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Thousands of companies use Slack to communicate internally. Photo: Chris Ratcliffe / Bloomberg via Getty Images

More than 50,000 companies use Slack for internal communication, and the average user sends 70 messages a day. To help users manage their messages and filter the most crucial information, Slack is adding artificial intelligence to its platform, per the MIT Tech Review.

The big picture: Slack hired Noah Weiss, a computer scientist from Stanford, to spearhead the effort in 2016. "Weiss aims to make Slack function like your ruthlessly organized, multitasking assistant who knows everything that’s going on and keeps you briefed on only the most salient events," the Tech Review reports.

The details, per the Tech Review:

  • With natural-language processing and machine learning, Weiss plans to "refine search queries and give people recommendations when they open the app."
  • Slack already has some of these AI features in place, including one that highlights up to 10 messages that "its algorithms deem most important" and puts them in a list for users to review when they come online after having been away.
  • "Another Slack goal is to help management keep a better eye on its employees. One of the team’s newest initiatives crunches data to construct online dashboards that give executives a bird’s-eye view of how employees are interacting, which topics are trending, and how sentiment changes over time."

Go deeper

"No-code" miracle for startups

Expand chart
Data: Interactive Advertising Bureau; Table: Axios Visuals

The U.S. has reached a tipping point in its shift from the industrial economy — one that relied on the buildout of hardware — to an information economy that relies on the transfer, storage and implementation of data, according to a new report.

Why it matters: This shift towards a data and information-based economy has allowed more businesses to establish themselves and scale quickly and at a very low cost. As such, the number of jobs created by the commercial internet has more than tripled since 2012.

Amazon's small business shield

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Amazon is touting the success of small sellers on its platform through the pandemic — and warning that antitrust legislation could jeopardize that success and blow up its open-marketplace model.

Why it matters: As online shopping became a lifeline for both businesses and consumers during the pandemic, Amazon reaped big benefits, but also saw its regulatory risk grow.

The new cold war panic

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The world has seen a power struggle between nuclear powers before, and has seen those countries inch closer to military conflict. But it's never before seen a cold war between two countries as interconnected — with each other and with the rest of the globe — as the U.S. and China.

Why it matters: Escalating antagonism between the world's two superpowers is likely to hinder global cooperation to fight climate change, divert resources to costly arms and tech races, complicate diplomacy for U.S. allies, and victimize Chinese and American citizens living in each other's countries.