Microsoft has been building and leveraging AI-powered copilots in many of their most loved and used applications ranging from redefining search with Bing and Edge to efficient coding in GitHub to transforming work productivity spanning across Microsoft 365 and its applications, and beyond. As AI and large language models (LLM) converge, and technology can now deliver, users can ask questions in their natural language, and the convergence of AI, LLM, and smart technology can provide an answer, take action, and create it. This convergence of AI, LLM, and smart technology is Microsoft Copilot, a generative AI companion that will revolutionize work, daily tasks, and thinking processes.
Microsoft Copilot isn’t a singular application but spans Microsoft 365 in layers across its applications, unifying data, concepts, and processes. It is a seamless experience across Microsoft 365, Windows 11, Edge, and Bing with its icon living on your taskbar or easily called up with the Win+C keyboard shortcut. Copilot will be an AI companion in Outlook, Windows, Bing, Chat, Teams, Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Paint, and many other apps to spark creativity, increase productivity, and meet the everyday needs of users whether they are part of a business or in their daily lives.
Microsoft Copilot in Apps
Copilot in Windows: lessen the cognitive load and make complicated tasks simpler. Complete tasks with ease while firing up your creativity.
Paint: with Cocreator, generative AI enhances drawing and digital creations with the addition of layers and background removal tools.
Photos: photos can easily be edited. With a single click, highlight your subject. Copilot and AI automatically determine the background. Next, with Background Blur, blur the background and by doing so, your subject stands out. Photos stored in OneDrive, either business or personal, can easily be found as photo searching can be based on the content of the photo as well as location.
Snipping Tool: users can capture their content from their screen in various ways. They can create videos and content from their screen, including capturing sound with audio and mic. Users extract specific text content from an image, which in turn can be pasted to another application. On the post-capture screen, sensitive information can be protected by using text actions such as text redaction.
Clipchamp: auto-compose will automatically suggest edits, narratives, and scenes based on images and footage. Users will be able to create and edit videos to share with their teams, family, and friends, and on social media.
Notepad: automatic session saving which allows you to close the app without losing their dialogue. Upon opening, users will resume where they left off. Additionally, previously open tabs will be restored along with unsaved content and edits across those open tabs.
With the New Outlook for Windows: who doesn’t have more than one email address? Get organized by connecting and coordinating your various email accounts. Writing, replying, and attaching attachments is a breeze with intelligent tools that will help you write concise and clear communications while attaching documents and photos from OneDrive seamlessly.
Modernized File Explorer: easily access important and relevant content with a modernized home, address bar, and search box, and with photos, a new Gallery option will help find photos easily. Keep up to date with file activity and, without opening files, collaborate with ease.
New Text Authoring Experiences to Voice Access and New Natural Voices in Narrator: a continuing and ongoing commitment to developing the most accessible version of Windows.
Windows Backup: a seamless and simple process of transitioning from a current PC to a new Windows 11 PC that leaves everything exactly the way it was left before the transition.
Microsoft Copilot in Bing and Edge
Bing Chat is now available with Microsoft Edge and some features include or will soon include:
Personalized Answers: intelligent suggestions that are relevant to you that are based on your search history. If the preference is not to access chat history to provide responses, then there is an option to turn this off.
Copilot in Microsoft Shopping: quickly find what you are shopping for from Bing or Edge and with Copilot, you will be offered the best price. Coming soon, online shopping can start with a photo or image rather than a written description.
DALL.E 3Model from OpenAI in Bing Image Creator: with a better understanding of what you are asking for, DALL.E 3 delivers more accurate images with better renderings of fingers and eyes. Editing creations will be much simpler with Microsoft Designer integrated directly into Bing.
Content Credentials: using cryptographic methods, an invisible digital watermark will be added to all AI-generated images in Bing which includes the date and time the creation was originally created. This support will also be available for Paint and Microsoft Designer.
Bing Chat Enterprise Updates: over 160 million Microsoft users already have access to Bing Chat Enterprise at no additional cost, and now, this feature will be available in the mobile Microsoft Edge app. Finding information using images and creating them will be supported with multimodal visual search and Image Creator.
Microsoft 365 Copilot: Microsoft Chat
Microsoft Chat learns who the user is by combing their entire universe of data at work from emails to meetings, to chats, to documents, and more, including data from the web. It gains an in-depth understanding of the user, their job, their priorities, as well as the organization they work for. With this deep understanding, Microsoft Chat goes beyond answering simple questions and providing simple answers. It is capable of providing a head start with the most tedious and complex tasks such as writing business documents, booking a business trip, and catching up on emails.
Microsoft 365 Copilot: Productivity and Creativity with Designer
The latest consumer app that leverages cutting-edge AI, Designer, allows users to quickly design and create visuals that are stunning for invitations, social media posts, or meetings. Powered by OpenAI’s DALL.E 3, Designer is becoming a powerhouse as Generative Extend extends the image beyond its borders while unwanted objects can be erased or removed with Generative Erase. Adding a background or object can be achieved with Generative Fill.
Designer is being integrated into Microsoft Copilot for consumers, beginning with Word. A text-heavy document can be transformed into a document with visuals and custom graphics that are either proposed by Copilot or uploaded by the user. Creating eye-catching visual drafts can be achieved with a few prompts by combining Designer, Bing Image Creator, Clipchamp, and Paint.
Microsoft 365 Copilot: Features in Select Microsoft Suite of Apps
Copilot in Word: unleash creativity at work. Copilot in Word can be used to draft a document based on your notes in OneNote and other documents that you direct it to. Copilot scans the target files, learns, and quickly generates a draft, in the typical format that you use, with all the key details surfaced from the files you provided. It can insert product images and it can pull and insert relevant visuals from other files. Copilot can write a short summary and insert it at the top of the document. Copilot will make suggestions to strengthen the document content, like adding an FAQ, which it will generate for you to refine.
Copilot in Outlook: stay on top of emails. Copilot can help you triage your inbox, prioritizing the most important emails whether on the web or mobile. Do the user’s emails have a long conversation thread? Copilot can summarize these threads and with time saved, users can quickly draft a reply or, Copilot can generate a reply for the user. The reply can be edited so it can reflect the user’s writing style, made more concise, or additional content can be added for context. Once reviewed, the user can hit send and the email is sent.
Copilot in Teams: in real-time during the meeting, when asked, Copilot can summarize what has taken place so far in the meeting including who said what, what points were made, where people stand, and list the unresolved questions.
Copilot in Teams and Intelligent Recap – After the Meeting: have a conflict with meetings? No worries! Users can simply choose the “Follow” button in one of the meeting invites. After the meeting ends, Copilot will generate a summary of what the user missed. Once ready, a Teams notification will be sent to the user, indicating that the Meeting Recap is ready. The meeting recap will highlight content that was shared, summarize notes, and any action items for the user or others whose names were mentioned. If things aren’t quite clear, users can ask Copilot clarification questions. A detailed response will be generated, including why a certain decision was made while providing important context. Users can ask Copilot what other solutions were considered, and it will provide citations from the transcript, so users can see where Copilot drew these conclusions.
Copilot in PowerPoint: without having to start from scratch, users can turn a document into a presentation. With their own words, Copilot can translate Word into PowerPoint and vice-versa and include visuals, animation, and speaker notes.
Copilot in Excel: turn a sea of data into clear insights and actions by asking Copilot to analyze the data. In turn, Copilot will provide three key trends. Drill down with follow-up questions. Copilot will generate a new sheet that provides the user with a better understanding of the data. Still not quite understanding the trend? The user can ask Copilot to visualize the trend and Copilot will add a visual or colour, popping the trend out to the user. Copilot can go further with “what if” scenarios, provide a step-by-step breakdown, and create a graph of the user’s projected model.
A productivity tool that combines AI and the power of large language models with an organization’s data, Microsoft 365 Copilot provides real-time intelligent assistance to users in business, personal, and learning environments. Working alongside Microsoft applications, including Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, Excel, Teams, and more, it assists users in increasing their productivity through powerful written and visual communication.
SharePoint administrators will administer Microsoft Syntex SharePoint Advanced Management from the SharePoint Admin Centre. It should be noted that this is a Microsoft 365 add-on. While features are administered by SharePoint administrators, some of the features can be utilized by site owners. The suite of tools available through Microsoft Syntex SharePoint Advanced Management Setup will not only help enhance secured collaboration in Microsoft 356 but will help manage and govern SharePoint and OneDrive compliance.
Microsoft Syntex SharePoint Advanced Management Setup provides advanced policies for access, ensuring secure content collaboration and advanced lifecycle management of site content.
Advanced Access Policies: Secure Content Collaboration
The advanced access policies include:
|Summary of Outcomes|
|Existing Label||Override with Library Default Label|
|Manually applied, any priority||No|
|Automatically applied, lower priority||Yes|
|Automatically applied, higher priority||No|
|Default label from policy, lower priority||Yes|
|Default label from policy, higher priority||No|
Advanced Sites Content: Lifecycle Management
Advanced Lifecycle Management for site content includes:
Microsoft Syntex SharePoint Advanced Management Setup adds several more layers of security through sensitivity labels and policies addressing site and OneDrive restrictions, sensitive content access, blocking downloads, and group security. As an add-on, this suite of powerful features and tools provides seamless end-to-end compliance and security for additional content security and prevention of data loss.
As mentioned in our previous article Microsoft 365: Microsoft Syntex Updates Part 1, Microsoft continues to leverage AI and machine learning to develop and enhance an end-to-end Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) solution for its customers.
Previously, we reviewed Syntex updates for Content Assembly, Translation, Summarization, Optical Character Recognition (OCR), Taxonomy Tagging, Image Tagging, and the new preview features for Pay-as-You-Go customers. In this article, we continue our journey of discovering the latest updates to Syntex with Intelligent Document Processing.
Intelligent Document Processing
As part of the IDP solution, Syntex integrates AI from Microsoft AI Builder, Microsoft Azure, and other Microsoft sources, to bring structure to content. Content can be tagged with extracted data, classified, and with the application of sensitivity and retention labels, can be secured. Content is seamlessly transformed into knowledge as the taxonomy tags and labels are integrated into Microsoft Viva Topics.
By understanding, categorizing, and tagging content, Document Processing encompasses the ability to analyze, navigate, and secure data through its data processing services. There are two model types in Microsoft Syntex including Custom Models and Prebuilt Models. Custom Models consist of Structured, Freeform, and Unstructured Document Processing. Prebuilt Models include Contract, Invoice, and Receipt processing.
There are three document processing services for custom models and the custom model that will be used is determined by the types of files that are used, the structure and format of the files, and where the model is to be applied. The Custom Models can be visualized in the image below:
The Custom Models include:
What is a Prebuilt Model? A prebuilt document processing model has already been trained for specific structured documents and can be used when a Custom Model is not required. The Prebuilt Models can be visualized in the image below:
The Prebuilt Models include:
Content from these processes, as well as the ones discussed in Microsoft 365: Microsoft Syntex Updates Part 1, can be electronically reviewed and signed with Syntex eSignature alongside Adobe Acrobat Sign or DocuSign. Content remains within Microsoft 365, keeping it safe and secure.
Designed to connect your content and powered by AI and technology, Syntex will help users discover and reuse content through search, efficiently streamline business processes with its integration into workflows, manage content with taxonomies and document processes, and the prevention of data loss through compliance and the capabilities of eSignature. Microsoft Syntex innovates and raises the standard of Content AI technology.
Microsoft continues to leverage AI and machine learning to develop and enhance an end-to-end Intelligent Document Processing (IDP) solution for its customers. The solution is Microsoft Syntex and through its time of development, implementation, and dynamic responses to global organization requirements, it has been receiving upgrades and expanding in new directions for greater content understanding, compliance, and processing.
Syntex is a new type of technology solution and is categorized as Content AI. Content AI not only automates workflows at scale but also empowers people using advancements in both cloud technology and AI. By combining both technologies and integrating them into the workflow of users, the creation, processing, and discoverability of content is transformed into a people-centric system making collaboration, knowledge, creativity, and sharing seamless and at everyone’s fingertips.
This fall, Microsoft announced many new updates to Syntex including Content Assembly, Translate Content, Summarization, Optical Character Recognition (OCR), Taxonomy Tagging, Image Tagging, and new previews for Pay-as-You-Go users that include content queries and universal annotations. In our next article, Microsoft Syntex Updates Part 2, we will dive into the latest Intelligent Document Processing models. Syntex will help organizations enhance, connect, and manage their content at scale while providing users seamless, intuitive, and easy access to content.
Let’s review the announcements this fall of what is released and what is to come.
New Content Creation
With Content Assembly, dynamic templates for a wide range of content can be created effortlessly. The format, whether it is invoices, letters, contracts, or statements of work, can be generated by existing documents and the data can be populated from a variety of sources. Microsoft Syntex can be leveraged to automatically generate repetitive and standard business documents, including contracts, agreements, letters of consent, etc. With these documents, modern templates with fewer errors can be used to generate accurate documents.
An existing document can be uploaded to create a modern template. This in turn can generate new content using SharePoint Lists as a data source or manual entries can be used.
Images, Audio, and Video Processing
One of the most common file types in Microsoft 365 is images. With close to 100,000 automatically recognized objects “out of the box”, images can now be processed and tagged.
Currently in Preview, content selected from single or multiple documents, or a folder, can be translated into one of a dozen languages that you specify.
Important data and action items are summarized into key points by Syntex which leverages AI to generate these content summaries. This can be accomplished by the application of rules or on demand.
Syntex Optical Character Recognition (OCR)
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) provides easy access to a digital version of scanned text by extracting text lines, words, paragraphs, and text blocks. With Syntex OCR service, the extraction of printed or handwritten text from images, including product labels, drawings, posters, forms, invoices, articles, and reports can now be attained. The extracted information can be made for compliance features including data loss prevention (DLP) and will be indexed in search.
With OCR service enabled and images added to the document library, Syntex will automatically scan the image files. It will then extract the relevant text. Once extracted, it will make the text from the images available for indexing and searching, allowing users to quickly and accurately find keywords and phrases.
In addition to image-only files, it now includes TIFF and PDF, in SharePoint, OneDrive, Exchange, Windows devices, and Teams messages. IT admins can secure these images across the platforms with DLP policies.
Syntex Taxonomy Tagging
Leveraging AI, Syntex Taxonomy Tagging labels and organized documents by automatically tagging them with descriptive keywords. These keywords are based on the taxonomy as defined in SharePoint. By enabling taxonomy tagging and applying a taxonomy column, documents are automatically tagged with keywords. These keywords are from the term store and assist with sorting, searching, filtering, and more. Categorizing, finding, and managing files in the document libraries is easier, more efficient, and labor-reducing.
Syntex Image Tagging
An AI-powered service, Syntex Image Tagging labels and organizes images with automatic tagging of descriptive keywords to the images. These tags are then stored as metadata which is then used to filter, optimize search, filter, and manage the images. Syntex Image Tagging allows faster categorization and search of a specific image.
New Features in Preview for Syntex Pay-As-You-Go Users
Available through June 30, 2024, Syntex Pay-As-You-Go Users will have access to all Syntex features that were previously only available to customers with the SharePoint Syntex seat license.
These Pay-As-You-Go user services include:
When there is content compliance, all content that is properly tagged and labeled will provide better compliance control with increased management and governance for all data, keeping it manageable and secure.
These new features are not only exciting but also set the path for Content AI. By combining technology and intelligent AI, Microsoft Syntex is creating a world of content management that is sleek, controllable, collaborative, and secure. Microsoft Syntex steps beyond the boundaries of content management with Intelligent Document Processing through the integration of AI, workflows, and knowledge as explained in our next article Microsoft Syntex Updates Part 2.