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Red Hat and IBM Research Advance IT Automation with AI-Powered Capabilities for Ansible

Project Wisdom layers artificial intelligence into hybrid cloud automation to reduce skill barriers, free up IT teams to innovate and help drive Ansible automation as a core technology

Red Hat, the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, and IBM Research announced Project Wisdom, the first community project to create an intelligent, natural language processing capability for Ansible and the IT automation industry. Using an artificial intelligence (AI) model, the project aims to boost the productivity of IT automation developers and make IT automation more achievable and understandable for diverse IT professionals with varied skills and backgrounds.

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According to a 2021 IDC prediction1, “by 2026, 85% of enterprises will combine human expertise with AI, ML, NLP, and pattern recognition to augment foresight across the organization, making workers 25% more productive and effective. Technologies such as machine learning, deep learning, natural language processing, pattern recognition, and knowledge graphs are producing increasingly accurate and context-aware insights, predictions, and recommendations.”

Project Wisdom – underpinned by AI foundation models derived from IBM’s AI for Code efforts – works by enabling a user to input a command as a straightforward English sentence. It then parses the sentence and builds the requested automation workflow, delivered as an Ansible Playbook, which can be used to automate any number of IT tasks. Unlike other AI-driven coding tools, Project Wisdom does not focus on application development; instead the project centers on addressing the rise of complexity in enterprise IT as hybrid cloud adoption grows.

From human readable to human interactive

Becoming an automation expert demands significant effort and resources over time, with a learning curve to navigate varying domains. Project Wisdom intends to bridge the gap between Ansible YAML code and human language, so users can use plain English to generate syntactically correct and functional automation content.

It could enable a system administrator who typically delivers on-premises services to reach across domains to build, configure, and operate in other environments using natural language to generate playbook instructions. A developer who knows how to build an application, but not the skillset to provision it in a new cloud platform, could use Project Wisdom to expand proficiencies in these new areas to help transform the business. Novices across departments could generate content right away while still building foundational knowledge, without the dependencies of traditional teaching models.

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Driving open source innovation with collaboration

While the power of AI in enterprise IT cannot be denied, community collaboration, along with insights from Red Hat and IBM, will be key in delivering an AI/ML model that aligns to the key tenets of open source technology. Red Hat has more than two decades of experience in collaborating on community projects and protecting open source licenses in defense of free software. Project Wisdom, and its underlying AI model, are an extension of this commitment to keeping all aspects of the code base open and transparent to the community.

As hybrid cloud operations at scale become a key focus for organizations, Red Hat is committed to building the next wave of innovation on open source technology. As IBM Research and Ansible specialists at Red Hat work to fine tune the AI model, the Ansible community will play a crucial role as subject matter experts and beta testers to push the boundaries of what can be achieved together.

Supporting Quotes

Chris Wright, CTO and SVP of Global Engineering, Red Hat
“This project exemplifies how artificial intelligence has the power to fundamentally shift how businesses innovate, expanding capabilities that typically reside within operations teams to other corners of the business. With intelligent solutions, enterprises can decrease the barrier to entry, address burgeoning skills gaps, and break down organization-wide siloes to reimagine work in the enterprise world.”

Ruchir Puri, chief scientist, IBM Research; IBM Fellow; vice president, IBM Technical Community
“Project Wisdom is proof of the significant opportunities that can be achieved across technology and the enterprise when we combine the latest in artificial intelligence and software. It’s truly an exciting time as we continue advancing how today’s AI and hybrid cloud technologies are building the computers and systems of tomorrow.”

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