certain: Direct or indirect AI adaptation for businesses and individuals will continue to proliferate. And the journey is going to be exciting, as we continue to unravel what is possible with this promising technology. AI-based solutions are already being used to tackle pressing problems in business to change the business world. Here are a few ways it’s doing that:1. Making truly autonomous processes possible While most AI technology for businesses still needs a substantial degree of human supervision and intervention, companies are working to develop technology with human-like cognitive ability, enabling AI systems to truly be trusted to take on autonomous tasks with minimal supervision.Related: 4 Crucial Roles of Artificial Intelligence in Entrepreneurship TodayThis technology has long been a focus of research in the world’s most cutting-edge research programs. Southern California AI disrupter Beyond Limits, for example, is adapting technology utilized by NASA to perform something like the unmanned space mission to Mars. These types of AI solutions can tackle complex problems in energy, transportation and medicine, by offering lightweight AI that isn’t reliant on massive infrastructure.Such AI has the processing speeds and cognitive ability that can parallel an actual human agent’s reasoning and problem-solving process.2. Ushering in the era of “big intelligence”The convergence of better programming through high performance computing (HPC) and big data means that computers can now crunch a massive amount of data and use AI programs to learn from and process that data into useful, actionable business insights.Dubbed by hardware companies like PSSC Labs as “big Intelligence”, the servers and storage harnessing the power of these new computing platforms are allowing companies to process consumer and market data coming from an astonishing array of sources.Real-time or near real-time processing means businesses can keep constantly up to date with better information, better recommendations and more predictive power, to optimize business decisions.3.Optimizing timingTiming is an important factor for any business, as there is a natural ebb and flow determined by many factors, including location, season, holidays and adjacent industries. Grasping this cadence is essential for business owners to succeed.However, even years of experience doesn’t guarantee that any business can accurately assess staff, stock and other timing-related needs accurately. A sudden boom in a particular city, for example, might prompt more traffic to certain businesses than they can handle. Poor weather could dampen the holiday rush in tourist towns, resulting in lower staff needs.Many AI companies are targeting these issues by integrating services to help business owners take advantage of available historic and emerging data, and optimize their business timing, to ensure that they maximize resources when they need it, and minimize waste when they don’t.For example, Ximble is looking to roll out features within its scheduling platform that use AI and machine learning to analyze traffic and retail data for businesses to create automated and optimized staff schedules. Similar features will likely emerge from inventory-management companies, as well as delivery, fleet management, and other similar business SaaS providers.4. Automating lead generation The cost of customer acquisition via lead generation is a critical part of every business. For many businesses, customer acquisition requires extensive cold-calling, trial and error and exploration of multiple channels. Artificial intelligence promises to not only increase the relevance of lead-generation campaigns, but also dramatically reduce their cost, in both time and money, by automating and learning from simple user inputs.Related: The Growth of Artificial Intelligence in Ecommerce (Infographic)By incorporating tag words, a rudimentary search for leads can automatically be implemented. Sugarbot is one of a handful of startups trying to crack this code. As the user within the business makes relevant selections from the results, a lead-generation system incorporating AI can learn, make adjustments and produce continually better and more relevant results within seconds.What takes a sales associate days or months can be achieved in mere hours or days. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.